War in Gaza pushes Egypt's gold prices 12.4 percent higher in two weeks

Muhammed Khalid , Sunday 22 Oct 2023

Gold prices in Egypt increased by 12.42 percent since the start of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict on 7 October, reflecting uncertainty among investors.

Two women in front of a Jewellery store in Cairo.
Two women in front of a Jewellery store in Cairo. Ahram Gate.


"The key reason behind the recent jumps in gold prices is the Palestinian-Israeli conflict which caused feelings of uncertainty in global markets, leading gold to approach $2,000 per ounce," Fady Kamel, the CEO of the investment group at Dahab Masr, told Ahram Online.

The purchasing per-gram price of 24-karat gold in the Egyptian market increased from about EGP 2,482 on 7 October to EGP 2,790.38 on 22 October.  

Globally, gold prices surged by about 8 percent between 7 and 22 October, reaching around $1,981 per ounce.

"The local market has mirrored movement in the global market. However, the market has become more price adaptive and will avoid repeating the instability followed the eruption of the Ukrainian-Russian war last year," Kamel explained.

Due to a surge in local demand, triggered by the rumours of devaluation, gold prices soared in Egypt earlier this year, with 24-karat prices surpassing EGP 3,000 per gram.

To contain the market, the Egyptian government approved in May 2023 a draft decree exempting travellers carrying gold from customs duties and other fees -- except value-added tax (VAT) -- for a period of six months.

The initiative, which is set to end in November, brought around 1.5 tons of gold into the Egyptian market according to Nagi Farag, gold trade advisor to the Minister of Supply and Internal Trade.


What should investors do?

Returning to Kamel, Dahab Masr's CEO advises investors to diversify their portfolios and invest between 30 and 40 percent in gold.

He expects the price of the 24-karat gold to break above EGP 2,800 per gram in the short range.

"Investors should also avoid speculation when trading gold, as the yellow metal is a long-term investment to hedge against the devaluation of liquidity," Kamel said.

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