Egypt considers selling real estate units in US dollars to foreigners, expats

Ahram Online , Friday 24 Nov 2023

Egypt is considering selling real estate units in US dollars to foreigners and expatriates in a collaborative initiative with the private sector, according to a Cabinet statement released on Thursday.

New Administrative Capital. Al-Ahram.
New Administrative Capital. Al-Ahram.


Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly discussed the proposed real estate initiative in an extensive meeting with top-ranking finance and housing officials.

This initiative is expected to become a “pivotal source” of foreign currency, Madbouly commented.

Attendees at the meeting highlighted the initiative's potential to significantly enhance the performance of the Egyptian Exchange, expedite growth in the New Administrative Capital and similar new cities, and bolster domestic real estate demand.

An agreement was reached on the terms of the initiative, with Madbouly leading the creation of a first draft.

Similar initiatives were previously launched by the Egyptian government in 2022 and 2023. These initiatives allowed foreigners to purchase real estate without restrictions and enabled expatriates to import cars to Egypt duty-free.

Egypt is currently experiencing a severe US dollar liquidity crunch. Approximately $20 billion in hot money has fled the local market, seeking higher interest rates offered by other markets due to tighter monetary policies.

In response to the complex economic situation, the government announced a plan to collect $191 billion through 2026. The plan includes gradually expanding on its initial public offering (IPO) program and the introduction of additional incentives for foreign investors, such as tax exemptions and golden licenses.

Additionally, Egypt is working to fulfill its commitments under a $3 billion loan program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). This involves implementing flexible regimes for both exchange and interest rates, aligning with private sector standards, enhancing the role of the private sector in the economy, and accelerating the pace of IPOs.

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