Finance Ministry to lower customs exchange rate to EGP 16 

Shaimaa Al-Aees
2 Min Read
The decision to float the Egyptian pound has stirred volatility in the Egyptian market.

The customs exchange rate will be lowered from EGP 16.25 to EGP 16 per US dollar for a month, due 1 September, Minister of Finance Amr El-Garhy told Reuters.

The customs exchange rate is used to calculate the value of fees paid by importers in the local currency for customs clearance of imported goods.

The minister attributed the decision to the depreciation of the customs exchange rate in line with the currency price’s downward movement over the last period.

On 30 July, the customs dollar exchange rate had been depreciated from EGP 16.5 to EGP 16.25 for a month, after four months of stabilisation.

Therefore, the ministry sets the exchange rate of the customs dollar each month.

Egypt began setting a monthly fixed customs exchange rate in January, following the flotation of its pound currency in November.

The dollar value at banks is estimated at an average of EGP 17.75/USD compared to EGP 17.95/USD a month ago.

Head of the Importers Division at the Cairo Chamber of Commerce Ahmed Shiha said that the increase is very tiny, as it doesn’t represent 0.5% of the cost.

Shiha told Daily News Egypt that the ideal value of the customs exchange rate is supposed to not exceed EGP 10/USD, which may represent a 30% to 35% decrease of its cost; therefore, importers may feel the development.

He demanded more decreases, because EGP 0.25 every month is very little compared to the increases in the dollar value after the liberalisation of exchange rate of the pound.

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