The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) said that the remittances of Egyptian expatriates increased by $1.2bn to $23.3bn during the period from January to November 2018, compared to $22.1bn in the same period in 2017, a 5.7% growth.
The remittances are among the most important foreign exchange (FX) resources in Egypt, along with revenues from the Suez Canal, tourism, and exports.
Before the liberalisation of the local currency on 3 November 2016, the majority of these remittances went to the informal market due to the large difference in the US dollar price between the formal and informal markets at the time.
The measures adopted by the CBE, most prominently, liberalising the exchange rate and increasing interest rates on savings in Egyptian pound, managed to attract remittances to the banking sector, which supported the foreign currency levels in the banks operating in the Egyptian market. This subsequently led to an increase in FX reserves to record levels that Egypt had not seen before.