This report was prepared in order to answer the questions we are getting about the status of importing goods into Egypt in light of the current economic situation.
- 13 Feb 2022, the CBE (Central Bank of Egypt) issued a decree obligating all importing companies to open Letter of credit (LC) for all imports and to deposit 120% of the total invoice amount in advance pending the LC issuance, this unprecedented measure caused a major shock to the importing community as they were given only 9 days to comply (deadline was 22 Feb 2022)
- Essential food stuff and medicine (priority list) were given an exemption to work using the old system of deferred payments plus foreign entities and express shipments (DHL , Aramex ...etc) not exceeding 50KG
- On 21 March 2022, the Egyptian pound was devalued by 15% and its value kept decreasing for the coming period
- On 10 May 2022 and after repeated protest from Industry unions, Raw materials were exempt from the LC rule with careful inspection from the bank to avoid manipulation, production lines were not given a priority as of the date of this update.
- By mid May 2022 Companies were not allowed to use foreign currency in their accounts to import goods unless they receive it from export of goods or services.
- On 10 August, the exemption list was expanded to include more raw materials and industry needs, however the foreign currency availability became scarce even for the essentials
- 17 August 2022 the head of the Central bank of Egypt (Mr. Tarek Amer) resigned amid reported disputes with internal and external entities like the IMF
- On 18 August 2022 a new deputy head was appointed (Mr. Hassan Abdallah) to lead the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE)
Hopefully the new Central Bank of Egypt leadership will manage to solve the current crisis