Suez Canal investment certificates will be issued during the next week, Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) Governor Hisham Ramez announced late Monday.
Ramez added that the certificates would not influence the bank’s savings rate or the country’s liquidity.
The CBE governor added that the investment certificates are financing instruments that are easily managed and transmitted between banks. He added that the certificates will be issued at government banks only, including the National Bank of Egypt, Banque Misr and Banque du Caire .
On Monday, a finance ministry official said administrative matters and law revisions are behind the delays announcing the certificates’ issuance.
On 18 August, Finance Minister Hany Kadry Dimian announced that a maximum limit will not be applied to Egyptians who seek to acquire investment certificates for the expansion of the canal. The minister added that several Egyptian companies will be permitted to purchase the certificates under certain regulations.
The government’s sudden decision to shift the financing of the project from shares to investment certificates has raised public scepticism. Some experts believe that investment certificates were selected for their easier regulations and attractive interest rate.
The certificates, agreed upon by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi as a source of financing the new Suez Canal project, will be issued through public sector banks over a period of five years. The certificates come with 12% interest rates, which Ramez said was the highest interest rate to lure participation in the project.
He also said that Egypt will pay the $0.5bn it owes to Qatar by the beginning of October.