The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) decided to raise the cap on maximum deposits in foreign currency in banks to $250,000 a month, or its equivalent in other foreign currencies.
The cap was previously $50,000, and has been changed in accord with the new instructions received by banks Tuesday. This decision applies only to companies to facilitate the import operations of main and basic commodities.
Daily News Egypt exclusively published news on 10 January that the Coordinating Council was considering raising the ceiling for foreign currency deposits for companies but leaving it in place for individuals.
The decision applies exclusively to companies that import basic rations or food commodities, machinery, production equipment and spare parts, intermediate goods, production inputs, raw materials, medicines, vaccines, and chemicals needed for their industries.
CBE set a maximum limit for foreign currency deposits for individuals and companies at banks on February 2015 of $10,000 a day and not exceeding $50,000 monthly. Because of this decision, the CBE was attacked by the business community, especially from importers of non-basic commodities since this decision limited their ability to finance import operations, especially since banks do not finance the import of such commodities.
The CBE’s new instructions stipulated raising the maximum limit for dollar deposits for juridical persons to meet requirements for import operations up to $250,000 a month without a maximum daily deposit.
The decision does not apply to natural persons that import goods other than those mentioned above. The CBE allowed companies to defer a part or all of the non-utilised balance of cash deposits during one month for use in the following month.