The Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) has revealed an increase in foreign exchange receipts in Egypt to reach $104.3bn in 2016/17 with an increase of $17.3bn from 2015/16, by 19.9%.
In its annual report on the receipts and payments of foreign exchange in Egypt which was issued on Wednesday, the CAPMAS explained that these increases came as a result of increasing direct incoming transfers to buy T-bills by foreign investors, reaching up to $7.5bn in 2016/17, compared to $19,000 in 2015/16. This came with the developments in the exchange rate of the local currency after the liberalisation of the exchange rate in November 2016.
“In the same pattern, transfers to purchase securities, stocks, and bonds from foreigners have increased. Additionally, incoming transfers for exporting foreign banknotes increased from $5bn to $9.4bn, at the same time the foreign income from transportation and travel increased,” the CAPMAS said.
The agency pointed out that the structure of foreign exchange receipts was affected by the liberalisation of the exchange rate, as the percentage of receipts from various investments increased to 27% during 2016/17, compared to 19.3% in 2015/16.
Within the same timeframe, the receipts of commodity exports declined to reach 16.2%, compared to 17.5%, and Arab’s bank accounts accounted for 12.8%, compared to 15.6%. The remittances of Egyptians abroad represented 16.7%, compared to 19.6%.
According to the agency, the main revenue items accounted for 72.7% of the total receipts in 2016/17.
It pointed out that foreign exchange earnings during 2016/17 were most present in terms of geographical diversity in the Arab region, accounting for 41.5% of the total receipts, with a value of $43.3bn. These countries are topped by Saudi Arabia with receipts of $19.2bn, followed by the UAE, with receipts of $10.5bn.
Europe accounts for 23.2% of the total receipts, with a value of $24.2bn, these countries are topped by the United Kingdom with $9.1bn, followed by Germany with $3.0bn.
Finally, North American countries come with receipts of $22.3bn, with the US accounting for about $22bn.
On the other hand, the agency revealed that total outgoing foreign exchange from Egypt increased to $90.3bn in 2016/17, an increase of $6.5bn compared to the year 2015/16, which is an increase of 7.7%.
The increase in foreign payments was due to the high value of loan instalments owed to international institutions, reaching $22.3bn, compared with $17.2bn.
Moreover, it pointed out that the structure of foreign exchange payments was not affected by the exchange rate liberalisation measures. The ratio of commodity imports’ payments declined by 55.1% during 2016/17, compared to 60.5% in 2015/16, a decline of $0.9bn.
Notably, foreign exchange payments to Egypt during 2016/17 were most present in terms of geographical diversity in European countries, accounting for 40.7% of the total payments, with a value of $36.8bn. The United Kingdom tops these countries with payments of $7.8bn, followed by Germany with $5bn.
The Arab region came second, accounting for 17.8% of the total payments with $16.1bn. These countries are topped by the UAE with payments of $5.6bn, followed by Saudi Arabia with payments of $4.6bn.
As for North American countries, these came third with a value of payments worth $9.3bn. These countries are topped by the USA by $8.9bn.
“The value of monetary transactions, receipts and payments with the COMESA countries doubled to reach $2.2bn in 2016/17, compared to $1.2bn in 2015/16, a rise of 90.2%,” according to the agency.
It explained that this increase was influenced by the general trend toward strengthening relations with African countries, while the balance of monetary transactions shifts from positive to negative, due to the sharp decline in the balance of transactions with Libya the direction of investments becoming from Egypt to Libya to utilise the reconstruction works in Libya.