Egypt’s two largest state banks raise $23 bln since pound float decision

National Bank of Egypt (NBE) and Banque Misr, the country’s largest state banks, have collected around $23 billion since Egypt took the dramatic step of floating its pound last year.

Egypt’s central bank decided in November 2016 to freely float the pound and raise key interest rates as part of a set of reforms aimed at alleviating a dollar shortage and stabilising the national flagging economy.

NBE has raised $16 billion including remittances from expatriate Egyptians, deputy chairman Yehia Aboul Fotouh told Amwal Al Ghad.

“The bank has pumped $17 billion to cover import payments in form of letters of credits and documentary collections.” Aboul Fotouh

Banque Misr has collected around $7 billion since the floating of pound, all directed to finance trade and cover import payments, vice chairman Akef El Maghraby said.