The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) will return USD 2.5 billion in deposits to Qatar this year as requested by the Gulf Arab state, Governor Hisham Ramez told Zawya.
“The central bank is ready to settle USD 500 million at the beginning of October and there is another USD 2 billion due at the beginning of November. We are ready to repay them as scheduled,” the central bank governor said.
Qatar, who had been a firm backer of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi, lent or gave Egypt USD 7.5 billion during the year he was in power. But relations between the two countries deteriorated after the army ousted Mursi in July 2013.
Egypt returned some USD 3 billion to Qatar between July 2013 and March 2014, according to the Egyptian finance ministry.
“The central bank is prepared to return Qatar’s deposits at the specified time,” Ramez said.
“Egypt is committed to repaying all its external debt and has not delayed payment despite the difficult economic circumstances.”
Egypt’s total external public debt stood at USD 45.3 billion in March 2014, according to finance ministry data released this month. The percentage of foreign debt to GDP was 15.5%.
Foreign reserves stood at USD 16.737 billion in July 2014.
Egypt has received billions of dollars in aid from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait since the army ousted Mursi.
Gulf aid to Egypt during the period from July to December 2013 amounted to USD 10.7 billion, according to the finance ministry.
Source : Zawya 2014