Egypt Stocks Gain EGP4.8bn in Week as Suez Canal Certificates Launched

In a week, Egypt’s stocks registered gains amounting to 4.8 billion Egyptian pounds powered by the release of the long-awaited investment certificates to fund the new waterway along the Suez Canal.

The country’s main stock index, EGX30 inched up by 2.27% in a week, with a surge of 215.38 points, ending Thursday’s transactions at 9650 points, versus 9435.05 points at the end of a week earlier.

The government seeks to collect EGP 60 billion ($8.4 billion), needed for the digging of the Suez Canal extension and six tunnels that will link the east and west banks of the canal.

The certificates have been released Thursday by four state-owned banks: Bank Misr, the National Bank of Egypt, Banque du Caire, and the Suez Canal Bank, attracting an “unprecedented” number of customers, according to Ramez.

On the first day of release, Egypt’s banks sold over EGP 6 billion (around $856 million) worth of investment certificates to fund the new waterway along the Suez Canal, said governor of central bank Hisham Ramez.

The certificates, limited to Egypt nationals and corporations, are issued at a value of EGP 10, EGP 100, EGP 1000 and its multiples, with a maturity of five years and a 12 percent interest rate.

There is no ceiling to the amount of certificates a single individual or corporation can acquire.

Egyptian expatriates can buy the certificates from banks overseas with ties to issuant banks in Egypt, in Egyptian pounds.