Egypt’s state banks helping to support bourse against coronavirus impact

State-owned banks National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr are pumping 3 billion Egyptian pounds ($190.4 million) into companies listed on the country’s stock exchange, a move to counter the economic impact of the coronavirus crisis.

Each bank has injected 1.5 billion pounds, said Akef El-Maghraby, vice chairman of Banque Misr, said in a statement on Thursday.

Egypt’s central bank has been unveiling a range of stimulus measures to buffer the impact of the coronavirus on the national economy.

It has on Monday made an emergent cut – its largest ever – in key interest rates by 300 basis points, and has also given businesses and individuals a six-month grace period for credit repayments and canceled ATM withdrawal fees for the same period.

The Egyptian government announced on Tuesday cutting a tax on dividends for companies listed on its stock exchange by half to 5 percent and lowering a stamp duty on stock market transactions, in an attempt to ease the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Saturday announced the allocation of 100 billion Egyptian pounds ($6.4 billion) to combat the spread of the flu-like virus.

To date, Egypt has reported 210 coronavirus cases, including six deaths.