The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) finished preparing a draft law to update the CBE and the Banking System Law No. 88 of 2003, according to CBE Governor Tarek Amer.
Amer explained that the draft law was prepared in accordance with the best international practices in the banking business, following a number of visits to central banks, such as the Bank of England. He noted that it also used reviews of World Bank experts and from the International Monetary Fund.
He pointed out that the draft law will be sent to the Federation of Egyptian Banks to comment before submitting it to the board of the CBE to make the law a survey for the ambitions of developing the CBE and the banking sector business.
Amer had met on Tuesday evening with leaders of banks operating in Egypt, along with the senior officials of the CBE.
During the meeting, Amer noted that the role played by the banking sector to implement the CBE decision had a great impact on restoring the confidence in the banking sector. He added that this was praised by many international bodies, especially after unlocking the loan agreement with the IMF, the completion of the first review of the economic reform programme, and nearing the disbursement of the loan’s second tranche.
Amer also stressed the strength of the Egyptian banking sector highlighting the opinions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) experts, noting that the deal of selling Barclays Bank Egypt to Attijariwafa Bank reflects the possible expansion opportunities in the banking sector.
Amer also discussed the aspects of consolidating governance and internal oversight, noting that this begins with a strong independent board of directors that fulfills it role across different strategic trends to implement policies and monitor the performance of the administrative apparatus.
He stressed that the Egyptian banking sector is full of expertise and capacities that enable it to fulfill its role.
Moreover, Amer suggested that banks should open branches in the New Administrative Capital to make it an international financial hub.
In this regard, chairperson of the Arab African International Bank Hassan Abdalla suggested offering banks incentives to build branches there and attract international banks.
Amer also touched on the importance of banks’ support to the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and mico enterprises sector, as it is the way to build a strong economy, stating that it also supports economic growth rates.
Deputy CBE Governor Lobna Helal stressed the importance of the banks’ preparations to achieve financial inclusion and taking interest in financial education and awareness, highlighting the importance of the women’s role in improving the system, supporting the economy through enabling them financially.
In a different context, Amer said that Egypt paid $750m on Tuesday to international oil companies and is set to pay a similar amount in June.
During a press conference at the Cabinet’s headquarters, he noted that the Egyptian market collected $45bn since the flotation of the pound on 3 November 2016.
He added that the monetary measures that were taken recently were primarily directed towards the development of the country and not the prices of goods, noting that the hard currency shortage has ended and that prices will get back to normal next year.
He pointed out that the CBE aims to remove the $100,000 cap on transfers of individuals according to a timetable agreed upon with the IMF at the end of last year.