Egypt’s Minister of Finance, Mohamed Moeit, ståressed that his decision to liberalise the custom dollar for non-essential products and goods is to protect the national industry sector, and to boost the state’s efforts to depend on manufacturing instead of importing.
Moeit informed Daily News Egypt in an exclusive interview that the allegations of some importers that this step has come in response to some businesspersons and manufacturers is completely incorrect. He explained the actual reasons behind taking this decision were to protect the domestic industry, offer more job vacancies, and ensure a fair competition exists between local products and imported ones.
“The economic reforms and its consequences on Egypt’s economic performance and its improvement prompted us to choose such a decision, and this step is a good one in order to boost the economic reforms goals and stimulate the domestic industry for it to become as a main source of national income and to strengthen the confidence in the Egyptian economy”, Moeit stated.
In parallel with this decision, according to Moeit, the ministry of finance has decided to maintain the custom dollar for essential, strategic, standard, and semi-finished products and goods at LE16, thus the purpose is not to increase revenues, but to further develop the Egyptian market.
“To set the custom dollar rate previously at a fixed price was an exceptional condition due to the fact that the Egyptian economy was on its way towards recovery, as the normal step in this case is that custom dollar rate is set according to the announced exchange rate determined by Central Bank of Egypt. So, the market is currently experiencing its natural direction, especially that this is the direction that is applied in all countries worldwide”, Moeit clarified.
Nevertheless, if the new direction negatively affects any listed non-essential imported products, after its practical application, we will transfer the affected product to the list of essential products and set its custom dollar rate at EGP 16. We will deal with the matter with absolute flexibility, Moeit explained.
The ministry of finance took this decision, in coordination with all concerned bodies, depending on a detailed research of the local market, aiming to improve the living standard of citizens, and to stabilise the price of commodities, concluded Moeit.