The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) has extended some of its precautionary measures against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic for an extra six months.
This will see the precautions in place until 31 December 2021, rather than 1 July.
The move comes as part of the strategy set up by the National Payments Council, headed by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, and continues the CBE’s efforts against the pandemic.
The extensions apply to: exempting customers from all local currency bank transfer service expenses and commissions; the free issuance of electronic wallets; cancelling all commissions and fees for transfers between mobile phone accounts and transfers between mobile phone and bank accounts; and the free issuance of prepaid cards to citizens, provided that these cards are contactless.
The exemptions additionally apply to cancelling fees and commissions for cash withdrawal operations, provided that the card issuing bank bears those fees and commissions, and this does not include credit card returns.
These decisions also cover cancellation fees and commissions for cash withdrawal operations on pension cards, with the CBE bearing the cash withdrawal expenses for these cards from ATMs, with a value of EGP 60-70m.
With regard to online e-payments, the decisions also include the continued cancellation of all fees for activating e-collection services via the Internet (E-Commerce).
The CBE confirmed it will continue closely monitoring all developments on the global and local arenas, to intervene immediately by taking appropriate measures to protect the national economy, revitalise the market, and maintain banking and monetary stability.