Egypt's Central Bank blamed for dollar supply
The sale price for dollars has reached EL3.68 in the foreign exchange market, prompting some to blame the Central Bank for the drop in dollars available, a newspaper reported.
The bank is "ignoring the [liquidity] crisis" by not pumping a sufficient amount of dollars from their foreign currency reserves into the market, sources from foreign exchange bureaus told The Wafd, Cairo's leading opposition daily.
The sources, that requested anonymity, warned of a continuing price rise in the U.S. currency and of "increasing pressures on forex bureaus on behalf of their [the Bank's] clients."
Meanwhile, some banks have announced their plans to make dollars available to clients who want to open letters of credit in order to export in an attempt to bolster Egypt's flagging balance of trade.
In return, they will receive a commission from abroad for arranging the transaction.
Also, the Central Bank has decided to implement a new system for monitoring foreign exchange offices, which they suspect of selling dollars at rates other than the official one.
Two inspectors will investigate dollar transactions in local sirafas (forex bureaus), where, according to the The Wafd report, they will check the company's "statistical lists for transactions." Forex bureau chiefs have condemned the intrusive manner of the proposed inspections.
Meanwhile, market performance on the Cairo and Alexandria Bourse has hit a four-year low as uncertainty over the government's foreign exchange policy has "affected the investor outlook in recent months. –(Albawaba-MEBG)
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)