Egypt's foreign reserves jumped in July to their highest in 20 months, the central bank said yesterday, boosted by $5 billion that Gulf states sent to Egypt after the army removed Islamist President Mohamed Mursi from power on July 3.
Reserves stood at $18.88bn at the end of July, up from $14.92bn a month earlier.
The figure is the highest since November 2011, but it nonetheless shows that Egypt continues to bleed foreign currency to defend the Egyptian pound.
Part of the drain was due to a payment of about $650 million Egypt had to pay in July to service Paris Club debt, according to another economist.
The country has run through more than $20bn in reserves, borrowed billions from abroad and delayed payments to oil companies to support its currency since its popular uprising in early 2011 frightened away tourists and foreign investors and the dollars they brought with them.