Investment in Egypt has halted as the country grapples with a shortage of hard currency. Asmaa Waguih / Reuters
Investment in Egypt has halted as the country grapples with a shortage of hard currency. Asmaa Waguih / Reuters

UAE to provide Egypt central bank with six-year, $1 billion deposit

The UAE will provide a US$1 billion deposit to Egypt’s central bank as the country looks to boost funds to meet the IMF’s loan requirements.

The deal was signed by Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, director general of the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, and Egypt’s central bank governor, Tarek Amer, giving Egypt six years to repay the loan, according to WAM.

Earlier this month the IMF said it had reached an initial agreement with Egypt for a three-year $12bn extended fund facility which would help the foreign exchange and decrease the budget deficit. However, the lender’s executive board said that it would not consider the loan until Egypt secured about $6bn from other creditors.

Investment in Egypt has halted as the country grapples with a shortage of hard currency. Egypt’s Naeem Brokerage said that the country will need billions of dollars a year just to get its head back above water.

Allen Sandeep, director of research at Naeem Brokerage, said that about $10bn in cash injections annually will be needed to come from a variety of sources including the IMF, World Bank, African Development Bank, international bond issuances plus with a “little help from the GCC”.

The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have spent billions of dollars supporting the Abdel Fattah El Sisi regime. And earlier this year, both the UAE and Saudi Arabia committed over $7bn in aid to Egypt.

But questions remain as to when the GCC deposits would actually arrive.

Mr Sandeep said that it should be sooner rather than later. “But whether this continued support from the GCC will follow through into next year or 2018/2019 will depend on their internal circumstances that hinge on the price of oil,” he said.

Saudi Arabia is losing about $10bn per month in revenues because of the drop in oil, which is hovering around US$50 a barrel from highs two years ago of at $110 a barrel. And while the UAE is feeling some pain from the drop in oil, it is still better positioned because it has a smaller population. “As things stand, at current [oil] prices, it will be difficult to predict any large deposits from the GCC,” Mr Sandeep said.

And tapping development financial institutions will not be an easy road for Egypt as there will be strict requirements to obtain these soft loans.

Chris Jarvis, head of the IMF’s mission to Egypt, said that Egypt’s fiscal policy will be anchored to placing public debt on a “clearly declining path toward more sustainable levels” dropping from 98 per cent this year to about 88 per cent of GDP in 2018/2019 fiscal year.

“The government recognises the need for quick implementation of economic reforms for Egypt to restore macroeconomic stability and to support strong, sustainable and job-rich growth,” said Mr Jarvis.

Follow The National's Business section on Twitter


Barcelona 2

Suarez 85', Messi 86'

Atletico Madrid 0

Red card: Diego Costa 28' (Atletico)

How to get exposure to gold

Although you can buy gold easily on the Dubai markets, the problem with buying physical bars, coins or jewellery is that you then have storage, security and insurance issues.

A far easier option is to invest in a low-cost exchange traded fund (ETF) that invests in the precious metal instead, for example, ETFS Physical Gold (PHAU) and iShares Physical Gold (SGLN) both track physical gold. The VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF invests directly in mining companies.

Alternatively, BlackRock Gold & General seeks to achieve long-term capital growth primarily through an actively managed portfolio of gold mining, commodity and precious-metal related shares. Its largest portfolio holdings include gold miners Newcrest Mining, Barrick Gold Corp, Agnico Eagle Mines and the NewMont Goldcorp.

Brave investors could take on the added risk of buying individual gold mining stocks, many of which have performed wonderfully well lately.

London-listed Centamin is up more than 70 per cent in just three months, although in a sign of its volatility, it is down 5 per cent on two years ago. Trans-Siberian Gold, listed on London's alternative investment market (AIM) for small stocks, has seen its share price almost quadruple from 34p to 124p over the same period, but do not assume this kind of runaway growth can continue for long

However, buying individual equities like these is highly risky, as their share prices can crash just as quickly, which isn't what what you want from a supposedly safe haven.


Starring: Lupita Nyong'o, Joseph Quinn, Djimon Hounsou

Director: Michael Sarnoski

Rating: 4/5


5pm: Wathba Stallions Cup Maiden (PA) Dh 70,000 (Dirt) 1,000m, Winner: Hazeem Al Raed, Antonio Fresu (jockey), Ahmed Al Shemaili (trainer)

5.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh 85,000 (D) 1,000m, Winner: Ghazwan Al Khalediah, Hugo Lebouc, Helal Al Alawi

6pm: Maiden (PA) Dh 70,000 (D) 1,400m, Winner: Dinar Al Khalediah, Patrick Cosgrave, Helal Al Alawi.

6.30pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 70,000 (D) 1,600m, Winner: Faith And Fortune, Sandro Paiva, Ali Rashid Al Raihe.

7pm: Maiden (PA) Dh 70,000 (D) 1,600m, Winner: Only Smoke, Bernardo Pinheiro, Abdallah Al Hammadi.

7.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh 70,000 (D) 1,600m, Winner: AF Ramz, Saif Al Balushi, Khalifa Al Neyadi.

8pm: Maiden (PA) Dh 70,000 (D) 2,000m, Winner: AF Mass, Tadhg O’Shea, Ernst Oertel.

Our family matters legal consultant

Name: Hassan Mohsen Elhais

Position: legal consultant with Al Rowaad Advocates and Legal Consultants.

3 Body Problem

Creators: David Benioff, D B Weiss, Alexander Woo

Starring: Benedict Wong, Jess Hong, Jovan Adepo, Eiza Gonzalez, John Bradley, Alex Sharp

Rating: 3/5

If you go

The flights Etihad ( and Spice Jet ( fly direct from Abu Dhabi and Dubai to Pune respectively from Dh1,000 return including taxes. Pune airport is 90 minutes away by road. 

The hotels A stay at Atmantan Wellness Resort ( costs from Rs24,000 (Dh1,235) per night, including taxes, consultations, meals and a treatment package.


Name: SmartCrowd
Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

Petrarch: Everywhere a Wanderer
Christopher Celenza,
Reaktion Books

Our family matters legal consultant

Name: Hassan Mohsen Elhais

Position: legal consultant with Al Rowaad Advocates and Legal Consultants.

The Specs

Engine: 1.6-litre 4-cylinder petrol
Power: 118hp
Torque: 149Nm
Transmission: Six-speed automatic
Price: From Dh61,500
On sale: Now

The Little Mermaid

Director: Rob Marshall
Stars: Halle Bailey, Jonah Hauer-King, Melissa McCarthy, Javier Bardem
Rating: 2/5


Director: Meshal Al Jaser

Starring: Adwa Bader, Yazeed Almajyul, Khalid Bin Shaddad

Rating: 4/5