Three billion Egyptian pounds were raised on the first day of selling Suez Canal investment certificates to the public, Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) Governor Hisham Ramez said on Thursday.
The four assigned banks began selling five-year Suez Canal investment certificates and raised a total of EGP 3 billion (USD 419.5 million) in the first working day.
The investment certificates issued are offered in three classifications: EGP 10, EGP 100, and EGP 1000.
“Revenues from the 10 EGP and 100 EGP certificates will be paid after five years, while the 1,000 EGP certificates will be paid quarterly,” Ramez said at a press conference Sunday.
The investment certificates, which have an interest rate of 12 percent, will be used to finance the new Suez Canal project and is expected to raise the project’s revenue to USD 13 billion.
The Central Bank Governor added that about 1,000 branches across the country will offer the certificates for citizens until 6 p.m., mentioning that he expects the turnout from Egyptians on the certificates to be ‘great.’
The government hopes to raise EGP 60 billion worth of revenue to fund the project through the certificate, which aims to expand the capacity of the Suez Canal, and will continue to sell certificates until their goal is achieved.
Earlier this year, Egypt’s Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority announced the construction of a new Suez Canal, which will involve 35 kilometers of dry digging, and the expansion and deepening of another 37 kilometers.
The project aims to attract more ships and boost the country’s income. Egypt’s Suez Canal brings in USD 5 billion annually and is a major contributor to Egypt’s economy, which was suffered since the 2011 revolution.