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Al Baraka Bank Egypt and EG-Bank Suspend Cash Withdrawals Abroad

January 20, 2024

Facing a hard currency shortage, Al Baraka Bank Egypt and EG-Bank have joined other Egyptian banks in temporarily restricting international credit card cash withdrawals.

For international purchases, EG-Bank caps credit card spending at EGP 3,000, while Al Baraka allows higher transactions of EGP 7,750.

To protect valuable foreign currency, Egyptian banks have clamped down on overseas spending using Egyptian credit cards.

Last week, the Commercial International Bank (CIB), Egypt’s largest private bank, announced that it has reduced foreign currency withdrawal and purchase limits for its credit cards.

CIB caps monthly foreign currency purchases at EGP 15,000 for entry-level cards and EGP 100,000 for top-tier options.

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank Egypt has also significantly reduced international cash withdrawal limits for its credit cards. Effective immediately, cardholders can only withdraw a maximum of EGP 1,545 per month, compared to the previous range of EGP 3,090 daily and EGP 15,453 monthly.

In December 2023, HSBC’s recent forecast anticipated a devaluation to EGP 40-45 against the US dollar in the first quarter of 2024, potentially straining Egypt’s import costs and impacting local purchasing power.

The Egyptian economy is currently under pressure as the US dollar continues its upward climb in the black market, reaching EGP 57 per dollar and poised to breach the EGP 60 mark.

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