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Egypt’s Zero-Customs Car Import Initiative Attracts Billions from Expats

May 6, 2024
Photo Source: Ahram Online

Egypt’s Minister of Emigration and Expatriates Affairs Soha Gendy announced that payment orders totaling USD 1.97 billion (EGP 94 billion) have been issued for beneficiaries of the zero-customs car import initiative on Saturday 4 May. 

As of now, approximately USD 799 million (EGP 38 billion) has been transferred into Egypt, Gendy confirmed.

Since its launch in October 2022, payment orders have been issued for 602,277 cars, with 29,475 vehicles already released from customs. 

Although the two-phase scheme officially concluded on April 30, the government has granted a 30-day grace period for individuals who faced difficulties in transferring the required deposit after registering.

The initiative allows expatriates to bring one personal-use vehicle to Egypt from abroad without incurring customs duties or taxes, including value-added tax (VAT). 

Egyptians living abroad are required to make a five-year bank deposit in foreign currency. 

Upon completion of the five years, expatriates can withdraw their deposited funds in Egyptian pounds (rather than the foreign currency they deposited) based on the prevailing exchange rate at the time of withdrawal, enabling them to import their vehicles without customs charges.

This initiative forms a component of Egypt’s broader strategy to bolster foreign currency inflows into the economy. 

Egypt currently seeks to attract more foreign currency for economic stability, as it tries to enhance the value of the national currency and mitigate inflation. 

Due to the global increase in commodity prices and disruptions in the global supply chain, Egypt has experienced double-digit inflation for nearly two years. As a response, the Central Bank of Egypt has taken measures to address this issue by raising key interest rates in order to curb the rising inflationary pressures.

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