CAIRO: Minister of Finance Hany Qadry issues decrees that will destroy investments in Egypt and its economy, founder of Free Egyptians Party businessman tycoon Naguib Sawiris said in an interview on Kalam Ala Masolity program Saturday.
The government should provide a convenient climate in the market and not to scare businessmen from these decrees.
The law of imposing new taxes on capital gains is a right decision but made in the wrong time, Sawiris added and that the ministry should have waited for Egypt’s capital to revive since currently it is facing major losses.
President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi issued a decree early July to amend some provisions of the Income Tax Law and Stamp Duty Law, according to a presidential statement.
This decision comes amid efforts to revive Egypt’s limping economy, which faces “tough challenges that require united efforts to protect it and reinstate confidence in it,” according to the presidential statement.
Qadry previously announced he would amend the tax system by imposing progressive taxes, wealth taxes, and real estate taxes as steps to cover the budget deficit and increase Egypt’s tax revenues.
The ministry should have held social dialogue before applying the law to know its impact on the market, Sawiris said.
The private sector in Egypt works on providing 65 to 70 percent of job opportunities in Egypt, Sawiris said, in addition to revenues they provide to the country in the form of taxes and customs that represent about 55 to 60 percent of gross national products.
“With all due respect to the state and public sector, the country is an unsuccessful manager,” Sawiris said, adding that half of those who work in public sector are “corrupt.”
During the rule of former President Hosni Mubarak, several projects were implemented, including mobile companies and cement factories that provide major labor. Mobinil and Vodafone companies used to pay 2.5 to 3 billion EGP for fees only, in addition to the taxes and customs that reached about 10 billion EGP per year.
Sawiris is one of the most prominent businessmen in Egypt, listed in Forbes magazine as the 374th richest person in the world.