Egypt’s central bank injected $15.694 billion into the country’s banks from November through April through both regular weekly dollar auctions and exceptional auctions, a statement from the country’s presidency said on Tuesday.
During the same period, Egyptian banks provided $33.7 billion worth of foreign currency to meet the demands of importers, the statement said. It followed a meeting between President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and central bank governor Tarek Amer.
Egypt, which relies heavily on imports, has faced a dollar shortage since the popular uprising in 2011 drove away tourists and foreign investors, major sources of hard currency.
Since lifting restrictions on foreign currency deposits and transfers earlier this year, flows of foreign currency into domestic banks have increased ten-fold, Amer said.
The country’s net foreign reserves stood at $17.52 billion at the end of May, less than half the $36 billion it had before the 2011 uprising.
Egypt has depended on dollar grants from Arab Gulf allies to meet much of its dollar needs. Earlier this month, Egypt got the first $500 million tranche of a $2.5 billion grant from Saudi Arabia.