spotted Egyptian banksIncreasing purchases of gold in dollars from individuals through shopping sites outside Egypt using direct debit or credit cards.
According to banking sources, banks have noticed the increasing use of credit and debit cards by customers in purchases of gold from foreign shopping sites and paying for them in dollars in amounts that are not commensurate with the customer’s uses, adding that a list of the owners of these cards is being prepared and sent to the Central Bank and public funds.
The sources stated that “the repeated practices of buying gold from abroad through foreign shopping platforms, and the draining of hard currency they cause, are among the behaviors of misusing cards that the Central Bank warned against,” quoting the Egyptian newspaper, “Al-Shorouk”.
She added that the demand for buying gold from abroad aims to achieve gains from the price difference between the local and foreign markets.
The price of gold in Egypt increased by 102.5% over the course of 2022, and the price of a 21-carat gram increased by 815 pounds, to rise to 1610 pounds by the end of the year, coinciding with the rise in the average price of the dollar against the pound in banks by 60%, at a time when gold prices declined globally compared to at local market prices.
The Central Bank of Egypt had asked banks operating in the Egyptian market to inform customers by any means of communication that it prohibits the misuse of credit and direct debit cards, especially for customers who do not leave the country.
Egypt has been suffering from a severe foreign currency crisis since the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis in February, and the US interest rate hike over the past year, which led to the exit of more than $20 billion in foreign hot money invested in debt instruments.