Egypt: Central bank governor resigns amidst economic crisis, declining currency
Egypt’s central bank governor, Tareq Amer, resigned on Wednesday amid the country’s ongoing economic crisis and the Egyptian President accepted his resignation, according to several press reports.
Amer had been at the helm of the central bank since 2015, and was due to hold the position for another year.
The resignation comes amidst a severe economic crisis and sharp criticism of Amer over handling the country’s financial challenges which have seen the local currency slide against the U.S. dollar in recent months. Actually, the currency hit near-record low, at 19.1 pounds to the dollar, a 22 percent drop since March, when the central bank decided a dramatic 48 percent devaluation of the pound, following Egypt’s decision to float its currency for the first time in decades. This is the sharpest fall in Egypt’s currency since December 2016.
Inflation also increased in recent months partly because of the repercussions of the Russia-Ukraine war. Egypt is the world’s largest wheat importer, and most of its imports come from Russia and Ukraine.
In July, the annual inflation in Egypt reached 14.6%, increasing the burdens on consumers especially lower-income households and particularly for everyday necessities.
Amer’s resignation came as the government is in talks with the International Monetary Fund for a new loan to support its reform program and to help address challenges caused by the war in Europe.
After his resignation, Amer was named presidential adviser. So far, no replacement has been announced.