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Monday, 14 May 2018

Finance Ministry working on law to ease transition to cashless economy

LEGISLATION WATCH- Finance Ministry working on law to ease transition to cashless economy: The Finance Ministry and central bank are working together to draft legislation to help ease the the state with its goal to transition to a cashless economy, government sources reportedly said yesterday. The law, which could go into effect during FY2018-19, would set limits on the amount of cash that government agencies can receive or pay in a single transaction. A suggestion currently under study sets a ceiling of EGP 20,000 per transaction, according to the sources. The government has been taking steps to gradually decrease the rate of cash transactions, based on a number of resolutions adopted during a National Payments Council meeting last year, which included drafting legislation to govern non-cash payments and transactions, developing a strategy for e-governance, and making e-payment options available to public sector employees. The move is part of the state’s wider financial inclusion strategy.

In other legislative news yesterday, the House of Representatives gave a preliminary nod to the law establishing the Upper Egypt Development Authority, as well as that governing clinical trials.

Laws on public surveillance, road management recalled from House: House Speaker Ali Abdel Aal also announced that the Ismail Cabinet has recalled two pieces of legislation it had sent to Parliament for review, including one on public surveillance and another on road network management, saying that both are covered by other, existing laws, Al Masry Al Youm reports.

Also yesterday: The House Housing Committee resumed its review of a temporary law to settle building code violations, Al Shorouk reports. Members of the committee disagreed over Article 1 of the legislation, which would not allow settlements for buildings erected on agricultural land. Some suggested including exceptions for land in new urban communities, but the committee ultimately did not reach consensus on the issue. It remains unclear why the committee is currently discussing the legislation, after having agreed in February that it cannot pass without amendments to the Unified Building Code. Both laws would have to pass together as they are too closely intertwined, the committee said at the time.

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