Back to the complete issue
Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Egypt parliament approves E-Payments Act

LEGISLATION WATCH- The House of Representatives’ general assembly approved the E-Payments Act yesterday, Al Shorouk reports. The law drafted by the CBE makes it mandatory for government and private sector entities to make all payments to subsidiaries, suppliers, and contractors electronically. The bill also demands electronic payment for big-ticket items such as taxes and customs payments, as well as subscriptions to IPOs, investment funds, and share purchases. Violators will pay a penalty equivalent to 2-10% of the total payment, or up to EGP 1 mn.

What does this mean for business? We’ll know more in the coming months as the government works out the executive regulations to the act.

Background: The bill is part of the government’s plan to gradually transition towards a cashless, paperless economy. The cabinet had announced last year its intention to make all government transactions electronic by the start of this year, and the Finance Ministry announced last month it will make electronic payment of government fees for amounts exceeding EGP 500 mandatory by early May.

And speaking of the move to a cashless society: The move toward (electronic) cash payment of welfare benefits appears to be gathering steam. A widely picked-up piece by state-run news agency MENA quotes Supply Minister Ali El Moselhy as saying that people benefiting from his ministry’s bread subsidy program could soon be paid cash instead. El Moselhy noted that the strategy would not save the government money, but would allow it to better target the subsidy to those who need it most. The proposal would see bread produced under the subsidy program sold at market prices.

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2021 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

Enterprise is available without charge thanks to the generous support of Commercial International Bank (tax ID: 204-891-949), the largest private-sector bank in Egypt; EFG Hermes (tax ID: 200-178-385), the leading financial services corporation in frontier emerging markets; SODIC (tax ID: 212-168-002), a leading Egyptian real estate developer; SomaBay (tax ID: 204-903-300), our Red Sea holiday partner; Infinity (tax ID: 474-939-359), the ultimate way to power cities, industries, and homes directly from nature right here in Egypt; CIRA (tax ID: 200-069-608), the leading providers of K-12 and higher level education in Egypt; Orascom Construction (tax ID: 229-988-806), the leading construction and engineering company building infrastructure in Egypt and abroad; and Act Financial (tax ID: 493-924-612), the leading activist investor in Egypt; and Abu Auf (tax ID: 584-628-846), the leading health foodmaker in Egypt and the region.