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Egypt's annual inflation rises to 29.6 pct, highest since pound float
2017/2/13 15:14:12 Source:Xinhua

CAIRO, Feb. 11 (Xinhua) -- Egypt's annual inflation rate rose to 29.6 percent in January 2017 compared to 24.3 percent in December 2016, the Central Agency for Public Mobilisation and Statistics (CAPMAS) announced on Saturday.

This is highest level of urban consumer price inflation since the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) records began in 2005.

The CAPMAS attributed the sharp increase in inflation to prices hikes in basic commodities and services.

Prices have soared since the CBE allowed in early November full float of the Egyptian local currency to limit shortage of foreign currency. The official exchange rate of the U.S. dollar then rose from less than nine pounds to over 17.79 pounds at the moment.

In an earlier report in January, the CBE stated that Egypt's total foreign debt increased by about 4.4 billion dollars to hit 60.2 billion as of end of September 2016, compared to 55.8 billion in the end of June 2016 and 46.1 billion in the first quarter of last fiscal year 2015/2016.

Egypt's fiscal year is from early July to end of June.

The total foreign debt currently represents 16.3 percent of the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP), while the total domestic debt rose by end of September 2016 to reach about 154.4 billion dollars.

Egypt has been struggling to revive its economy that ailed since the eruption of 2011 revolution, which caused sharp decline of tourism, foreign investment and export revenues, via national mega projects, upgrade of road networks, reclamation of vast areas of lands, establishment of power plants and construction of a new administrative capital city.

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