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Egypt raises rates on Suez Canal certificates to 15.5 pct

Officials said the widening would boost annual revenues from the Suez Canal to $13.5 billion by 2023 from $5 billion

Published: Updated:

Egypt raised interest rates on five-year investment certificates in its New Suez Canal project to 15.5 percent, the finance ministry said on Sunday.

The five-year investment certificates were sold in 2014 to fund a major expansion to the Suez Canal and had a 12 percent interest rate, paying quarterly dividends.

“The finance minister said the raising of the return from the certificates comes in coordination with the central bank governor's decision to raise returns on deposits,” the ministry said in a statement.

“It also shows how the state is taking care of and helping citizens who rushed to invest in this project to show their love for the nation.”

Officials said the widening would boost annual revenues from the Suez Canal to $13.5 billion by 2023 from $5 billion, but sluggish world trade has kept earnings relatively flat.

The Suez Canal Authority expects revenue to increase to $5.7 billion this year, from $5.175 billion in 2015.

The canal is one of Egypt’s main sources of income. Its $8 billion expansion was inaugurated by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in August 2015.