Egyptian central bank says met half foreign investors’ dollar backlog

 Egypt's central bank said on Tuesday it had covered 50 percent of a backlog of dollars owed to foreign investors.

Difficulty in repatriating profits from business activity in Egypt is one of the main obstacles cited by foreign investors after years of political and economic turmoil since the 2011 uprising that ousted autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

"The Central Bank of Egypt announces today … the coverage of 50 percent of foreign investors' pending backlog through direct sales to investors' custodians," it said in a statement, adding it would cover the remaining backlog in the "near future".

The bank said backlogs had accumulated because foreign investors did not use the central bank's repatriation mechanism. It did not say how much money was waiting to leave the country.

Egypt's foreign currency reserves dropped to $19.560 billion at the end of May from $20.525 billion the previous month.

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