Potential use of local currencies for trade between Saudi, Egypt

Feasibility of local currency trade exchange proposed by Saudi Minister
Potential use of local currencies for trade between Saudi, Egypt
Discussions initiated on local currency trade exchange between Saudi, Egypt

According to Yahya Al-Wathiq Billah, head of the Egyptian Commercial Service at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Egypt and Saudi Arabia are actively considering the use of their respective local currencies for trade exchange in the coming time. 

Al-Wathiq Billah stated that the Saudi Minister of Commerce has already put forth a proposal to initiate discussions regarding the feasibility of conducting a portion of trade exchange operations using local currencies.

He pointed out that the proposal will undergo discussions between the Central Banks of both countries, and it is anticipated that a final agreement will be reached in 2024.

In a meeting held earlier this month, Egypt’s Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait and Indian Ambassador to Cairo Ajit Gupte explored the potential of utilizing their respective local currencies for facilitating payment settlements between Egypt and India.

Read more: Currency exchange rates and trade dynamics in the Middle East

Saudi-China swap agreement 

On November 20, the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) and the People’s Bank of China (PBC) announced the signing of a local currency swap agreement valued at 50 billion yuan ($6.93 billion) or SAR26 billion.

This development reflects the strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries.  While Saudi is renowned as the leading global oil exporter, China stands as the largest consumer of energy worldwide.

In recent years, both nations have endeavored to broaden their collaboration beyond the realm of hydrocarbons, venturing into domains like security and technology.

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