On Thursday, the National Wages Council in Egypt decided to raise the minimum wage in private sector establishments from 2,400 pounds to 2,700 pounds as of January 2023. The decision contradicted government promises of equality, as the minimum wage in the private sector is 300 pounds less than that in the government sector. The application of the minimum wage is not binding on private-sector establishments in the country.
Since March 2022, the US dollar has appreciated against the pound by more than 57% due to the Central Bank of Egypt’s two decisions to devalue the currency within seven months. The country faces an acute shortage of hard currency and a severe economic crisis and resorts to borrowing frequently. The US dollar price in the parallel market is at least six pounds higher than the official rate.