Bankruptcies up by 26 percent, says cabinet

In 2011, bankruptcies increased by 26 percent in comparison to the year before, according to a report released by the cabinet on Sunday. Also, the value of securities traded on the Egyptian Stock Exchange fell by 67 percent, the number of companies started last year fell by 13 percent, exported capital witnessed a 40 percent decline, and privately-owned companies lost 39 percent of their capital.

On Thursday, Egypt's stock exchange bid a painful farewell to its final trading sessions of 2011 after stocks suffered losses estimated at US$32.24 billion and the main index dropped 49.3 percent.

According to a Monthly Economic and Social Indicators report issued by the Egyptian Cabinet’s Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC), imports increased by 33 percent in December 2011 as compared to the same period in 2010. Exports increased by 7 percent.

The value of the Egyptian pound dropped against the dollar, Euro and British pound in December by 3.7 percent, while the value of gold rose 27 percent from December 2010.

On Friday, Fitch Ratings lowered Egypt's credit rating. It attributed the drop to a decrease in the country’s foreign currency reserves and continued political unrest.

The report also pointed to a 30 percent increase in the number of internet users, a 26 percent increase in the number of mobile phone subscribers, and a 10 percent decline in the number of land line subscribers as compared to 2010.

The report showed a 33 percent decline in the revenue of goods transported by train and a 14 percent drop in revenues from natural gas exports.

Gray cement prices fell by an average of 16 percent, while steel prices increased by 19 percent.

New jobs offered in the private sector witnessed a 55 percent decline, and employment opportunities provided by the local development fund fell 48 percent. Employment opportunities provided by the Social Fund for Development increased by 18 percent.

Concerning the health sector, the report said the number of cases treated abroad in 2011 at the state’s expense increased by 80 percent, while the number of total cases treated at the state’s expense decreased by 17 percent.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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