Engage In Egypt

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About Egypt

Capital City

Cairo

Population

As of March 2024, the estimated population of Egypt is 112.7 million.

Currency

The currency in Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (EGP). The currency symbol is E£.

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Overview

Egypt, officially known as the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country in North Africa. It borders the Mediterranean Sea to the north, the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northeast, the Red Sea to the east, Sudan to the south, and Libya to the west. Egypt is renowned for its rich history, ancient civilization, and iconic landmarks such as the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Sphinx, and the Nile River. With a population of approximately 109.5 million people, Egypt is the 15th most populous country in the world. The capital and largest city is Cairo. The country’s official language is Arabic, and the national language is Egyptian Arabic. Egypt has a unitary semi-presidential republic form of government. The president, serves as the chief of state, while the prime minister is the head of government. The government structure includes a Parliament with an upper house called the Senate and a lower house called the House of Representatives. The country’s constitution was established on January 18, 2014. Egypt’s economy is a mixed system combining private freedom elements with centralized economic planning and government regulation. The country has a diverse economy with sectors such as agriculture, industry, tourism, and services playing significant roles. Egypt is a member of the League of Arab States (Arab League) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). With its rich cultural heritage and strategic geopolitical location, Egypt continues to captivate the world with its historical significance and vibrant present.

Employment Relationship

Permanent Employment

The Labor Code of Egypt defines permanent employment as work performed for an indefinite term. If an employment relationship continues after the termination of its initial contract, it is considered to be an indefinite term contract. However, employment contracts with foreign nationals will not be regarded as indefinite-term agreements if the employment relationship continues after termination. 

Fixed-Term or Specific-Purpose Contracts

The Labor Code in Egypt does not limit the maximum duration (including renewals) of fixed-term contracts. If the agreement is made for more than five years, an employee can terminate it after the completion of five years by providing a notice period of three months.  If the period of a labor contract concluded for a definite period expires and the two parties continue their employment relationship, it shall then be considered as a renewal of the contract for an indefinite period. This provision does not apply to contracts with foreign nationals. Labor contracts for an indefinite period can be renewed multiple times by mutual agreement between the employee and employer.

Temporary Employment Contratcs

The Egyptian Labor Law classifies temporary workers into three categories: Provisional workers who complete work that by its nature forms part of the activity exercised by the employer. The accomplishment of this work necessitates a specific period and ends with its completion. Casual workers who complete work that by its nature, does not form part of the activity exercised by the employer, and accomplishment of the work does not take more than six months. Seasonal workers who complete work that is fulfilled in traditionally recognized periodical seasons. 

Probationary Period

The Labor Code allows a probationary period to be included in the employment contract if it is included expressly in writing. However, the probationary period cannot exceed three months, and the employee cannot undergo a probation period more than once for the same employer.

Working Hours

In Egypt, the Labor Law stipulates that the standard working hours are 48 hours a week or 8 hours a day. This does not include the time given to an employee for meals and rest. Hours worked beyond 48 a week and 8 hours a day are considered overtime. The total working hours, including overtime, cannot exceed 10 hours a day, and employees cannot be at the workplace for more than 12 hours per day (10 working hours + 2 non-working hours). The period between the start of a work period and its end must not be spread over more than 12 hours.  

Holidays / PTO

Statutory Holidays

  • The 1st day of Muharram - date subject to change every year
  • Prophet Mohammed’s birthday - date subject to change every year
  • The 1st and 2nd days of Shawal (Eid-ul-Fitr) - dates subject to change every year
  • The 9th, 10th, and 11th days of Zoelhega (Eid-ul-Adha) - dates subject to change every year
  • Eastern Christmas - January 7
  • Spring day (Sham El Nessim) - date subject to change every year
  • Sinai Liberation Day - April 25
  • Labor Day - May 1
  • June 30 Revolution - June 30
  • Revolution Day - July 23
  • Islamic New Year - July 30
  • Armed Forces Day - October 6

Paid Annual Leave

Employees accrue or accumulate annual leave from the first day of employment, even during a probation period. The annual leave is for 21 days with full pay for employees with at least one year in service. For employees with more than ten years in service or who are over 50 years of age, the annual leave is increased to 30 days. For service under one year (but at least six months), the employee is entitled to leave in proportion to the period spent at work.

Sick Leave

In Egypt, the labor code provides employees with sick leave if their illness is confirmed by a report from the relevant medical authorities. During the period of sickness, the worker is entitled to wage replacement compensation from the Public Authority for Health Insurance. The employee is eligible for sick leave with a sickness allowance up to 180 days in a year.  The sickness allowance is paid by the Public Authority for Health Insurance as 75% of the daily wages of the employee for the first 90 days of the sickness and 85% of the daily wages for the next 90 days of sickness. In the case of tuberculosis, mental illness, or a chronic disease, 100% of the wage is paid while the employee is sick until recovery.

Maternity Leave

The Egyptian Labour Law provides female employees who have spent ten months in the service of their employer the right to a maternity leave of 90 days, with full compensation. Leave is compulsory for 45 days after childbirth. An employee is required to submit a medical certificate indicating the expected date of delivery. Employees are entitled to maternity leave only twice during their period of service with the employer. An employer is prohibited from terminating a female worker during her maternity leave. 

Paternity Leave

The Labour Law of Egypt does not provide for paternity leave.

Termination of Employment

Notice Period

An employment contract can be terminated by the employer under the following circumstances: With a notice period of 2 months if the employee has worked for less than 10 years for the same employer With a notice period of 3 months if the employee has worked for more than 10 years for the same employer Without notice in case of grave mistakes Employees have the right to be absent for one day (eight hours) per week during the notice period to allow them to look for another job. If an employer terminates a contract without notice or before the expiry of the notice, they must pay the employee an amount equal to their wages for the period of notice or remaining part.   

Severance Benefits

According to the Labour Law of Egypt, employees are entitled to severance benefits in the following situations: If the employer terminates the labor contract for economic reasons, employees are entitled to 1 month’s wages for each of the first 5 years of service and one and a half month’s wages for each year after that. Employees retiring at 60 years are entitled to an indemnity calculated based on half of his or her monthly wages for each of the first 5 years of employment, and one month’s wages for each subsequent year, unless they are entitled to old-age, disability or death benefits under the Social Insurance Scheme.

Social Security

Pension

Egypt's pension system underwent significant recent changes as the Social Insurance Law No. 148 of 2019 became effective on January 1, 2020. The new law replaces many existing social security regulations and consolidates several different social insurance programs into one. The insured person contributes 9% of monthly covered earnings, and the employer contributes 12%. Insured persons qualify for an old-age pension once they reach age 60 with at least 120 months of contributions. Insured persons who qualify for an old-age pension will receive 2.22% of the insured's average annual covered earnings for each year of contributions, up to 36 years. Average earnings are now determined based on the insured's lifetime earnings (adjusted for inflation). The new calculation formula only applies to periods of service since the new law's implementation date. The National Bank of Egypt and Misr Life Insurance now offer Egyptians abroad a pension product for contributions made in U.S. Dollars called Maash Bokra. Clients of the National Bank of Egypt who are within Egypt may also purchase 1 of these policies.

Dependents/Survivors Benefit

In Egypt, the social insurance system provides benefits to eligible survivors of insured persons.  A survivors pension is paid if the deceased received or was entitled to receive an old-age or disability pension. The pension is also paid if the deceased was younger than age 60 and had at least three consecutive months (or a total of six months) of contributions or at least 10 years of contributions if the death occurred more than a year after employment ceased. Eligible survivors include a dependent widow, a divorced wife without any other source of income and previously married to the deceased for at least 20 years, a dependent widower with a disability, dependent sons younger than age 21 (age 26 if a full-time student, no limit if disabled), unmarried dependent daughters, dependent parents, and, in the absence of eligible sons or daughters, dependent brothers and sisters under certain conditions.

Invalidity Benefit

In Egypt, the social insurance program provides a disability pension to insured workers younger than the regular retirement age (60) who are assessed with a total or partial disability and permanent incapacity for any gainful employment and have at least three consecutive months or a total of six months of contributions (there is no minimum qualifying period for public-sector employees). The disability pension consists of a base pension and variable pension that is calculated as follows: Base pension – up to 2.2% (2.5% for arduous work or 2.8% for dangerous work) of the insured’s reference monthly base earnings is paid for each year of contributions, up to 36 years. Variable pension – 2.2% (2.5% for arduous work or 2.8% for dangerous work) of the insured’s reference monthly variable earnings is paid for each year of contributions for total disability. The social insurance scheme for workplace injuries uses a similar base and variable pension system, but with different amounts.

Taxation of Compensation and Benefits

Personal Income Tax

The income tax code in Egypt defines the tax year as the fiscal year beginning January 1 and ending on December 31. The income tax is imposed on the total income earned in Egypt by resident and non-resident individuals. Income tax is applicable on annual net income above EGP 15,000 (Egyptian pounds). The income tax rates range from 10% – 25% on annual taxable income. 

Immigration

Types of Visas

The following visa categories are available in Egypt: Single entry visas –  valid for 6 months and allow a maximum stay of 60 days Multiple entry visas –  valid for 6 months and allow a collective stay of 90 days Business visas – applications must be submitted with a letter from the visiting person's company stating the purpose of the visit, as well as the name and address of the organization to be visited in Egypt

Work Permit

With exceptions for specific work categories, the labor code requires foreign nationals who wish to work in Egypt to obtain a work permit through the Ministry of Manpower and Training Office. The work permit is issued within 48 hours after the application is approved. It is valid for one year and can be renewed for a fee. The law limits the number of foreign workers in any organization to 10% of the total workforce. The employer must register foreign employees with the Directorate of Manpower and Immigration and notify the agency of specific details such as their personal data, job requirements, as well as qualifications for the job.

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