Legal Analysis of Recent Regulatory Changes Bolstering Egypt’s Economy

Egypt’s economy has seen significant improvements in recent years, driven by legislative and procedural overhauls that have made it a competitive emerging market. Key developments include the issuance of the new Investment Law no. 72 of 2017 and recent amendments to the Companies Law no. 159 of 1981. The General Authority for Investments (GAFI) has taken measures to improve business conditions and streamline bureaucratic processes by creating new regulations and activating existing provisions in these laws.

Joint Stock Companies

GAFI activated a provision requiring joint stock companies to register their shares in a central depository company, even if the company is not publicly listed. This requirement has been burdensome due to the complexity of the process, but GAFI has been postponing the registration deadline to prevent it from becoming prohibitive to the operations of joint stock companies. This requirement is beneficial to minority shareholders, who can obtain their dividends directly through the depository, and allows for easier and more transparent tax collection.

Limited Liability Companies

Significant regulatory developments have occurred in relation to limited liability companies. One major impediment to establishing a limited liability company was the requirement to deposit the company’s capital prior to its establishment. Recent regulations have removed the need for a bank certificate before establishment, expediting the process. Another important development has been the removal of the requirement for limited liability companies to have at least one Egyptian manager at all times.

Representative Offices

Representative offices in Egypt are legal vehicles designed to encourage investment by allowing foreign companies to study the market on the ground without the need to register as a company or branch. The Egyptian government has resolved to regulate some of the governance challenges in relation to representative offices. The decree requires representative offices to submit a detailed list of its employees, details of the work conducted, and a timeline of the market studies annually for GAFI’s review.

Standard Articles of Incorporation

In light of recent legislative amendments, the Ministry of Investment has issued a decree with new standard articles of incorporation for joint stock companies, limited liability companies, and single member companies.

Application Issues in the Investment Law

Despite the paradigm shift that the Investment Law has created in Egypt in terms of its impact on investment, it also presents some issues in its application that GAFI is currently trying to resolve. For example, the Investment Law has stipulated that a Notary Public fee of 0.25 percent of the capital of a company will be applied on companies seeking to ratify its articles of association or any further amendments. GAFI has been consistently working to resolve this issue by pushing for an amendment to the Investment Law that will cap the fee at EGP 10,000.


Recent developments in reducing bureaucracy, driven by legislative changes or regulatory initiatives, have been central to the continuation of Egypt’s economic revival. However, bolder steps are required to further streamline the bureaucracy that has long plagued the Egyptian administration and overshadowed many legal developments. This legal analysis provides a comprehensive understanding of the current regulatory landscape in Egypt and the potential impact on its economy. It underscores the importance of careful legislative and procedural changes in fostering a competitive and conducive business environment.