Business partners of Egypt’s ruling party have started to take their money out of the country, according to Bloomberg. Ethiopia’s super rich who are looting the country in partnership with the Woyanne ruling junta have been doing that for a while now. We have previously reported (read here) about one of them, Samuel Tafesse, who has recently built a $5-million mansion in a suburb of Washington DC. Most of the Woyanne leaders are currently on a property buying frenzy in the U.S. and Europe.
Egypt’s Super-Rich Begin Moving Their Money To Switzerland
(Bloomberg) — Egypt’s rich are considering taking money out of the country as violent protests against President Hosni Mubarak enter a 10th day, and Switzerland is a popular destination, a Swiss-based Arab banker said today.
“We’ve been getting inquiries about moving money” from Egypt to the Alpine nation, said Karim al-Korey, an associate director at Arab Bank (Switzerland) Ltd. “I have two or three clients who could transfer 10 to 15 million dollars each.”
Two Arab Bank (Switzerland) executives sent an emailed statement disputing al-Korey’s comments after they were published, saying he was not authorized to speak publicly for the firm.
His comments as published do “not represent the official position of the bank,” wrote Alain Dargham, the head of investment advisory, and Jean Kamitsis, head of wealth management. “We formally deny the content.”
Protests against Mubarak have left about 300 people dead and hundreds more injured in the past two weeks. Egypt’s ruler has replaced ministers and promised free elections before stepping down in September. That hasn’t calmed protesters who say his 30-year presidency must end immediately.
“Everything in Egypt is now closed but we think banks could start to reopen on Sunday. If this is the case, we expect funds to come in,” al-Korey told Bloomberg by telephone from his Geneva office. If Mubarak goes, “people all over the region will get scared and start transferring money.”
Switzerland on Jan. 19 froze any assets belonging to Tunisia’s ousted President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and his entourage. Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia after a popular revolt ended his 23-year rule.
Most Egyptians close to Mubarak aren’t worried that their funds will be seized abroad and still see Switzerland as the safest haven, al-Korey said.
“There is a fear but only for a very few people,” the banker said. “You are talking about Mubarak, his sons, and Ahmed Ezz, the richest man in Egypt, as well as maybe 10 or 15 of the top businessmen.”
Ezz, chairman of Ezz Steel, was among the businessmen ousted from cabinet and ruling party positions yesterday. UBS AG and Credit Suisse Group AG, Switzerland’s biggest banks, declined to comment on possible movements of funds from Egypt.