The Central Bank of Egypt has left the cost of borrowing money unchanged at 9.75 per cent at the December meeting of its Monetary Policy Committee, after six successive monthly cuts to interest rates.

Egypt’s rate of inflation was 13.3 per cent in November – the same rate as in October – after food prices fell for the first time since January 2009.

Inflation will climb to 15.1 per cent in December before falling slightly to reach an average rate of 14.7 per cent in the first three months of 2010, says Mohamed Abou Basha, an economist at EFG-Hermes, an Egyptian investment bank.

Inflation will fall back into the single digits in the second half of 2010, says Abou Basha.

The central bank also left the deposit rate and the discount rate unchanged at 8.25 and 8.5 per cent respectively.