OCI halts tax repayments

Firm says it has 'reinstated legal proceedings' with tax authorities

Orascom's Egyptian HQ is in the Nile Towers building
Orascom's Egyptian HQ is in the Nile Towers building

Orascom Construction Industries has suspended pre-agreed tax payments to Egypt's tax authorities, according to reports.

Egypt's MENA news agency said that the authority has filed a complaint to the country's prosecutors for not meeting a $129.3m (EGP800m) payment, which had been due on 31 December. The payment was part of its $1bn (EGP7.1bn) settlement agreed with the authority in April.

Prior to the settlement, the tax authority was pursuing Orascom for $2.1bn (EGP14.2bn), which it said the company owed following the $12bn sale of its cement business to Lafarge Industries in 2007. But in September, following the ousting of Egypt's former president Mohammed Morsi, the company said that it was "exploring its legal options" regarding the case.

The company confirmed in an email to the Reuters news agency that it had now suspended payment as part of "the appeals and reinstated litigation process" with the tax authority.

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