CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's top cigarette maker Eastern Company said on Thursday it had reached an agreement with its international partner Philip Morris for the tobacco giant to pay back outstanding debt and make future payments in the local currency.

Philip Morris, which has an agreement with Eastern Company to produce its local brands, halted paying dues in dollars in return for its production last year.


Eastern Company expects $105 million in total arrears dating back to July 2016 to paid back this month, chairman Mohamed Haroun told Reuters.

Haroun said that Philip Morris will also begin paying for its local production in Egyptian pounds as opposed to dollars beginning this month at a fixed exchange rate of 18 pounds to the dollar through February 28, 2018.

Egypt's pound was about 15.8 pounds to the dollar on Thursday.

(Story corrects day in first paragraph to Wednesday from Thursday.)


(Reporting by Ehab Farouk; Writing by Eric Knecht; Editing by Louise Heavens and David Evans)