Some ATMs Work, Market on Standby: Egypt FinMin

Some pensioners are able to withdraw money from ATMs in Egypt, but the stock exchange will remain closed until "calm is restored to the street," newly-appointed Egypt Finance Minister Samir Radwan told CNBC Wednesday.

Thousands of Egyptians gather in Cairo's Tahrir Square.
Marco Longari | AFP | Getty Images
Thousands of Egyptians gather in Cairo's Tahrir Square.

The governor of the central bank reported that there is a partial opening of ATMs, while a wider opening of banks is hoped for by Sunday, Radwan said.

The chairman of the stock exchange is still "watching the situation very closely," but will keep the market closed until problems of protestors in the street abate, he said.

It is also a priority for Egypt that the Suez Canal is "safe and sound," Radwan said, adding that "nothing will happen to it."

Mubarak Wants 'Peaceful Transition'

President Hosni Mubarak has vowed to step down as president, but months later, once another president is elected.

While saying "only the president" could definitively answer why he won't step down sooner, Radwan speculated that Mubarak wants to avoid a collapse in the transition process that other countries have faced and to ensure a "peaceful transition."

The new government is committed to working with parties across the political spectrum, he said.

"The door is open to changing the constitution, especially the articles of the constitution that allow people to run for president," he said.