Egypt Independent

Abouelnaga: Egypt will negotiate swifter Arab financial aid ‘with dignity’



Egypt will negotiate expediting the payment of financial aid Gulf countries pledged to Egypt following the 25 January revolution with dignity, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Fayza Abouelnaga has said.

Abouelnaga told Al-Masry Al-Youm that Egypt's successful negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will be perceived as a positive signal and prompt Gulf countries to give the pledged assistance.

A government source told the newspaper that Egyptian officials are scheduled to meet with officials from Saudi Arabia and the UAE to discuss ways to bolster the Egyptian economy, adding that the two countries may give Egypt assistance over the next few weeks in the form of loans, grants and support for investments.

Arab countries had pledged to grant Egypt assistance amounting to US$10 billion. Egypt has only received $1 billion, from Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

The source said settling disputes with Gulf investors will help expedite payment, particularly those with Al-Futtaim Group, Egyptian Kuwaiti Company and Kingdom Holding Company.

The government, meanwhile, is seeking to secure loans totaling $4.2 billion $3.2 billion from the World Bank, $500 million from the IMF and another US$500 million from the African Development Bank in order to reduce the budget deficit, which stands at LE144 billion (about $24 billion).

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm