Govt postpones IMF loan
Ziad Bahaa Eddin
 

The government has postponed any decision related to the US$4.8 billion loan Egypt has been seeking from the International Monetary Fund, Deputy Prime Minister Ziad Bahaa Eddin said Tuesday.

At a press conference, Bahaa Eddin, also an economist, said the current government was not under as much pressure as that of ousted President Mohamed Morsi.

Negotiations between multiple Egyptian governments and the fund have gone back and forth several times. No deal has been hashed out despite several Egyptian fiscal crises and numerous visits from top fund officials.

The government has received some $12 billion in aid from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Kuwait.

Qatar was a key financier of Morsi’s government, but after negotiations related to converting a deposit package into bonds collapsed, Egypt was forced to return $1 billion. A second sum of $500 million from that deposit was returned to Qatar on Monday.

Last month, Prime Minister Hazem al-Beblawi announced the government would reform energy subsidies, which the IMF said was a requirement for it to give Egypt any loan. Another requirement, a more progressive tax system, was provided for in the proposed constitution, but the relevant articles did not go into detail.

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