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Egypt to get $2bn from IMF in July

June 20, 2018 at 9:45 am

International Monetary Fund (IMF) [World Bank Photo Collection/Flickr]

Egypt is set to be given the fourth $2 billion tranche of the $12 billion International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan, Finance Minister Mohamed Maait has announced. The money will be paid in the second half of July.

Maait told Al-Masry Al-Youm that the amount will be deposited in Egypt’s foreign reserves at the central bank before being transferred to the ministry’s accounts in Egyptian Pounds.

Egypt agreed with the IMF in mid-August 2016 for a three-year $12 billion loan to endorse the country’s fiscal reform programme. The government of Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi embarked on its reforms in 2014 in an attempt to curb the growing state budget deficit.

READ: Egypt raises bus prices by over 10% 

Since then, it has been implementing extensive economic reforms on a nationwide basis. The first step saw Egypt float its currency and cut subsidies on basic necessities, leading to increased inflation and poverty.

On Saturday, the petroleum ministry announced a 17.4-66.6 per cent rise in fuel and cooking gas prices, the third increase in 20 months. Hours later, the government announced a 10-20 per cent increase in the ticket prices for the minibus services used across the country.

Whilst the IMF praised the Egyptian government’s efforts last year, inflation still hit 33 per cent in August, the country’s highest level since 1986. The new state policies have added to the financial woes of many millions of Egyptians living below the poverty line, who have complained of being unable to afford basic necessities as a result of the price increases.