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World Bank: 60% of Egyptians poor, middle class suffers from 'reforms'

May 3, 2019 at 1:34 am

The World Bank issued a report to announce prolonging cooperation with the Egyptian authorities until 2021, through establishing a strategic partnership to ensure more loans and assistance to Egypt.

This report revealed that nearly 60 per cent of Egyptians are either poor or belong to the poorest groups.

The World Bank stressed that Egypt needs to make more efforts to accelerate economic containment and provide the growing workforce with more job opportunities, especially with the increasing rate of inequality and national poverty.

The World Bank confirmed that there are dramatic geographical disparities in poverty rates, ranging from seven per cent in Port Said Governorate to 66 per cent in some Upper Egypt governorates.

The report pointed out that economic decisions, such as lifting subsidies and others, have affected the middle class, which is suffering from the increasing cost of living.

READ: Egypt cuts fuel subsidies by 40.5%, electricity by 75%

The report stressed the need to make more efforts to accelerate economic containment and provide a growing workforce with job opportunities.

The World Bank Group announced expanding its support and increasing its focus on developing human capital by encouraging rapid implementation of education and health reform projects while supporting Egypt’s transition to the digital economy and e-government services.

The reforms tackle debt sustainability and redirecting scarce budget resources toward launching new social programs serving the poor and most needy citizens. The relevant legislation has also been enacted to support the most favourable business environment. The automation of government processes has reduced bureaucratic obstacles facing business.

The World Bank Group will continue to support the government’s efforts to strengthen the country’s social security network, including programs to help disadvantaged people earn their living and move away from the cash transfer program.

This extension will allow much greater support to enable private sector-led growth by addressing sectoral reforms and local economic development in less developed regions.

READ: Egypt price rises hit cinema tickets, train fares

The framework of the partnership with Egypt between 2015 and 2019 focuses on increased rates of employment led by the private sector, social inclusion and improved governance.

Operations to be held during this extension include reforming the health and education sectors, strengthening social security networks and social inclusion, providing job opportunities and private sector growth, and transforming Egypt’s economy into a digital one.

The objectives of these intervention procedures are to improve productivity, encourage innovation and competition; and thus contribute to the development of the country’s economic and human capital.