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Egypt discusses with World Bank financial support for development in Sinai: Ministry

Ahram Online , Tuesday 22 Jan 2019
Nasr, World Bank
Egypt's investment and international cooperation minister Sahar Nasr (L) meets with World Bank’s Chief Executive Officer Kristalina Georgiev (R) (Photo Courtesy of MOIC)
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Egypt has discussed with the World Bank the possibility of financial support for priority sectors in development and infrastructure projects in Sinai, a statement by the Ministry of International Cooperation and Investment said on Tuesday.

Minister Sahar Nasr met with the World Bank’s Chief Executive Officer Kristalina Georgiev during the World Economic Forum in Davos, where they reviewed the bank’s support for other projects in transportation and agriculture.

Georgiev stressed the bank’s support for the economic reforms led by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, highlighting the bank’s ongoing support for the programme and it help with attracting foreign investments to the country.

They also discussed the bank’s continued endorsement of the reform programme with a $3 billion financing deal agreed upon in October 2018.

Egypt signed off on a $1 billion tranche of the $3 billion deal during the investment forum Africa 2018 in December 2018 in Sharm El-Sheikh.

The $1 billion tranche will be used to support the upcoming phase of the reform programme, focusing on creating job opportunities and improving living standards through boosting the private sector and enhancing government performance.

In 2018, Egypt announced an ambitious plan to develop Sinai by 2022 at a cost of nearly $16 billion.

The Egyptian state has been focusing on development in Sinai in recent years while combating terrorist organisations based in the northern part of the peninsula.

The project includes plans for residential and industrial development, water desalination plants, hospitals and sewage networks, as well as a comprehensive road network.

Egypt’s economic reform programme, which has included cutting subsidies and the introduction of new taxes such as the value-added tax and the liberalisation of the local currency, helped Egypt secure a $12 billion loan package from the International Monetary Fund in November 2016.

President El-Sisi has repeatedly stated that although the austerity measures have been tough on citizens, they will pay off in the future.

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