Left-leaning Egyptian parliamentary bloc calls for rescinding 'disastrous' economic measures

Ahram Online , Sunday 6 Nov 2016

The 25-30 bloc is also attempting to rally other MPs to support its call for the sacking of the cabinet

25-30 Bloc
From L to R: Egypt's 25-30 Bloc members Haitham El-Hariri, Khaled Youssef and Nadia Henry

The 25-30 bloc, a small left-leaning coalition in Egypt's parliament, have called for a meeting with other MPs on Sunday to demand the rescinding of what it described as "disastrous" economic measures taken by the government on Thursday as well as the sacking of the cabinet.

Last week, Egypt floated its pound in a bid to stabilize an economy weakened by a dollar shortage, and later announced cuts in oil subsidies, increasing fuel prices by 30-47 percent.

The 25-30 bloc, which is named after the two revolutions of 25 January 2011 and 30 June 2013, called for an emergency session of the legislature to be held on Monday to discuss the 3 November decisions and hold the cabinet accountable to the people's representatives.

On Friday, The bloc said the recent measures "lacked vision and sufficient study" and would further burden the Egyptian people.

It said the Monday session should take a series of steps to address current economic conditions and allow MPs to draw "alternative economic policies."

Meanwhile, the Egyptian parliament's majority bloc Support Egypt announced on Saturday that it fully supports the government's new International Monetary Fund (IMF)-inspired economic reforms.

Egypt has struggled to draw dollars and revive the economy since the 2011 uprising, which was followed by a drop in tourism and foreign investors, two major sources of foreign currency.

The recent measures, welcomed by Washington and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), could lead to steep price hikes on many goods and services.

Egypt is awaiting a final approval on a $12 loan package from the IMF. The government has repeatedly said the recent reforms were not pushed by the IMF in return for the loan.

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