Egypt to receive $1.15 billion in 'urgent financial aid' from EU and World Bank

Ahram Online, Wednesday 1 Feb 2012

Ministry of finance announces package to help Egypt bridge its budget gap, but fails to clarify whether the funds are grants or further borrowing

Finance minister Momtaz El-Saeed meets Marco Franco, EU ambassador to Egypt (Photo: Ministry of Finance)

Egypt will receive an urgent aid package worth $1.15 billion from the European Union and World Bank, finance minister Momtaz El-Saeed announced on Wednesday.

The European Union (EU) is in line to supply $650 million while the World Bank (WB) is giving $500 million, a statement from El-Saeed's ministry said.
The finance ministry did not specify whether the funds are loans or grants, calling them only "emergency aid with facilities". Egyptian officials were unable to clarify the matter when contacted by Ahram Online.
A note from the Delegation of the EU to Egypt, however, said the funds are 'Macro-Financial Assistance', suggesting negotiations are still underway as to the form the aid will take.
On Wednesday morning, finance minister El-Saeed met with the EU's ambassador to Egypt, Marco Franco, and the WB’s Director for Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti, David Craig, to discuss funding issues.
El-Saeed said the World Bank has also pledged to help Egypt with $2 billion in funding over two years. An IMF delegation is expected to return to Cairo in the coming weeks to finalise an agreement on a controversial $3.2 billion loan facility.
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