Maspero clashes weaken confidence in Egypt economy: Moody's

Ahram Online, Tuesday 18 Oct 2011

Credit ratings agency says violence, and rumours of ministerial resignations that followed, 'raised pressure' on the country's battered economy

Army crackdown also hit the economy, says agency (Photo: Reuters)

Credit ratings agency Moody's says last Sunday's clashes between the army and mainly Coptic protesters has increased pressure on the Egyptian economy and further weakened investor confidence in the country.

According to a report seen by the London-based Al-Sharq Al-Awsat newspaper, the initial resignation of Egypt's deputy prime minister in the aftermath of the fatal crackdown has raised further questions about the country's credit-worthiness.
In March, Moody's cut the rating for Egyptian sovereign bonds to Ba3 from Ba2, saying further reductions were possible. The agency has not revised the rating since.
The report said that a lack of political stability, represented by the rumours of resignations of cabinet members, has given a negative image to an economy already taking a battering and trying to shore up fallen revenues.
Moody's added that a change of government in the present environment would further stall economic reform. It would also, it said, increase doubts over Egypt's access to foreign financial assistance, such as that mooted from the International Monetary Fund, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
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