IMF loan unaffected by Egypt political unrest: Planning minister

Ahram Online , Sunday 25 Nov 2012

Egypt's planning minister insists that the political unrest after Morsi issued a power-consolidating decree will not affect IMF deliberations on $4.8bn loan approval

Egypt's political situation will not affect the approval process for the $4.8 billion loan the country is seeking from the the International Monetary Fund, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Ashraf El-Arabi claims on Sunday.

Last week, the IMF announced it had reached a staff-level agreement with Egypt regarding the facility. The ratification process will start 19 December at the next IMF executive board meeting.

El-Arabi assured that Egypt will receive the loan’s first tranche a few weeks after the board ratifies the loan.

“The total amount of loans that have been brokered with our development partners, including the European Bank, African Development Bank, the European Union and several gulf countries, have reached approximately $14.5 billion until July 2014,” added El-Arabi during the press conference held Saturday evening.

Those statements came among wide concerns of the economic effects of President Morsi’s constitutional declaration announced Thursday, which immuned the president's decisions against judicial scrutiny.

Some protested the consitutional declaration on Friday so Morsi supporters came out in counterbalance. Clashes soon ensued.

Furthermore, police forces and protesters clashed adjacent to Tahrir Square where Egyptians were demonstrating to commemorate last year's state attack against protesters on Mohamed Mahmoud Street.

A million-man march is being scheduled for Tuesday in Tahrir Square to protest Morsi's power-consolidating decree.

The IMF loan is meant to relieve the country's liquidity crunch, ease currency depreciation risks and boost investor confidence following the political turmoil that the country has witnessed since the January 2011 uprising.

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