Egypt gets US$2 bn loan from Libya

Egypt and Libya finalized a US$2 billion loan agreement Wednesday evening to shore up the Egyptian economy and foreign reserves, according to state news agency MENA.

The interest free loan is repayable in five years, with a grace period of three years, an Egyptian Finance Ministry official told the agency.

The anonymous official anticipated the government would receive the loan by next week. He praised Libya for the gesture, which he said emphasizes the strength of the relationship between the two countries.

The deal follows an announcement Wednesday that Qatar would offer Egypt natural gas supplies as well as an additional $3 billion package of financial assistance, which would bring the country's foreign currency reserves to $18.4 billion, the highest level in recent months.

The additional foreign aid may improve Cairo's position in negotiations with the International Monetary Fund over a $4.8 billion loan.

The anonymous Finance Ministry official anticipated additional aid would come through but did not disclose the source.

Edited translation from MENA

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