The government is working to amend its economic reform program before it agrees on the date of an International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation’s visit to Cairo, said IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice on Thursday.
The Cabinet had requested a US$4.8 billion loan to cover a steep budget deficit, predicted to reach LE200 billion by the end of this fiscal year.
The IMF said it would only grant the loan if Egypt adopts an economic reform program that guarantees strict austerity measures.
The program would be enforced through 2022 with a target average growth rate of 7 percent, said Prime Minister Hesham Qandil.
During a press conference at IMF headquarters in Washington, Rice said that the fund had not yet received the proposed reform program, and that he had no definite timeframe for the delegation’s trip to Egypt.
He assured that the IMF was ready to provide financial aid to support the reform program to help overcome financial hardship.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm