IMF sees ‘excellent progress’ in talks with Egypt

An International Monetary Fund (IMF) official said that the fund continues to make excellent progress on discussions with the Egyptian government on a comprehensive policy package, reaching an agreement on the first and second combined reviews of the Egyptian economic reform program.

According to the Arab World Press agency, IMF spokesperson Julie Kozack said in a press conference at Washington that the IMF’s team and the Egyptian authorities had reached an agreement on the basic elements of the agreement program, and that the authorities expressed their commitment to them.

She added that the discussions are still ongoing and that the IMF will announce the results as soon as they are completed.

In response to a question about the possibility of taking measures to support Egypt in light of pressures that may result from influx of Palestinian refugees due to the war in Gaza, Kozack stated: “We see that there is a need for a comprehensive support package for Egypt.”

“The Fund is working closely with the Egyptian authorities and its partners to ensure that Egypt has no remaining financing needs, and that the program is also able to ensure stability at the macroeconomic and financial levels.”

Kozack also said that the IMF’s PortWatch platform, which tracks navigation traffic globally, monitored a decline in navigation through the Suez Canal by 55 percent on an annual basis until February 13, while traffic through the Cape of Good Hope increased in the same period by approximately 57 percent.

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