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IMF’s loan to Egypt not linked to Gaza crisis, official assures

The Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Jihad Azour said there is no link between the size of the IMF’s loan to Egypt and the Gaza crisis.

During an interview with Al Arabiya Business on Sunday, Azour noted that the IMF program was drawn up about a year and two months ago, and the first and second reviews took place before the Gaza War.

Azour added that there is no doubting that Egypt and other countries have been economically affected by current events, and the risk rate has increased.

However, he assured that that the size of the loan is linked to the financing gap and has nothing to do with political aspects.

The UAE’s investment in Egypt is an important event, he said, but is completely unrelated to the Fund’s discussions with Cairo.

“We have not yet seen the details of the deal between the Emirates and Egypt,’ he added.

“The discussions between Egypt and the IMF are related to economic reform in Egypt, strengthening the role of the private sector, activating the role of social protection, and giving confidence to the economy in order to advance it.”

He pointed out that the flexibility of the exchange rate is an essential issue to protect the Egyptian economy from external shocks, as during recent years there have been shocks that have impacted the Egyptian economy and other economies.

Azour said that this policy is accompanied by financial measures to reduce inflation, now relatively high in Egypt and an overall global problem.

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