IMF unlocks $1.67 billion tranche to Egypt as public debt & Covid-19 jeopardize economy

The executive board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has allowed the Egyptian authorities to draw $1.67 billion under a 12-month standby arrangement.

The move, which comes as result of a review of Egypt’s reform program, has brought the country’s total disbursement under the aid deal to $3.6 billion, according to a statement by the Washington-based fund.

Earlier this year, the IMF approved a $5.2 billion package for Egypt. The Arab republic will reportedly receive the remaining $1.6 billion after a series of economic reviews.

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The Egyptian economy remains vulnerable to volatility in global financial conditions, according to Antoinette Monsio Sayeh, the IMF’s deputy managing director, who says that the nation’s high level of public debt and gross financing needs still pose a threat to its economic recovery.

“The Egyptian authorities have managed well the Covid-19 pandemic and the related disruption to economic activity,” Sayeh said.

“[But] there are still risks to the outlook, particularly as a second wave of the pandemic increases uncertainty about the pace of the domestic and global recovery.”

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