CAIRO, April 15 (Reuters) – Fuel subsidies will cost Egypt
more than 120 billion Egyptian pounds ($17.4 billion) this
financial year, above previous estimates, as a falling local
currency adds strain to the budget, Oil Minister Osama Kamal
told Reuters on Monday.
Egypt is under pressure to curb its soaring fuel subsidy
bill, which accounts for a fifth of state spending, to secure a
$4.8 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund. But
Kamal cast doubt on his previous estimate that the cost would
hit 120 billion pounds in the 2012/13 fiscal year to June 30.
CAIRO, April 14 (Reuters) – Egypt’s central bank sold $600
million to banks in a special auction of foreign exchange on
Sunday to pay for wheat, meat, cooking oil and other essential
imports to a country struggling with a currency crisis.
The size of the auction – 15 times the amount the central
bank has been selling at its regular currency auctions – showed
the extent of pent up demand for dollars as Egypt struggles with
an economic crisis two years after the ousting of Hosni Mubarak.
CAIRO, April 7 (Reuters) – Egypt is seeking to increase its
previously-requested $4.8 billion loan from the International
Monetary Fund to cover its soaring budget deficit, the planning
minister said in comments carried by three newspapers on Sunday.
“Egypt will intensify its efforts in the spring meetings of
the IMF in the period from April 16-21 to receive additional
funding to cover the financing deficit until mid-2015,” Ashraf
El-Araby said in remarks carried by Al Masry Al Youm newspaper.
CAIRO/DOHA, March 27 (Reuters) – Egypt will import 900,000
barrels of oil a month from Libya starting in April and is
paying off some of the money it owes to foreign energy firms,
its oil minister said, in steps aimed at easing energy shortages
that are hitting the economy.
Egypt, which has endured over two years of political
instability since the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak in
2011, is struggling with sliding currency reserves, falling
tourism and a soaring budget deficit.
JEDDAH, March 27 (Reuters) – Down a narrow alleyway deep in
the Jeddah slum of Karantina, three women from Sudan have set up
stalls under colourful parasols, selling peanuts, hibiscus
petals, dried pulses, baskets, frankincense, calabashes and
They laugh and gossip in the sunshine, swathed in bright
printed cloth, while a scrawny black cat picks its way between
piles of rubbish. But when approached by a stranger, they are
CAIRO (Reuters) – A prominent Egyptian political activist accused of inciting violence against President Mohamed Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood was released without bail on Tuesday after he turned himself in for questioning, the prosecutor general’s office said.
Alaa Abd El-Fattah, a blogger who became a symbol of the uprising that overthrew Hosni Mubarak in 2011, was among five activists the prosecutor general ordered on Monday be arrested – a step the opposition decried as a reversal for democracy.
CAIRO, March 21 (Reuters) – Egypt’s revival of a scheme
meant to protect foreign buyers of government debt and stocks
will struggle to achieve a wider aim – easing an acute dollar
Earlier this month the central bank reopened a modified
version of a mechanism last used in 2003 which ring-fences
dollars invested in Egyptian securities.
LONDON/CAIRO, March 20 (Reuters) – When it raises tolls in
May, Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority will know that fuel costs rule
out alternative routes, but some in the shipping industry say
the calculation could reach a tipping point if the risk of
delays from unrest increases.
Egypt’s economy has been in crisis since the 2011 overthrow
of Hosni Mubarak, with Islamist President Mohamed Mursi’s
cash-strapped government grappling with sliding currency
reserves, falling tourism, a soaring budget deficit and a wave
of often violent street protests.
CAIRO, March 19 (Reuters) – Egypt plans to start rationing
subsidised bread, a minister said on Tuesday, taking a
politically risky step to restrict supplies of the cheap loaves
upon which many Egyptians depend as the state tries to save
Bassem Ouda, the supply minister, said the government would
start implementing rationing “after two months”. Trials of a
rationing system using electronic smart cards would begin in the
restive Suez Canal city of Port Said and its suburb Port Fouad.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Once parliamentary elections are out of the way, Egypt stands a chance of securing an International Monetary Fund loan to help address its currency and budget crisis; the problem is that no one knows when that will be.
With face-to-face contact between Egypt and the IMF re-established this week after a two-month gap, both sides are pushing for urgent action, but with strikingly different emphases.