Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly announced on Sunday that 2019 is expected to be the final phase of the economic reform program sponsored by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), after two years of implementing its reforms.
Madbouly made the announcement during his participation in the third investment conference for the Middle East and North Africa, organized by the CI Capital Group.
The Prime Minister said that this conference comes at an important time for Egypt, as well as for the economies of neighboring countries in the Middle East.
He explained that Egypt has succeeded since 2016 in the implementation of multiple programs as part of a long-term strategy to enable the local economy to raise growth rates and reach it’s development objectives.
In an attempt to revive its faltering economy since 2011, Egypt obtained an IMF loan in 2016 in exchange for implementing a rigorous reform program, beginning with floating the pound. Egypt began implementing the IMF reform program in November 2016. The international lender made a deal to provide Egypt with a $12 billion loan in exchange for wide-ranging structural economic reforms.
The reforms include a raft of measures such as devaluing the pound currency, loosening capital controls, ending energy subsidies, reforming public enterprises and overhauling monetary policy – all in a bid to restore economic stability and long-term growth.
The first step the IMF commended was the flotation of the pound, a measure quickly taken in November 2016. The following year, Egypt slashed parts of its energy subsidies, resulting in a 60 percent surge in fuel prices.
IMF has since recommended that the government continue removing subsidies on fuel.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm