The International Monetary Fund (IMF) cancelled a visit to cancel a planned January visit in Cairo to negotiate a loan of $3.2 billion, an official at the International Cooperation Ministry was quoted as saying by an Egyptian daily on Tuesday.
A report carried out by Egypt’s daily al-Masry al-Youm said that the IMF attributed the decision to Egypt’s credit rating, negative economic projections, instability, political unrest, and the central bank’s reluctance to devalue the Egyptian pound.
Meanwhile, Egypt’s prime minister appealed to Group of Eight countries on Monday to help unlock billions of dollars in aid promised in September but not yet delivered under an initiative to support countries of the Arab spring.
Army-backed Prime Minister Kamal al-Ganzouri, who was appointed in November, met ambassadors of G8 countries to tell them Egypt needed financial support immediately, Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr said.
Under the so-called Deauville partnership, G8 countries agreed to supply economic and political aid quickly to several Arab governments in return for commitments they would pursue democratic reforms.
The partnership, which also includes Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey and international organizations such the IMF, has so far pledged about $80 billion in financing to Tunisia, Egypt, Morocco and Jordan over the next two years.
“The prime minister met with the ambassadors of the G8 countries to discuss Egypt's urgent economic needs and what these countries can give Egypt within the framework of the Deauville partnership,” Amr told reporters after the meeting, according to Reuters.
“The prime minister shared with the ambassadors the government’s plan to ensure security and stability on the streets,” he added.
Ganzouri said last week that apart from $1 billion sent by Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Egypt had received little of the promised aid.
The Arab Monetary Fund has lent Egypt a new loan of $270 million at an interest rate of 1.69 percent to be paid over 4.5 years, with a grace period of two years.
Also, the Egyptian government said the Abu Dhabi Sovereign Fund on Sunday agreed to grant Egypt $750 million, according to the report by al-Masry al-Youm.
Egypt has lost billions of dollars in revenue from tourism and investors, who were frightened away by the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak in February.
The financing under the Deauville partnership is mostly in the form of loans rather than outright grants, and is provided half by G8 and Arab countries and half by various lenders and development banks.
In June, Egypt negotiated a $3 billion financial package from the IMF in June, only for its ruling military council to reject it a few weeks later.