IMF had "productive" discussion with Egypt
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund held "productive" discussions with Egypt about its economic strategy, a senior Fund official said on Monday after a visit to the country.
Egypt is desperately seeking a $4.8 billion loan from the IMF to help prop up its budget and contain a currency crisis set off by political turmoil.
"I have held productive discussions today with President (Mohamed) Mursi, Prime Minister (Hisham) Kandil, and Egypt's economic team on the economic and financial challenges now facing the Egyptian economy," Masood Ahmed, the IMF's director for Middle East and Central Asia, said in a statement.
He said a technical team will visit Egypt in coming weeks to discuss a possible IMF loan.
Egypt first struck an agreement for a stand-by loan with the IMF in November, but Cairo postponed the formal end of the deal last month because of new political confrontations and protests.
Analysts view the IMF loan as critical to give Egypt's Islamist government credibility with the markets. The Egyptian pound hit a series of record lows against the dollar on Monday as political turmoil is depleting the country's foreign reserves.
- Merkel says tightening Ukraine-Russian border is key to peace deal |
- Ferguson protest march marks two weeks since police shooting |
- Gaza gunmen execute 'collaborators'; mortar kills Israeli boy |
- U.S. hostage rescuers dropped from night sky: Syria activist
- Islamist militants on rise in Austria: government