* Minister appointed last week in a cabinet reshuffle
* Hinted he would not scrap a new tax on stock market gains
(Adds details, background)
By Yasmine Saleh
CAIRO, June 22 Egypt's newly appointed
investment minister Ashraf Salman said he targets $10 billion in
foreign direct investment (FDI) for the coming fiscal year and
$14 billion in three years.
Egypt had been hit by an economic crisis following a 2011
uprising that ousted autocratic Hosni Mubarak. Since then, the
state's successive governments have been trying to steer a
course between boosting revenues without discouraging investors.
FDI for Egypt's first nine months of the 2013-14 fiscal year
that starts on July 1 stood at $4.4 billion. It was $3 billion
in the year ended June 2013, almost $1 billion less than in the
"I need FDI. It has a magical effect in creating jobs and
lowering poverty," said Salman, a veteran banker speaking in a
late TV interview with Egypt's private CBC TV on Saturday.
He said he wants to attract more FDI by passing legislation
to help businesses and minimizing bureaucracy.
Salman also hinted he was not intending to reverse a
decision by the state earlier this month to impose a new 10
percent tax on dividends and share transactions' gains that sent
the country's bourse to records low.
Salman said the issue was discussed with the market before a
decision was made. After the law went into effect, the market
rebounded, he noted.
Salman was appointed last week in a limited cabinet
reshuffle that followed the election of former army chief Abdel
Fattah al-Sisi as president.
The decision to appoint a separate investment minister
reverses a decision this year to merge the ministry with that of
industry and trade, a move that shows Sisi's keen to attract
foreign funds back to stimulate the economy.
Sisi had last year ousted elected Islamist President Mohamed
Mursi in reaction to mass unrest against his rule.
Mursi's downfall prompted a wave of violence and protests
that deepened the economic crisis. Sisi's Gulf Arab allies have
sent billions of dollars in aid to Egypt after Mursi's fall
which analysts said had saved Egypt from bankruptcy.
(Reporting by Yasmine Saleh; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)