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3.2 billion euros of Egypt-French arms deal financed by loan from Paris: Sisi

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi attends a military ceremony in the courtyard of the Invalides in Paris, November 26, 2014. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

CAIRO (Reuters) - The French government loaned Egypt 3.2 billion euros to finance the recent multibillion-euro purchase of French military equipment, Egypt’s president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said in an interview on al-Arabiya TV on Saturday.

Egypt signed an agreement this month to buy 5.2 billion euros worth of French weapons, including 24 Rafale combat jets made by Dassault Aviation, a multi-mission naval frigate, and air-to-air missiles.

“The last equipment we got from France was with a French loan worth 3.2 billion euros and this loan was extended from the French government,” President Abdel Fatatah al-Sisi said in the interview.

France said at the time the deal was agreed to that more than half the purchase price would be financed by French banks with a state-backed Coface guarantee.

Reporting By Shadi Bushra and Ali Abdelatti; Editing by Yara Bayoumy and Steve Orlofsky

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