IMF official says Ras al-Hikma deal recognizes the potential of Egypt’s economy to generate additional tourism revenues

International Monetary Fund (IMF) Mission Chief for Egypt Ivanna Vladkova Hollar said that the Ras al-Hikma deal, which is worth $35 billion, will reduce the pressure on the balance of payment but if it were used prudently.

She told a new conference on Monday that the expectation for what is a prudent use of the new resources coming into Egypt, from the Ras al-Hikma deal, is “to ensure that those resources are used to reduce Egypt’s vulnerabilities and to make sure that they’re used to improve the outlook, the economic outlook facing Egypt.”

“And from that perspective, what we mean and what we have heard as a commitment from the Egyptian authorities is to save a significant portion of those proceeds in gross international reserves, to strengthen the buffers that Egypt has to deal with forward looking shocks, and to use a significant portion of those proceeds, so 50 percent of the local currency value of those proceeds to reduce debt, public debt.”

Hollar also said that the Ras al-Hikma, was an investment deal that recognizes the potential of the Egyptian economy, in terms of generating additional tourism revenue.  “As normally FDI flows come into a particular country, recognizing again, the ability of the country to generate additional resources in various areas.  And as long as the conditions are there, the conditions that we spoke about in terms of having a fair level playing field for the private sector to compete alongside with public sector enterprises, FDI is likely to come in in order to bring in the know how, bring in additional resources for investment that would, again, strengthen the ability of the Egyptian economy to generate jobs and generate economic growth.”

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