Three Gulf countries pledge USD 12 billion in aid to Egypt

Cairo, PTI | Updated : 13 March 2015, 10:30 PM

The three Gulf nations of Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates today pledged USD 12 billion in new investment and aid to help Egypt’s ailing economy during an international conference here.

Each of the three countries pledged USD 4 billion for the country’s economic sector during the Egypt Economic Development Conference (EEDC), which opened today in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh and was attended by at least 89 Arab and foreign countries including India.

Kuwait’s emir Sheikh Sabah-Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah said that his country has allocated USD 4 billion for investment in various sectors in Egypt.

Saudi Arabia crown prince Muqrin bin Abdel-Aziz announced that his country will extend USD 4 billion in financial aid and private investments to Egypt, including a USD 1 billion deposit in Egypt’s Central Bank.

Mohamed bin Rashed Al-Maktoum, the vice president of the UAE and ruler of Dubai, pledged USD 4 billion to Egypt, USD 2 billion of which will be provided as deposits at the central bank while the remaining amount will be allocated to stimulate the economy.

Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi opened the EEDC and promised immediate strategies and clear policies to support the private sector and foreign investors, and reiterated Egypt’s commitment to paying the arrears owed to foreign companies.

The President also added that Egypt is aiming to boost growth to at least 6 per cent in the coming 5 years and to decrease the unemployment rate to 10 per cent.

“Egypt has put in place a sustainable long-term development strategy until 2030,” El-Sisi said.

“Egypt’s economy does not rely on mega-projects alone but on a clear economic vision committed to a free market economy and private sector participation,” he added.

“Egypt plans to promote at least 60 projects during the economic gathering, with the aim of getting fresh investments to boost its limping economy,” conference spokesperson Ambassador Hossam el-Kawish said.

During the conference, El-Sisi cited a number of projects that are seeking investment, including the planned reclamation of 4 million feddans of land, the digging of the new Suez Canal, the Suez Canal development project, the Golden Triangle project, as well as new airports, developing roads, waste management, mining and tourism.

First Published: Friday, March 13, 2015 10:28 PM
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