Morning Round-Up – Egypt & IMF, Sinai & Tourism, Saudi & IBM

International Monetary Fund to discuss loans in Egypt this month – IMF statement in our inboxes said:

“The IMF received an invitation from the new Egyptian government to visit Cairo. We expect the staff mission, which will be joined by Masood Ahmed, the Fund’s director for the Middle East and Central Asia, to take place during August to resume discussions on possible financial support for a homegrown economic program. The IMF stands ready to support Egypt and work closely with the authorities.”

Political obstacles that prevented an earlier agreement with the IMF have largely dissipated, but the economy is still fragile, which is confirmed by Egypt’s call to the IMF once again to renew discussions.

Egypt’s Rafah crossing with Gaza closed after attack – The impact from these attacks and similar incidents will put pressure on tourism revenues, which dropped by nearly a third last year, amid the worst stint of political instability in Egypt since the assassination of President Anwar Sadat in 1981.   On the same day, tourists had to cancel a Sharm El Sheikh trip because of protests in South Sinai.

Out in the dark – very detailed feature on Egypt’s electricity problems, Egypt Independent

Egypt May mobile subscriptions up 22pct

Lebanon’s hash growers protect their cannabis, which has apparently become a major source of income, by opening fire at police

Saudi’s Mobily awards IBM $280 million IT outsourcing contract




  • John
    Posted August 6, 2012 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    “Political obstacles that prevented an earlier agreement with the IMF have largely dissipated” Have they?

    • Rebel Economy
      Posted August 6, 2012 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      From a foreign investor’s point of view, now that there is a government led jointly by the military and the Muslim Brotherhood the country is heading towards some kind of political stability. The boxes have been ticked, so to speak. And it’s a positive sign that there is consensus from both the Egyptian government and the IMF on the need to move quickly on a loan agreement. Just today, Egypt’s finance minister told Al Ahram he expects a loan to be signed before the beginning of November. Now a quick agreement has obviously been promised many times before, but the crux of the matter is that the macroeconomic situation is too fragile to wait much longer.

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