Economy expected to grow by 5.3% in 2015, Minister
Minister of Planning Ashraf al-Araby - YOUM7/Sami Waheeb
By YASMINE SAMRA

CAIRO: Minister of Planning Ashraf el-Araby expected economy to grow by 3 to 5.3 percent, as total investments are likely to reach 330-340 billion EGP, during 2014/15 Plan for Economic and Social Development.

Egypt has been trying hard to revive its limping economy that was affected by the local unrest that followed the resignation of former President Hosni Mubarak in the wake of January 25 Revolution in 2011, which kept tourists and foreign investors away.

“Citizens will feel the outcome of the Economic and Social Development Plan for 2014/15, which gives priority to developing deprived areas, villages, and Upper Egypt,” Araby said in a conference organized by State-owned Middle East News Agency (MENA) to discuss Egypt’s economic position, according to a video posted on the ministry’s official page of Facebook.

“Investment is expected to edge up 14-15 percent, including 65 percent private investments, provided that political stability is achieved,” Araby said.

Araby said the new investment plan will include projects worth 4 billion EGP. The investments will be directed to New Cairo power plant through partnership between Public and Private sector (PPP).

“The new plan will give priority to the growing unemployment crisis, approaching 30 percent among young people under 30 years. This requires providing 650,000 jobs through micro and small businesses,” he added.

Egypt’s Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) recorded $2.8 billion during the first half of the 2013/14 fiscal year, compared to a total of $3 billion in the 2012/2013 fiscal year, General Authority for Investment (GAFI) Chairman Hassan Fahmy revealed Sunday, according to Al-Ahram.

In its World Economic Outlook Report issued in April, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expected Egypt’s economy to grow by 2.3 percent and 4.1 percent in 2014 and 2015 respectively.

“Economic growth in Egypt is expected to be broadly the same in 2013, as political uncertainty will continue to weigh on tourism and foreign direct investment, notwithstanding the fiscal stimulus supported by GCC financing,” IMF stated in the report. Egypt’s economy grew by 2.1 percent in 2013.

Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates pledged a total of $12 billion in assistance to Egypt following the ousting of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July after the mass protests against his rule.

Despite the aid Egypt received from Gulf States, it still needs financial assistance to achieve economic prosperity, IMF mission chief Christopher Jarvis told AFP last month.

“The financial aid could come from Gulf countries, IMF, or other financial institutions,” Jarvis added.

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