CAIRO: Egypt will hold the “Development Partners” conference in the resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh Feb. 15, with the aim of luring Arab and foreign investments, Minister of Planning Ashraf al-Araby said Monday.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank will participate in the economic summit along with other international lending foundations, Minister of International Cooperation Naglaa el-Ahwany told Al-Mal business newspaper in August.
Ahwany said the government was tending to suspend the donor conference that had been called for by Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz in June to support Egypt’s economy after President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s election win.
The delay was attributed to ministries’ need to prepare detailed studies about the projects that will be proposed during the conference.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait have granted Egypt more than $12 billion in cash aid and oil products to boost Egypt’s economy after the ousting of former President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.
“The government should hold an immediate conference to offer the urgent investment projects and another one later in February. Every day of people’s lives counts, and every day passes the economy bears its burden,” said Alia El-Mahdi, cconomics professor at Cairo University.
Egypt is facing a sharp power crisis and investors seeking profitability will not risk injecting their money in a country where blackouts lasted recently for more than 12 hours recently, Mahdi told The Cairo Post.
“Government’s hope to handle the electricity shortage could be the reason behind the delay,” she added.
In his speech at an economic conference held in Cairo Monday, Araby stressed that “energy remains a top priority for the government.”