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Wednesday, 17 October 2018

World Bank pledges USD 3 bn loan for infrastructure projects, Sinai development

** #2 – World Bank pledges USD 3 bn loan for infrastructure projects, Sinai development: Investment and International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr reached a final agreement with the World Bank to extend a USD 3 bn loan “over the coming months,” according to a ministry statement (pdf). The funding will be directed towards supporting the government’s development drive in the Sinai Peninsula, as well as financing infrastructure, transport and agriculture projects elsewhere in the country and general backing for Egypt’s economic reform program, the statement says. Talks for the funding had been ongoing since April. We had reported in an exclusive back in July that Cairo was seeking USD 2 bn in World Bank funding. It remains unclear whether the USD 3 bn in funding package includes a USD 500 mn loan Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly had requested from the bank for social housing development.

The news comes as Investment Minister Sahar Nasr is courting European investors on a roadshow that has taken her to Luxembourg, according to a ministry statement (pdf). In addition to sit-downs with government and Luxembourg stock exchange officials, Nasr is meeting with execs in industries including banking, materials, and chemicals. Look for a return visit by a Luxembourg trade delegation in the not-so-distant future.

Nasr is meeting today with the EU’s top “neighborhood policy” boss, according to a European Commission statement picked up by Al Masry Al Youm.

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