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Sunday, 6 January 2019

Did the FinMin revise upwards its public debt targets for Egypt?

**#3 FinMin revises upwards its public debt targets for Egypt: The Finance Ministry is targeting reducing Egypt’s public debt to 80-85% of GDP by the end of FY2021-22, according to an initial draft of the FY2019-20 state budget presented to President Abdel Fattah El Sisi last week, according to an Ittihadiya statement. A senior government official had told Enterprise last month that the ministry’s comprehensive debt control strategy, which has been in the works since August, aims to reduce Egypt’s public debt to 72-75% of GDP by FY2021-22 from 98% today. State budget guidelines for FY2019-20 released in November had set a public debt target of 79.3% of GDP for that fiscal year. The ministry is still hoping to maintain its 2% primary budget surplus during the next three fiscal years.

Background: The Finance Ministry was expected to officially unveil its debt control strategy at the end of last month. According to sources, who spoke to Enterprise, the strategy centers largely on the diversification of debt instruments — including the issuance of green bonds, sovereign sukuks, zero-coupon bonds, and two other new-to-Egypt instruments — as well as the diversification of the currencies in which we borrow and our sources of funding.

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