House approves FY2019-2020 state budget
LEGISLATION WATCH- The FY2019-2020 budget has cleared the House. The House of Representatives has approved the FY2019-2020 state budget, which targets GDP growth of 6% and a budget deficit of 7.2%, Reuters reported. The government will aim to reach a primary budget surplus of 2% and reduce public debt to 89% of GDP, with an eye to bringing that figure down to 80% by FY2021-2022. It will also aim to bring the unemployment rate down to 9.1% and sees population growth at 2.3%. The budget will see large fuel subsidy cuts which will reduce expenditure on petroleum products to EGP 52.96 bn, down from EGP 89.75 bn this fiscal year. Electricity subsidies are also expected to drop by 75% to EGP 4 bn, Bloomberg noted.
In other news from the House:
Parliament OK’s data-sharing agreement: The House has finally greenlit an agreement signed in 2016 between Egypt, Morocco, Jordan and Tunisia to improve electronic data sharing, Al Mal reported. Finance Ministry representatives said that consultations with security agencies caused the legislation to be delayed for three years.
Civil service looks set to get pension hike: The House also approved a draft law that would see payouts to pensioners rise 15% across the board and the minimum monthly pension jump to EGP 900 from a previous EGP 750, the local press reported. The measure now requires input from Maglis El Dowla (the State Council), according to a separate press report.