Egyptian MPs disapprove Govt’s Economic Plan

Assembly speaker Saad al-Katatni said the “government must submit its resignation to the head of state”.

Egypt’s parliament overwhelmingly rejected the army-appointed cabinet’s plan to cut state spending on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Kamal al-Ganzouri’s government presented the Islamist-dominated parliament with the plan on Feb. 26 and it has been discussed over ten sessions.

Only six out of 365 lawmakers who cast their votes approved of the plan, which was criticized as vague and incoherent. Some said the programme failed to improve public security, reduce poverty or provide the revenue to raise wages.

Finance Minister Mumtaz al-Seaad said this week he expected the first loan installments to arrive in May and the government had told the IMF it had political backing for the loan.

But an IMF statement on Tuesday provided little evidence of significant progress.

“The IMF remains ready to support a home-grown programme that maintains macroeconomic stability and promotes inclusive growth, enjoys the necessary broad political support and includes adequate external financing from Egypt’s international partners,” the statement said.

“We look forward to advancing these discussions and to bringing a program for consideration by the IMF Executive Board as soon as the above conditions are in place,” it added.

Assembly speaker Saad al-Katatni said the “government must submit its resignation to the head of state”.

The government is expected to step aside by the end of June after a presidential election.

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