Egypt marks first preliminary budget surplus in 15yrs

Egypt’s Finance Minister Mohamed Mait on Thursday said that preliminary indicators of the state’s budget for financial year 2017/2018 confirm a major financial improvement added to the first preliminary budget surplus in over 15 years.

Data also showed a decline in overall deficit-to-gross domestic product (GDP) on the back of higher public revenues, which exceeded the annual growth rate for public expenses added to improved tax collection, a statement by Egypt’s Presidential office said, citing the minister as saying.

The announcement was made during a meeting chaired by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi with Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly and finance minister Mohamed Mait.

The meeting tackled the budget for the current financial year 2018/2019, which Mait said would continue to bear the fruits of Egypt’s economic reform programme.

The new budget will focus on increasing spending in the fields of human resources and development, in addition to the continued focus on major infrastructure development projects spearheaded by public transportation, water utilities, wastewater, and the development of slums, the statement showed.

The government will also focus on raising productivity and competition levels particularly in the industrial and export-related sectors.