Egypt’s 2019 GDP growth projected at 5.5% – IMF report

Egypt’s economy is projected to grow 5.3 percent in 2018 and 5.5 percent in 2019, the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook report showed on Tuesday.

IMF raised Egypt’s economic growth projections for 2018 from a forecast of 5.2 percent announced earlier in April. The Fund said the forecasted growth in Egypt reflected a recovery in tourism, rising natural gas production, and continued improvements in confidence due to the implementation of the IMF-backed reform programme.

Egypt’s average consumer price inflation is projected at 20.9 percent in 2018, 14.0 percent in 2019, and 7.0 percent in 2023, according to the report.

“In Egypt, while healthy foreign reserves and a flexible exchange rate leave the economy well positioned to manage any acceleration in outflows, maintenance of sound macroeconomic frameworks and consistent policy implementation, which have led to a successful macroeconomic stabilisation, is important.” the report said.

Egypt’s unemployment rate is expected to reach 10.9 percent in 2018 and 9.9 percent in 2019, the IMF said.

In July, the Fund maintained a favourable outlook for Egypt’s economy in its third major review of the country’s loan programme but warned against the risks of rising fuel prices and an investor exit from emerging markets.

The three-year $12 billion loan programme agreed in late 2016 and aimed at drawing back investors that fled after its 2011 uprising has obliged Egypt to undertake tough reforms such as slashing energy subsidies, imposing new taxes, and floating its pound currency.