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Egypt to Pay off $850M in Debt to Foreign Oil Companies

Source: Ahram Online 5/14/2018, Location: Africa

Governor of Egypt's Central Bank Tarek Amer said that the country is expected to make an $850 million payment on its debts to foreign oil companies.

According to the latest records announced by the Egyptian government, which date back to last June, Egypt's debts to oil foreign companies are $2.4 billion.

Amer's statements came during a two-hour meeting with the Al-Ahram editorial board ahead of the Al-Ahram Business Leaders' Awards ceremony in Cairo on Thursday.

During the meeting, the central bank chief said Egypt's monetary policies and current fiscal position is assuring.

He highlighted that the country's total foreign exchange inflows reached $120 billion since floating the Egyptian pound in November 2016.

Amer then said that Egypt's level of external debts does not raise any concern. He added that Egypt has never been late in paying any of its obligations even during the most difficult times.

"We are continuing to carry out economic reforms, as we have strong reserves which are seen as a deterrent to any manipulation of the exchange market," said Amer.

The governor also announced that EGP 30 billion is expected to be pumped into small enterprises, which is expected to benefit 8 to 10 million citizens.

The closed round of talks was attended by Makram Mohamed Ahmad, Chairman of the Supreme Council for Media Regulation, Karam Gaber, Head of the National Press Council as well as head of the journalists' syndicate and Al-Ahram chairman Abdel-Mohsen Salama and other editors-in-chief and Al-Ahram board members.

Speaking on the economic reforms that have been taking place since 2016, Amer said that its results have strengthened the stability of the Egyptian economy.

"Although these decisions were painful, they were necessary, because they were delayed for many years," said Amer.

He explained that for the reform policies to bear fruit, Egyptians should continue their efforts to achieve all their aspirations for a better living.

In October 2017, Oil Minister Tarek El-Molla said that Egypt will fully pay off its debt to foreign oil companies within two years if it continues making payments at the same rate.

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