Shaky Egyptian economy spurs debate

Published May 16th, 2001 - 02:00 GMT

The Egyptian government will soon submit a new integrated tax plan to the People’s Assembly Committee for Planning and the Budget in an attempt to create a more sound economic system. The plan, which aims to promote economic reform by improving tax exemptions and seeking investments, was devised by a team of both local foreign experts. 


Egypt’s financial hardships, according to Finance Minister Midhat Hasanayn, result from numerous factors, yet the situation is not exceptional considering the fact that Egypt is in the process of shifting from a controlled to a free market system. Other factors include large volumes of imports from Southeast Asia and the funneling of capital to projects that have either been unsuccessful or have yet to see profits, according to an economists Mahmud Ghallab and Abd Al-Mun’im in an Al-Wafd article.  


Some members of the People’s Assembly even warned that the public should be informed of the imminent dangers facing the economy. According to Hasanayn, the budget’s profit-expenditure gap stands at 20.77 billion Egyptian Pounds, of which 27 percent go to paying down the public debt.  


Others have warned that only half of the economic plan could be financed through state budget. Also believed to be in jeopardy by certain members of the Assembly are free medical treatment, health insurance and educational services, since allocations to them were lacking in the proposal. — (MENA Report)

© 2001 Mena Report (

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