Egypt plans to plug budget gaps with more foreign debt

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Egypt's Finance Minister says the country will face a $10 to $12 billion budget shortfall for the current 2017-18 fiscal year, and plans expanded foreign debt issuance to overcome it.

Finance Minister Amr el-Garhy told participants at the annual Euromoney Egypt Conference on Monday that economic reforms were ongoing.

Cairo secured a $12-billion, three-year bailout loan from the International Monetary Fund in November to support the program, enacting a tough subsidy cuts, a value-added tax and currency devaluation to qualify.

El-Garhy has announced plans to fill the gaps in recent press interviews, saying that Egypt will issue a 1.5 billion euro ($1.8 bln) bond by the end of November and another $10 billion in Eurobonds next year, with $3 billion to $4 billion issued by the first quarter of 2018.