Parliament is expected to approve the Prime Minister Sherif Ismail’s cabinet’s government programme on Wednesday, despite the objections of members of parliament to the programme presented on 27 March.
Parliamentary speaker Ali Abdul Aal submitted the results a parliamentary committees study of the cabinet’s programme to the Minister of Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Magdy El-Agaty.
According to parliamentary sources, Al-Agaty will convey the recommendations to the cabinet, which will then disperse the recommendations to each minister for review.
All cabinet members will attend Wednesday’s session to witness the vote. However, representatives of the government present at the vote are not expected to respond to recommendations on the cabinet’s programme.
MP Mohamed Badawi Desouky said approximately 300 MPs have recommended amendment to the programme, further 180 MPs are expected to submit recommendations on Wednesday, followed by a general vote.
He added that the indicators say that the government will acquire the confidence of the MPs, especially that a majority of them believe in voting confidence in the cabinet in light of “the difficult economic position of the country.”
MP Ashraf Al-Araby said parliament expressed a number of recommendations on the government’s programme and its financing mechanisms.
Setting a timetable for the implementation of the programme is not as important as the ability of the government to implement the target goals, said Al-Araby, adding that it is also important for the government to be efficient in its implementation.
After voting on the government’s programme, parliament will discuss the draft budget next week. Parliament’s committees will also undergo their final formation.
Al-Araby said next year’s budget will bear the weight of a heavy burden: this year’s budget.
“The government accumulated a deficit this year of 9.8% [of GDP], but indicators expect that the deficit will reach 11.7%,” said Al-Araby. The deficit for the next fiscal year is expected to be 9.9%, the same percentage estimated by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Al-Araby stated that the government should discuss and implement policies that would determine wage rates, debt, and other key economic issues and concerns.
The government’s programme, entitled ‘Beginning and Hope’ provides a framework to lower the budget deficit and inflation rate, to raise the growth rate to 6% within two fiscal years, and to develop a mechanism for tax commutation.
According to previous statements by the prime minister, the programme sets a number of challenges which pertain to national security inside and outside of Egypt, the increase in population, the increase in unemployment rate, and the decrease of the quality of government services.