The International Monetary Fund (IMF) stated in its Egypt report that it expected Egypt’s foreign debt to rise to $102.4bn, which is more than 25% of the total GDP by 2020/2021. The increase is expected following the loans granted by the IMF and other financial institutions to fund the government’s economic reform programme.
Egypt’s foreign debt had reached the $55.7bn mark in fiscal year (FY) 2015/2016. The IMF forecast that it would increase to reach $66bn by the end of FY 2016/2017. The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) has announced that foreign debt had reached $60bn in the first quarter of FY 2016/2017.
Moreover, the IMF estimated that the financial gap, which is the difference between Egypt’s foreign currency needs and its actual revenues, to be $35bn. According to the IMF, half of the gap is a result of the CBE’s need to replenish foreign currency reserves.
Egypt has secured full financing for FY 2016/2017 through the loans provided by the World Bank, the IMF, China, Afreximbank, and others. The IMF believes that the financing gaps for FY 2017/2018 and 2018/2019 will be lower, and that they can be covered through multilateral support, rollovers of some maturing liabilities, and little fresh financing.
The IMF estimates Egypt’s foreign debt to reach $98.7bn by the end of the economic reform programme in FY 2019/2020, while it is expected to reach the $102.4bn mark by the end of 2020/2021, which is the year expected to bear the fruits of the reforms.
On the other hand, the domestic debt according to the government’s plan is expected to reach 76% of the total GDP by FY 2020/2021.