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Egypt ranks 2nd on Economist’s global normalcy index: Finance Ministry - Daily News Egypt

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Egypt ranks 2nd on Economist’s global normalcy index: Finance Ministry

It reflects success of Egypt’s economic reform programme, says Maait

Mohamed Maait, Minister of Finance, has affirmed that the Egyptian economy has become more capable of facing challenges and meeting the aspirations of the people, as it came in second place on the Economist’s normalcy index which keepstrack of which countries are returning to pre-pandemic life.

He added, in a statement on Sunday, that this reflected the success of the government’s economic reform programme, in a way that contributed to enabling the Egyptian economy to contain the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Egyptian minister explained that the last fiscal year witnessed an improvement in financial performance indicators, as the total deficit decreased from 8% to 7.4%, with an initial surplus of 1.4% of GDP.

He added that all international rating institutions maintained Egypt’s credit rating with a stable outlook despite the pandemic, which reflects its confidence in the solidity of the Egyptian economy and its ability to deal flexibly with internal and external challenges.

The minister said that President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi is leading the largest development movement in Egypt, pointing out that the national project for the development of the Egyptian countryside, “Decent Life”, is one of the best development programmes in the world, according to the United Nations, as it contributes to raising the most economic growth rates and leads to improving the lives of 58% of Egyptians with investments exceeding EGP 700bn within 3 years.

The minister added that the Egyptian customs system has witnessed a qualitative development, as importers are dealing with it by accessing the unified electronic platform for national trade and the tax system has witnessed a qualitative development as well.

The minister stressed that there is a growing interest in achieving human development, and that the allocations for the health and education sectors in the state’s general budget for the current fiscal year have exceeded the constitutional entitlement rates, and the gradual introduction of the “comprehensive health insurance” system to provide integrated health care for all Egyptians.

Maait explained that government investments during the current fiscal year witnessed an unprecedented increase of 27.6% to maximize spending on development projects.

The minister said that the World Bank estimates, in a recent study, that spending on social protection programs reached 4.2% of GDP in fiscal year 2019/20, and that poverty rates decreased by 5.2% with direct support programmes for the neediestgroups.

The minister indicated that the Egyptian government is keen to diversify sources of funding, and that Egypt will enter the “sovereign sukuk” market in 2022, explaining that investors’ demand for the first offering of green international bonds reflects their confidence in the Egyptian economy.

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