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French Version

Egypt expects six percent growth next year

Egypt can expect to achieve 6 percent growth in the next financial year starting July 1 amid improving investment levels, Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif said in remarks published on Sunday by the official Middle East News Agency.

The economy was also expected to grow by 5 percent in this financial year, Nazif said.

Economists have in the past said Egypt needs to achieve growth levels of 6 percent a year to keep pace with the growing number of youths entering the workforce, cut unemployment and raise living standards.

"Realizing average growth of 6 percent in the next financial year is not difficult, particularly with the rise in levels of investment and new offers the government has received from international companies to establish new projects in the Egyptian market or to expand existing projects," Nazif said.

In September, the Planning Ministry forecast 5.5 percent growth for the current 2004/5 financial year, compared to 4.1 percent the previous year.

Economists have praised liberalization policies of Nazif's cabinet, saying the moves will boost growth rates. The reforms include cutting customs tariffs and moves to slash taxes.

Cairo,02 14 2005
The Daily Star
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