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Egypt welcomes Obama aid pledge

23 May 2011 No Comment

EGYPT’S Prime Minister Essam Sharaf welcomed on Friday a pledge by US President Barack Obama to forgive one billion dollars in Egyptian debt and provide one billion dollars in aid.

‘This American support and other pledges by the European Union will help boost Egypt’s economy and encourage new projects,’ Mr Sharaf said in a statement from his spokesman, Ahmed al-Saman, Egypt’s official MENA news agency reported.

Mr Obama made the pledge on Thursday in a wide-ranging address on the Middle East.

Egypt, which was rocked by a popular revolt which ousted president Hosni Mubarak in February, faces a budget deficit of between 9.9 and 11 per cent for the 2011-2012 fiscal year, according to Finance Minister Samir Radwan.

The minister had forecast Mr Obama would pledge $2 billion in aid to Egypt in his policy speech.

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