ABU DHABI: The United Arab Emirates foresees greater stability in Egypt after former army chief Abdel Fattah Al Sisi won a presidential election last week and will continue to back it financially, the UAE foreign minister said yesterday.
Since the army ousted Egypt’s first freely elected president, the Islamist Mohammed Mursi amid mass protests against his rule last July, the UAE has become a major donor for Egypt, taking a hands-on approach in its support for Cairo. Some Gulf countries were opposed to Mursi and his Muslim Brotherhood, which they regard as a security threat. In total, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the UAE have pledged over $12bn in loans and donations since July.
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed also told reporters the UAE wanted international partners to join in their efforts to repair Egypt’s shattered economy.
“We want to have partners from around the world involved, whether it be partners like Germany ... or institutions like the World Bank and the IMF,” Sheikh Abdullah said at a news conference in Abu Dhabi on the occasion of a visit by his German counterpart.
The minister said the UAE had a plan to revive Egypt’s economy and put it back on track.
“The next period will be different. The previous one was a transitional period and now there will be more stability,” he said.
The International Monetary Fund and Egypt have discussed a possible loan worth up to $4.8bn to help the economy embattled since a 2011 uprising that toppled president Hosni Mubarak and drove away tourists and foreign investors, two main sources of foreign currency.
These talks took a backseat when financial aid began flowing from Gulf states following Mursi’s ouster last year. REUTERS