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Egypt said it’s seeking billions of dollars in private sector investments and will set new policies on government ownership as it moves to boost an economy dealing with the shock waves of the war in Ukraine.

Officials are in discussions with Gulf nations on converting part of deposits they’ve made in Egypt into investments, while stakes in two army-owned firms and 10 other companies will be offered on the stock market by year-end, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly told reporters Sunday.

The government will also announce its policies on public ownership, which may see the state lessening its involvement in some sectors and completely exiting others, by the end of May, according to the premier. Egypt wants the private sector to make up 65% of investments in the country within three years, compared to about 30% currently, he said.

Egypt’s sovereign wealth fund is seeking investors for about $9 billion in assets, Planning Minister Hala Elsaid said at the same briefing in Cairo. 

The Arab world’s most populous nation is rushing to lessen the hit of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on its economy. A major wheat importer, it’s now facing higher bills for grain and energy shipments, has seen foreign outflows from its local-debt market and expects a fall in tourism from Russia, an important source.

Officials in the past two months have secured financial pledges from countries such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, hiked interest rates for the first time in five years and allowed the currency to weaken more than 15%.

The government also said Sunday that:

  • Egypt expects $40 billion in investment in green hydrogen projects in the coming years; no details given
  • Egypt saw $20 billion in foreign outflows from its local debt market this year
  • Country targets cutting debt-to-GDP ratio to 75% in 2026, from 85%
  • Egypt to issue sovereign sukuk bonds in the coming few months
  • Country may offer more sovereign green bonds before it hosts COP27 climate summit in November

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