• Minister says finance gap currently at $36bn
  • Investment-lead growth model is the reason the gap is expected to widen

Egypt’s Ministry of Finance expects the country’s finance gap to widen in the next few years despite the need to press ahead with major projects.

“We have a big financing gap. The financing gap for the economy is estimated at $36bn in the next five years. This might widen a little bit when the International Monetary Fund (IMF) come and do a review in a few weeks,” said Finance Minister Hany Dimian speaking at the Euromoney conference in Cairo on 7 September.

Dimian goes on to explain that the reason behind the widening of the finance gap is increased investment activity.

“We are going to go back to the international capital markets very soon. Still early to say the amount but we have plans to go back to the market. We will introduce sukook to broaden our base of financing and also deal with the twin deficit.”

The budget, which was approved on 21 June, stated that growth has been projected at 5 per cent, which is a slight increase from 4.2 per cent this year.

Public revenues are expected to increase by 26 per cent to reach $80.3bn, but expenditure is expected to hit $116bn, which is up 20 per cent.

The budget is set to limit government expenditure by cutting wages, subsidies and interest payments, which are set to be reduced by 1 percentage point for 2015.