Saudi Arabia’s assistance to Egypt will take the form of soft loans and investments rather than grants, Reuters has reported.

A Saudi businessman familiar with the matter told the agency that there would be no more “free money” while oil prices were low.

Saudi investors are looking for good returns as the kingdom attempts to diversify its revenues away from oil.

During King Salman’s visit to Cairo, a SR60bn ($16bn) Egyptian-Saudi investment fund was announced. Contributions will come 50 per cent from Saudi Arabia and 50 per cent from Egypt, according to press reports. King Salman pledged SR30bn of investment in Egypt in December 2015.

Cairo and Riyadh also signed a deal to finance $1.5bn of development projects in the Sinai region of Egypt. This includes the King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud University in the city of Al Tor in South Sinai, and a residential complex project. 

Finance deals were also signed for West Cairo power plant and Kasr El Aini Hospital, according to the Egyptian State Information Service.

Saudi Arabia is also expected to finance Egypt’s petroleum purchases through a $20bn soft loan over five years.

In early 2015, Saudi Arabia deposited $2bn in the Central Bank of Egypt, to help shore up its dwindling foreign exchange reserves, as part of a $4bn aid package.