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Government, FJP wrangle over IMF loan deal

Government, FJP wrangle over IMF loan deal

Indications of a potential disagreement between the government and the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) have surfaced as the government started talks with International Monetary Fund (IMF) over securing a loan.

The party insisted on the approval of an elected parliament on the loan, which came days after the Cabinet spokesman had denied the Prime Minister's remarks that the loan must be offered to the upcoming People's Assembly for approval.

Abdullah Shehata, head of the economic committee at FJP, said that there should be no loan without the approval of an elected parliament representing the nation.

Ruling out any possible development on the IMF loan during 2012, Shehata added that the economic reform program adopted by the government can never be achieved this year, which stalls the loan's procedures.

Shehata said that FJP submitted a complete program to handle the energy subsidy ssue, including a tightened monitoring, a quick implementation of the coupon system as well as a conversion of all power stations to fully operate on natural gas, which will save nearly EGP 10 billion.