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IMF to Cairo: $3.2 aid pkg 'ready' whenever Egypt's economic plan is

Political wrangling in Egypt may come at a cost.

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An Egyptian woman sells clothes on the side of a road in Cairo. Some 40 percent of Egyptians live on less than $2 per day, the World Bank says. (MAHMUD HAMS/AFP/Getty Images)

A top International Monetary Fund (IMF) official told reporters today that "we can mobilize financing" for a badly-needed aid package for Egypt as soon as politicians there show strong support for a comprehensive economic recovery plan, reported the Associated Press.

Masood Ahmed's comments come amid heightened political in-fighting in Cairo that earlier this week saw a near-strike by parliament in protest of the ruling military. 

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Ahmed's remarks suggest the IMF deal may not go through as planned on May 15, said Bloomberg.

Parliament last week threw out the economic plan put forward by the military-appointed cabinet as part of a growing standoff, said AP

Ahmed, who directs the fund's Middle East and Central Asian work, said the plan should balance the Egyptian economy, boost investing, address social issues, and have strong political support able to sustain it even with country's historic presidential elections this month, according to The Wall Street Journal

“Not only this government, but the one that will take over after the presidential elections, will need to be supportive and committed to implementing these measures,” Ahmed told reporters in Dubai, according to AP

Egypt is expected to need some $10-12 billion in external aid over the next year or so, AP cited Ahmed as saying

Over half of the nation's foreign currency reserves have been spent since 2011, according to Bloomberg, forcing domestic borrowing costs to soar. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/egypt/120502/imf-32-egypt-aid-pkg-waiting-economic-plan-cairo