Egypt’s relationship with the IMF has long been rocky. Most notably, in 1977, when Egypt reduced food subsidies in exchange for IMF financing, riots erupted in Egypt’s major cities, resulting in nearly 80 deaths and hundreds of injuries. The deal had to be terminated, and subsidies reinstated. Several more deals have been discussed since then, including in 2012; but most have gone off track or been abandoned.
Against that background, it is not surprising that many Egyptians view the IMF as overbearing, seeking to impose its will on countries without sufficient regard for local conditions. Some even view it as a tool of Western domination. This perception has caused past Egyptian governments not only to shy away from IMF support, but also to delay the annual economic consultations required under the Fund’s Articles of Agreement.
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