Egypt’s EGPC recently announced in a press release that the framework agreement with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to finance Egypt’s petrol, diesel and butane needs will help ease the financial bottlenecks faced by EGPC in finding the hard currency needed for imports, as well as increasing the quantities imported. Amr Mostafa, EGPC’s Vice Chairman for Operations, said that the executive steps of agreement are expected to begin within two weeks.

The Ministry of International Cooperation had signed a deal worth $3 billion with the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation, a member of the Islamic Development Bank group, in order to finance the imports of petroleum products for three years.

Mostafa pointed out that the agreement would also help increase the strategic reserves of these commodities, because of Egypt’s ability to import quantities additional to those planned and to exploit the significant decline in prices to boost excess inventories. He added that the rising stock would facilitate greater flexibility in dealing with crises and pumping larger quantities to eliminate such emergencies as soon as they occur.

Egypt imports $500 million worth of various petroleum products a month; up to $6 billion annually.
The governorates of Upper Egypt received its own fair share from these agreements as the ministry also signed a cooperation framework agreement with the same bank valued at $198 million to help finance the development of the hydrogen cracker complex at the Assiut refinery.

EGPC’s vice chairman explained that this plant will completely cover the various fuel needs of Upper Egypt, and that the rest of the project funding will be made available through local banks. The ministry plans to finish the project and start trial production beginning in 2018.