The EIPR reiterates its reservations on most of the IMF loan terms, which have adverse socioeconomic impacts on most citizens and are damaging to the economy and social stability.
Programs: Economic and Social Justice
The report assesses the economic and social impact of the economic adjustment program, agreed upon by the Egyptian government and the International Monetary Fund as a condition for Egypt’s receipt of $12-billion loan under the Extended Fund Facility, to be disbursed in six tranches.
EIPR stresses the importance of issuing this law in a timely manner. The presidency’s objections should not be used to justify a delay given the importance of this legislation and its direct impact on the health and rights of Egyptians as well as scientific research. We also stress on the importance of releasing drafts to the media and civil society, to enable the assembly to pass a law that receives the support of stakeholders and makes them partners in its implementation.
Egypt was hit with the biggest fine in its history when the ICSID ruled on September 3, 2018 that Egypt was liable for compensation of $2 billion to Union Fenosa, as damages for the 2014 government’s failure to provide gas to the company during the energy crisis in Egypt.
A group of residents of the Wadi al-Qamar area in western Alexandria, located near a cement plant, had filed a complaint to the Environmental Affairs Agency (EAA) and the Public Prosecution in August 2015, alleging that emissions from the Alexandria Portland Cement were harmful to their health.
The report is of particular relevance to the meeting scheduled for April 20, 2 pm GMT, between World Bank officials and civil society organizations focused on tax justice and the disclosure policies of international finance institutions such as the World Bank and IMF.
The IFC has been operating in Egypt since 1995 and has worked with dozens of different companies across different sectors, mainly through lending or holding equity in the investee company, as well as by providing technical support. We have found through our research that the IFC invests in operations that are deeply involved with some of the most secretive offshore jurisdictions in the world, where information about the real owners of these companies is in many cases obscured.
EIPR sees this judgment as justice for the complainants and a recognition of their rights to health and environmental safety. The judgment is particularly important because current environmental laws and regulations allow heavy polluting industries such as cement and coal-powered plants to operate in residential areas.
The Egyptian government implemented half of the measures required of it under the terms of the agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) from April to December 2017, the second IMF review period.