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Egypt's politics put economy at risk

March 6, 2013 at 12:27 PM

CAIRO, March 6 (UPI) -- Delays in the Egyptian election process mean a $4.8 billion loan from the IMF may go on the backburner, an economist said Wednesday.

An Egyptian administrative court said Wednesday it was referring an election law to a constitutional court for review. The court said Egypt's upper house of Parliament made amendments to the law without referring back to a high constitutional court.

Farouk Soussa, an economist for Citi, told the Egyptian Independent newspaper the dispute may jeopardize the loan from the International Monetary Fund.

"Egypt's economic challenges are deepening by the day, while the prospects of addressing these seemingly diminish at an equally alarming rate," he said.

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi changed the election date to accommodate Easter celebrations in late April under the Coptic Christian calendar.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met last weekend with his Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Amr. Kerry said he was in Cairo to listen to suggestions on what Egyptian leaders needed to realize their post-revolutionary ambitions.

"It is important, even urgent, that the Egyptian economy gets stronger and that people have jobs and have opportunity and that the energy of this country can be focused on a more prosperous future," Kerry said.

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