Cancel all Egypt’s unjust debts, says Jubilee Debt Campaign

Jubilee Debt Campaign has called for all of Egypt’s unjust debts to be cancelled, following reports that President Obama will announce a $1 billion write-off of debt owed by Egypt to the US.

New loans of $3-$4 billion are also reportedly being offered by the US, IMF and World Bank (1),

Tim Jones, of Jubilee Debt Campaign said:

“All unjust debts run up by dictator Hosni Mubarak should be cancelled. Many of the loans were almost certainly used to buy weapons from western companies which helped keep Mubarak in power for so long.”

“Right now the UK Government is claiming Egypt owes £100 million to Britain’s Export Credits Guarantee Department, but won’t own up about what it’s for. Dictator debt must not be kept a secret. David Cameron should order the immediate release of information on the origins of these debts and cancel Egypt’s unjust debts to the UK.”

“Reports that fresh loans are being offered up by the Western controlled IMF & World Bank are deeply concerning. Loading Egypt up with new debts is not in the interests of Egypt’s people. Time and again such debts have been used to force countries to follow free market policies for the benefit of multinational companies. Meanwhile repayment of debts and their interest drain money out of a country.”

“If Western powers really want to help Egypt’s economy in a time of transition, rather than control it, they should offer debt cancellation and grants, not loans with strings attached.”

The Egyptian Goverment’s total external debt is $30 billion. It currently spends $3 billion per year on debt payments (2).

President Obama is reported to be ready to cancel only part of Egypt’s debt to the US (3)

For more information call Jubilee Debt Campaign on 020 7324 4722 or Tim Jones on 07817 628196

Notes

1. Guardian, http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may/19/barack-obama-middle-east-aid

2. World Bank, http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/all

3. Reuters,http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCATRE74I09Q20110519

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