Rebel Economy asked Ahmad Shokr, a Ph.D. candidate in Middle Eastern history at New York University and a founding member of the Drop Egypt’s Debt campaign, to lay out the key problems critics have with a planned International Monetary Fund loan to Egypt. 

  • 1. You are a vocal opponent of the International Monetary Fund loan. Can you explain why you are against it? Is it because of Egypt’s history of troubled relations with the Fund or the lack of transparency over the negotiations, or both?

Our campaign is mainly opposed to the policies that will be linked to the IMF loan. The government reform program (to be approved by the IMF) is aimed at achieving macroeconomic stability through three interrelated sets of policies—spending cuts, higher taxes, and greater exchange-rate flexibility. For the most part, ordinary Egyptians will foot the bill for these policies in the form of higher sales taxes…

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