IMF delegation in Egypt for talks on crucial loan

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CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's presidential spokesman says a delegation from the International Monetary Fund is back in the country for critical negotiations over a $4.8 billion loan to help bolster Egypt's ailing economy.

The economy plummeted following last year's uprising that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak, and much of the IMF loan is designed to deal with a huge government budget deficit.

Government officials say the deficit for the last fiscal year that ended this summer reached nearly 11 percent of the GDP and will likely increase this year. They say a reform plan will include subsidy cuts.

Presidential spokesman Yasser Ali says President Mohammed Morsi was meeting Tuesday with his economic team to discuss the talks with the IMF.

A deal is expected before the end of the year.

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