Egypt's El-Sisi Appoints Housing Minister as New Premier

(Bloomberg) -- Egypt’s president on Thursday appointed Housing Minister Mostafa Madbouly to form a new cabinet, days after the government resigned in what was seen as a largely procedural move.

Madbouly had served as caretaker prime minister when his now-former boss, Sherif Ismail, was out of the country late last year undergoing medical treatment in Germany. Ismail’s administration quit earlier this week after President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi was sworn in for his second term.

Ismail, who had also served as oil minister, was at the helm when Egypt floated its currency in November 2016 and slashed fuel subsidies, the first phase of a sweeping program to revive an economy that struggled since the 2011 ouster of President Hosni Mubarak.

The moves helped Egypt secure a $12 billion International Monetary Fund loan critical to restoring investor confidence in the Arab world’s most populous nation. At the same time, however, they sent prices soaring, with inflation topping 30 percent and further burdening a population of over 96 million, half of whom live near or below the poverty line.

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