Jan 18, 10:44 AM EST

IMF says Egypt is progressing well with economic reform plan

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CAIRO (AP) -- The International Monetary Fund says Egypt is making progress with its economic reform program, although it will still take time to improve living standards for the whole population.

IMF Mission Chief for Egypt Chris Jarvis says Wednesday that while the currency had depreciated more than expected when it was floated as part of the reform package, it is expected to come down and economic growth to pick up.

Speaking from IMF headquarters in Washington, Jarvis says that Egypt's government and central bank were sticking to their pledges made to secure a $12 billion loan package from the lender of last resort, and that this was "showing some results."

Egypt qualified for the loan, but inflation in December jumped to a record high of 24.3 percent, the highest since 2008.

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