Credit Agricole Egypt denied on Wednesday an Egyptian newspaper report it had agreed to lend El Wadi Cement EUR150m to help it build a cement plant in Egypt. Al-Mal newspaper reported on Tuesday that El Wadi had secured the loan in a bid to regain a production licence withdrawn by Egypt’s Industrial Development Authority because of start-up delays and financing shortfalls.
"We did not grant them EUR150m. This information is not accurate," Credit Agricole Egypt’s managing director, Henri Guillemin, told Reuters by telephone. "Credit Agricole Egypt and Credit Agricole Group did not grant El Wadi a loan."
He added his bank had not had any negotiations with El Wadi.
Egypt reopened the bidding process for the cement licence in May and blocked El Wadi and other cement firms with existing operations from bidding, saying it wanted to boost competition and bring down cement prices.