Egyptian drivers wait in line with their vehicles at a petrol station on June 27, 2013 in Cairo, Egypt. Image Credit: AFP

Cairo: The UAE has agreed to grant Egypt $1 billion and another $2 billion interest-free loan, an Egyptian source close to the talks told Gulf News on Tuesday.

“The amount was expected to be part of a larger financial package from the UAE. The loan would be in the form of a deposit at Egypt’s central bank,” the source, who talked on condition of anonymity, said.

The offer was made during a meeting between a UAE delegation to Cairo, led by UAE National Security Adviser Shaikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and Egypt’s interim president Adly Mansour.

“The UAE stands by Egypt and its people in this crucial phase. It has confidence in the choices made by its people, as well as this people’s ability to overcome the current challenges,” Shaikh Hazza said, according to WAM.

Also, the UAE has sent 30,000 tonnes of diesel to Egypt via Suez, a senior Petroleum Ministry official said on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Egypt’s presidency named former Finance Minister Hazem Al Beblawi to serve as interim prime minister, leading a government that will administer new elections and work to revive a crumbling economy.

Al Beblawi will take ownership of an economy stuck in the worst slowdown in two decades, record unemployment and the highest budget deficit in the Middle East.

Opposition leader Mohammad Al Baradei is named as vice-president for foreign affairs, according to the state-run news agency.

Meanwhile, a senior member of Muslim Brotherhood has rejected the timetable announced by the country’s interim president for amending the country’s constitution and setting new presidential elections. Essam Al Erian said on his official Facebook page that the transition plan will take the country back to “square one”.

Ayman Sharaf is a journalist based in Cairo

WIth additional inputs by AP