* Egypt floated its pound currency in November
* Central bank governor says inflationary shock has passed
* Tarek Amer says foreign companies can repatriate profits
* World Bank will disburse $1 billion loan in March
* Central bank to provide $1.5 billion in payments to IOCs
* Amer predicts 30 percent fall in imports bill
(Recasts with second tranche of World Bank loan, adds details
from interview, quotes, background)
CAIRO, Feb 24 Egypt will receive in March the
second $1 billion tranche of a $3 billion World Bank loan aimed
at supporting a government economic reform programme, Central
Bank Governor Tarek Amer said late on Friday.
The country has been negotiating billions of dollars in aid
from various lenders to revive an economy hit by political
upheaval since a 2011 revolt and to ease a dollar shortage that
has crippled imports and hampered its recovery.
Facing a gaping budget deficit, Egypt began a series of
painful economic reforms and has been taking steps to loosen
capital controls, end energy subsidies, reform public
enterprises and overhaul monetary policy.
The central bank floated the Egyptian pound in November to
attract foreign capital, and the currency has weakened from 8.8
pounds to the U.S. dollar to roughly 20 pounds in December but
rallied to around 16 pounds this week.
Prices have skyrocketed as Egypt depends heavily on imports.
Core inflation soared to the highest in over a decade, hitting
30.86 percent in January.
"The inflationary shock has happened; liberalising the
exchange rate will not have an effect on inflation again," Amer
told local channel DMC in a televised interview.
He sought to paint a positive image of the float, saying it
allowed the central bank to provide $1.5 billion for payments to
international oil companies this year. Egypt imports $1 billion
worth of fuel every month, he said.
Enough dollars, $13.5 billion, have flowed into local banks
since November, allowing them to let foreign companies
repatriate profits, Amer said, something they were unable to do
for the past few years.
Egypt had roughly $36 billion in reserves before an uprising
in 2011 ushered in a period of political turmoil, scaring away
tourists and foreign investors, key sources of hard currency.
Reserves were almost halved by September but have been
building up ever since the float, which helped Egypt clinch a
$12 billion three-year loan from the International Monetary
Fund, and were at $$26.363 billion by the end of January.
Amer expects foreign debt to reach $60 billion by June 2017.
It stood at $55.76 billion in June 2016. Egypt has imported
goods worth some $15 billion since the float, he said, but
estimated that imports would fall 30 percent this year.
"The budget is coming under control, and we are now seeing
fiscal discipline," he said.
(Reporting by Ahmed Aboulenein; Editing by Catherine Evans and