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Palm Hills Denies Banks Reconsidering $204 Million Egypt Loan

Palm Hills Developments SAE, an Egyptian real-estate developer, denied that lenders providing it with a 1.2 billion Egyptian-pound ($204 million) loan are reconsidering the deal because of the referral of the company’s chairman to trial.

“These reports are false,” said Bassem El-Shawy, director of investor relations at Palm Hills, referring to a report in Al Alam Al Youm newspaper today. “Our operations run independent of the chairman’s activities, and the banks have told us they understand that.”

The Cairo-based developer had its stock recommendation cut this month at HSBC Bank Middle East Ltd. and investment bank EFG-Hermes Holding SAE. Palm Hills faces a legal claim seeking the annulment of its purchase of a land plot from the government, for which a Cairo-court will convene on March 1.

Former Housing Minister Ahmed El Maghraby, a Palm Hills shareholder, is among those to have been referred to trial by Egypt’s public prosecutor on suspicion of squandering public funds and profiteering. Yasseen Mansour, chairman and chief executive officer of Palm Hills, has also been put on trial.

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