Earthquake strikes New Zealand
Just a short time after midnight on Saturday Nov.12, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake was registered in New Zealand. The epicenter was close to Christchurch, NZ and resulted in a eight foot tsunami wave hitting the coast within hours of the initial earthquake. The area is still on high alert for large aftershocks and tsunamis. Authorities do not expect following waves to be taller than the first that occurred. Mr. Key, a reporter who was in contact with a military helicopter monitoring the coast, said that “we don’t have any indications at the moment to believe [the waves] will rise, but we can’t rule that out.” Fire departments are relieved at the outcome of this earthquake, as much less damage to people and property occurred compared to a similar quake in the area five years ago in which two-hundred people were killed. There have only been two reported casualties from this weekend.
Egypt granted IMF assistance
Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi has stated that the country has a budget deficit of 12 percent and that unemployment is unacceptably high. Tourism, which used to be the largest source of income in the nation, has fallen precipitously since the political uprising of the Arab Spring five years ago. In an effort bolster economic confidence, the government floated the currency, which decreased its value by a half, and increased interest to 14.75 percent, which raised the cost of basic household necessities and food. Demonstrations occurred on Friday. As a result the International Monetary Fund has taken action, approving a substantial loan to Egypt in an effort to alleviate the worst of it’s current economic crisis. The loan will amount to $12 billion in total, and Egypt will receive about a quarter of that sum effective immediately. The money will be sent according to the nation’s need depending on the effects of new reforms and the rate of economic growth. Christine Lagarde is the managing director of the IMF and has advised that “resolute implementation of the policy package is essential to restore investor confidence” and that fuel subsidies and public sector bills must occur in order for the Egypt to regain some stability in the near future