Egypt has endured nearly two years of political upheaval since the euphoria of the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak in February 2011 and eventually brought Islamists to power. Their credibility – and how well they do in forthcoming parliamentary polls – may rest on how they handle the economic crisis.
Before the visit, the International Monetary Fund had said Ahmed would discuss recent economic developments and "possible IMF support for Egypt in facing these challenges." Egyptian state media said the IMF team would stay for several days.
"We will attend many meetings with the Egyptian government today. The technical team will come later," Ahmed said after the meeting attended by Egypt's newly sworn-in finance minister, a little-known academic who is an expert on Islamic economics.
"All details will be discussed in these meetings today," added Ahmed, who was due to meet President Mohamed Morsi later.
The pound has lost more than 4 percent of its dollar value since Dec. 30, when the central bank introduced a new system for selling foreign currency to try to stem the fall in foreign reserves. The pound's slide has raised concern about inflation in the food-importing country that could ignite further unrest.