CAIRO (AP) — Egypt’s prime minister says he expects to reach an agreement by the end of the year with the International Monetary Fund on an aid package to help boost the country’s sagging economy.

Hesham Kandil said after meeting with IMF Chief Christine Lagarde on Wednesday that his government has drawn up an economic plan for the IMF that includes strategies to counter the budget deficit, encourage investment and ensure that subsidies reach those most in need.

Initial talks over a $3.2 billion loan earlier this year stalled after Egypt’s political leaders failed to overcome differences on a plan for the funds.

Egypt’s finance minister has said Cairo hopes to increase the loan to $4.8 billion to cover budget deficits stemming from shrinking tourism and foreign investment revenues after last year’s uprising.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.