Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat
Egypt came on top of destinations for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development's (EBRD) investments in the southern and eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) region in 2020, accounting for more than €1 billion out of the €2.13 billion of development financing injected into 48 projects across the region, Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat announced on Monday.
SEMED includes Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, the West Bank, and Gaza.
“While the COVID-19 pandemic led to a decline in development gains globally, it also demonstrated that extraordinary multi-sectoral and collaborative interventions are possible. These interventions are evidenced by Egypt’s partnership with the EBRD, which played an indispensable role in building back better economies to address significant short-term and long-term challenges such as unemployment and climate change,” said Al-Mashat.
Amid the pandemic, the EBRD provided €784 million of liquidity lines to local banks in Egypt for on-lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to protect jobs and help enterprises restart and reshape through the recovery phase, according to EBRD.
On inclusive, green and resilient recovery, EBRD also provided a $12 million loan to the Hayat Regency for the development of a new hotel in West Cairo, which aims to generate more than 300 jobs and promote women’s inclusion through a high-quality training programme funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).
In addition, EBRD supports one of the first green private-to-private (P to P) projects in Egypt with an initial $4.2 million loan to TAQA PV for Solar Energy, TAQA Arabia’s renewable energy subsidiary, according to EBRD.
Egypt is a founding member of the EBRD. Since the onset of the bank’s operations in 2012, EBRD has invested over €7.1 billion in more than 125 projects in the country, with a total private sector share of 74 percent, according to the international cooperation ministry.
According to the annual report the ministry released in December, the ministry secured development financing agreements worth $9.8 billion during the year; $6.7 billion of which are directed to finance sovereign projects, while $3.1 billion are used in supporting the private sector.