Explainer: What you need to know about Egypt’s NWFE programme

Habiba Hamdy , Wednesday 23 Nov 2022

Egypt’s Country Platform for the Nexus of Water, Food and Energy (NWFE) aims to mobilise climate finance and private investments from multiple international financing institutions to accelerate the national climate agenda and support the country's green transition.



NWFE, is a national scheme meant to implement the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), a document Egypt recently submitted detailing its commitments to emission targets by 2030.

NWFE, launched by Egypt's Minister of International Cooperation in July 2022, reflects the interlinkages and complementarity between climate action and development efforts, and is intended to aid Egypt in its transitional phase to a green economy as part of the country's National Climate Change Strategy 2050.

The programme seeks to mobilise concessional development finance for a package of priority green development projects in the food, water and energy sectors.

 NWFE aims to achieve sustainable, low-emission development, and enhance scientific research and technology transfers in the climate change field.

The projects covered by NWFE – within its three fields – cater to the needs of adaptation and mitigation in ways that enhance the country’s sustainable development trajectory for COP 27 and beyond.

At the energy sector, NWFE aims to shift Egypt from inefficient and harmful practices, such as thermal power plants, to renewable energy.

In terms of food and water security, there are plans to enhance small farmers’ adaptation to climate risks.

In addition, there are other plans to increase crop yields and irrigation efficiency to build resilience of vulnerable regions.

Moreover, the program plans to develop water desalination capacity, establish early warning systems, and modernise on-farm practices.

NWFE's parallel project, NWFE+, will focus on sustainable transport projects.

This comes as the country plans to boost its green investments to 50 percent of total public investments by 2024/2025, up from 40 percent currently, and as it aims to increase the supply of electricity generated from renewable sources to 42 percent by 2035.

Below, Ahram Online zooms in on the main aspects of NWFE:

  • There are currently a total of nine projects under the three umbrellas of NWFE.
  • The intention is to set up one energy project, five food and agriculture projects, and three irrigation and water projects.
  • NWFE is financed by multiple entities including both state and non-state actors.
  • The African Development Bank is Egypt’s partner for the water pillar.
  • The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is the partner for the energy pillar.
  • International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is the partner for the food security pillar.
  • Egypt signed multiple agreements and letters of intent (LOI) at a total value of $10 billion on finance day of COP27, including around $7 billion for NWFE and about $3 billion for NWFE+.
  • The United States and Germany pledged $250 million to finance the program’s energy pillar. Sixty percent (around $150 million) of the pledged amount will be allocated in the form of debt exchange and development grants.
  • The European Union signed an (LOI) with a finance value of $35.8 million for the energy pillar as well.
  • To reduce harmful gas emissions through the implementation of a solar energy project (which is expected to produce 10 GW) by 2028,  the energy pillar is expected to mobilise $10 billion from the private sector.
  • The pillar also aims to remove 5 GW of inefficient fossil-fuel capacity by 2025.
  • The aim of this project is to cut natural gas consumption and reduce emissions by around 17 million tonnes per year.
  • NWFE seeks to deploy over $300 million in grant and concessional finance from France, Denmark, the UK, the Netherlands, and the European Commission, as well as from other donors.


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