Egypt, EBRD launch second phase of SCZone digitalisation programme

Doaa A.Moneim , Thursday 23 Feb 2023

Egypt launched on Thursday the second phase of the technical support programme for the digitalisation of the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone) in collaboration with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

Egypt, EBRD

The action came under the EBRD’s country strategy (2022-2027) for Egypt, which focuses mainly on promoting an inclusive economy, accelerating Egypt’s green economy transition, and enhancing the country’s competitiveness by supporting private-sector growth and strengthening governance.

The launch was witnessed by Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat, CEO of the SCZone Walid Gamal El-Dein, EBRD’s Vice President Alain Bello, and EBRD’s Managing Director of the SEMED Region Heike Harmgart.

The second phase of the programme is meant "to strengthen the region's position as a centre for global investments, building on what was achieved in the first phase, which was successfully completed in 2020,” Al-Mashat said during the event.

She added that the first phase of the programme achieved great progress in terms of accelerating the pace of procedures for investors in the SCZone, which enhances the efficiency of the services provided, supports Egypt’s priorities to transform the region into a major development hub, and boosts the competitive advantages available to investors from different sectors across the world.

The second phase aims to simplify administrative procedures and speed up the management of investor services, launch a unified and automated window that provides services to investors, and develop an effective, competitive, and environment-friendly business environment, according to the minister.

Al-Mashat asserted the importance of digital transformation in providing job opportunities, promoting expansion in economic sectors, such as financial services and e-commerce, and promoting comprehensive and sustainable growth.

The ongoing portfolio of the Ministry of International Cooperation with the EBRD includes 35 projects in innovation, digitisation and entrepreneurship, which contribute to achieving 11 SDGs, with a total development financing of $1 billion. The projects represent 4.5 percent of the ministry's development financing portfolio, according to Al-Mashat.

These funds were made available by 13 bilateral and multilateral development partners.

Egypt is one of EBRD’s founding members. In 2021, Egypt became a country of operation with €10 billion in over 160 projects, of which 70 percent has been dedicated to the private sector.

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