More than 700 young people from 120 countries worldwide gathered in Hurghada on Monday for the beginning of the annual congress of international youth organisation AIESEC.
The event is being held in Egypt under the auspices of the Egyptian presidency and the youth and sport ministry and the tourism ministry, and aims to celebrate youth leadership worldwide.
Abdel-Rahman Ayman, AIESEC’s first Egyptian global president, said at a press conference at the beginning of the events that holding this year’s congress in Hurghada represents a significant opportunity to promote Egypt as an ideal investment and a networking platform for business leaders, start-ups, and jobseekers.
The congress, held this year under the slogan “Egypt, where it all begins,” was held once before in Egypt, in Sharm El-Sheikh in 2013.
Ayman also announced AIESEC’s project in Egypt this year, which is to work on the United Nations’ 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, in line with the country’s 2030 sustainable development strategy.
AIESEC’S primary focus in Egypt is the education sector; AIESEC volunteers work with more than 350 schools, educational and vocational centres and higher education institutions across the country to empower university students to act and contribute to AIESEC projects, either through working individually or through the organisation.
Ayman also highlighted the non-profit organisation’s expansion in Egypt, from representation in three universities in 2013 to almost every private and public university, in addition to its expansion across 18 cities in Egypt, over the span of three years.
The congress will see events on three main themes: sustainable development, entrepreneurship, and youth employment.
It is also the annual occasion where top AIESEC leaders representing their local and national boards review the organisational state of affairs, create strategies and decide on plans to implement the organisation’s ambition to be a youth leadership movement by 2020.
The first day of the international congress events featured several discussions and cultural shows, ending with the global village event, where AIESEC representatives from each country and territory that the organisation is present in showcased their culture through traditional outfits, food, music and culture.
Other special events during the congress will include the Global Youth Speak Forum, a one-day function where youth and senior leaders collaborate to discuss the Sustainable Development Goals, and the AIESEC 70th Global Celebration Event, to commemorate the platinum anniversary of the organisation, which was founded in 1948.
The congress runs until 9 July.