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.