Prospects for cooperation between Egypt and the World Bank Group (WBG) in the transportation sector were the subject of discussion between Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat and Ibrahim Dajani, the regional director for sustainable development and infrastructure in the Middle East and North Africa region at the WBG, on Thursday during the latter's visit to Egypt.
The meeting tackled the means to boost private sector investments and the status of ongoing projects, in addition to opportunities for future cooperation on green cities and dry ports.
Al-Mashat discussed future partnerships between Egypt and the World Bank in the transport sector, sustainable infrastructure, and the promotion of smart solutions in the sector to create more job opportunities and increase the sector's contribution to economic growth.
The minister said the transport sector was the highest recipient of development financing from multilateral and bilateral partners in 2020, receiving $1.8 billion throughout the year.
The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) has financed several projects in the transport sector, including the Egypt National Railways Restructuring project (ENRRP) in 2009 with $270 million, in addition to a $330 million fund in 2011, she added.
The World Bank is also financing the Greater Cairo Air Pollution Management and Climate Change project to the tune of $200 million, which ensures the reduction of harmful emissions from vehicles and the provision of infrastructure to meet the energy supply requirements for charging and maintaining electric vehicles.
Dajani praised Egypt's efforts to develop its infrastructure, especially in airport development and the speedy implementation of transport projects in the past two years, elaborting that the World Bank is greatly invested in expanding development partnerships with Egypt.
Egypt’s transport sector projects support social and economic development and directly benefit the citizens, he said, adding that these projects further stimulate the participation of the private sector and increase its investments in the transport sector.
Al-Mashat also met with Ayat Soliman, the WBG’s regional director of the sustainable development department for the Middle East and North Africa, during her visit to Egypt, to discuss joint relations between Egypt and the WBG meant to achieve sustainable development across several fields.
The meeting broached several pressing issues, including climate change and the government’s efforts to overcome its repercussions and prepare an integrated national strategy.
They also delved into the achievements accomplished in the field of gender equality, which is a key pillar of the World Bank's financing development policies.
Furthermore, the development of the Suez Canal axis was discussed. The Upper Egypt Development Programme was tackled, being an exemplary model in the development of rural communities.
During the meeting, the minister noted that Egypt plays a key role in the regional transition towards a green economy, explaining that it is planning for more partnerships and is keen on integrating climate action into the development strategies to promote private and foreign investments in transitioning towards a green economy.
Al-Mashat pointed out that several projects are being implemented through joint cooperation between national authorities and the World Bank, such as the Greater Cairo Air Pollution Management and Climate Change project that is worth $200 million. The project is focused on reducing harmful gas emissions.
The two sides are also working on the $8.1 million Organic Pollutants Management project.