The FINANCIAL — The Board of Directors of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has approved its first country strategy for Egypt which focuses on four key priorities identified in cooperation with the Egyptian government:
Supporting the competitiveness of Egypt’s private sector. The Bank will support the private sector with improved access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), better economic integration and increased opportunities for women and young people.
Improving the quality and sustainability of Egypt’s public utilities through private sector participation. Egypt suffers from a low quality of service provision and ageing infrastructure. The EBRD will help develop a more efficient power sector and promote gas market reforms contributing to the country’s energy security. The EBRD will also finance the modernisation of municipal infrastructure and promote the participation of the private sector within it.
Egypt’s Green Economy Transition. The EBRD will support Egypt’s efforts in diversifying its energy mix by financing renewable energy projects and energy efficiency investments across sectors, including energy efficiency credit lines for SMEs. The Bank will also seek to improve water efficiency through modernising water supply and waste water management. These investments will be complemented by policy dialogue.
Strengthen governance. In close cooperation with international financial institutions, the EBRD will contribute to improving governance in the public and private sector. The Bank will also provide capacity building for relevant institutions to improve competition, promote investment and policy delivery, according to EBRD.
Janet Heckman, EBRD Managing Director for the southern and eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) region and Director for Egypt, said: “We are proud to have adopted the first country strategy for Egypt which is based on a thorough assessment of the sectors and our dialogue with the authorities. Our engagement in Egypt, which started in 2012, has contributed to the development of the economy as well as to the reform process. We see this as an appeal to increase and strengthen our engagement in the country and aim for even wider impact.”
Philip ter Woort, departing EBRD Country Director, said: “I am very pleased with today’s endorsement by the EBRD Board of the country strategy for Egypt, which builds on the Bank’s strong operational engagement in Egypt over the last four years and lays the foundation for the Bank’s financial and policy dialogue engagement in the country for the years ahead.”
Egypt is a founding member of the EBRD and the Bank has invested over €2.3 billion in the country to date through 42 projects since the start of its activities at the end of 2012.