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Egypt's House of Representatives approves $217m development financing deals

Egypt's House of Representatives approves $217m development financing deals
Minister of International Cooperation, Rania El-Mashat

Cairo – Mubasher: The Minister of International Cooperation, Rania El-Mashat, stated that the House of Representatives approved four development financing agreements worth $217 million with development partners, to implement a number of projects in the fields of wastewater management, water desalination in the Sinai Peninsula, and the development of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), along with a development financing agreement that aims to strengthen governmental institutes in order to enhance the public services.

These projects fall within the ministry's framework to support the national development agenda, across various sectors, according to a statement on Wednesday.

The House of Representatives corroborated the Presidential Decree No. 76 for 2021, approving a second loan agreement between Egypt’s government and the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) that is worth $183 million, to finance the establishment of Bahr El-Baqar Drainage System.

Another collaboration with the KFAED was also approved according to the Presidential Decree No. 77 for 2021, approving a development financing worth $18 million, to establish two seawater desalination plants in the cities of New Rafah and New Bir El-Abd.

The House of Representatives also condoned the Presidential Decree No. 17 for 2021, which approves amending the executive protocol signed between the Egyptian and Italian governments regarding the Italian credit line with the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (MSMEDA, formerly known as the Social Fund for Development) to finance MSMEs, that is worth $15.4 million.

They have also acknowledged the Presidential Decree No. 71 for 2021, which approves exchanged letters between Egypt and the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation, regarding the agency’s support to the Egyptian government with a grant worth $238,000 to finance the project of “Strengthening the Egyptian Governmental Institutes with the Aim of Improving Public Service”.

El-Mashat stressed the importance of the approved agreements to implement several development projects especially in the Sinai Peninsula, by making several funds available catering to various sectors in order to achieve agricultural and infrastructural development, and to provide public services, water and sanitation services, and education to invest in the human capital.

In addition to developing residential communities, she explained that the ministry pushes for strong multilateral and bilateral partnerships to support the implementation of development projects within the Sinai Peninsula Development Program.

El-Mashat indicated that the ministry is working towards advancing international partnerships to promote effective development cooperation, through the three principles of Economic Diplomacy; Multi Stakeholders Platform, the Official Development Assistance mapping to the Sustainable Development Goals, and the Global Partnerships Narrative that puts “People at Core”, “Projects in Action,” and “Purpose as the Driver”.

El-Mashat stated that the approved agreements stimulate the implementation of several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); namely SDG1: Ending poverty in all its forms; SDG2: Zero Hunger; SDG6: Clean Water and Sanitation; SDG8: Decent Work and Economic Growth; Sustainable Cities and Communities, and SDG11: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions.

It is worth noting that El-Mashat highlighted in her statement at the plenary session of the House of Representatives the ministry’s role in supporting the implementation of the government’s program for 2018/2019 - 2021/2022 and acknowledged the ministry’s efforts in implementing economic diplomacy to consolidate international partnerships with multilateral and bilateral development partners and providing development funds to implement the national development program.

Launched by the Ministry of International Cooperation, the 2020 annual report, titled “International Partnerships for Sustainable Development: Writing the Future in a Changing Global Dynamic” showcases the financial agreements secured to be worth $9.8 billion, of which $6.7 billion was secured for financing sovereign projects and $3.19 billion was secured in support of the private sector.