Despite the pandemic that rocked the boat in 2020, Egypt managed to maintain its macroeconomic stability; cushioned by the aforementioned homegrown economic reform program. Egypt’s economy was one of the few in the world to escape recession with a positive GDP growth rate of 3.6% in 2020. Pushing through a challenging 2021, Egypt is prevailing economically with a growth rate of 2.5% as reported by the IMF and is expected to grow by 5.7% in 2022, according to the IMF’s 2021 report on “World Economic Outlook: Managing Divergent Recoveries”.
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals can only be realized with strong global partnerships and cooperation. A successful development agenda requires inclusive partnerships — at the global, regional, national and local levels — built upon principles and values, and upon a shared vision and shared goals placing people and the planet at the center.
“I call the years 2020-2021 the ‘Years of Multilateralism.’” H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat Egypt has been prioritizing building for economically resilient, sustainable and inclusive communities in the road ahead, with a forward-looking agenda, pushed through agility and innovation. With political will and leadership, now is the opportunity for the region, and the rest of the world, to come together and collaborate to ensure that no one is left behind.
The United Nations SDGs can only be realized with strong global partnerships and cooperation. A successful development agenda requires inclusive partnerships — at the global, regional, national and local levels — built upon principles and values, and upon a shared vision and shared goals placing people and the planet at the centre.
The SDGs remain the framework for building back better, with everyone coming together to enhance development effectiveness and impact and accelerate progress in achieving the goals. According to the United Nations Sustainable Development Report 2020, Egypt ranks 83rd from 166 countries with SDG achievement on track, moderately increasing or stagnating with no decrease.
In recent years, the circular economy has gained increasing prominence as a tool which presents solutions to some of the world’s most pressing crosscutting sustainable development challenges. Egypt was featured as a ‘Grow Country’ in the 2020 Circularity Gap Report alongside China, Brazil and Vietnam, the only group with an overall positive trade balance, accelerating transition to a circular economy.
The UN Partnership Development Framework for Egypt (UNPDF), launched in 2006 with the Ministry of International Cooperation as co-chair represents the UN’s cooperation framework with the Government of Egypt. It recognizes the substantial gains already made by Egypt on a whole range of development indicators and takes into account lessons learnt from previous cooperation.
Formulated in coordination with the Government of Egypt through a highly participatory and inclusive process, the UNPDF for the period of 2018 - 2022 is fully aligned with national development priorities, as articulated in the national Sustainable Development Strategy: Egypt Vision 2030 as well as the global Sustainable development Goals and is based on a number of key priorities. The UNPDF is composed of four pillars: 1) Inclusive Economic Development 2) Social Justice 3) Environmental Sustainability and Natural Resource Management 4) Women's Empowerment.
The strategic relationship between Egypt and the EU, since 1977, has extended across several sectors, positively contributing to economic development. Currently, the cooperation portfolio between the two sides amounts to $1.6 billion. This year, the EU has supported the Government of Egypt's COVID-19 National Preparedness and Response Plan through reallocating $106.5 million under the Health Sector Policy Support Programme – II.
The cooperation portfolio between Egypt and Italy within the framework of the debt swap program is worth $350 million dollars, in which $149.9 million is allocated for the first phase, and $100 million is allocated for the second phase, through which about 88 projects were funded.
2020 witnessed the signing of two agreements within the third phase of the Egyptian-Italian debt swap program for development, including an agreement for the Social Welfare development project in Luxor worth $2.68 million, which is implemented in partnership with the World Food programme and aims to provide an integrated package of development to support the most vulnerable families in Luxor. The second agreement was also to expand the projects of applied technological schools, and enhance the skills of teachers with a total of $2.6 million, which is used to develop technical education, support the capabilities of graduates, and establish a network that includes a large number of applied schools that are managed through the Applied Technology Schools Administration Unit at the Ministry of Education and Technical Education. The Ministry of International Cooperation with the United States of America through the USAID have started discussions on expanding the economic cooperation strategy between Egypt and the US during the next five years (2021-2025). The new strategic framework mainly targets economic and social development by supporting structural reforms. A joint Egyptian-Iraqi High Committee in Baghdad was held for the first time in 30 years with a series of meetings with the presence of the Ministry of International Cooperation as a way to establish industrial, economic and investment development in both countries. With the Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly and the Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kazemi, 15 agreements and memorandums of understanding were signed in aspects such as, strategic development, investment, transportation, infrastructure, agriculture, environment, health, customer rights, legal systems, and industry production. Moreover, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD) signed a comprehensive package of development financing agreements with Egypt worth 715.6 million euros that are aimed at accelerating the transition to a green recovery and investing in human capital. This covers various sectors including health and transportation. The agreements come within the framework of the 2019-2023 Strategic Partnership in Social and Economic Development between Egypt and France, which is worth one billion euros.
Strategic discussions on the cooperation framework have been initiated with bilateral and multilateral partners to identify the way forward; including the World Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank, USAID, African Development Bank, Germany and Japan. As we are moving forward, further negotiations are ongoing with all development partners. There are 5 projects under SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals which amount to $19.7 million making up for 0.076% of the total ODA portfolio.
Enhance North-South, South-South and triangular regional and international cooperation on and access to science, technology and innovation and enhance knowledge sharing on mutually agreed terms, including through improved coordination among existing mechanisms, in particular at the United Nations level, and through a global technology facilitation mechanism.
Promote the development, transfer, dissemination and diffusion of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on favourable terms, including on concessional and preferential terms, as agreed.
Fully operationalize the technology bank and science, technology and innovation capacity-building mechanism for least developed countries by 2017 and enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology
Enhance the global partnership for sustainable development, complemented by multi- stakeholder partnerships that mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technology and financial resources, to support the achievement of the sustainable development goals in all countries, in particular developing countries