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  • Wednesday, 31 May 2023

The Ministers of International Cooperation and Communications and Information Technology signed a German Grant Agreement to Support e-Government & Innovation worth €8 million

Minister of International Cooperation H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, and Minister of Communications and Information Technology H.E. Dr. Amr Talaat signed an agreement between the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the German Agency for International Cooperation in Egypt (GIZ) on behalf of the German government for cooperation in implementing the first phase of the project to support e-government and innovation In the Public Administration (INNOPA), with a grant of €8 million out of a total of €17.5 million. The project aims to support innovation in digital transformation and the promotion of e-government, including cooperation in establishing a laboratory to develop applications in the field of government services.

The agreement was signed by Deputy Minister of Communications and Information Technology for Administrative Development, Digital Transformation and Mechanization Khaled Al-Attar and Director of the GIZ Alexander Solga,  on behalf of the German government.

The agreement mandates that the two sides cooperate in supporting the regulatory framework, coordinating digital transformation and effective management of official development aid, coordinating digital transformation of public administration, improving electronic human resource management, promoting user-oriented digital services, and producing innovative forms and products for public administration.

Al-Mashat said that the "e-Government and Innovation" project aims to support the reform of the civil service system and stimulate innovation in government services, pointing out that the agreement signed comes among the results of the joint coordination cooperation platform, "The Information and Communication Technology Sector for Development", that was held under the umbrella of communications and technology in the presence of all development in 2021.

Al-Mashat added that, in light of the long-term cooperation with the German side, the development funding portfolio records about €1.6 billion in priority sectors, including innovation and e-government, and that the e-government project is in line with the state's vision to expand investments in innovation, communications and information technology under the umbrella of Egypt's Vision 2030, to enhance digital inclusion and shift to a knowledge-based economy, build capabilities and encourage innovation.

Al-Mashat thanked H.E. Dr. Amr Talaat for his efforts in achieving Egypt's strategy for digital transformation, pointing to cooperation with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology to launch the initiative of the joint international working group on technology and innovation in cooperation with the UN, which aims to enhance the participation of representatives of national agencies, government institutions and UN agencies working in Egypt. That is through the formulation of non-stereotypical and innovative government projects based on technology, in light of the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework between Egypt and the UN 2023-2027. 

Note that the ongoing portfolio of development cooperation with multilateral and bilateral development partners includes 34 projects in the field of innovation, digitization and entrepreneurship at a value of $1 billion, representing 4% of the development financing portfolio, and contributing to achieving 13 SDGs. The Ministry of International Cooperation has also worked to provide grants worth $85 million in 2022 to support digital transformation and e-government.

In his speech, Talaat affirmed that the signing of the agreement is to support e-government and innovation in public administration and represents one of the prominent steps in the constructive cooperation between Egypt and Germany in the field of communications and information technology and a continuation of the partnership between the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the GIZ which started 3 years ago and resulted in Egypt joining the GovStack International Initiative as a participating country at the invitation of the German Agency for International Cooperation.

H.E. pointed out that the implementation of this project comes in line with Egypt's digital strategy and the efforts exerted to promote digital transactions in all aspects of life and to achieve the transformation into a participatory, paperless digital government that relies on a strong and secure infrastructure to ensure the provision of government services with the latest advanced technologies, and to ensure the provision of these integrated services in high quality, efficiently and effectively to the citizen through digital channels.

Talaat indicated that Egypt had come a long way in digital transformation in light of the implementation of many projects aimed at developing information infrastructure throughout the country and launching digital government services, pointing out that the country is among the group of leading countries in digital government with classification (A) in the digital government readiness index for the year 2022 issued by the World Bank.

Talaat then explained that the Ministries of Communications and Information Technology and International Cooperation as well as the GIZ will cooperate in establishing a government innovation lab at the Digital Egypt Creativity Center - Giza, through which emerging companies will be invited to innovate in the field of developing applications in the field of government services to provide them to citizens in an accessible manner. He also expressed his aspiration to implement more joint cooperation projects with the GIZ.

Al-Attar said that the cooperation between the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology with the GIZ in the field of government innovation aims to build the capacities of Egyptian companies and cooperate with German companies. He explained that the areas of cooperation include the implementation of a number of projects in all aspects of digital transformation, pointing out that cooperation will take place in establishing the Government Innovation Lab next July, which aims to create a supportive environment for cooperation and partnership to develop digital solutions for citizen services and the challenges facing administrative work in the government.

Soliga explained that the agreement confirms the trust and cooperation with the Government of Egypt in light of the common goals and interests that unite the Egyptian and German governments in the field of innovation in government services. Pointing out that cooperation is taking place with the Egyptian government aims to build capacities, digital transformation and developing efficient performance, he emphasized the importance of the talks held by Talaat during his visit to Germany this month, which paved the way for many cooperation projects, especially those related to the establishment of the Government Innovation Lab.