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  • Saturday, 06 January 2024

The Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, Meets with the Chairman of GAFI, Hossam Heiba, to Discuss Enhancing Joint Cooperation between the Authority and Development Partners.

A Joint Press Release by the Ministry of International Cooperation and the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI). 

The Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, met with the Chairman of the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI), Hossam Heiba, at the headquarters of the Ministry of International Cooperation in the New Administrative Capital. 

That was in the presence of the work teams from both sides, to discuss enhancing joint cooperation between the Authority and development partners in various fields, and advancing international partnerships to support the business environment and emerging companies, within the framework of the efforts undertaken by the state to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship and increase their role in the national economy. The implementation of existing partnerships between GAFI and development partners was also discussed during the meeting.

Al-Mashat and Heiba looked into  ways to enhance international cooperation and partnerships with multilateral and bilateral development partners in enhancing the role of the startup growth and prosperity unit in supporting the entrepreneurship environment and proposing frameworks, regulations and laws that motivate these companies as an effective element.

The meeting also referred to the role played by Egypt Ventures, the first venture capital company with government capital, to encourage and support the investment environment in emerging companies, and future steps to increase its role through technical support and investments in companies and business accelerators.

In this regard, Al-Mashat stressed that the private sector, especially emerging companies, is a driving force for promoting innovation in various societies, in addition to its role in increasing economic growth and strengthening the position of countries in a world that is witnessing intense competition in presenting new ideas and innovations in various sectors and industries to overcome the challenges facing the world today.

Al-Mashat also stressed the Ministry’s keenness to expand the role of startups and entrepreneurship, improve the entrepreneurship environment and relevant legislation, as well as encourage international investments from development partners in startups.

In the same context, Al-Mashat also highlighted the Private Sector Portal: Hub For Advisory, Finance & Investment For Enterprises, that the Ministry launched last December, which aims to connect private sector companies of all sizes with financial and non-financial services provided by development partners and present details of tenders and initiatives offered continuously in light of the efforts of the government to enhance the participation of the private sector. H.E. pointed out the ongoing discussions to achieve integration in efforts between what is provided by the private sector portal platform, and the efforts made by the Startup Support Unit formed by the decision of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers.

Additionally, Al-Mashat discussed, with the Chairman of GAFI, Hossam Heiba, the ongoing efforts with the World Bank Group to prepare the study on the situation of foreign investment in Egypt, in implementation of the directives of the Supreme Council for Investment.

For his part, Heiba stressed the full coordination between all government agencies to advance the investment file, praising the role of the Ministry of International Cooperation in supporting the investment environment in Egypt, whether through promoting investment opportunities, providing financing for projects through international development partners, or launching initiatives for the business community.

Heiba pointed to the cooperation between the Ministry and the GAFI in cooperating with international institutions and development partners to finance the Authority’s human resources development programs and enhance operating efficiencies, as well as introducing them to the package of measures undertaken by the Egyptian government. This had a great impact on increasing the state’s capacity to attract more investment, especially the establishment of the Golden License Unit, which brings together all the permits required to establish companies and production units in one approval, launch of the electronic incorporation service, expansion of the establishment of free and investment zones, and dispensing of most of the documents required to establish and operate economic facilities.

Since its establishment, Egypt Ventures has invested more than EGP 383.5 million in more than 205 startup companies. Of these, EGP 222.2 million are direct investments and EGP166.3 million are indirect investments. Egypt Ventures also invests in 3 business accelerators that in turn support emerging companies in various sectors, which are Falak Startups, Flat6Labs, and Fintech EFG EV.

It is worth noting that H.E. the Prime Minister, H.E. Dr. Mostafa Madbouly, issued a decision to establish a permanent unit for emerging companies in the Council of Ministers, specialized in proposing policies, laws and regulations appropriate for the growth and prosperity of emerging companies, headed by GAFI’s Chairman and with the membership of representatives from the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Ministries of International Cooperation, Supply and Internal Trade, Planning and Economic Development, Finance, Communications and Information Technology, Trade and Industry, the Central Bank of Egypt, the General Authority for Financial Supervision, and the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency.

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