Speaking with Manus Cranny from Bloomberg TV this morning, Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, affirmed that Egypt seeks to scale up its engagement with the private sector in 2021,
and that it is expected to be a key theme for the upcoming year.
With a third of total development financing dedicated to the private sector in 2020, totaling $3.1 billion out of $9.8 billion, Al-Mashat underlined that this is an opportunity to showcase Egypt’s past successes in securing development financing, which in return led to increased confidence and enthusiasm for investors to provide more development financing despite the shortcomings of the COVID-19 pandemic.
To provide a clear picture on the future outlook of multilateralism and analyze the strategic implications of its contributions for Egypt, Al-Mashat stated that multilateralism was vital in helping Egypt march ahead with achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals in all of its development projects, which includes a cooperation portfolio with a total of 377 projects worth 25 billion dollars. The top three funded sectors are Goal 7 for Affordable and Clean Energy; Goal 9 Industries, Innovations and Infrastructure; and Goal 6 Clean Water and Sanitation, receiving collectively 62% of ODA financing. For Goal 7 for Affordable and Clean Energy, Al-Mashat referred to the Benban solar park project as evidence of Egypt's engagement with the private sector, which was carried out in cooperation with 45 different private companies. There are currently 34 projects worth 5,950 USD (M) for Goal 7; 36 projects worth 5,737 USD (M) for Goal 9, and 43 projects worth 4,999 USD (M) for Goal 6. Al-Mashat added that green growth and environmental initiatives have also recently become a top priority, which aligns global and national priorities, and in return reinforces Egypt’s commitment to deepen its engagement with the private sector to encourage innovation and growth according to the environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles. Egypt issued the first green bonds in the MENA region, which also reaffirms its commitment to engage with the private sector and investors in green financing and sustainable development projects, Al-Mashat stated. The report, titled ‘International Partnerships for Sustainable Development’, tracks Egypt’s progress towards the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The report draws on the latest available data found in the Ministry’s ODA SDG mapping exercise, and provides an overview of Egypt’s implementation efforts, highlighting areas of progress and the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on each SDG. To reflect the changing global dynamic amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of International Cooperation has been working to apply the three principles of economic diplomacy, which are: organizing multi-stakeholder platforms, ODA SDG mapping, and the Global Partnerships Narrative (People&Projects&Purpose).