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  • Monday, 30 January 2023

In the Presence of the Prime Minister H.E. Dr. Mostafa Madbouly, Investors and Private Sector Companies: Minister of International Cooperation Discusses Mechanisms to Stimulate Private Sector Engagement Through International Partnerships in the CI Capital’s 7th Annual MENA Investor Conference

● H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat: “$7.3billion in development financing for the private sector over the past 3 years.”

● We are committed to incorporating the Government of Egypt’s development vision by increasing private sector participation in line with national strategies and development partners.

The Minister of International Cooperation H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat participated in the CI Capital’s 7th Annual MENA Investor Conference, in the presence of the Prime Minister H.E. Dr. Mostafa Madbouly, as well as the Ministers of Planning, Finance, and the Public Business Sector, as well as a group of investors, investment banks, private sector companies and CEOs from Egypt and the MENA region.

During the session, H.E. discussed the role of international partnerships in stimulating private sector participation in development.

Al-Mashat said that the ministry works with all multilateral and bilateral development partners, with the exception of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in order to strengthen economic relations and open horizons for partnerships, whether with government entities or the private sector. H.E. noted that concessional development finance plays a role in supporting development efforts and in stimulating participation of the private sector. Hence, the Egyptian private sector, across several fields, has fruitful relations with development partners and international financing institutions.

Moreover, Al-Mashat indicated that the Ministry of International Cooperation is working to ensure that the country's priorities, strategies and objectives, as well as providing more opportunities for the private sector are included in action plans with development partners, through multi-stakeholder platforms. H.E. noted that despite the competition between nations to obtain financing from MDBs and IFIs, Egypt has set a precedence in terms of clarity and credibility in presenting projects transparently, all in line with the UN SDGs.

H.E. added that despite global challenges of 2020 and 2021 and the continuation of these challenges in 2022, Egypt was able, through its strong relations with development partners, to secure development financing agreements with the aim of advancing the national development vision, noting that the private sector has benefited during the past three years from these funds. This includes development financing exceeding $7.3 billion from multilateral and bilateral development partners, whether in the form of lines of credit to finance small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and startups, soft development financing for companies, or direct investments in priority state sectors.

H.E. stated that the Ministry of International Cooperation established a framework for international cooperation and development financing, which ensures the alignment of national strategies with development partners with the country's priorities and objectives. Through 2022, and continuing into 2023, the ministry continued to prepare country strategies with multilateral and bilateral development partners, which incorporate room for private sector engagement in development efforts.

The Minister also talked about the efforts exerted to create constructive partnerships through blended financing between development partners, the private sector and national entities to expand development projects and climate action, coinciding with Egypt's presidency of the COP27, and for the implementation of the 2050 National Country Climate Strategy (NCCS) and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). H.E. added that the COP27 witnessed the signing of grants and agreements with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), as well as new partnerships, including with Climate Investment Funds (CIF), in order to support efforts to expand green hydrogen, enhancing Egypt's position as a regional energy hub.

And H.E. added that in light of the importance of climate action and development, and the absolute necessity for the participation of the private sector as a major actor in the green transition, the Ministry of International Cooperation launched the Country Platform for the Nexus of Water, Food and Energy (NWFE) Program, which includes 9 priority projects that fall within the NCCS 2050 umbrella. H.E. pointed out that each pillar has a key lead development partner responsible for coordinating and mobilizing private sector investments, blended financing and various financing mechanisms.

H.E. added that as the G7 group launched the Just Energy Transition Partnerships (JETP) to support countries in transitioning away from coal, the NWFE platform mobilizes climate financing not only for a clean energy transition but also for water and food security.

The Minister referred to many models that were an example of participation from development partners along with the private sector through blended finance to achieve development, such as the Benban Solar Park, which attracted many local and foreign investments, as well as the Bahr El Baqar Water Treatment Plant, and the El-Gabal El-Asfar Wastewater Treatment Plant. This is in addition to other diverse fields such as infrastructure and transportation, pointing out the clarity of the projects being implemented by the state and its keenness on the participation of relevant entities.

H.E. pointed out that technical support and capacity building is one of the important pillars that the Ministry is focused on, along with development partners, to strengthen it with the government and private sectors.

Al-Mashat also noted the efforts to map the development financing portfolio, which amounts to about $26 billion, with the UN SDGs, in a way that enhances the ability to track progress on each goal, supporting both increased international partnerships and efficient decision-making on future projects.