Egypt be­ing repo­si­tioned on world in­vest­ment map: Nasr

The Daily News Egypt - - News -

A range of eco­nomic indi­ca­tors are sig­nif­i­cantly pick­ing up, said Min­is­ter of In­vest­ment and In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion Sa­har Nasr, adding, “the tim­ing of the CFA In­sti­tute’s Mid­dle East In­vest­ment Con­fer­ence to­day is per­fect, and I am hon­oured that the con­fer­ence is held un­der the aus­pices of the In­vest­ment and In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion Min­istry.”

Nasr said at the con­fer­ence, on Tues­day, that Egypt is am­bi­tiously im­ple­ment­ing its eco­nomic re­form pro­gramme, aim­ing to re­po­si­tion the coun­try as a global des­ti­na­tion on the world map.

She said that im­prov­ing the in­vest­ment cli­mate is one of the key pil­lars of the pro­gramme, re­ply­ing to a question from mod­er­a­tor Gary Baker, CFA In­sti­tute man­ag­ing di­rec­tor for Eu­rope, the Mid­dle East, and Africa, re­gard­ing the Egyp­tian govern­ment’s ef­forts to­wards repo­si­tion­ing the coun­try.

The min­is­ter also added that the min­istry of­fered var­i­ous in­cen­tives for in­vest­ing in spe­cific sec­tors and in some ar­eas, through the new In­vest­ment Law, to boost in­vest­ments.

“We care so much about growth and cre­at­ing jobs de­pend­ing on na­tional re­sources in many fields such as gas and oil,” she said, adding that Egypt is im­ple­ment­ing an am­bi­tious plan in the field of re­new­able en­ergy, a field she said has great po­ten­tial.

Fur­ther­more, Nasr said that the min­istry is not wor­ried about in­creas­ing in­vest­ments in the sec­tor of oil and gas, adding,“we are not wor­ried at all about in­creas­ing in­vest­ments in the area of oil and gas be­cause we see the other de­vel­op­ments in other eco­nomic sec­tors and the en­ergy sec­tor is a per­fect ex­am­ple.”

“We are very proud of the Ben­ban project in Aswan in Up­per Egypt,” said Nasr, adding that Egypt has many in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties de­pend­ing on the con­sumer mar­ket, which in­cludes 100 mil­lion peo­ple, and in­vestors can ben­e­fit from African eco­nomic agree­ments.

Ad­di­tion­ally, Nasr men­tioned that the mar­ket faced many chal­lenges a year ago, but af­ter the en­hance­ment of the reg­u­la­tory cli­mate, mar­ket con­fi­dence im­proved.

The min­is­ter added that she holds nu­mer­ous meet­ings with var­i­ous in­vestors who are look­ing to in­vest in the Egyp­tian mar­ket, adding, “the bulk of FDIs are com­ing from the UK and the US.”

Also, Nasr said that Egypt and Asian coun­tries have a lot of co­op­er­a­tion op­por­tu­ni­ties, es­pe­cially with China be­cause of the, One Belt One Road Ini­tia­tive, adding,“a lot of Chi­nese in­vestors are dis­cussing different deals in the mar­ket right now.”

Nasr noted that the field of construction is one of the pri­or­i­ties be­cause many in­vestors are in­ter­ested in the New Ad­min­is­tra­tive Cap­i­tal and other new ci­ties, adding that the Min­istry of Hous­ing fo­cuses on build­ing in­te­grated com­mu­ni­ties with full ser­vices, not only on cre­at­ing new ci­ties.

“I am op­ti­mistic by na­ture,” Nasr said, adding that with the help of her team, many achieve­ments have been made to en­hance the con­fi­dence of in­vestors. She also said that the min­istry sup­ports en­hanc­ing pro­duc­tiv­ity projects.

Nasr em­pha­sised that the min­istry fo­cuses on startup projects, adding,“there are a lot of small projects that we sup­port, in Up­per Egypt and other places, be­cause they of­ten do not have the ac­cess of meet­ing govern­men­tal of­fi­cials, so I try my best to sup­port and meet them.”

Af­ter the floata­tion of the pound, Egypt be­came more at­trac­tive due to low labour costs, said Nasr, adding, “I meet with different busi­nessper­sons and I feel the change. How­ever, we are at the very be­gin­ning of repo­si­tion­ing Egypt.”

“Be­ing in the pol­i­cy­mak­ing po­si­tion is chal­leng­ing, but I am very in­ter­ested be­cause I am ben­e­fit­ing from past ex­pe­ri­ences as a World Bank staff mem­ber,” said Nasr, re­ply­ing to a question from the ses­sion’s mod­er­a­tor, Baker.

The 2018 Mid­dle East In­vest­ment Con­fer­ence brings to­gether over 300 in­ter­na­tional thought lead­ers, pol­i­cy­mak­ers, in­dus­try ex­perts, and key mar­ket par­tic­i­pants from across the MENA re­gion for a day of dis­cus­sions about trends shap­ing Egypt and the wider re­gion.

Min­is­ter of In­vest­ment and In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion Sa­har Nasr

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