Egypt’s Vision 2030 places a strong focus on human capital development, education and infrastructure as key pillars that will transform the country into an invaluable asset for Africa.
As Egypt’s economic growth is forecast to strengthen to 5.8% in 2020 and 6% in 2021, the major pillars of H.E President al-Sisi’s Vision 2030 have placed the country on track to solidify its role in the African market and function as an African hub due to its economic tenacity, advantageous geographical position and accessibility in relation to Europe and the Middle East.
On a global scale, 2020 has presented unprecedented challenges due to the coronavirus outbreak, but even in the face of a pandemic, many of Egypt’s pioneers rose to the challenge. Through its dedication to educating Egypt’s human capital for a better future, CIRA is committed to providing educational opportunities for Egypt’s middle-class. Mohamed El Kalla, CEO of CIRA, says, “The middle class is supposed to be the driving working force behind the country. We managed to create a model where we have a very strong technical and academic background nation-wide, while the average fee for our schools is USD$600 per year. This ability to cater to the middle-class is what made the organisation so big.” Companies such as Jumia also educate their employees internally, which creates a huge advantage in the market.
Hesham Safwat, CEO of Jumia, says, “We give sellers lessons about e-commerce on how to develop their business and use the tools that can make them be part of this e-commerce ecosystem. We started transferring this experience to the local people, now 90+% of people working in the country are locals, which is giving us an edge against competition because we are much closer to the market, the consumers, the vendors and the partners.” For Vision 2030, education and the development of human capital are critical to the economic expansion of Egypt.
With Egypt’s strategic location, all signs point to its capability to become an international trade hub for Africa. Minister of Industry and Trade, H.E. Nevine Gamea says, “Egypt is keen to achieve tangible results in the fields that can lead to regional economic integration and development, connecting civilisations and cultures of the African countries and deepening the cooperation with the international partners.”
Through major infrastructural developments in rail, land, sea and air, Egypt’s global market potential and it’s proximity to Europe and the Middle East put the country in a highly favourable position. Eng. Mohamed El Kheshen, Chairman of Evergrow, states, “This year, we are expanding more and more in the African continent. We are the third for production capacity in the world. As for quality, we are at the top globally. Evergrow is the only company large enough to be in the Middle East and Africa. We have a big presence in most African countries.”
From an investment standpoint, Egypt also holds an incredible amount of potential. “Egypt has a very good plan to open many areas of investment to many companies and how we translate all those to digital systems could be a huge opportunity for many companies to invest,” affirms Tarek Fayed, CEO of Banque du Caire.
Through the development of megaprojects, the country is equipped to take on the African and global markets. Megaproject development also improves infrastructure and is an indicator of economic stability. Al-Futtaim Group Real Estate LLC, for example, has progressed its Cairo Festival City with great success. As an all-inclusive city, Ashraf Ezz El-Din, Managing Director of Al-Futtaim Group Real Estate LLC, states, “The great thing about our city is the mixture: we have the retail part as a whole, we have offices, we have international companies working here, schools, residential areas and a hotel.” Megaprojects such as these are designed to enhance opportunities and create jobs while expanding Egypt’s markets.
Through these initiatives, all signs suggest a prosperous economic future for Egypt. According to Mervat Zohdy El Sayed Soltan, Chairperson of EBE Bank, Egypt has always been destined to emerge as an economic power. “Egypt is truly a land of opportunity, great civilisation and very high returns. This formula is very attractive to investors. We would like to see the impact of all the benefits that are happening through foreign investments in Egypt to trickle down to all members of society.”