African Development Bank extends EGP 10 m grant to support Egyptian entrepreneurs

African Development Bank extends EGP 10 m grant to support Egyptian entrepreneurs
بقلم Marwa Nassar - -

The African Development Bank will extend a 10-million-pound grant to support Egyptian entrepreneurs and startups under a deal signed with the Ministry of International Cooperation and Investment.

The grant will prop up a project for supporting entrepreneurship ecosystem in Egypt. The project will back Egypt’s Fekretak Sherketak initiative which is meant to support and accelerate the growth of Egyptian entrepreneurs to develop innovative businesses in today’s competitive economy.

The project is scheduled to launch a digital platform to help entrepreneurs and organize training sessions and workshops to spread awareness about means of developing startups as well as innovative ideas to confront the challenges besetting entrepreneurs, especially female ones.

Egyptian Minister of International Cooperation and Investment Sahar Nasr said the project is meant also to develop the services offered to entrepreneurs, secure needed technical and legal data and provide services for developing startups.

She added that the ministry is deeply interested in adopting policies and all-out programs that would directly help developing ventures.

She noted that Fekretak Sherketak initiative offers all needed support for small investors, including planning for the project, securing needed funds and expanding the project.

She noted that this would create jobs, develop economy, and promote partnership with the private sector.

Under Fekretak Sherketak, more centers for serving entrepreneurs and emerging companies will be set up in various governorates to facilitate offering more services to entrepreneurs nationwide, she said.

The success of Fekretak Sherketak initiative in its first year has promoted the ministry to establish a central department for entrepreneurship under the umbrella of the overture, she said, noting that promoting emerging companies is one of the key reforms carried out by the ministry.

International statistics underlined that small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) play a pivotal role in securing jobs for youths and women, she highlighted.

She added that the ministry is working hard for Egypt to have a comprehensive platform for supporting African youth, therefore the ministry joined hands with the African Development Bank which has branches in various African countries.

Meanwhile, Director of the African Development Bank Malin Bloomberg said that the bank is keen to support entrepreneurship, noting that the bank launched in 2016 an overture to bolster entrepreneurs in the region and offer grants to support innovations and emerging companies.

She commended the efforts exerted by Egypt to support entrepreneurs and women in addition to legislative reforms which are meant to improve the investment climate.

Egypt has recently recorded a progress in the innovation index and managed to confront the challenges besetting it and spearheaded legislative reforms, she said, noting that this progress was quite clear in the 2018 Doing Business Report.

She extolled Fekratk Sherkatk initiative and the entrepreneurs’ center established by the ministry to provide technical support to entrepreneurs.

She added that the agreement is meant to promote the ministry’s efforts to enhance entrepreneurship.

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