By Doaa Farid
The Minister of Industry and Foreign Trade Mounir Fakhry Abdel Nour decided on Friday to restructure the Egyptian side of the joint business councils with a number of countries including the American, Italian and French business councils.
According to state news agency MENA, Abdel Nour pointed in a statement that these new changes meet the needs of the current stage and the economic plans which the government is implementing. He also noted that it has been taken into account to include diverse sectors that have opportunities to contribute to the growth and expansion of economic relations and bilateral trade between Egypt and these countries.
Alaa Saba’ the chairman of Beltone Financial and a new member of the Egyptian-American Business Council confirmed the new structuring of the council.
State owned Al-Ahram reported that Abdel Nour suggested that meetings will be held soon with the new composition of the American, Italian and French business councils, to impose a joint vision to build strong economic ties with these countries, boom bilateral relations, multiply Egyptian exports, increase joint investment and open up new areas of partnerships between the Egyptian companies and foreign counterparts during the next phase.
The text of the decision states that Omar Mehanna is the new chairman of the Egyptian-American Business Council, the Egyptian-Italian Business Council headed by Khaled Abu Bakr and the Egyptian-French Business Council is headed by Fouad Mahmoud Younis.
Meanwhile, Adel Lamie the chairman of the Egyptian-Turkish Business Council said they haven’t been informed yet with any changes in the structure of the council. Lamie added that not all the joint business councils with other countries directly affiliate to the Ministry of Industry and Foreign Trade.
“The Egyptian-Turkish council is affiliated to the Egyptian Businessmen’s Association (EBA), while other business councils for instance are affiliated to the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce” Lamie said.
The second article of the decision included that the head of the Egyptian side of these councils should submit to the minister of trade semi-annual reports about the efforts and activities of each council, and its future plan to develop common interests, according to Al-Ahram.
The third article states the Egyptian concerned authorities and embassies abroad especially business offices should assist those councils to perform their tasks and provide them with data and information related to each council’s activity.
Abdel Nour pointed earlier in August that the government is keen on supporting both foreign and domestic investment, with the hope to use such investment to spur the implementation of new development projects in different sectors over the coming months.
Despite the current turmoil, exports reached EGP 79.3bn in the first half of the current year, a 17% rise compared to the same period last year. Increasing the rate of exports is at the top of the government’s agenda, Abdel Nour stated after he became minister.