By Mohamed Alaa El Din
Proposing projects through the Public Private Partnership (PPP) system will lead to economic mobility in the information and communication technology (ICT) sector, Infrastructure Director at the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology Khaled El-Attar said.
It will also help develop Egypt’s ICT sector, which will have positive social and developmental impacts in the upcoming period, he added.
El-Attar said mechanising the notary and commercial registry offices will improve the services offered to citizens and provide data to for governmental visions and plans depending on data analysis, also known as Big Data technology. Digitising these offices will increase electronic governmental services, which will have good effect on economic growth.
He said there will be about 110 computerised offices in both projects for developing the commercial registry and the notary office by the end of 2015. It is most convenient to make this progress now because of the low demand in the market and to lessen the burden on the state budget, since it is already working on many national projects. Depending on partnership with the private sector is necessary, with positive effects on both it and the government.
El-Attar said the ministry is currently making alternative plans to implement the project in case the companies falter and become unable to carry out the tasks entrusted to them. More than 50 companies and alliances requested to implement the two projects to develop the commercial registry and the notary office.
He believes PPP projects always have high risks; consequently, said companies have a vision about the change of the dollar’s price. Their plans are in accordance with their vision, which enables them a profit margin, and guarantees implementation of the project.
Head of Link Egypt Yehia Tharwat believes PPP projects can revive the economy of the ICT sector, if large companies do not monopolise profits.
Tharwat believes economic mobility in the sector depends on how the big companies will employ the small ones to provide certain services, such as maintenance and linking networks to each other. The large companies are most likely to work on such projects, given their financial solvency and their experience and previous achievements. This especially rings true with the presence of international companies in the Egyptian market, such as Microsoft, Dell, and Huawei.
He also said it is necessary that the government, represented by the PPP unit at the Ministry of Finance, cooperate with the private sector. This would introduce measures determining the fees that will be imposed on the citizens in exchange for benefiting from the services of the commercial registry and the notary office after digitisation. The local economy’s current status needs to be taken into consideration, he said.