Minister of International Cooperation Sahar Nasr said Arab sovereign funds pledged to finance development projects in Egypt, with a large portion dedicated to Sinai, worth $6bn over the next three years.
Nasr noted that she will conduct further negotiations with the representatives of those funds to increase the funds and distribute them among all provinces of Egypt to support economic and social development plans.
Arab sovereign financing funds include: the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development (AFESD), the Saudi Fund for Development, the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED), the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID), and the Islamic Development Bank fund.
Nasr, told Daily News Egypt that this financing reflects the trust of those funds in Egypt’s vision for economic, administrative, social and political reform. She added that heads of these funds pledged to begin financing as soon as possible, noting that the fund is liable to increase.
Minister of Investment Ashraf Salman said the Saudi Fund for Development has agreed to provide a grant to Egypt worth $200m to finance small and medium enterprises (SMEs) through the Social Fund for Development (SFD), which will re-lend the money with interest of no more than 5%, with an additional EGP 250, to SMEs in Sinai.
Meanwhile, according to the Minister of Investment, the global decline of oil prices will reduce Egypt’s chances to obtain any Gulf aid or grants in the upcoming period, as most Gulf countries have been affected by the falling oil prices.
He added that the government prepared a number of projects that will be presented to a number of Arab funds, especially those focusing on the agriculture, housing, and energy sectors, to discuss the possibility of investing in them, since Saudi Arabia has allocated approximately SAR 30bn to invest in Egypt in the coming years.
Daily News Egypt learned that the funds allocated about $900m each over the next three years to finance development projects. However, the Minister of International Cooperation said she aims to implement these projects even earlier.