CAIRO: In an effort to exchange experience and strengthen partnership between Egyptian and British businesses in the field of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), the UK-Egypt Climate Change Business Seminar focused on financial structures, technology and advisory services for local CDM projects.
Egyptian Minister of State for Environment Affairs Maged George told The Daily Star Egypt that the seminar, which is organized by the British embassy in Cairo, is a great chance to carry out successful partnerships and cooperation with Britain.
He said: Britain is considered one of the largest countries that successfully implement and support CDM projects.
“Implementing such projects will help in the reduction of green house gas emissions that lead to destructive climate change in the world. They will also contribute to sustainable development through the generation of tradable carbon credits.
Hoping to protect the environment and avoid drastic climate change, the Egyptian Designated National Authority of CDM, established in the ministry of state for environmental affairs, has agreed to operate 22 CDM projects, which are currently in the implementation phase.
“Implementing CDM projects in Egypt will not only help in the reduction of five million tons of harmful emissions of carbon dioxide gas, but will achieve massive economic profit. Foreign investments in such projects will cost LE 1 billion in Egypt, said George.
The first CDM project implemented in Egypt was inaugurated in Abu Kir Cement Factory in Alexandria in late 2006 and was financed by the Austrian government.
“Investment costs of this project reached LE 150 million and managed to reduce 1.8 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions. The Egyptian government would not have afforded to implement that project without the foreign partnership, he said.
Derek Plumbly, the British ambassador to Egypt, said Britain, which ranks first as a source of CDM investments, helps Egypt and other developing countries to benefit from the Kyoto Clean Development Mechanism protocol.
“In such seminars, we try to encourage the British partnership with all Egyptian organizations concerned with CDM projects. In fact, some agreements took place and projects did come out, Plumbly told The Daily Star Egypt.
He said climate change is considered a serious challenge that has to be faced, but still governments have the chance to invest in CDM projects.
“I think implementing such projects is crucial. I know how Egypt could be affected by climate change if proper international action is not dealing with it. This is a mutually beneficial profitable way by which governments and businesses can work together to ensure that development does respect the environment and that money is brought into Egypt through the European Union and the UK, the British ambassador added.
He asserted that CDM investments, though complicated, are considered enormous opportunities that with huge benefits in both development and environment.