By Nasrine Ramsis
Minister of Communications and Information Technology Atef Helmy has said that his ministry will attract increased foreign investment in order to provide additional job opportunities for young people, as one of two primary goals for 2013.
He added: “We will continue in our efforts to aid companies working within the domestic market to improve and increase the number of work opportunities available for our country’s youth.”
The second goal, he said, is to develop the country’s information technology sector in a number of fields in a way that would best address Egypt’s economic and social needs. He went on to say that he hoped to see growth rates for the sector increase from 6% to 10% by the end of this fiscal year.
Helmy also stated that other countries, such as Turkey, Argentina and Brazil, had previously suffered through worse recessions than what Egypt is currently experiencing now, but they were still able to overcome challenges faced and eventually build advanced economies. He said that the Communications Ministry would continue to exploit Egypt’s strategic geographic location, adding that 18 new maritime internet cables had recently been laid throughout the country. Helmy claimed this placed Egypt second in the world in terms of the number of internet cables located throughout the country.
The minister also said economic growth in the sector would rely on the availability of advanced strategic infrastructure, adding that the ministry was interested in working to create a new national statistics database. He said progress in this field, however, would not be possible without legislative support and the passing of new laws regulating international bids in addition to the application and use of new technology.
He added that the ministry would seek to encourage Egyptian businesses operating across different sectors to begin using cloud computing services. This comes in addition to a number of new workshops that are set to be hosted by the Communications Ministry to promote cloud computing services and formally introduce them to the Egyptian market.
He ended stating that he was “optimistic regarding the success of our sector’s economic indicators and the potential for integration with other sectors”.