Egypt will promote investment in the Suez Canal Zone in Abu Dhabi, Beirut, Moscow, Barcelona, Marseille, Hamburg, Milan and Lisbon by participating in various business conferences, head of Federation of the Egyptian Chambers of Commerce (FEDCOC) Ahmed El-Wakil announced on Sunday.
The move comes in the framework of a programme that aims to promote investments in the Suez Canal Axis through organising and participating in conferences over the next three months.
Egypt will activate agreements with regional federations, joint Arab chambers and international institutions, El-Wakil explained.
An integrated presentation was prepared about the Suez Canal Axis and there are ongoing amendments in laws and procedures to improve the investment climate in the zone, El-Wakil added.
Encouraging investments, the Suez Canal project will be considered an Economic Zone of a Special Nature (SEZONE), and an organising law is expected to be issued in that regard.
The government has agreed on proposing a draft law of amendments on the law for Economic Zones of a Special Nature 83/2003. The law will be a legislative framework for investing in the Suez Canal, converting the area into an economic authority, and holding capabilities equivalent to ministries, governorates, and authorities.
Under the law, the president may set up, by virtue of a presidential decree, one or more zones outside the suburban boundaries of the existing cities and villages for purposes of establishing agricultural, industrial and service projects.
In the zones, investors will be subject to 5% income tax, versus 10% – 20% outside the SEZONE. The authority, to be established under the law, will have a supreme committee that supervises the taxation system in SEZONE.
Offering the “lowest” cost production centre in the Middle East-North Africa in many sectors, the authority has a special customs service under the supervision of a supreme customs committee.
According to the investment authority, industries targeted to enter the SEZONE are automotive assembly and components, chemicals and petrochemicals, construction and building materials, textile and readymade garments, agribusiness and food processing, home appliances and electronics, logistics and warehousing, and pharmaceuticals.
There will be a centre in the zone to settle disputes if the parties agree to refer the matter thereto, if the parties in dispute have residence or work premises in the zone.