Minister of Trade and Industry Tarek Kabil said that the government is placing a great deal of effort to achieve economic reforms through the creation of a comprehensive development strategies that it believes will place Egypt among the top 30 countries in fields of economic and social development.
In his speech on Monday to a delegation of American officials and people in business at the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, Kabil acknowledged that though Egypt’s economy is facing some challenges, the nation’s GDP has achieved a growth rate of 4.2%.
Kabil noted that the government targets a 6% growth in GDP next year, increasing investments by 19%, and reducing the fiscal deficit to 8.5% by the end of the fiscal year (FY) of 2018/2019.
Kabil pointed out that the ministry will soon announce an industrial development strategy based on the integration and development of a number of key sectors such as engineering industries, automotive and construction materials, as well as small and medium-sized enterprises (SME). It also plans to provide technical support and programmes to the aforementioned sectors.
“The ministry is planning the establishment of 10 industrial complexes to be developed with the latest technological systems and standards. The ministry has been able to complete the first phase of Al Robeiki Leather City Project in Badr City after it was delayed for 13 years. The project will be inaugurated after a year of construction,” Kabil said. “Egyptian exports have witnessed an increase of $1bn over the first 9 months of 2016, as imports have declined by $7bn during the same period,” he continued.
Along with the announcement of that trade deficit had decreased to $8bn, the minister added that the African market represents one of the most important markets to increase Egyptian exports. In this regard, the ministry launched an Egyptian logistics centre in Kenya, which serves to facilitate shipping between the two nations.
The minister declared that there were tremendous opportunities that American exporters and investors could benefit from including the huge size of Egypt’s domestic market and its access to other markets and nations. He highlighted that Egypt’s participation in major economic blocs allow it to make large-scale trade agreements and collaborate with an even greater number of countries worldwide.
According to the minister Egypt has access to 1.6 billion consumers around the world made possible by its participation in free trade agreements.