Hisham Okasha, chairperson of the National Bank of Egypt (NBE), signed a protocol with Mohamed Abdel Aaty, minister of water resources and irrigation, to support and develop agricultural projects with economic return, through providing the necessary funding to develop and modernise irrigation methods.
According to Abdel Aaty, the protocol comes within the framework of implementing the state’s 2030 strategy to develop the agricultural sector and provide necessary resources for irrigation, through scaling back traditional irrigation methods and replacing them with modern ones.
According to Okasha, signing this protocol reflects the attention given by the NBE to supporting and developing small and medium enterprises (SMEs), especially in the agricultural field.
He added that the protocol aims to provide an integrated system of financial and technical solutions to all parties. Through it, necessary funding can be provided to owners of lands that require the implementation of modern irrigation systems, as recommended by the ministry. This guarantees a quick implementation of such projects, within the framework of the Central Bank of Egypt’s initiative to support small projects.
Okasha pointed out that the bank takes into consideration the nature of these projects, as funding is provided through simple and facilitated means that fit their reality, while guaranteeing high-quality services and quick decision-making through all credit centres and the bank’s branches that are spread across the country.
He added that the funding available from the NBE for agricultural activities, and all other activities related to it, is estimated at EGP 3bn, designated for 9,700 projects.
He pointed out that the bank’s direct and indirect SMEs portfolio amounted to about EGP 44.7bn for 63,000 projects and is planned to be increased to EGP 100bn over the next three years.