The Industrial Development and Workers Bank of Egypt (IDBE) signed a cooperation protocol with the Damietta Furniture City (DFC) to finance furniture manufacturers and artisans in the new city.
Established on an area of 331 feddans in Damietta, the DFC includes 150 factories and 1,500 small and medium workshops.
The IDBE’s chairperson and managing director Maged Fahmy said that this protocol comes in line with the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) initiative to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as the driver and locomotive of economic growth and provide new job opportunities.
Fahmy affirmed that the bank will provide the necessary financing for the new DFC because it is the first industrial zone specialised in the furniture industry, which increases export opportunities, provides foreign exchange for the country, and supports young entrepreneurs.
The deputy chairperson of the IDBE Hamdy Azzam said that the protocol is part of the bank’s plan to finance such industrial clusters. He pointed out that the bank has previously financed the Robiki Leather City, the Egyptian Commodities Exchange (EGYCOMEX), and other projects of the Industrial Development Authority (IDA).
He added that the state has instructed boosting the promotion and marketing of the national furniture industry to increase exports, given that the new city is located near export ports in Damietta and Port Said.
Azzam stressed that this project meets the bank’s development objectives, including optimal utilization of Damietta’s economic capabilities, the development of the North Delta area, providing new job opportunities for youth, establishing a regional business centre to stimulate investors and preserve public health through locating workshops outside residential areas.
According to Tarek Galal, head of the IDBE’s small enterprises department, the bank is keen to play its historic role in supporting national projects, including the new furniture city project.
He added that the bank will provide financing in accordance with the CBE’s initiatives at low-interest rates, in addition to facilitating the procedures of obtaining funds which can last up to 10 years, including one year of the grace period.