Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) held a meeting with the Egyptian Businessmen’s Association (EBA) on Monday, to discuss business opportunities in the local market.
Gertrud Wagemans, private sector development advisor at RVO, and Louis Martens, deputy head of the economic department at Netherlands embassy in Cairo, participated in the gathering.
The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs is implementing a project for the development of the private sector in priority countries for potential Dutch investments to enhance their business environment in many promising markets including Egypt, Wageman said.
“We aim at creating a solid private sector that stimulates Dutch new investments in several sectors,” she said, asserting that her current visit to Egypt is to identify the private sector’s needs and developments in the regulation reforms side.
Wageman listened to the EBA members about the investment proposals in the water sector, logistics, agriculture, renewable energy, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), education, and vocational training.
“I think we should start from small and medium scaled projects. We don’t have a very large budget. When we start, the interest of Dutch investments will develop in the future,” she commented on the EBA members’ speeches.
For his part, Martens asserted that the EBA’s meeting will contribute in setting a joint strategy to develop Egypt’s private sector within the framework of the Netherlands’ Foreign Affairs Ministry’ allocation of €3m for this purpose for three years.
“This budget can be doubled according to the needs of the Egyptian market. Developing the private sector is a top priority for RVO. The RVO’s work will boost Dutch investments in the local market over the next few years,” Martens noted.
Mohamed Youssef, executive director of the EBA, said that Egypt’s private sector is in need of boosting collaboration with the Netherlands in the areas of technology transfer and the sectors that serve the sustainable development goals more than financial support.
The Egyptian government pays major support to the technological sectors in the industry and vocational training areas, Youssef said, adding that investments in education and human resources development contribute in supplying the demands of the labour market.