Several international partners have lent their support to Egypt’s drive to curb the further spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), during a meeting with Minister of International Cooperation, Rania Al-Mashat.
In a ministerial statement on Sunday, Walid Labadi, Country Manager of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) in Egypt, Libya and Yemen, said, “This is a challenging time for the private sector in Egypt, the main driver of economic growth and employment. Lives, businesses, jobs, and livelihoods are at risk,”
He added that the IFC is working closely with clients and partners in Egypt to help mitigate the already evident impacts of the coronavirus crisis. It also supports businesses as they continue to operate and retain staff.
The United Nations (UN) has also lent its strong commitment to its partnership with the Egyptian government during current efforts to counter COVID-19, said Richard Dictus, UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt.
Dictus highlighted the coordination between the Ministry of International Cooperation and international development partners, especially during the global pandemic.
Randa Aboul-Hosn, Resident Representative of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Egypt, said the ministry presented a coherent and innovative mapping and alignment of development cooperation in Egypt to the Sustainable Development Goals.
Japan’s ambassador to Cairo, Masaki Noki, highlighted the Japanese government’s support for Egyptians through development projects in education, culture, tourism and antiquities. Noki added that one of most important projects currently underway is the Grand Egyptian Museum, which is scheduled to open towards the end of 2020.
South Korea’s ambassador to Egypt, Yeocheol Yoon, said his country has long been involved in development projects in Egypt, adding that the Korean government has provided finance for many projects. These include the Korean Egyptian Technology University, as well as other infrastructure projects, such as the modernisation of railway signals on the Nagaa Hamadi-Luxor railway line.
The ambassador said that Korea is considering providing finance for desalination and solid waste management. Yoon added that his country is ready to support Egypt in combating the coronavirus, whilst acknowledging the measures the Egyptian government has already taken.
Dina Saleh, Director of the sub-regional office of the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in Egypt and the Middle East region, said that the Ministry of International Cooperation plays a pivotal role in bringing together all development partners. IFAD is ready to provide all support necessary to ensure that the negative impact of the coronavirus on the agricultural sector is reduced, Saleh added.