Egypt’s Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Hala El-Said, has affirmed that the sustainable development plan for the fiscal year (FY) 2020/21 attaches great importance to the development of Upper Egypt.
In a ministerial statement on Thursday, she pointed out that the government allocated EGP 47bn in public investments to Upper Egypt in FY 2020/21, which constitutes 25% of the total government investments, with 50% increase over the 2019/20 plan.
El-Said noted that the government’s development efforts focus on three areas: giving priority to the development of Upper Egypt in the framework of a coherent and integrated development programme, focusing on the rural areas most in need to narrow the development gap and reduce migration to urban areas, and supporting promising areas to exploit existing opportunities and provide more jobs for youth.
The Minister reviewed the features of government investments directed to the local development programme in Upper Egypt from 2016/17 to 2019/20. About EGP 5.8bn public investments were directed to the local development programme in Upper Egypt (EGP 2.8bn for Qena governorate, and EGP 3bn for Sohag governorate), representing 19.6% of the total public investments in the two governorates during this period. Of this amount, loan financing constitutes 53.4%, while the treasury finance constitutes the rest.
El-Said added that EGP 2.9bn were approved for the local development programme in Upper Egypt during FY 2020/21, of which EGP 1.3bn for Qena, and EGP 1.6bn for Sohag. Financing through loans constitutes 61% of the total amount, while treasury financing constitutes the remainder.
As for the sectoral distribution of investments, El-Said said that drinking water and sanitation projects have accounted for the largest share, at about EGP 2.5bn or 43% of the total investments. Road and transport projects ranked second with EGP 1.3bn investments or 22.3%. Local administration received EGP 544.2m investments or 9.3%, while the environment improvement obtained EGP 482.4m or 8.3%.
The Minister added that the Upper Egypt Development Programme during the past four years resulted in the completion of 1,749 projects at a total cost of EGP 2.4bn. Of these, 532 projects are in Qena, with a total investment cost of EGP 1.3bn, and 1,217 projects in Sohag, with a total investment cost of about EGP 1.1bn.