The American Ambassador in Cairo: We have invested 80 billion dollars in Egypt over the past 43 years

Jonathan Cohen, the US ambassador in Cairo, emphasized that for decades, the American Chamber of Commerce in Cairo has been the embassy’s vital partner in promoting trade and investment between the United States and Egypt, and it is always a pleasure for me to have the opportunity to speak with you.

He added during the monthly meeting of the Chamber headed by Dr. Sherif Kamel, that as many of you know, I have spent a lot of my career establishing partnerships with the United States in the eastern Mediterranean, including in Italy, Greece, Cyprus, Turkey, the West Bank and now in Egypt, and from My top priority as an ambassador here is to help American companies secure business opportunities and overcome challenges.

Cohen added that using diplomacy to bring together individuals and companies strengthens our government partnerships, enhances trade and investment, and builds people-to-people relationships that ensure lasting cooperation, pointing out that the United States Embassy is your lawyer and source, and it is also here to connect American and Egyptian companies, so you can find New and expanding horizons and taking advantage of them, to build our economic future and invest in it together.

He explained that the United States has provided long-term assistance to Egypt, which has helped make the country more resilient through our security partnership, educational and cultural exchanges, and development work.

The United States government also provides strong support to Egypt, bilaterally and through multilateral institutions, and has invested more than $ 80 billion in Egypt over the past 43 years. Our programs have helped provide clean water and electricity to millions of Egyptians, create jobs, and preserve sites. An archaeological mission, and tackled many of Egypt’s most pressing public health challenges, including during the COVID pandemic.

Cohen noted that our cultural and educational programs have introduced thousands of Egyptian youth every year to new ideas and new ways of seeing the world. We choose hundreds of Egyptians annually for personal and virtual exchanges now. We provide cultural, English and skills building programs that reach thousands of Egyptian youth and professionals every year.

He explained: We have built more than 2000 schools, trained more than one hundred thousand teachers, and provided more than $ 350 million for higher education grants and academic exchange opportunities. We have supported more than 70,000 high school and vocational school students so that they can succeed in the workforce.

We are also committed to protecting Egypt’s rich cultural heritage, as evidenced by the work of my team to coordinate the return of more than 5,000 pieces of papyrus and antiques just a few weeks ago, and there is a lot in common between the United States and Egypt when it comes to our diplomatic engagement as well. On all major regional issues today – from finding a political solution in Libya, to making progress toward peace in the Middle East, to working to find a solution to the Renaissance Dam – the United States and Egypt share a commitment to formulating diplomatic solutions that enhance regional stability.

Cohen pointed out that with the advent of 2021 new challenges and greater opportunities, we look forward to working with our partners in the business community and the Egyptian government to make the most of them, but before we talk about these opportunities, I would like to take a moment to think about what we have seen during the past year in Egypt, while grappling with The entire world with the worst pandemic in a century, Egypt has survived the crisis far better than most.

He continued: The government’s economic reforms, those difficult political choices that President El-Sisi and Prime Minister Madbouly implemented to pull the Egyptian economy out of the brink of the crisis between 2016 and 2019 – along with the ambitious government development plan for Vision 2030 and some directly studied programs. Responding to the epidemic, created a barrier that strengthened Egypt from the worst economic effects of COVID, thanks to a large extent, thanks to these policies, Egypt is the only country in the region whose economy has actually grown over the past year, despite the epidemic, which translates into opportunities for American companies.

He added that the International Monetary Fund recently looked at Egypt’s strong fundamentals, a government committed to reform, and expected strong economic growth and recovery during this year and in the coming years, and the main rating agencies, Fitch, S&P and Moody’s, also share this assessment, and investors are acquiring Egyptian bonds, including This is the first-ever green bond in the region, issued last fall.

He added that Egypt was the first destination for foreign direct investment in Africa for the fifth year in a row in 2020, and one of the best regional destinations for investment capital, financial technology and ICT investments.

He added that Egypt is investing in its economic future by launching new transport and infrastructure projects linking Egyptian cities and ports with international markets.

It is also building 14 smart cities; It invests in major upgrades to the nation’s healthcare and education systems; It embarks on an ambitious program to replace hundreds of thousands of old cars with cleaner and more efficient vehicles.

He pointed out that it meets a greater part of its energy needs through renewable and clean energy, as well as modernizing the oil and gas sectors, and the Egyptian government is working to double Egypt’s digital future, making use of technology to bring government services closer to people, and linking the Egyptian economy more to the rest of the world with programs such as: Egypt “manufactures electronics” and builds the workforce in Egypt. Tomorrow with Digital Future Work.

He urged American companies to bid on these projects, which have a total value of about thirteen billion dollars, adding: Thirty-one opportunity for American companies to help build Egypt’s future with the help of American businesses.

The story is the same in the ICT sector – which has been the fastest growing sector of the Egyptian economy, growing by nearly 17 percent for each of the past few years.

He explained that Egypt’s location at the link between Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe, and its global connection with 18 major international data cable systems, makes it a very attractive market, and I have already been told that there are more connections and faster speeds. Business.

He pointed out that investments in the ICT sector in Egypt rose by 35% over the past year, as start-ups alone raised more than $ 100 million in 2020, in areas such as mobile phone payments, e-commerce, financial technology, and health technology.

Since everyone is moving to the cloud, the ambassador said, Egypt is in a strategic position to lead the data center markets in Africa and the Middle East, which are expected to grow by doubling numbers during each of the next several years.

On a larger scale, Cohen stressed, Egypt has the most comprehensive educational system in the Middle East. Whether we are talking about universities, secondary schools or vocational schools, the demand is strong and growing for more international links, more distance learning options, and more private sector investment. In Cairo alone, the demand for private education from the kindergarten stage is expected to grow. More than one million students will reach the end of the twelfth grade over the next decade, and the growing number of partnerships between American universities and Egyptian universities shows that we can work together to provide these students with multicultural skills, more globalized perspectives, and world-class foundations for building their futures.

He said that meeting the growing demand for health care services, and providing more options for those services, is another area we see with huge potential.

He explained that this sector is large, diversified and growing, so whether we are talking about expanded health care services in general or digital transformation of the entire system, investment opportunities are many, and the medical city in the new administrative capital alone offers many opportunities for American companies. Closer with the rest of the African continent, major pharmaceutical companies are looking to Egypt as a platform for expansion and innovation, and I cannot think of anyone better than our world-class companies to supply the medical devices needed by Egypt’s growing healthcare system, from telehealth services, to training programs. To meet the growing demand in Egypt for skilled doctors and nurses, to build and manage healthcare centers that will employ them – there is ample room for American companies in this vital field.

He added: Egypt also provides us with growing demand and attractive opportunities in agriculture, and American companies are already active in the field of food and beverages, raw materials and much more. Our agribusiness associations work closely with local businesses to share best practices.

He indicated that there are opportunities to bring in American technology and know-how to increase yields and make farms more efficient, to maximize the utilization of water resources, improve supply and production chains, and expand the quality and availability of food and beverages required by Egypt’s population growth.

He added: Despite the epidemic, US agricultural exports to Egypt increased by a remarkable 23 percent in 2020, to reach nearly two billion dollars, led by soybeans, grains, dairy products and nuts. Egyptian agricultural exports to the United States increased by 22% during the same period, reaching a record level of $ 220 million.

He added that we must pay special attention to emerging opportunities in the renewable energy sector and the ambitious “green agenda” of the Egyptian government, not to mention Egypt’s ambitions to become a regional energy hub as the government realizes that more and more energy needs in Egypt come from renewable and sustainable sources. That’s why it plans to generate more than 40 percent of the country’s electricity by renewables by 2035 and is considering tougher targets.

He continued: This means the continuous flow of new projects in power generation and transmission. The government is pouring serious money into more energy-efficient buildings, better management of vital water resources, and creating incentive programs for Egyptians to choose cleaner cars, all of which means opportunities for the latest innovative companies like many of the companies that own them.

He added that the renewable energy equipment market alone is likely to be worth billions of dollars, not to mention the design, construction and operation of new energy facilities, new desalination plants and recycling plants, and by working together, we can ensure that your companies are in a position to benefit, to meet these opportunities. Directly, I pledge that I and my team will work tirelessly with you and the Egyptian government to continue improving the business climate, just like you, we believe that having a strong and empowering private sector is the best way to generate jobs and achieve economic growth, development and prosperity, and my team and I will continue our efforts to create and expand business opportunities among the United States. Egypt, and we worked with the Egyptian government to build an environment that would attract more American investment.

The ambassador said that Egypt had undertaken a number of important reforms in recent years, but that there was still important work. We want to help reduce red tape and barriers to international trade, and enhance trade facilitation. We aim to help Egypt improve the intellectual property rights system, so that innovation thrives, and we want to work with you to ensure a level playing field for the private sector.
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