June 30: Egypt's success in combating illegal migration

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Sun, 23 Jun 2024 - 10:32 GMT

BY

Sun, 23 Jun 2024 - 10:32 GMT

FILE- Illegal migration - Reuters

FILE- Illegal migration - Reuters

CAIRO – 23 June 2024: Since President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi's 2015 decision to reinstate the Ministry of State for Immigration and Egyptian Expatriates' Affairs, Egypt has provided unprecedented initiatives, services, and care to its citizens residing worldwide.

 

This ministry has focused on addressing the problems and demands of Egyptians abroad, linking them to their homeland, and involving them in the country's sustainable development journey.

 

Support for Egyptians in Crisis Situations

 

The political leadership has maintained continuous communication with Egyptians in countries experiencing wars, conflicts, natural disasters, and COVID-19 lockdowns, aiding them and facilitating the return of those who wish to come back home.

 

Recently, the ministry operated a 24/7 operations room to manage rising death and missing cases among pilgrims, coordinating with relevant authorities in Saudi Arabia and the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

 

Major Initiatives and Campaigns

 

Since its inception, the Ministry of Immigration has launched numerous initiatives and campaigns to serve Egyptians abroad. One of the most successful is the "Boats of Salvation" initiative, launched by President El-Sisi in 2019 to curb irregular migration and raise awareness of its dangers.

 

No illegal boats have sailed from Egypt's coasts since 2016, earning international praise. The ministry also focuses on raising awareness in high-emigration governorates and training youth to enhance their skills for the global job market.

 

Training and Employment Initiatives

 

The ministry has promoted the "Training for Employment" initiative as an alternative to illegal migration, collaborating with top institutions to train and qualify youth, opening safe and fair opportunities. The ministry also facilitates the reintegration of returning Egyptians through counseling, training, and psychological support.

 

The Egyptian-German Center for Jobs, Migration, and Reintegration

 

Launched in 2020, this center offers vital services and programs, helping Egyptian youth aspiring to migrate by providing employment opportunities, vocational and psychological training, tailored to the demands of European and German job markets.

 

Conference of Egyptians Abroad

 

With about 14 million Egyptians residing abroad, the Ministry of Immigration organizes the "Conference of Egyptians Abroad," with its fifth edition scheduled for August 4-5 under the Prime Minister's patronage. This conference demonstrates the government's commitment to listening to its expatriates and engaging in dialogue with them.

 

Successful Initiatives and Laws

 

The ministry has implemented previous conference recommendations, including the long-awaited law allowing Egyptians abroad to import cars duty-free. This initiative has been a significant success, allowing any Egyptian or their family members over 16 with foreign residency to import a car without taxes.

 

Investment Opportunities for Egyptians Abroad

 

Focusing on investment, the ministry has supported establishing the "Egyptians Abroad Investment Company," managed by expatriate businessmen without state intervention. Registered with the General Authority for Investment, it involves ten leading overseas investors and aims to attract more Egyptian expatriates, promoting national projects and diverse fields such as technology, industry, agriculture, tourism, and real estate.

 

Youth Dialogue Center and Communication Initiatives

 

The ministry launched the MEDCE (Ministry of Immigration Dialogue Center for Egyptian Scholars Abroad), providing a platform for Egyptian students studying abroad to maintain connections and resist political and cultural influences.

 

The center involves top researchers and students from global universities, promoting Egypt's cultural and touristic heritage, and supporting expatriates during crises, like the Turkey earthquake and Sudan crisis.

 

Continuous Engagement and Support

 

Aligned with the state's vision for sustainable development, the ministry continually updates expatriates on national projects and challenges. The "An Hour with the Minister" initiative enables direct communication between the minister and Egyptians abroad, discussing proposals and solving problems with various Egyptian ministries and institutions.

 

Election Participation and Rights Awareness Campaigns

 

The "Participate with Your Voice" campaign encouraged Egyptians abroad to vote in the 2023/2024 presidential elections. The "Know Your Rights and Rest Assured" campaign, in collaboration with Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development, educated Egyptians in Saudi Arabia about their rights and duties through clear, simple videos.

 

Promoting Investment and Enhancing the Business Climate

 

The ministry's "Why Invest in Egypt?" campaign highlights the country's investment climate, infrastructure, and government measures to facilitate investments, including tax reductions and legislative amendments. The Supreme Council for Investment, chaired by the President, supports these efforts.

 

Reviving Roots and Strengthening Cultural Ties

 

The "Reviving Roots" initiative, ongoing since 2017, maintains connections with communities historically residing in Egypt, such as Greek, Cypriot, and Armenian communities, fostering a sense of belonging and affection for Egypt.

 

Education and Housing Initiatives

 

In collaboration with the Ministry of Higher Education, the ministry provided a grace year for Egyptian professors abroad whose leaves exceeded ten years. The Ministry of Education implemented a semester exam system for "Our Children Abroad," meeting families' requests.

 

The ministry also coordinated with the Ministry of Housing to offer discounted housing units and land to Egyptians abroad, payable in foreign currency.

 

Aviation Discounts and New Flight Routes

 

The ministry arranged discounts with the Ministry of Civil Aviation for Egyptian families traveling with EgyptAir, including fare reductions for spouses and children. Responding to expatriate requests, new flight routes to African cities like Mogadishu, Abidjan, and Djibouti were announced, with plans for a direct Cairo-Seoul route by 2025/2026.

 

Facilitating Military Status Resolution

 

Addressing expatriate requests, the ministry launched the "Military Status Settlement" initiative to help Egyptians abroad resolve conscription issues, enabling them to renew residencies and travel freely.

 

Future Digital and Training Initiatives

 

The ministry plans to launch the first digital app for Egyptians abroad, in collaboration with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, to provide investment incentives and digital services. Training centers for Egyptian youth before working abroad are also in development.

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