Mon, 25 Oct 2021 - 06:12 GMT
Mon, 25 Oct 2021 - 06:12 GMT
CAIRO – 25 October 2021: Egypt’s infrastructure investments soared by LE 2.3 billion ($143 million) over the past seven years, marking an increase of 340 percent since the fiscal year 2015/2016, according to Minister of Planning Hala El-Said.
Believing that infrastructure is a key enabler for development, El-Said added that Egypt has increased its investments in roads and bridges by more than 90% over the past three years to reach $1.79 billion in 2020 from $0.89 billion in 2018.
She explained that the sector is expected to grow during 2020-2024, as this growth will be primarily driven by active partnerships between the public and private sectors and the expansion of green buildings to increase energy efficiency and advanced infrastructure.
The minister also touched on the National Roads Project that was launched in 2015, which aims to construct 7,000 kilometers of new roads in 6 years with a budget of $11 billion, as well as implementing complementary works to enhance the existing road network by providing the required maintenance for 5,000 kilometers of current roads.
“Egypt has made remarkable progress during the past few years in modernizing transportation, communications and digital infrastructure, which was reflected in Egypt’s ranking in global indicators, following up that despite the pandemic, the Egyptian government has completed a number of major projects, in addition to the projects being implemented, which contributed to alleviating the negative effects of the Corona epidemic on the Egyptian economy, which created a large number of opportunities, as the projects included 1,000 companies and nearly two million Egyptian workers,” El-Said said.
She added that residential projects alone contributed to securing 800,000 job opportunities for young people, besides that most major projects are fortunate in being in sectors relatively less affected by the epidemic, with 32% in housing and 27% in transportation, compared to only 3% in the tourism sector, which is a highly affected sector by the epidemic.
On the modern railway and transport network, El-Said explained that the Egyptian government is working to improve the current railway network by adding more trains and renewing old buses, noting that two giant railway projects are underway, which will significantly reduce commuting time and help reduce the carbon footprint in Egypt.
She explained that the two projects were represented in the express train project worth $23 billion, in addition to the monorail project in Cairo, at a cost of $3.5 billion.
El-Said indicated that the Egyptian government is seeking to support the manufacturing infrastructure through industrial complexes and cities, which will increase productivity and efficiency.
She explained that during the past six years, 17 industrial complexes were established in 15 governorates nationwide to provide 43,000 new direct jobs for young people, adding that during the past two years, Egypt established three industrial cities.
Moreover, the minister talked about the "Hayah Karima" initiative, stressing that the Egyptian government aims to achieve a regional balance in infrastructure development, at a total cost of more than LE 700 billion over three years, to develop Egyptian villages through the development of infrastructure projects in various fields, with a focus on Education, health and sanitation, explaining that the initiative targets 4,584 villages spread over 175 centers in 20 governorates, benefiting 58 million beneficiaries in total.
She explained that the Egyptian government has taken several major decisions to support the industries most affected by the closures caused by the pandemic, the decline in aggregate demand, and the disruptions in supply chains as energy costs have been reduced for the entire manufacturing sector.
In addition, a tax exemption was provided on real estate for the industrial and tourism sectors, subsidy payments to exporters were increased, and discounts on fuel prices were introduced for the aviation sector. Support has also been provided to special economic zones, with their exports exempt from value-added tax.