Women work in a factory that makes men's suits in 10th of Ramadan City, Egypt, Feb. 22, 2006 - Reuters
CAIRO – 1 April 2018: Some 190 projects were executed under the Mashrouak (your project) initiative in Cairo governorate, with a cost of LE 14 million, Governor of Cairo Atef Abdel-Hamid said Sunday.
He added that another 141 projects are currently being studied with a cost of LE 18 million.
Mashrouak initiative was launched by the Egyptian government in March 2015 to encourage youth to start their own small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The initiative provides facilitated funding to youth and women to kick start their projects.
Abdel-Hamid stressed on the importance of the initiative, saying that it helps in reducing unemployment through providing financing to youth to implement their projects as well as offering project ideas along with their feasibility studies to help those who do not have ideas.
Besides creating jobs, the initiative aims to achieve social development and improve livelihoods for the Egyptian people, Abdel-Hamid said, adding that SMEs are the driver for economic growth.
Abdel-Hamid said that Cairo governorate has provided 19 offices for the initiative to serve Cairo’s population of 11 million, of which 45 percent are young people.
Egypt has been working on developing SMEs and has launched several initiatives and incentives to encourage them.
In January 2016, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) announced a plan to provide LE 200 billion to 350,000 SMEs over the next four years. Under the initiative, 20 per cent of bank loans should be allocated to SMEs.
Total loans that banks issued within the this initiative reached LE 67 billion, head of banking development sector at CBE Mostafa Mounir said last month.
On Saturday, The Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Development Authority (MSMEDA) and the Ministry of Manpower signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to prepare the youth on setting up their own projects.
Trade Minister Tarek Kabil said after the signing that developing SMEs is a top priority for the ministry to enhance trade and industry by 2020 as the sector represents 80 percent of Egypt’s economy.