The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has inaugurated its first resident office in Egypt on Tuesday.
The site will serve as the base for the Bank’s operations in the country, in close cooperation with Headquarters, to further support the development of the private sector and contribute to the growth of Egypt’s economy. The new office will play a key role in accelerating the EBRD’s activities in the country and in developing projects that will benefit the Egyptian people.
The office was opened by the EBRD’s First Vice President Phil Bennett together with Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation, Naglaa El-Ehwany, EBRD Managing Director for the southern and eastern Mediterranean region, Hildegard Gacek and EBRD Director for Egypt, Philip ter Woort.
“The opening of our resident office in Egypt is a very important step towards speeding up our activities and supporting the country’s plans for reform. The EBRD’s investments will contribute to the development of an economy which can bring prosperity to the Egyptian people,” said Bennett.
The EBRD will focus on strengthening the country’s financial sector, providing finance to small and medium-sized enterprises, boosting the creation of high-quality private-sector jobs and developing a resilient economy.
The Bank’s activities in Egypt will also include enhancing the agribusiness value chain, promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency, increasing private-sector involvement in transport and upgrading municipal infrastructure and services.
Philip ter Woort has been leading the EBRD’s resident office in Egypt since April 2013. “The opening of this office is another key milestone for the EBRD and we look forward to further supporting Egypt’s economic development. The EBRD’s high integrity and operational standards are important to support growth and value creation in the private sector,” said Mr ter Woort.
To date, the EBRD has invested over €600 million in 16 projects in Egypt. Among them are a €126 million loan for the modernisation of Egypt’s railway system and a US$ 60 million loan to support Mall of Arabia, a benchmark project in 6th of October City, a satellite city in the wider Cairo area.
In addition, trade finance programmes have been established with the National Bank of Egypt and Barclays Bank Egypt to support international and intra-regional trade. The EBRD has also initiated technical assistance support from which some 175 small and medium-sized local enterprises have benefited to date.