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Al-Mashat and Italian Ambassador chair local counterpart management committee for Egyptian-Italian debt swap program

Al-Mashat and Italian Ambassador chair local counterpart management committee for Egyptian-Italian debt swap program

Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation, and Mr. Michele Quaroni, Italian Ambassador to Cairo, chaired, at the headquarters of the Ministry of International Cooperation in the new administrative capital, the local considerations management committee for Egypt. Italian Debt Exchange Program for Development, to discuss developments in the implementation of projects of the third phase of the program worth $100 million, through which numerous development projects in the areas of food security and agriculture, higher and civil education sectors. support to society, environmental projects and preservation of cultural heritage, projects to empower female breadwinners, creation of 10 wheat storage silos and projects to empower and protect children. The meeting took place in the presence of representatives of the Italian Development Agency and the Technical Support Unit of the Committee.

During the meeting, the Minister of International Cooperation praised the importance of the debt swap program mechanism implemented with the Italian side and which many development partners seek to emulate, which aims to reduce the burden of Egypt’s external debt. government, emphasizing the importance of periodic meetings of the committee to ensure optimal implementation of agreements and obtain maximum benefits, selecting projects based on national priorities, and a technical support unit to monitor the implementation of projects, in addition to annual meetings to approve debt. exchange decisions.

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The meeting was an opportunity to discuss the position of the different projects within the framework of the aforementioned third tranche and how to overcome obstacles in order to fully use their funds, particularly at the level of the Schools of Applied Technology project, in strengthening teachers. ‘ and solid waste management in the governorate of Minya.

In this context, Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation, highlighted the willingness of the Ministry of International Cooperation to fully coordinate the ministries and authorities concerned, with the aim of developing a vision on how to benefit from the funds available, to benefit from already existing projects so that their implementation can be completed by the end of this year.

It was also emphasized that the Ministry of International Cooperation is in continuous coordination with the ministries and agencies concerned to obtain the necessary approvals for the implementation of the projects approved by the Management Committee, with the aim of quickly completing the signing executive agreements for these projects. and benefit from these amounts.

On the other hand, the possibility of the Italian side to participate in the “Hafiz” platform of financial and technical support to the private sector, launched by the ministry to become a unified platform of financial and technical services provided by partners, was discussed. Development. to the private sector, whether large or small and medium enterprises, as well as emerging companies in Egypt, so as to strengthen the efforts undertaken by the ministry to support the private sector in the implementation of government directives .

The two parties agreed to begin negotiations on the fourth tranche of the debt exchange program for development, and the Italian ambassador confirmed that his government attaches great importance to supporting the sectors targeted by the “Novi” program. , namely water, food and energy. , as the areas of cooperation for the new tranche can be focused on: The agricultural food sector (Agribusiness), helping marginalized groups most affected by climate change and food shortages, in addition to investing in human capital. In addition to studying the creation of technical schools in the agricultural sector.

Egypt and Italy have enjoyed close relations since the 1970s and the implementation of the first phase of the Development Debt Swap Program with Italy began in 2001, during which 54 projects were been implemented. The second phase was signed in 2007 and saw the implementation of. 32 projects, then the third and final phase. In 2012, several projects are being implemented, and the total of the three phases amounts to approximately $350 million, through which many projects have been implemented.

In 2001, the implementation of the first phase of the program began, worth $150 million, through which 54 projects were implemented, the largest of which were rural development in Western Nubariya, the creation of schools and the development of education, projects in the field of green transformation, monitoring of the production cycle of agricultural crops and the rehabilitation of water supply systems in the governorate of Beheira .

In 2007, the implementation of the second phase of the program, worth $100 million, began, through which 32 projects were implemented, the most important of which were the sectors of combating poverty and creation of employment opportunities, solid waste management, creation of a wastewater treatment system. the Rubiki sewage plant, the modernization of industrial secondary schools and the creation of technical education complexes in Fayoum, in 2012 the third phase was signed worth $100 million, thanks to which a number projects have been implemented and others are being implemented in the fields. food security and agriculture, higher education sectors, civil society support, environmental and cultural heritage preservation projects, and projects to empower female breadwinners. The creation of 10 wheat storage silos and projects to empower and protect children.

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