CAIRO: Almost 700 green projects have been included in Egypt’s fiscal plan for 2020-21, at a total cost of EGP447.3 billion ($28.4 billion).
The 691 projects represent 14 percent of the plan’s total public investment, Minister of Planning and Economic Development Hala Al-Saeed said, and the ministry is aiming to increase this figure to 30 percent for 2021-2022.
She added there were incentives for ministries to move toward green projects by prioritizing financing for them.
The ministry held workshops to discuss a guide on sustainability standards that aligns with the government’s interest in expanding sustainable development into its planning system.
Mohamed Farid, head of the infrastructure sector at the ministry, said that projects meeting environmental sustainability criteria would be prioritized over other projects at the evaluation stage.
Jamil Helmy, assistant minister of planning and economic development for follow-up affairs of the sustainable development plan, said that six workshops were organized with several ministries. These discussed the environmental sustainability standards guide, which was prepared by the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development in cooperation with the Ministry of Environment, to implement the political leadership’s directives toward a green economy and integrating an environmental dimension into the sustainable development agenda.
Helmy talked about the executive action plan to integrate environmental sustainability standards into development plans, including forming work teams within ministries, strengthening the capabilities of workers, and setting up a mechanism to follow up compliance with basic environmental standards before approving project financing.
Last Thursday, Egypt launched its first green bond issue on the London Stock Exchange. The government green bond issue, worth $750 million for five years, is the largest in the Middle East and North Africa, and the first of its kind on the exchange.