CAIRO: Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly on Wednesday reviewed measures to boost investment opportunities in various economic sectors and stressed the need for concerted efforts to create an environment conducive to investments and friendly for foreign investors.
He described boosting domestic and foreign investments top priority of the government. The prime minister chaired a meeting attended by various ministers of the Cabinet to discuss preparations for the upcoming investment promotion conference in the North African country, said Cabinet spokesperson Nader Saad.
Major international institutions, investment banks, representatives of international companies, and business leaders are scheduled to be invited to the business event.
Saad said the meeting focused on the mechanisms for the implementation of a policy recently approved by President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi. It lays emphasis on increasing the private sector’s role in the economic development of the country.
The meeting also discussed the global and regional developments that are affecting the world economies. The ministers also highlighted the issues the North African country is currently facing due to geopolitical tensions such as the Ukraine war, fluctuating oil prices, and the declining value of the Egyptian pound against the US dollar.
Egypt’s economy was hit hard after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last February unsettled global investors and led them to pull billions out of the North African country.
The war sent wheat prices spiraling, heavily impacting Egypt, one of the world’s largest grain importers, and piling pressure on its foreign currency reserves.
With costs driven up further by soaring global energy prices, official inflation topped 18 percent in November, while billions of dollars worth of imported goods remain locked in Egypt’s ports.
As the foreign currency crunch continues, the Egyptian pound has plummeted, losing 70 percent of its value over 10 months.
The most recent dip — just over 8 percent — came Wednesday, the same day experts rang alarm bells when two state-owned banks announced one-year saving certificates with a whopping 25 percent interest rate.
Egyptian Minister of Supply and Internal Trade Ali Moselhi faced harsh criticism from parliamentarians.
The minister told the meeting the prices of commodities will go down within two months. He said more than 60 percent of the country’s food items are imported and prices are going up due to an increase in the prices of imported raw materials.
He said his ministry was preparing a new law to regulate random markets and control prices.