Approximately 85% of the disputes involving Saudi companies operating in Egypt have been resolved in cooperation with the Ministry of Defence, according to the Saudi-Egyptian Businessmen Association (SEBA) director-general Ahmed Darwish Tuesday.
Problems have been resolved under the supervision of Egypt’s presidency and in cooperation between the government and the Saudi Ambassador Ahmed Al-Qattan, SEBA clarified in a statement.
Darwish explained that some of the remaining disputes are related to the Ministry of Endowment. There are also further disputes involving three Saudi companies owning 3,500 acres in Sadat City, which he said will be resolved after disengaging the ministries of Housing and Agriculture.
Several Saudi companies are planning to expand their business in Egypt, including food oil firm Saffola, Jannat Agriculture Investment Company and Almarai, which will invest EGP 5bn to expand their agriculture and industrial projects.
Following the 25 January Revolution, Egyptian courts had voided privatisation contracts for several companies, returning them to the state. These re-nationalisation decisions angered investors, who resorted to international arbitration centres to file cases against Egypt.
Egypt’s government formed the Dispute Settlement Committee in July to deal with all investment disputes pending international arbitration. Egypt has also undertaken various initiatives to reduce bureaucracy and ensure investors’ rights. This has included the development of new laws to regulate bids and investment.
The government is planning to resolve all investment disputes before the Economic Summit in Sharm El-Sheikh in March.