European institutions launch green investments programme in Egypt

Reem Hosam El-din
2 Min Read
The EBRD's 2011 Annual Meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan, 20-21 May 2011

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD), the European Investment Bank (EIB), and the European Union (EU) launched their new Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF) for Egypt during an event held on Tuesday in Cairo. The event was attended by more than 250 participants, including government officials and representatives from the banking sector, business community, international institutions, and civil society.

The event was held in the presence of Janet Heckman, EBRD managing director for the southern and eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) region; Stephanie Lanfranchi, the country director at the AFD; Christope Lucet, head of the EIB; Reinhold Brender, deputy head of the EU delegation to Egypt; and Hanan El-Hadary, chairperson of the Industrial Council for Technology Innovation at the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

The GEFF programme comes with injected investments worth €140m. It will seek to provide loans for energy efficiency and small-scale renewable energy investments by private companies through a group of participating banks, including the National Bank of Kuwait-Egypt (NBK) and Qatar National Bank (QNB), which were the first to participate in the new facility with the aim of achieving energy security. The loans are combined with technical support to develop projects and win incentives for the successful completion of investments, resulting in producing products aimed at promoting energy efficient and renewable energy technology, as well as raising awareness, reducing operating costs, and improving competitiveness.

“The programme is aimed at small and medium enterprises (SMEs), not large industrial innovators. We target private-sector companies working in all sectors of the economy,” said Janet Heckman.

The program is supported by an EU grant worth €23.8m. The European Union Neighbourhood Investment Facility (EU NIF) is providing the funds for incentives to complete investments, while the comprehensive technical-assistance package is jointly funded by EU NIF and EBRD’s Shareholder Special Fund.

GEFF is the latest in a series of similar programmes led by EBRD, rolled out so far in 24 countries, in cooperation with 120 local financial partners.

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