Digitalisation spearheads Egypt’s financial inclusion drive: OBG

Daily News Egypt
4 Min Read

Egypt’s plans to put digitalisation at the heart of its efforts to drive post-pandemic growth in the financial services sector have been explored in a new COVID-19 Response Report (CRR) by Oxford Business Group (OBG) in partnership with Egypt’s Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA). 

The CRR provides in-depth analysis of Egypt’s response to the pandemic in an easy-to-navigate and accessible format, focusing on key data and infographics relating to its socio-economic landscape. 

The report shines a spotlight on Egypt’s fintech segment, which has expanded to become a regional leader and is poised to play a pivotal role in increasing banking penetration rates and supporting a broader bid to formalise more of the economy.

Here, there is coverage of the efforts underway from both the private and public sectors to encourage e-commerce growth and accelerate the transition to digital payments, building on higher, pandemic-induced demand from citizens for remote transactions amidst a desire to avoid handling cash.

Egypt’s vibrant start-up scene, which showed marked resilience throughout the pandemic by continuing to attract investors for initiatives across the sectors of the economy, is another focus. 

In addition, the CRR examines the key part that reforms implemented before the pandemic played in strengthening Egypt’s non-bank financial institutions, enabling lenders to support businesses during the crisis.

Subscribers will find an in-depth analysis in the report of the latest developments across the key components of the financial services sector, including the banking, insurance, capital markets, microfinance, venture capital and Islamic finance segments. 

The report also features case studies and interviews with high-level sectoral representatives from the public and private sectors, including Mohammed Omran, Chairperson of FRA, who shares his thoughts on a range of topical issues, including the ways in which COVID-19 changed the actions and priorities of the financial sector.

“The pandemic has definitely propelled a growing number of companies to proactively adopt digitalisation,” he said, “Going forwards, sustainable finance products and services will become increasingly important. Consequently, we have adopted a strategy concentrated on building engagement and awareness, enabling voluntary action and implementing resilient regulations.”

Harry van Schaick, OBG’s Regional Manager for Africa, said the IMF-backed fiscal and economic reforms implemented by the government had paved the way for Egypt to initiate an effective response to the pandemic, with its financial institutions well placed to contribute to the national effort. 

“Egypt navigated the challenges of COVID-19 while still maintaining positive economic growth – a feat that few other markets were able to achieve,” he said, “A strong regulatory framework and ample liquidity meant lenders were able to play a key supporting role. Looking ahead, we expect the scope for financing to increase in the recovery phase, buoyed by a deepening of the capital markets and diverse activity on the stock exchange.”

The CRR on Egypt forms part of a series of tailored reports which the global research and advisory company is currently producing with its partners, alongside other highly relevant, go-to research tools, including a range of country-specific Growth and Recovery Outlook articles and interviews.

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