UNIDO helps mainstream Industry 4.0 technologies in Egypt’s manufacturing sector

Daily News Egypt
6 Min Read

Egypt’s Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) are teaming up to mainstream Industry 4.0 technologies in the country’s manufacturing sector.

The announcement came as ITIDA participated in UNIDO’s online webinar “Industry 4.0 in Egypt: Enhancing the Readiness for the Adoption of Industry 4.0”.

ITIDA CEO Amr Mahfouz delivered a speech at the event on behalf of Minister of Communications and Information Technology Amr Talaat.

During the speech, Mahfouz said that Egypt is fully committed to adopting and harnessing Industry 4.0 technologies across all sectors, as part of its Vision 2030. This aims to develop the country as a sustainable technologically industrialised hub.

The webinar comes in light of UNIDO’s five-year Program for Country Partnership (PCP), to advance Egypt’s inclusive and sustainable industrialization. 

The programme aims to help the country increase the integration of Industry 4.0 technologies in key industrial sectors, and to enhance the contribution of industry to national economic, environmental, and social development. 

The PCP supports Egypt’s efforts in achieving its industrial development goals, outlined in the Sustainable Development Strategy: Egypt Vision 2030.

Accordingly, the PCP will focus on: industrial policy and governance; investment promotion; green industry; smart cities and sustainable industrial parks; value chains; and mainstreaming Industry 4.0 in priority industrial sectors, including chemicals, electronics, food, textiles, leather, furniture, and handicrafts.

Mahfouz said that the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, in cooperation with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, are assisting various state sectors to adopt new technologies. 

These include automation, augmented reality, the Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence (AI), which helps in cost reduction, while enhancing both productivity and quality.  

Mahfouz added, “The emerging technologies of Industry 4.0 promise improved value chains, methods of production and business models, which are of utmost importance particularly to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in different sectors.”

He added, “The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is particularly focusing on promoting and adopting emerging technologies such as, the IoT, Big Data Analytics, Microelectronics, Digital Fabrication, Additive Manufacturing, Robotics, Cybersecurity in specific industries, mainly the Engineering sector, Agro-food, smart cities, and other related industries.” 

Mahfouz said that, in order to reap the benefit of Industry 4.0 technologies, the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology has designed the right ecosystem. This is based on digital transformation efforts, Electronics Industry plans, and establishing an AI strategy. 

Egypt has also increased considerably the amount of digital infrastructure investments, dedicating $1.6bn for this purpose. 

Mahfouz additionally mentioned that the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the Ministry of Trade and Industry joined forces with the private sector to establish and equip the first Industry 4.0 Innovation Center (IIC) in Egypt. 

With a prime location in the Knowledge City in the New Administrative Capital (NAC), the IIC aims to raise awareness of the 4th Industrial Revolution technologies and their practical applications in smart factories. At the same time, it includes raising awareness on adopting advanced technology in local manufacturing, and providing training in automation and digitisation techniques.

This comes in addition to providing the necessary support in the areas of stimulating industrial innovation and designing smart factories in a way that contributes to the transfer of knowledge and the development of the industrial sector.

The IIC includes a training laboratory for students, entrepreneurs, and industrial facilities, and a product development laboratory that includes design programmes and prototyping manufacturing machines, a production process development laboratory. The centre incorporates a simulation of a smart factory with the techniques of 4.0 devices, equipment and tools for developing smart systems. 

The centre also targets a number of segments to benefit from its services, including factories, SMEs, startups, and students, in addition to sponsoring and supporting graduation projects in related fields.

Lastly, Mahfouz noted ITIDA’s efforts to promote adopting Industry 4.0 technologies, including the recent (X4SW) initiative, which aims to support digital transformation and enterprise agility in the local IT sector.

This will take place by helping software development companies achieve their digital strategies and business objectives.

He also mentioned the “Egypt Makes Electronics” (EME) Initiative, which aims to transform traditional mechanisms and common practices of manufacturing electronics and home appliances to Industry 4.0 techniques and practices. This aims to bring about a qualitative transformation in the industry, and to mark Egypt as a leading regional hub for innovative electronic designs.

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