ITIDA, CBI collaborate to help Egyptian SMEs increase IT outsourcing exports to Europe

Daily News Egypt
3 Min Read

The Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) has cooperated with the Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI) to support Egyptian IT outsourcing (ITO) exports to the European market.

The CBI of The Netherlands’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs offered a three-year programme to support Egyptian IT small- or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in their export journey to the EU by offering technical assistance through a practical business export coaching project. The programme also prepares Egyptian companies with the skills and knowledge needed to enter the European market. 

The beneficiary SMEs will receive three years of company coaching provided by international and local experts, and assistance with the creation of an international market strategy. 

Additionally, the programme will provide guidance, advice, and coaching to the companies on the type of certification suitable for their market entry strategy. It will also help improve the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR), in addition to offering market orientation support and finding export business opportunities. 

ITIDA CEO Amr Mahfouz said: “CBI’s export coaching programme is among a set of actions that help achieve our ambitious strategy that is aiming to triple the size of Egypt’s BPO and ITO exports over the next five years.” 

The programme targets SMEs and Women-led companies in Egypt that offer ITO services that are interested in an improved market position in the EU and want to contribute to an enhanced ecosystem for SMEs, Mahfouz explained.

The CBI detailed a number of requirements for applying companies, including that the SME must be at least 50% or more locally owned or has a local management structure, and that the SME employs at least 10 full time equivalents (FTEs) and a maximum of 250 FTEs. 

SME applicants should also have been active in the ITO industry for at least three to four years, have no joint venture with a company based in a non-developing country, and no licensing commitments that prohibit or limit the export of products to the European Union. Management of applying companies should also be able to communicate in English. 

The deadline for completing the application form is 31 January 2022.

The CBI will finance most project costs. Participants will only bear the cost of travel expenses for European market entry activities, investment in product offers, employees, and certification. 

The programme comes within the framework of the cooperation agreement signed by the CBI of The Netherlands’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the ITIDA, the Chamber of Information Technology and Communications, Eitesal Association, and Nile University to launch its comprehensive programme to develop the export capabilities of Egyptian IT SMEs.

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