Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly asserted that Egypt will continue its support for African efforts to achieve sustainable development and help unlock the huge potential of African cooperation through various trade agreements and economic cooperation platforms.
Madbouly’s remarks came during his meeting with a delegation of the Governance Council of the Arab-African Trade Bridges Programme (AATB).
The meeting was held in the presence of Hani Sonbol — the CEO of the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) and Secretary-General of the Arab-African Trade Bridges Programme — with the participation of several ministers from Arab and African countries and representatives of international financial institutions.
The meeting was also attended by Egyptian Minister of Planning and Economic Development Hala El-Said, Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait, and Minister of Trade and Industry Nevine Gamea.
Madbouly expressed his happiness to meet the members of the AATB Programme during their current visit to Egypt, pointing out that the programme is a good platform for consultation and the exchange of ideas, visions, and experiences, in addition to strengthening the efforts of governments to develop trade between African and Arab countries.
The PM also affirmed Egypt’s appreciation for its cooperation with the ITFC, which is one of the most active member institutions of the Islamic Development Bank Group.
Furthermore, he said that Egypt intends to intensify cooperation with the ITFC in light of the pioneering programmes it implements, especially the AATB Programme, to enhance trade and investment flows between Arab and African member states and support trade finance.
In the same context, Madbouly stressed that strengthening trade and economic cooperation with Arab and African partners is a top priority for the Egyptian government, especially at this difficult time, as the world is facing major health, economic, and social challenges due to the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic.
For her part, El-Said indicated that Egypt is working closely to develop the cooperation portfolio with the Islamic Development Bank Group as part of its efforts to support the trade and investment movement with African and Arab countries.
She pointed out that the coming period will witness more opportunities for fruitful cooperation, reviewing in this regard some initiatives that included the development of Egyptian exports to the African market and the establishment of the first export academy in Egypt in cooperation with the private sector in addition to qualifying a number of women entrepreneurs in the field of heritage crafts to enhance their export capabilities to various international markets.
She also explained that Egypt launched an initiative to secure commercial operations and investments in cooperation with the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment and Export Credit (ICIEC) as well as enhancing the investment partnerships with the private sector in cooperation with the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD).
In the same context, Sonbol reviewed the features of the AATB Programme, which was launched in 2017 in Morocco with the aim of reviving Arab-African relations through initiatives and programmes aiming to promote trade between the two regions.
Furthermore, he asserted that new members had joined the Bridges Programme, emphasising its importance during times of crisis, such as the coronavirus pandemic.
He also affirmed that the programme provides support and innovative solutions to member states in order to overcome the negative effects of the pandemic.