Nevine Gamea — the Minister of Trade and Industry and CEO of the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (MSMEDA) — said that 45% of the total funds provided to MSMEs were directed to women over the past seven years, amounting to about EGP 11.1bn in funding.
This financed about 700,000 MSMEs and provided about 837,000 jobs.
She added that the agency is working in coordination with various state agencies to implement the directives of the political leadership by providing all aspects of support for Egyptian women.
This is to create a new generation of businesswomen and maximise their participation in the economic development witnessed by the Egyptian state over the past seven years. Women are encouraged to employ their skills in establishing stable, productive, and profitable MSMEs that can contribute to improving the standard of living for themselves and their families, especially in villages in border and Upper Egyptian governorates.
On the occasion of Egyptian Women’s Day, Gamea stated that the MSMEDA relies on several axes to enhance the economic and societal role of women, including providing free training and professional programmes to help them be self-employed and qualify them to set up MSMEs.
She added that over the past seven years, more than 28,000 women were trained for entrepreneurship skills to be familiarised with the basic skills of establishing and successfully managing a small business in various financial, accounting, and marketing aspects.
The agency also provides a variety of financing services to help women set up new small enterprises or expand their existing ones to ensure the continuity of these projects and increase their production capacity.
Furthermore, Gamea said that the agency’s plans for this year aim to increase this funding and develop the services provided to women in order to increase their participation in the country’s sustainable development.
She also explained that the agency — in cooperation with the concerned authorities — implements programmes and projects for community and human development that contribute to providing thousands of jobs for girls and women in various governorates. During the past seven years, 16.8m jobs were provided for women in community development services in the fields of health and literacy, kindergarten teaching, and training.
Moreover, Gamea emphasised that the MSMEDA’s support for Egyptian women does not stop at providing funding and technical services for women’s projects. It also includes marketing services, which can help enhance the profitability of their projects by providing e-marketing services and professional product photography as well as facilitating their participation in central or local exhibitions organised by the agency or in cooperation with partner bodies.
Women’s participation in the agency’s local exhibitions accounted for 51% of all attendance. Women also received 30% of all marketing services provided by the agency.