Nevine Gamea — Minister of Trade and Industry and CEO of the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Development Authority (MSMEDA) — confirmed that breaking into the African market is one of the most important axes of the MSMEDA’s action plan to expand trade exchange.
The plan mainly targets the member states of the COMESA and the raw materials available in them to reach a distinguished product capable of competition.
The minister also noted that women are an essential element benefiting from increasing this cooperation through the launch of the ‘50 Million African Women Platform’, which includes more than 38 African countries that are member states of the COMESA, ECOWAS, and EAC.
The minister’s statement came in tandem with an announcement by the COMESA stating that Egypt ranked first among its member countries in terms of the number of users on the platform.
Gamea stressed that since the launch of the platform, work has been ongoing to activate commercial and industrial communication between millions of female owners of small and medium enterprises and entrepreneurs in Africa to learn about the opportunities available in each country and its needs for products, commodities, raw materials, procedures for providing them, and the bodies entrusted with dealing with them.
This works to facilitate trade movement between these countries and provides the opportunity for women to expand their projects and reach the foreign market. The minister also indicated that Egyptian female entrepreneurs have increased their interest in benefiting from the platform, which contributes to enhancing their capabilities to integrate and expand in the African market.
Sally Saada — Head of the Technical Office in the MSMEDA — explained that the agency is the national authority responsible for managing the content of the 50 Million African Women Platform in Egypt within the framework of the work mechanisms of the Gender Unit within the office. She added that the unit includes representatives from many national authorities concerned with Egyptian women’s issues to develop the platform’s content, including the Central Bank of Egypt, the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the National Council for Women, the Ministry of Social Solidarity, as well as a number of national institutions, councils, and associations.
Additionally, she said that the platform’s content has been translated into Arabic so that thousands of businesswomen in Egypt can use it and benefit from the services it provides.