Amr Talaat, Minister of Communications and Information Technology, has said that Egypt is taking steady steps towards achieving comprehensive development and building a digital state.
This came during his speech before the Egyptian-Lebanese Association of Businessmen’s (ELBA) meeting on Tuesday. The event was attended by Ali El-Halabi, Lebanon’s ambassador to Cairo; Ghada Labib, Deputy Minister of Communications and Information Technology for Institutional Development; Sherif Farouk, President of Egypt Post; and Fathallah Fawzy, President of the ELBA.
He pointed out that the strategy of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is based on three axes: digital transformation, providing highly efficient and stable telecommunication services, and providing digital job opportunities for youth. The strategy aims to provide easy government services to citizens, and to provide job opportunities in the communications and information technology sector that depend on young people of all scientific and academic backgrounds.
He stressed that a new phase of digital services based on the electronic signature has been launched. He explained that the electronic signature system was activated in several stages, starting with its activation in government applications, where government employees will use the electronic signature in the performance of their work with the government’s move to the new administrative capital, then the stage of activating the electronic signature system in applications for enterprises and companies such as the electronic invoice in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance. Then the stage of application to citizens’ services, where consular services for Egyptians residing abroad will begin.
Talaat explained that in the context of achieving digital transformation, the Egyptian information infrastructure was built by linking all government databases, which contributed to the formation of a digital picture of the entitlements of every citizen, thus enabling the government to deliver support to those who deserve it and facilitating the disbursement of a grant to irregular employment at the beginning of the pandemic. The government digital transformation project has also been implemented to enable government agencies to exchange data, and thus the citizen gets the service provided by different agencies through one portal. Giant data centres have also been established at the highest technical level to host and preserve citizens’ data.
Several weeks ago, President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi launched the Digital Egypt platform, which currently includes more than 130 government services on the Digital Egypt platform. He pointed out that a number of digital transformation projects are being implemented in cooperation with various sectors of the state, with investments amounting to more than EGP 15bn, including the mechanization of the agricultural tenure system, the mechanization of the health insurance system, the completion of the law enforcement system, the development of economic courts and the remote litigation system, and the mechanization of the real estate licensing system. The issuance of the national number for the property has also been launched, as well as cooperation with the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities to provide virtual tours of archaeological sites for residents outside Egypt.
The Minister of Communications indicated that more than 90% of the data traffic between East and West passes through Egyptian lands and waters. He explained the efforts of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology to expand the international infrastructure outside Egypt by increasing the number of submarine cables, and expanding and developing the international infrastructure inside Egypt, where the local network that transmits data from the Mediterranean Sea to the Red Sea was doubled to increase from 2,700 km to more than 5,000 km, and the expansion of the international network in the continent of Africa through the HARP cable system, in addition to the expansion of data centers for Egypt to move from a country that transmits data to a country that hosts data, where the largest international commercial data centre was established in Egypt.