Ahmed Kouchouk, Deputy Minister of Finance and spokesperson for the State Ownership Policy Document, has said that the document is like the “economic constitution” of Egypt and aims to boost the role of the private sector, maximise exports and competitive production in regional and global markets, and increase the private sector’s contribution to national output.
Kouchouk’s remarks came on the second day of the Egyptian Economic Conference on Monday.
He added that the Document would contribute to laying the foundations for a decent life for all citizens, and improving the public services provided to them.
Kouchouk said that the Egyptian government launched a comprehensive and serious societal dialogue on the Document before it was approved in its final form, with the help of 10,000 economists.
He explained that the government aims, through the State Ownership Policy Document, to develop various mechanisms for the participation of the private sector to achieve the highest economic return on state assets, by working to establish strong mechanisms for regulating the market and promoting fair competition.
Kouchouk said that the government also aims to provide great investment opportunities in promising sectors, so that the business community and investors benefit from the improvement of the infrastructure, which has become more attractive to local and foreign investments, and is more able to achieve economic and development goals, especially amid the challenges imposed by global challenges.
He explained that the government plans to increase private sector investments from 30% of the total investments to 65% during the next three years, as the government seeks to exit from 79 sectors, and reduce its investments in 45 other sectors to make more room for the private sector.
Kouchouk said that citizens will benefit from the Document because it aims to provide more job opportunities and ensure the high quality of production by supporting fair competition between companies.
He added that the State Ownership Policy Document also aims to strengthen social safety nets by redirecting state funds to human development rather than business projects.
Kouchouk stressed that the participation of the private sector in some sectors will not affect the beneficiaries of subsidies, because the state will not stop its supervisory role over the Egyptian market, but rather will strengthen that role to prevent any monopolistic practices to ensure citizens’ needs are met at reasonable prices and high quality.
Kouchouk said that the experiences of 30 countries around the world were studied before the issuance of the Document, through 30 specialized sessions for experts and stakeholders. A survey of international institutions was conducted to this end as well.
He also explained that the government is implementing structural reforms to enhance the competitiveness of the Egyptian economy with Egypt’s supportive and stimulating political will for the private sector, and a strong, qualified and attractive infrastructure that opens its doors to local and foreign investments to achieve comprehensive and sustainable development.