Egypt boasts real estate portfolio valued at $200bn, ready for international export

Shaimaa Al-Aees
5 Min Read

Assistant Minister of Housing for Technical Affairs, Abdelkhalek Ibrahim, stated that Egypt’s real estate assets, including both state and private sector projects, are valued at $200bn and are suitable for export. This includes the ongoing Ras El-Hikma project.

Since 2022, the Egyptian government has launched an initiative to export real estate, aiming to invigorate the local market and increase foreign currency reserves through property sales, Ibrahim explained.

At a press conference on Sunday, he remarked, “This initiative is a comprehensive strategy to improve the economic environment, focusing on attracting more investors. By directing investments into the real estate sector from international markets, we’re enhancing stock market performance and capitalizing on major projects like the Administrative Capital and other new cities. This approach is designed to boost demand in the Egyptian real estate market, promoting continuous growth and economic vitality.”

Ibrahim also noted the growing contribution of real estate activities to the national economy, accounting for about 20% of Egypt’s GDP in 2023. Real estate in Egypt serves as a valuable asset for individuals and businesses, making sector stability a key objective for the nation’s economic equilibrium.

In line with President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s directives, the government has made urban development a priority. This initiative addresses critical issues and acts as a vital catalyst for economic expansion and investment, both locally and internationally. In the last decade, Egypt has completed over two million housing units, supplementing private sector efforts. These units meet various needs, from social support to investment attraction, strengthening the economic base of cities, especially in new urban areas.

The creation of new cities has been instrumental in transforming slums and advancing social housing projects, receiving praise from global entities. For example, projects like New Alamein have set the stage for initiatives such as Ras El-Hikma, highlighting the importance of strategic urban planning and investment in Egypt’s growth path, he revealed.

Tarek Shoukry, Undersecretary of the Housing Committee at the House of Representatives and Chairperson of the Real Estate Development Chamber at the Federation of Egyptian Industries, presented three key demands for the future. These include advocating for tax breaks for real estate developers for a specific period.

Shoukry suggested a one-year trial of tax exemptions for real estate firms, expecting a favourable impact on their project execution.

He also stressed the need for a definitive strategy regarding land price interest rates amidst various factors. The chamber recommends a two-year extension with fixed land price interest rates at 10%, in line with existing practices.

Additionally, Shoukry highlighted the significance of the real estate financing sector in connecting sellers and buyers. He proposed a shift towards unified collateral in real estate financing and the introduction of initiatives with lower interest rates. He also called for a change in banks’ mortgage financing methods.

Abdul Rahman Agamy, CEO of Diamond Group and Sky AD Developments, emphasised the positive impact of the Ras El-Hekma deal on the Egyptian economy and the real estate sector. He pointed out its role in attracting foreign investment in Egypt’s real estate.

Agamy also underlined the private sector’s responsibility in presenting the Egyptian market’s potential to international investors. He mentioned that state support for the sector has gained global recognition following the Ras El-Hekma deal.

He stated that the Ras El-Hekma project will exemplify the state’s vision for establishing smart, sustainable cities, in partnership with an international developer bringing fresh ideas. This project is expected to have broad economic effects, such as increasing tourism to over 8 million visitors and drawing foreign companies to Egypt, aiding the country’s economic recovery.

Furthermore, Agamy noted that starting the Ras El-Hekma project will accelerate the development of the northwest coast and the new city of Alamein in the next phase.

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