The Government of Egypt and the World Bank Group signed US$5 million grant agreement yesterday to support Equal Access and Simplified Environment for Investment in Egypt (EASE) project, which aims to improve the regulatory environment for investors through simplified licensing and transparent industrial land allocation processes.
“We are very pleased to support the Government of Egypt’s investment climate reforms that would boost investor confidence and facilitate greater private sector participation and job creation,” said Asad Alam, World Bank Director for Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti.
The project aims to facilitate investor services through delivering simplified licensing and transparent industrial land allocation processes through the General Authority for Investments and Free Zones’ (GAFI) One Stop Shops (OSSs); enabling GAFI to achieve its strategy of becoming the window for investment services. The project also supports the Industrial Development Authority (IDA) in simplifying, automating and de-centralizing industrial regulations in light of international good practices. Additionally, the EASE project helps the Egyptian Regulatory Reform and Development Authority (ERRADA) build its capacity for better regulatory management.
“The EASE Project is a strong signal from the Government to investors of the serious commitment for regulatory reform. The Project will help Egypt realize the benefits of several policy reforms, including amendments to the Investment Law, Industrial Licensing Reform, and improved efficiency of government to business services” said Sherif Hamdy, Trade and Competitiveness Senior Operations Officer.
The current portfolio of the World Bank in Egypt includes 26 projects for a total commitment of US$7 billion. The World Bank finances projects for faster delivery of benefits to the people of Egypt in key sectors including social safety nets, energy, transport, water and sanitation, agriculture and irrigation, housing, health, as well as employment-intensive projects and financing for Micro and Small Enterprises.