The UAE's Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development activated the Loan Agreement signed with the Egyptian Ministry of International Cooperation and the Egyptian Social Fund for Development last November for 200 million dollars to be invested in the development of the micro-finance sector in the Arab Republic of Egypt, Chairman of the Fund Hussain Jassim Al Nowais said Saturday.
Making the announcement on the sidelines of the Egypt Economic Development Conference (EEDC) in Sharm el Sheikh, Al Nowais said, "This agreement clearly indicates the extent of the keenness of the leadership in the United Arab Emirates to enhance and deepen the channels of cooperation and mutual relationships with Egypt, and confirms the importance which the leadership attaches to development projects that can bring economic and social benefit to the Egyptian citizens."
"Khalifa Fund will soon disburse loan payments in favour of the Egyptian Social Fund for Development, with the expectation that this organisation will contribute towards creating more than 200,000 enterprises in the coming six years, and providing more than 200,000 job opportunities for the Egyptian citizens," said Al Nowais.
"The loan aims at supporting the efforts of the Egyptian Government in combating poverty and unemployment, and promoting the role of women in development and empowerment through availing opportunities in case of those who have entrepreneurial attributes and skills to realise their ambition and to establish their own business that will contribute in enhancing their contribution to the national economy in the Arab Republic of Egypt."
Al Nowais added, "The financing initiative is aimed at providing support to the Microenterprises Sector in Egypt through targeting remote areas and disadvantaged groups. There is also a need to intensify efforts to promote comprehensive developmental efforts to upgrade them economically and socially, and provide a safety net of continuum towards achieving developmental benefits.
Accordingly, this agreement concentrates mainly on directing funding towards the rural areas to finance up to 70 percent of the total funding directed to all the regions of the Republic."
"The execution of the project will be based on directing the financing towards women so that 25 percent of the total enterprises expected to be financed through this agreement are those aimed at women, while the remaining financing will be directed for a diverse range of projects for men and women."
"This loan will contribute to enhancing the social and economic stability of a large segment of the Egyptian society, and it will also contribute to support the governmental efforts to reduce poverty, enhance social welfare and support the Egyptian citizen.
The loan is distinguished for its soft terms, with the tenure period of the loan reaching 15 years, with a six-year grace period," Al Nowais concluded.