Egypt cabinet approves decree on funding deal with World Bank to spur job creation

Egypt’s cabinet approved during its weekly meeting on Wednesday under Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly a proposed presidential decree on a funding agreement signed between the Egyptian government and the World Bank.

The deal aims at promoting entrepreneurship and creating more job opportunities, particularly for young people and women.

The $200 million ‘Catalyzing Entrepreneurship for Job Creation’ project is aimed at promoting entrepreneurship, combined with expanding access to finance for small and medium enterprises, which have proven to be a major source of growth and job creation.

The World Bank has said in a statement that the new project is designed to address the major obstacles that young people and women face when launching new businesses.

In an economy where the financial system is dominated by banks lending primarily to mature businesses, the project will channel $145 million mainly through non-bank financial institutions that offer loans to small businesses. This project component will have established lending targets for women and youth-led businesses, first-time borrowers, and small businesses in less developed regions across Egypt.

To build up the early-stage investment ecosystem in Egypt, the project will invest $50 million in privately managed risk capital intermediaries. The project will also fund coaching opportunities for new businesses throughout the entrepreneurial lifecycle to build the necessary skills and capacity for success.