Egypt may be home to the Great Pyramids but many on the outside do not know it’s stricken by poverty, high unemployment rates and slim business opportunities for women. However, a new $200 million loan may be able to turn the nation around and positively change the current financial hardships. Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, based in Abu Dhabi, has announced a $200 million loan agreement that will focus on the development of the microfinance sector in Egypt.
The loan is aimed to promote entrepreneurship opportunities for women, bolster enterprises and reduce poverty. Chairman of Khalifa Fund, Hussain al Nowais, hopes the loan can help Egypt’s government economically support their citizens with better opportunities which could lead to a plethora of benefits. When the loan is dispersed, it’s estimated to create over 200,000 enterprises as well as open up more than 200,000 jobs for Egyptian citizens.
Hussain al Nowais discussed ways the loan can be efficiently implemented into various projects with the Secretary-General of the Egyptian Social Fund development, Suha Suleiman. To achieve the ideal results, the Egyptian government must focus on strengthening the economy with new enterprises that will translate into thousands of job opportunities. Additionally, the loan is segmented to help women entrepreneurs find success in the business world where 25% of the loan will be dedicated solely towards women and the remaining amount will be used between other enterprises for both men and women.
As it stands now in Egypt, 60% of the citizens are below the poverty line and the loan may help alleviate the struggles within the country because jobs will become available to support better lifestyles. In addition to the loan from Khalifa fund, other UAE and international companies have signed other deals with Egypt to help the Egyptian economy improve. One deal includes a $2 billion investment that would be used towards health, money exchange, renewable energy and waste management sectors.