By Julian Nabil
Former Minister of Investment and current AUR Capital CEO Ashraf Salman
For me, the new Investment Law is part of the strategic and major reform measures the government is currently adopting. The soon-to-be enforced law will pave the way for future investments. We are on the right track, I believe.
The current circumstances in Egypt are of no exception… We just came back from a period of political, economic, and social unrest. We have seen harsh reform programs everywhere else in the world taking place; we just need to be on top of the game at both public and private sector levels.
Sabbour Consulting and Sabbour Real Estate Chairman Hussein Sabbour
The Egyptian government is on the right track with a true development plan that involves drastic economic decisions. I am very optimistic about the future and do not fear of what is to come.
Previous governments used to ignore problems to keep on going but no reform was ever put strategically until the problem escalated to what we face today. I am confident in the Egyptian government’s management of the current crisis and its reform strategy that is currently being put into effect.
Chairman of Mena for Development Consultancy Fathallah Fawzy
The new law is very good if it goes into effect. The law aims to attract local and foreign investments by solving most of the problems faced by investors today.
The “one-stop shop” system for obtaining all the required business establishment and operating licenses is one of the most important advantages of the new law; and it should be activated as soon as possible.
The new law is important as it will limit the authority of allocating land plots to the General Authority for Investment (GAI). The law also encourages labor intensive projects and investments in remote areas along with projects exporting their products outside Egypt by offering them specific incentives.
Tatweer Misr Managing Director Ahmed Shalaby
The- 10-year tax exemption amid recent tax hikes along with
transfer of profits abroad without restrictions will help open up the Egyptian real estate sector. The new law will also allow the promotion of properties abroad by facilitating the selling of properties to foreign investors, thus helping attract new investments. As a real estate developer, I see that the one-stop shop, established following the New Investment Law, is extremely interesting as well.
However, attracting additional investments can be realized by issuing laws or executive decrees as a proof that the pudding is in the eating. In other words, we need to create an overall investor-attractive environment that goes in tandem with business surveys, which have more criteria than those covered by the law. The law by itself is not the magic wand for attracting investors but it is a good first step. The main issue for foreign investors is not only land allocation, but also the issuance of required permits and the logistics around how this would be done through a single authority. Whether this will happen or come under the purview of that one stop-shop system is yet to be seen.