WB Approves USD 200 mn Loan for Egypt’s SMEs

WB Approves USD 200 mn Loan for Egypt’s SMEs

The World Bank (WB) has approved a USD 2 mn agreement with Egypt to finance small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and to create more job opportunities, especially for youth and women, Invest-Gate reports.

“The USD 200 mn ‘Catalyzing Entrepreneurship for Job Creation’ project is aimed at promoting entrepreneurship, combined with expanding access to finance for SMEs, which have proven to be a major source of growth and job creation,” read a statement by WB on May 5.

The deal was signed by WB Country Director for Egypt, Yemen, and Djibouti Marina Wes and Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr.

Commenting on the agreement, Nasr said, “Our partnership with the WB will empower women and men to be successful entrepreneurs and [increase investments in the entrepreneurship field], which will improve Egyptian life.”

Since Egypt’s financial system is dominated by banks lending primarily to mature businesses, the venture will direct USD 145 mn mainly through non-bank financial institutions offering loans to small businesses, the statement highlighted.

“To build up the early-stage investment ecosystem in Egypt, the project will invest USD 50 mn 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,” it added.

The WB currently has a portfolio of 16 projects in Egypt, with a total of USD 6.69 bn worth of investments.


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