Egypt gets EUR 138 million in grants from the EU

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The Ministry of International Cooperation and the European Union have celebrated signing many development financing grants worth 138 million euros.

According to the Minister of International Cooperation, Rania Al-Mashat, the grants come intending to support the state’s development efforts in various sectors during the celebration. Al-Mashat affirmed the government’s keenness to move forward in developing relations with the European Union within the framework of the new cooperation program, explaining that since 2008, the European Union has provided development grants to Egypt worth 650 million euros. Al-Mashat added that these grants contributed to mobilizing more than 7 billion euros in the financing, in the form of development funds from European financial institutions and multilateral development banks.

The Egyptian government agreed to the Ministry of Finance’s request to upgrade the sovereign green finance framework to a sovereign sustainable finance framework. The Council of Ministers issued a statement announcing that the upgrade would allow the start of the necessary executive procedures to give a new type of bond known as sustainable bonds. Finance Minister Mohamed Maait had announced last year that the government was considering issuing sustainability bonds in coordination with the United Nations and investment banks, given the absence of Egyptian experience in issuing this type of bond.

Earlier this year, Minister of International Cooperation, Rania Al-Mashat, said that the government is looking into the possibility of projects of the presidential initiative “Decent Life” benefiting from the issuance of sustainable development bonds. The government’s decision came one day after the Finance Minister’s statements that Egypt aims to cooperate with the Chinese side to issue Egyptian bonds denominated in yuan in the Chinese market, within the government’s plan to diversify sources and financing tools and attract new investors.

Standard & Poor’s issued a report last month. It expected Egypt to become the largest issuer of sovereign debt among emerging markets in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with issuances amounting to $73 billion. According to the report, Egypt has expanded significantly in issuing sovereign bonds over the past years, borrowing about $63 billion last year from its issuance. The report stated that Egypt would also lead 54 countries in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa to extend the loans it obtains through bonds it issues to pay the value of old bonds.