The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) is considering engaging with the contracting sector as part of its EGP 100bn initiative supporting the industry and agriculture sectors, according to CBE Governor Tarek Amer. Part of the facility includes a decreasing interest rate of 8%.

In statements to the Middle East News Agency (MENA), Amer noted that the government is looking to expand the initiative’s base of benefit to support industry and agricultural industrialisation. To do so, the contracting sector will be added.

Mohamed Abdel Raouf, a member of Egyptian Federation for Construction and Building Contractors (EFCBC), said there the CBE and the contracting sector have in negotiations in the presence of Prime Minister Mostafa Madboauly.

Abdel Raouf added that attention must be paid to distributing the funds equally to all contracting sectors companies, regardless of their size.

He explained that the EGP 100bn CBE initiative must include small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the contracting sector to guarantee they can continue working in the market.

Shams El Din Youssef, Chairperson at Alshams for Contracting and EFCBC member, said that the decreasing interest rate offered by the CBE is a good percentage. It should not, however, add any financial value to it.

Youssef pointed out that this initiative stimulates employment and keeps contracting companies operational.

He added that the contracting companies are ready to absorb their share of the initiative to continue working, as they are already working in the Egyptian market.

The contracting sector has a strong business volume, as it currently works on many national and private projects, Youssef said. He added that further support will help promote businesses and boost investments in the sector.

Ahmed Azmi, Vice Chairperson of SIAC Holding, said the government’s decision to decrease burdens on contracting companies through the initiative, especially given the current conditions, is correct.

He said that the initiative will give privileges to contracting companies similar to those given to other companies in other sectors that were affected by the current conditions.

Azmi added that he anticipates all contracting companies will take advantage of this initiative. The state is keen to dispurse the value allocated to the sector in segments sufficient for all companies operating, as the initiative’s main goal is to work on continued job opportunities in the sector.