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On 18-19 September, Euromoney Conferences returned to Cairo for the 22nd Euromoney Egypt Conference. Welcoming over 750 issuers, investors, financial intermediaries and senior government officials from over 25 countries, the conference analysed and debated the big questions and developments surrounding Egypt’s economy, capital and real estate markets, investment and private sector.
The conference opened with a keynote interview with the Egyptian Exchange’s new CEO, Mohamed Farid Saleh. Mr Saleh highlighted his determination to make the EGX a more efficient and liquid trading platform, in which both domestic and foreign investors have faith. While challenges remain, Mr Saleh said he was confident in achieving this vision. A series of one to one interviews followed featuring CI Capital’s Hazem Badran, Attijariwafa Bank’s Ismail Douiri, Mastercard’s Khalid Elgibali, Egyptian-American Enterprise Fund’s Amal Enan, and Egypt Ventures’ Shehab Marzban
The first panel of the conference focused on investment outlook. Panellists remarked that outlook is now stronger than any time in the past decade and government action on currency and economic stability are to be applauded. The question now is whether investment law will encourage FDI and sticky capital flows.
We were honoured to welcome H.E. Mr Amr El Garhy for a special keynote interview to close the morning session. He stated the government is committed to the reform programme. They want to create a stable 5-6% growth rate and let business build on it. He also emphasised that bond issuance is an important part of fiscal stability but spending constraint and growth are the priority.
Following lunch, the second panel discussed capital markets. A key takeaway from the panel were the devaluation of the pound has sent a signal to international investors that Egypt is open for business. The final panel of the day focused on the real estate market in Egypt with comments including that the market for residential real estate remains strong and attractive.
We were delighted to open the second day of the conference by welcoming H.E. Mr Tarek Kabil, Minister of Trade and Industry to the stage for a keynote interview. He remarked that Egypt’s industry and trade is poised for great things, and the government is committed to improving the environment for key sectors (textiles, chemicals, manufacturing).
IFC’s Waladi Labadi, AfDB’s Leila Mokaddem and Afreximbank’s Benedict Oramah’s were also welcomed to the stage to participate in one to one interviews in a session focused on multilaterals and investors.
The first panel of Day 2 was titled ‘Industrialisation and Exports’. Panellists commented that Egypt’s diversified economy is its greatest strength. There is much to build on but logistics and regulations need upgrading to maximise potential.
The Big Discussion put the spotlight on Egypt’s private sector, an area of great importance as 60% of Egypt’s GDP comes from the private sector and it employs 74% of its people. The final panel of the conference welcomed entrepreneurs and start up investors who commented that the start-up ecosystem in Egypt is developing well, and should continue to evolve organically.
Euromoney would like to thank all sponsors, speakers and delegates who joined us in Cairo for making the 22nd Euromoney Egypt Conference such a resounding success once again. We look forward to seeing you again next year.
For sponsorship enquiries for 2018, please contact Rebecca Chamberlain, firstname.lastname@example.org