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Egypt launches 3-year private sector led economic growth plan that Nigeria can learn from

Egypt has launched a three year economic growth programme that targets 6-7 per cent GDP expansion that will be rooted in boosting private sector growth, increasing exports and accelerating the digitization of the economy.

The country’s strong reliance on private sector investment contrasts sharply with the approach in Nigeria where businesses and investors are complaining of government disdain and the false premise that public sector spending will get Africa’s largest economy out of the woods it is in.

Egypt’s three-year structural reform plan is key to helping the country overcome the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The disciplined approach to economic development in Egypt has helped the country to achieve key economic targets since it opted for this new path in 2016 and it is a departure from Nigeria where growth targets are routinely missed.

The initiative announced Tuesday builds on a broader economic program launched in 2016 that helped curb a crippling dollar crunch and revive investor confidence as Egypt struggled to rebound after the 2011 uprising against President Hosni Mubarak. The coronavirus pandemic has threatened to undercut some of those gains.

Egypt’s new plans include developing the green economy and providing greater support for small and medium-sized enterprises, according to a document from the Planning Ministry.

Read Also: SSA must embrace data, techniques, people to boost growth; BCG

The North African nation is targeting economic growth of 6-7% for the next three years, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly told reporters at the program’s launch.

Key to implementing the program was developing the industrial, telecommunications and information technology and agriculture sectors, strengthening water security and ensuring all of the country’s provinces receive necessary development support.

Authorities have already begun providing aid to small businesses and working to ensure greater financial inclusion by making it easier for everyone to open bank accounts. The central bank is also encouraging the non-banking financial services sector, a move in line with the program’s push for greater digitization of the economy.

Under President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, the government has also pushed ahead with a major overhaul of the most populous Arab nation’s infrastructure, building new bridges, tunnels and roads and creating cities, including an administrative capital east of Cairo.

Authorities have said such construction is key to ensuring medium and long-term development and encouraging greater use of Egyptian land beyond the banks of the Nile River and Delta region that are home to the vast majority of the country’s more than 100 million people.

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