Business & Economy

US supports new entrepreneurship and employment programmes in Egypt

THE US Embassy in Cairo announced an investment of $45 million in two new programmes that will promote small businesses in Egypt and train students to help them successfully compete for jobs. Provided through the Agency for International Development (USAID) in partnership with the Egyptian ministry of international co-operation, the new programmes seek to fulfil the needs of thousands of entrepreneurs and vocational school students over a four-year period.
The ‘Strengthening Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development’ (Seed) programme will receive funding of $22.9 million. Over the coming four years, Seed will provide technical assistance to small businesses throughout Egypt to help them qualify and gain access to bank loans, develop new business ideas, and conduct market research. Aligned with the government of Egypt’s economic growth strategy, Seed will benefit a number of business sectors, especially woman-owned small businesses and sectors that can potentially employ large numbers of women and youth.
The remaining $22.1 million will fund a new educational programme called ‘Workforce Improvement and Skills Enhancement’ (Wise). This programme will support quality education at Egyptian vocational schools, especially by partnering with manufacturing and service companies to develop the technical skills of students and future job-seekers.
Seed and Wise are part of a comprehensive package of technical assistance designed to stimulate job creation, economic recovery, private sector business growth, and a stronger trade and investment environment throughout Egypt. Over the past three years, USAID activities in Egypt have led to new or better full-time employment for over 40,000 Egyptians and to the creation of an additional 20,00 short-term jobs. Since 1975, the US has contributed nearly $30bn in economic assistance to Egypt.

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