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Tuesday, 7 February 2017

GAFI chairman Mohamed Khodeir gives details on the Investment Act

Incentives under the Investment Act will last for three years, Youm7 quotes General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI) Mohamed Khodeir as saying. He added that these incentives have been made deliberately short to encourage speedy development of projects. The draft of the law which was shopped to the public had set a five-year timeline for the incentives. Ditto the Supreme Investment Council’s incentives, which also suggests that the new investment incentives program will last for five years. It is unclear whether these were changes to the law recommended by the Egyptian Council of State (which recently completed a review of the law) or the Investment Ministry. Khodeir was coy on the subject, stating that the changes made by the Council were not major without stating what these were.

As for private free zones, Khodeir also said that there is consensus against establishing new private free zones, many of which have turned into graft havens, and have thus been excluded from the legislation (this has the Finance Ministry’s fingerprints all over it).

In a bid to sell the faltering one-stop shop policy, Khodeir said that land is being tendered jointly by different government bodies without delays to the investor. He can only be speaking recently, as all of 2015 and 2016 show this not to have been true. In any case, he still does not address the conflict between the policy and other legislation granting other authorities the right to tender land on their own. But thanks anyway. On a related note, GAFI’s investment promotion company, which was sanctioned by the Supreme Investment Council, will be established this month, Al Borsa reported.

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