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Thursday, 17 June 2021

More details on that EUR 1.7 bn French financing agreement signed earlier this week

We have a more detailed breakdown on some of the funding agreements to come out of French finance minister Bruno Le Maire’s visit to Cairo this week. The International Cooperation Ministry had signed EUR 1.7 bn in financing agreements with French agencies and entities this week, according to a cabinet statement. These include an EUR 990 mn financing agreement with the French Development Agency (AFD) and a separate EUR 776 mn agreement with the French treasury that will both support key infrastructure projects throughout the country over the next four years.

Transport projects are receiving the bulk of the funds: A total EUR 1.37 bn from the package is going to transport projects. EUR 776 mn will be allocated towards Tunnel Authority purchases of 55 new trains for Cairo Metro Line 1. The Mansoura-Damietta railway rehabilitation project will be seeing EUR 95 mn in funding under the new agreement. While upgrades to the Abu Qir Metro will be financed through a EUR 250 mn allotment. Construction of the Robaki-10th of Ramadan-Belbeis railway line, and the Aswan-Toshka-Wadi Halfa line is also expected to get another EUR 250 mn.

Sewage treatment is also on the list of priorities: An EUR 52 mn agreement to construct a sewage treatment plant in Helwan, an EUR 68 mn allocation for a sewage treatment facility in East Alexandria and a EUR 50 mn allotment for a facility in Jabal Al Asfar.

And so is energy: The Finance Ministry is also set to receive the second tranche of a facility to enable the upgrade of its energy subsidy policies worth EUR 75 mn. The Electricity Ministry is looking at a EUR 50 mn facility to construct a regional electrical control center in Alexandria.

Separately, our universal health system will be seeing EUR 150 mn in support under a different agreement signed this week, while a project to construct a French university in Egypt will get EUR 12 mn in funding.

But wait. What about the rest of the EUR 3.8 bn French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire signed? Le Maire had signed a second EUR 2 bn agreement with Transport Minister Kamel El Wazir to provide credit facilities to fund the development of the Cairo Metro Line 6.

Check out our exclusive two-part interview with Bruno Le Maire about the new universal healthcare system, renewables, urban development and Egypt’s post-pandemic role as a regional trade hub here and here.

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