On Friday, May 6th, The U.S.-Egypt Business Council jointly with AmCham Egypt Inc. hosted H.E. Khaled Hanafy, Egypt’s Minister of Supply and Internal Trade; in the attendance of H.E. Ashraf El Araby, Minister of Planning.
The event was attended by Yasser Reda, Egypt’s Ambassador to the United States, Dan Glickman, former Secretary of Agriculture; General Jim Jones, former National Security Advisor; and former Senator Norm Coleman in addition to senior representatives from than 40 U.S. companies.
Minister Hanafy highlighted some of the ongoing challenges Egypt is currently facing then went on to share some of the opportunities that are available given Egypt’s growing population and huge market potential. He iterated the importance of the Suez Canal development zone as an attractive logistical and industrial center.
Minister Hanafy specifically shed light on a number of projects being carried out by U.S. companies including Visa, Microsoft and Blumberg Grain's command and control center, which is the central nervous system of a fast-expanding network of grain storage facilities that will save Egypt nearly $2 billion in five years. Minister Hanafy also commended Coca-Cola and Pepsi on their commitments to Egypt.
The minister then spoke about the new bread subsidy system and how it alleviated the pressure on the government budget, allowing for other commodities to reach its targeted recipients, while saving money for other social support programs. Minister Hanafy also highlighted the importance of the new logistical center at Damietta port as a hub for local and international commodity exchange.
The event was followed by a special meeting for both Ministers Hanafy and El Araby with Tom Donohue, President and CEO of the US Chamber of Commerce.