by Thandisizwe Mgudlwa
It has previously been noted that Egypt, is an ideal location to base a business with regional, and even global ambitions.
And that the country offers easy access to markets in the Arabian Gulf, the Levant, North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa as well as Europe.
According to ICT global research, leading global players ranging Intel and Oracle to Orange and Vodafone have established product development divisions and call centres serving global operations.
And a key to the success of this industry sector is the close partnership between the government and businesses.
In addition, the ICT sector contributes at least 4.4% of the GDP in 2013.
There was a 14.85% increase in the number of companies operating in the ICT sector in Egypt between April 2012 and April 2013, recording 5243 company.
Egypt has three advanced mobile phone networks. All three either have, or soon will have 3.75 G infrastructure, they serve over 91 million subscribers as In April 2013. growing by 23.41% since April 2012 – and hitting a penetration rate of 112.64.
There were more than 33.26 million regular internet users in May 2013.
Over 2.36 million subscribers used ADSL line in May 2013, with annual growth rate of 20.37%
Fixed line subscribers were 8.6 million in May 2013.
WiFi networks are provided countrywide by businesses, restaurants and cafes for their customers.
Further reported is that the MCIT announced the launch of Egypt’s national ICT strategy for 2013-2017 in April 2013. The strategy aims to attract foreign investment, create jobs and establish Egypt as an ICT hub in North Africa through the development of technology infrastructure, updating of legislation and promotion of Egyptian companies.
Furthermore, between 2013 and 2017, the MCIT plans to invest EGP450mn (US$64mn) in Egyptian ICT companies and EGP20mn (US$2.8mn) in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the mobile and open source application fields. By 2018 the MCIT expects to have doubled the ICT sector’s 2014 output to EGP120bn (US$17bn) and to have created more than 100,000 direct jobs.
The Egyptian government has established a new technological zone in Maadi in Cairo on a space of 42,000 meter square with investments worth 750 Million EGP in an effort of attracting new foreign investments in the ICT sector in Egypt.
The government has planned to establish the “Automatic Vehicle Location” technology in an effort of improving the domestic security and decreasing traffic congestion.
Egypt’s ICT sector also has potential opportunities in sub sectors such as Fibre Optic Cables, Call Centres, Equipment/Network Centres, GSM Solutions and Applications, Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Media Convergence, Triple Play, Wi-Fi, Wi-Max /Wireless Networks and Solutions.
Also, Egypt is an attractive market that can offer major business opportunities to informed traders and investors. Trade and investment between the UK and Egypt is promising. However it is not always an easy market. A successful entry into Egypt will be determined by the quality of the information and advice upon which the decision to enter is based. Continued success is also dependent upon the ability to navigate the laws and practices of Egypt.
The study adds, “The public-private partnership (PPP) model has proved instrumental to growth – one successful PPP is Smart Village Cairo, a 3 million square meter IT Park housing a number of global ICT firms such as Systel, Alcatel Lucent, Microsoft, Ericson, IBM World Trade Corp, Hewlett Packard, Beltone Financial Holding ; Nokia Siemens and Vodafone.”