Mr. Hossam Heiba, Chief Executive Officer of the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI CEO), and Ms. Helene Budliger, Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, discussed, on the sidelines of the Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF 2023) hosted by Egypt, the investment opportunities available to Swiss companies in Egypt.
GAFI CEO held the meeting with Ms. Budliger in the presence of Ms. Yvonne Baumann, the Swiss Ambassador to Egypt, and Ms. Simone Wyss, Swiss Global Enterprise CEO, to explore ways to implement the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between GAFI and SGE in the field of investment promotion and attracting FDI particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Moreover, GAFI CEO participated in a networking event organized by SwissCham Egypt and attended by leading Swiss companies in Egypt as well as Egyptian and African counterparts.
Mr. Heiba pointed out that Egypt is Switzerland's largest trading partner in Africa, and that major Swiss companies operate in the Egyptian market. However, there are more promising opportunities that can be exploited to benefit both sides, as Egypt can take advantage of Swiss expertise and knowledge, as well as Switzerland will benefit from the competitive advantages of the Egyptian economy.
GAFI CEO added that despite the economic challenges, Egypt remains the most prominent investment destination and the main gateway to Africa. Moreover, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), which is one of the largest free trade areas in the world, creates great opportunities for investment and commercial expansion in the Continent, as it includes 1.3 billion consumers and a market exceeding $3.4 trillion.
“It is no coincidence that Egypt chose to host the IATF, since Egypt is not only an economic giant in the African continent in itself, but also because of its location at the crossroads between Europe, Africa and the Middle East, it has a great potential to become the desired entry point for companies seeking to do business in Africa.” Ms. Helene Budliger, Swiss State Secretary for Economic Affairs said.