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    ICT Minister, UNCTAD Delegation Discuss Egypt e-Commerce Strategy

    Cairo, 7 March 2017

    The Minister of Communications and Information Technology Yasser ElKady has received the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Head of Information Technology Policies Sector Torp Jorn, and the UNCTAD ICT Policy Review (ICTPR) Programme Director Mary Sekat, where they discussed Egypt's national e-commerce strategy in its final form.

    The strategy is line with efforts exerted by the State to support the business community, open new and promising markets and facilitate international trade to promote exports and achieve growth for the private sector, thereby creating new and distinct job opportunities for youth, and promoting innovation and entrepreneurship.

    During the meeting, ElKady said that the strategy is a strong foundation that stimulates the e-commerce concept in domestic and international business activities. It also enables the industry to move forward in implementing projects and e-transaction-based businesses. He also talked about the State's efforts to improve the quality of services provided to citizens, the most important of which is the inclusive smart card, through which several support services will be provided. In the same context, ElKady highlighted the need to establish a center of excellence for e-commerce that can bring together industry stakeholders to promote e-commerce.

    For his part, Jorn hailed the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) role in developing an e-commerce strategy for the growth and prosperity of e-commerce activities in Egypt and the whole neighboring region. He pointed out to recommendations of experts which underscored the significance of promoting Egypt ICT sector competence, including skilled calibers, competitive advantages of the geographical location of the country and supportive work environment of the outsourcing industry, all of which help in promoting e-commerce in Egypt.

    at the conclusion of the meeting, ElKady called for presenting the e-commerce strategy to the ICT community in Egypt—with the participation of the industry stakeholders—at the earliest opportunity. In the meanwhile, the strategy is set to be presented during the e-Commerce Week, organized by UNCTAD, in April at its headquarters in Geneva.

    Egypt was among the first countries in the world that have requested to benefit from UNCTAD international experiences and role in developing trade; assisting its member states—especially the developing ones—to increase their exports; and cooperating with them in developing a comprehensive strategy for the e-commerce in Egypt. The request is within the framework of the cooperation between MCIT, UNCTAD and MasterCard, relying on the experiences of the World Bank, the International Labor organization (ILO), the Universal Postal Union (UPU), the World Trade Center, the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the European Commission (EC), as well as experts from Alibaba Group which is a Chinese e-commerce group.

    Egypt has taken a number of concrete steps to promote e-commerce in the community, where Internet penetration in Egypt has reached 38%, and the number of online shoppers has increased in recent years. This in addition to promoting MCIT national program to develop, modernize and automate work systems at nationwide post offices (3600 post offices); disseminate financial inclusion concepts; and provide many of the postal and financial services for citizens.

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