Ministry of Communications and Information Technology
30 January 2013
Minister of ICT Meets with IT Companies Heads

Mr. Atef Helmy met with the heads of the information technology companies. The meeting was also attended by Mr. Yasser El Kady, CEO of the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA).

During the meeting, the modern trends outline of projects implementation and development through activating the joint system between the government, private sector companies and civil society organizations were reviewed.

Moreover, most important projects proposed by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) previously, as well as future projects expected to be put forward during the current fiscal year, which ends on June 30th, 2013, were also reviewed.

Those projects amount to a total investments of about 45 million Egyptian Pounds in order to develop the local demand in the field of infrastructure. 

The meeting also discussed IT companies’ debts payment at MCIT and its affiliates, as the Minister has promised to resolve during the next few weeks.  Discussions also tackled the most important challenges facing the sector companies during the current period.

In his opening speech, Mr. Atef Helmy has expressed his keenness on companies’ interests and ongoing success in the Egyptian market and settlement of their financial dues. 

He points out that the problems of 10 companies have been fully resolved; he promised that the remaining 4 companies’ difficulties are to be completed over the next few weeks.

Minister of Communications adds that the Ministry exerts maximum efforts to maintain the sector achievements during the last period, stressing at the same time that everyone is committed to building on the achievements, regardless of the challenges faced by the sector during that period. 

He continues we only lack the return of quietness and stability; we all have to adapt our capabilities to cope with the current circumstances.

Despite all this, the sector expects a very bright future due to our new perceptions that could be crystallized in the form of projects that serve the sector and the citizen at the same time, Mr. Helmy adds.

He says, we shall be able to create new opportunities leading to the innovation a unified business model that drives the production wheel in the sector ahead, as long as we constantly have new creative ideas in this field. 

Minister stresses that once this economic model is finalized and its activation mechanisms are reached, there shall be large-scale projects with state ministries such as Tourism, Justice, Education, Finance, Agriculture and other ministries in cooperation with the Ministry of Communications. 

Those projects are to be available to all corporations to meet a large part of their ambitions.  This emerges from the ministry's keenness to preserve the rights of all companies to contribute in the implementation process.

Minister of Communications has responded to the companies’ request to hold a monthly meeting on a regular basis with the companies to determine the most important progresses and issues that may arise in order to solve them.

During the meeting, MCIT new trends in implementing and developing new projects in the coming period were reviewed. This includes taking benefit of new technologies, such as cloud computing applications to provide resources and dramatically reduce government expenditures upon using software system services.

This enables the creation of governmental cloud-computing organizations and open new horizons for the increase of demand for government services provided through mobile phones, as the number of mobile subscribers in Egypt has reached about 95 million subscribers.

The modern business development trends also include: working with pay-for-service along with providing mechanisms that ensure the accuracy of entered data, keeping pace with international standards of green technology, providing the necessary infrastructure for the projects in a timely manner. The main goal is to enable and run applications and providing required human resources for each project. 

In this context, the Minister of Communications stresses on the need to develop the necessary mechanisms to ensure faster implementation, and legally to facilitate for all parties to implement this new offering.

Among the most important proposed future projects to be raised during the coming period for the development of local demand, come:

§ Fisheries system project, in cooperation with the General Authority for Fish Resources Development
§ National Authority for Remote Sensing and Space Sciences 
§ Draft information services system in courts, in collaboration with the Ministry of Justice
§ Agricultural registry query projects
§ Completion of the documentation offices services automation with the Ministry of Justice
§ Prosecutors certificates draft with the public prosecution
§ Al-Azhar University hospitals automation project, in cooperation with Al-Azhar University

Minister of ICT, Mr. Atef Helmy has addressed IT companies to activate the Public Private between the public and private sector and to create new advanced mechanisms to finance new projects through the investment of achieved projects in the past ten years.  In addition to utilizing the close relationship with private and government sectors in developing Business Models for projects work development. 

He has also requested the optimal exploitation of these projects potential, through providing paid advanced services to beneficiaries and citizens to ensure the continuity of these projects and find legal solutions to the problems and challenges that hinder the application of such business models.

IT companies have reviewed the most significant obstacles facing the information systems sector including, for example: the reluctance of government agencies to receive existing projects, the weakness of local demand, banks discontinuation to finance sector companies and the establishment of state-owned affiliated IT companies. 

In this regard, companies have appealed to the Minister to intervene with the ministries and other entities to resolve the rest of the financial problems, especially that the current period is witnessing a severe deficiency in the business at hand, which represents a significant burden on companies. 

Minister of Communications has drawn the companies’ attention to communicate with the specialized committee formed by the Ministry to accommodate all the problems, whether existing or what may arise to determine the causes and solve them the soonest possible.

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