Egypt: Dr Hala Al-Saeed, the Minister of Planning and Economic Development, met with the Minister of Local Government and Regional Development in Norway, Sigbjørn Gjelsvik, yesterday, July 21, 2023. The meeting aimed to explore ways of cooperation and strengthening bilateral ties.
Several other ministers and government officials also registered their presence at the meeting and emphasized the ministry’s role in enhancing cooperation.
According to the updates, the discussions were held on the margin of her participation in the High-Level Political Forum for Sustainable Development (HLPF) 2023 held in New York under the slogan “Accelerating coronavirus recovery and full implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Plan at all levels.”
The reports stated that Ahmed Kamali, Deputy Minister of Planning, Mona Essam, Assistant Minister for Sustainable Development, Alia Khaled, Policy Analyst of the Ministry’s Sustainable Development Unit, and Egypt’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations also attended the meeting.
During the meeting, Hala Al-Saeed reviewed the role, tasks, and profiles of the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development. She pointed out that the ministry is responsible for drawing up long, medium- and short-term sustainable development plans.
The ministry has been preparing the investment plan, a signboard to the Egypt Vision 2030 launched by the Egyptian state to align with the national sustainable development goals.
In addition, it was also added that Egypt had provided three reports for the voluntary national review to the United Nations that show how far the country is achieving Sustainable development goals.
The Minister of Planning referred to the ministry’s subsidiaries as the National Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development, which provides training and consulting in governance and sustainable development.
“The institute also plays a vital role in monitoring Egypt’s performance in the international indicators in governance and Sustainable development under the slogan “Governance for Sustainable Development”, a banner to other subsidiaries such as the Central Device and Statistics and Institute Planning nation, and demographic centre,” said the Minister.
Al-Saeed was attracted to the “Hayat Karima” initiative, which targets a better life for citizens in the Egyptian countryside, listed by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs as one of the accelerators to achieve sustainable development goals, and pointed to the National Green Smart Projects initiative that aims to find Egyptian solutions to climate change problems within the Egyptian governorates.
The Minister of Planning has emphasized the importance of financing for achieving sustainable development goals, stating that the issue of funding for development is mentioned in the 2018 and 2021 National Voluntary Report as one of the main challenges for achieving Agenda 2030.
Moreover, Minister Hala Al Saeed clarified that the Ministry of Planning has cooperated with UNDP to support the provinces of Fayoum, Port Said and Behera as the first stage in developing the first voluntary local audits to measure progress in achieving sustainable development goals in each province, emphasizing the importance of localization of sustainable development goals in the governorates.
The Minister of Planning pointed out the Governorate Competitiveness Index, the first integrated and multidimensional indicator reflecting the determinants of the long-term inclusive economic growth approach in the Egyptian provinces.
In her remarks, she also highlighted that it was designed in cooperation between the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, the Central Bureau for Public Population and Statistics, and the Centre for Information and Decision-making Support.
In the end, Minister Al Saeed concluded that the initiative also included the National Council Egyptian for Competitiveness, with close and extended cooperation with the United Nations Economic and Social Committee for West Asia (ESCWA) and supported by the US Agency for International Development Total Economic Reform and Stability Project.
How to transfer Egyptian expertise regarding the provincial competitiveness index to Norway was discussed.