The Minister of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), Amr Talaat, delivered a speech at the Collaboration and Engagement Day, organized by the Egyptian Information Telecommunications Electronics and Software Alliance (EiTESAL).
The collaboration event was also attended by the CEO of the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), Ahmed Elzaher, EiTESAL Chairman Hossam Megahed, member of the House of Representatives Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Committee Maha Abdel Nasser, and officials from various ICT local and international companies and civil society organizations (CSOs).
On his part, CIT Minister Talaat highlighted that the volume of investments in Egyptian ICT startups has been growing increasingly. Investment deals in Egypt increased during 2022, compared to 2021, despite their decrease globally. This reflects the ability of Egyptian youth to create added value and compete in global markets to attract investors and venture capital (VC).
In addition, Minister Talaat further showcased the efforts made by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and startups operating in the ICT sector by providing trained human calibres to meet the requirements of these companies nationwide as well as international companies exporting digital services from Egypt.
In his remarks, Talaat indicated the significance of developing digital skills, especially since the ICT sector is based on human innovation and creativity. He stated that MCIT is stepping up its efforts to launch more training initiatives that target numerous age groups in various specializations required in local and international labour markets, thus boosting youth competitiveness in the labour market.
A few years ago, he added, MCIT targeted training fresh graduates, and then it provided specialized training for university students specialized in ICT sciences. Meanwhile, the Ministry is currently providing training for new age groups as it launched Digital Egypt Cubs Initiative (DECI) to train school students starting from the preparatory stage.
Moreover, he declared that a new initiative would be launched targeting training students starting from Primary Four on computer skills. He added that new initiatives in multiple career paths would soon be launched to include university graduates in all disciplines to provide specialized training for youth in line with their academic and professional backgrounds. These initiatives will consist of more than university graduates specialized in ICT fields, he revealed.
Egyptian SMEs are capable of competing, creating added value, and expanding their business in the markets, Talaat said. He also highlighted the efforts made to support startups as the minimum capital of a one-person company (OPC) was reduced to EGP 1,000 instead of EGP 50,000.
Talaat pointed out that eight CREATIVA Innovation Hubs were opened to incubate startups and provide value chains and services to support entrepreneurs. He stated that five new Hubs would be opened in Giza, Alexandria, Beni Suef, the New Valley, and North Sinai during the first half of 2023 as part of a plan to establish a Hub in each governorate.
Meanwhile, during his speech, Minister Talaat also underlined that the ICT sector had been the highest-growing state sector in the country over the past four and a half years. He pointed out that the state’s sectors cooperate in all ICT-based development projects.
He also emphasized the significance of engagement among the constituents of the information society, which include the public sector represented by MCIT and the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), major local and international companies, SMEs, startups, members of the House of Representatives, media, and CSOs operating in ICT, to exchange visions and ideas about the future of the ICT sector, opportunities, challenges, and trends in the ICT industry which has become a common factor in all other sectors and industries.
For his part, Megahed highlighted that about 225 companies from Cairo and different governorates participated in EiTESAL Collaboration and Engagement Day. Additionally, the event is part of a series of meetings held by EiTESAL in collaboration with ITIDA to develop the IT industry and spur local and international companies to make more efforts in marketing their locally manufactured products.
Along with manufacturing, the companies are encouraged to reconsider their plans in line with global changes. This is in addition to highlighting the constructive role of startups and solutions providers specialized in Artificial Intelligence (AI).
The Day also aimed to create opportunities to establish a professional network of Egyptian companies, design a compelling Egyptian product supported by the local industry to compete globally and emphasize the concept of exporting local services and products based on creativity and innovation in marketing.