Osama Saleh, GAFI Chairman
As part of its efforts to support the role of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in advancing economic development and creating an encouraging investment climate, the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI) on Sunday organized a seminar to launch the "SME's Credit Guarantee Initiative" at GAFI's headquarters in Cairo. GAFI Chairman Osama Saleh, Credit Guarantee Company (CGC) Chairman Mohammed Abdulhamid, GAFI's SME's Unit Executive Director Reem al Saadi, a number of SME owners, and a group of bank officials involved in SMEs financing attended the seminar.
During the seminar, GAFI and the CGC signed a protocol of cooperation to activate the initiative.
Addressing the opening session, Saleh said that in light of the successive economic and political developments in Egypt and the resulting change in the credit policies of some financial institutions, which might directly affect the performance and survival of companies in the country, especially SMEs, GAFI, in cooperation with CGC and the concerned banks, launched the "securing credit cover for SMEs" initiative to support SMEs with good solvency and enable them to continue operating in the market at this stage.
He said the SME support initiative maintains the relationship between SMEs and the various financial institutions as it provides credit guarantees and cover for SMEs.
Saleh stressed the importance of SMEs as the driver of economic and social growth and the backbone of the Egyptian economy. "As we continue our efforts to attract foreign investments, it is important that we turn greater attention to local investments through support for SMEs," he said.
Addressing the seminar, CGC Chairman Mohammed Abdulhamid discussed the objectives of the initiative and ways to guarantee credit for SMEs.
For his part, Eng. Mohammed Murad Al Zayyat, chairman of a pioneering company listed on the Nile Stock Exchange for SMEs, stressed the importance of the initiative and its role in maintaining the survival of SMEs and helping them achieve growth.
The seminar concluded with answers to questions from the audience and with the announcement that registration forms for enterprises wishing to receive credit guarantee services are available at GAFI headquarters and on its electronic site.