The World Bank approved a $50 million loan to support the Government of the Arab Republic of Egypt's initiative to improve the higher education system in the country. The Higher Education Enhancement Project is part of a comprehensive strategy for education reform in Egypt and is one of 25 reform projects, 11 of which will receive World Bank funding.
The $50 million variable-spread currency loan has a repayment period of 17 years, including five years of grace. Disbursements will run from fiscal year 2003 through 2007. The reform agenda was influenced by the National Conference on Higher Education, held in February 2000, and aims to redress Egypt's need to upgrade educational quality in the university sector.
The Project comes at a critical time in Egypt's economic development. The country is restructuring its economy to better compete in the global environment and has recently signed a partnership agreement with the European Union (EU).
To successfully compete in this international marketplace, Egypt needs to have the capacity to fully participate in new knowledge-based enterprises. The speed with which the country makes this economic transition will either be facilitated or hindered by the quality its higher education system and its capacity to bridge the growing digital divide.
The Higher Education Enhancement Project will focus on three central areas: improving the efficiency through the reform of governance and management of the higher education system; improving the quality and relevance of university education to respond to the needs for new learning technologies, equipment, and human resource development; and improving quality and relevance of mid-level technical education. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )