Planning Minister discusses the national program for structural reforms with IMF mission
Dr. Hala El-Said, Minister of Planning and Economic Development, met with officials of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in the presence of Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund and the United Nations Envoy for Financing Sustainable Development, and the Fund's working group via video conference, to discuss the structural reforms agenda.
During the meeting, El-Said stressed the importance of launching the National Program for Structural Reforms as the second stage of economic reform, in line with Egypt's Vision 2030, to follow up on the success achieved by the economic reform program and the sustainability of those successes.
Regarding the main objectives of the structural reforms program, El-Said explained that it aims to achieve comprehensive, balanced, and sustainable growth, as well as achieving flexibility, productivity and competitiveness while enhancing job opportunities and creating decent job opportunities, reducing the trade deficit, and bridging the financing gap.
El-Said added that the National Program for Structural Reform focuses on reforming five main systems, namely the characteristics of the demographic system, population, financial system, logistics, government performance system, and the legislative system.
"The national program for structural reforms targets 6 reform pillars, 31 policies and objectives, and 100 structural and legislative initial measures, with the localization of sustainable development goals at the level of all 27 governorates." She said.
Regarding the main characteristics and features of the structural reforms program, El-Said explained that the program is characterized by dynamism, suitability with local and international developments, as well as inclusiveness as it addresses weaknesses at sectorial levels.
The program is also characterized by complementarity and evidence-based on the interconnectedness and complementarity of the program's pillars, government policies, and other strategies, and reliance on detailed and updated information and in-depth analysis of pressure points in the Egyptian economy.
El-Said added that structural and legislative reforms have been put in place, taking into account that all of them have a specific goal, and are measurable and evaluated using key performance indicators for each reform that can be measured or quantified, in addition to being measured qualitatively according to the nature of the reform.
El-Said discussed the pillars of the structural reforms program, explaining that the program includes 6 pillars and objectives for each of them, covering structural and legislative procedures.
"The first main pillar of the program is to increase the relative weight of the three main sectors in the Egyptian economy, which are the industrial sector, the agricultural sector, and the communications and information technology sector." She added.
Regarding the main objectives of the industrial sector, El-Said indicated that it is to raise the level of integration in value chains, increase the competitiveness of manufacturing industries, localize local industry while strengthening local supply chains and deepening interdependence, in addition to increasing investment rates in manufacturing industries and the sector’s share in the gross domestic product as well as creating new job opportunities and supporting small and medium industries and entrepreneurship.
Dr. Hala El-Said touched on the main goals of the agricultural sector, which included maintaining food and water security, increasing the productivity of the agricultural sector and its share of the GDP, creating new job opportunities, and increasing the income of small farmers, in addition to supporting agricultural exports and improving the sector's competitiveness.
El-Said went on to explain the main objectives of the communications and information technology sector, which were to increase the sector’s contribution to the GDP and accelerate the pace of digital transformation, while developing the export capacity of the sector, raising the sector’s ability to create new job opportunities, enhancing skills for future jobs, and supporting emerging companies.
Concerning the supporting pillars, El-Said explained that the first pillar is to improve the efficiency of the labor market and TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) through developing the technical education and vocational training system, setting up the institutional framework to activate the role of the private sector in education and training, and the integration between the supply and demand sides of the labor market, while enabling women, youth and people with special skills.
El-Said added that the second pillar was to improve the business environment and enhance the role of the private sector by creating a supportive and enabling environment for competition, facilitating the movement and development of trade and removing obstacles, while upgrading the transport and logistics sectors, supporting the participation of the private sector, facilitating investment procedures, as well as supporting the transition towards a green economy.
El-Said continued talking about the supporting pillars, referring to raising the level of governance and the efficiency of public institutions by supporting administrative and institutional reform, empowering local administration units and strengthening their capabilities, and improving the governance of state-owned companies.
El-Said touched on the pillar of supporting financial inclusion and facilitating access to finance through accelerating financial inclusion, increasing and diversifying financing options available to the private sector, in addition to stimulating and stimulating the money market.
El-Said also referred to the pillar related to human capital development from education, health, and social protection, explaining that it includes raising the efficiency of health care services and expanding their scope, activating the Egyptian family development strategy, and raising the efficiency of the educational system.
The National Structural Reform Program has been praised by the IMF mission as well as the efforts made by the Egyptian government to launch and implement the program phases, as representatives of the Fund commended the characteristics and pillars of the program, as well as its consistency with the UN goals of sustainable development.
The members of the mission expected that the program would be an appropriate extension of the economic reform program and would preserve the sustainability of the successes achieved by the first stage of economic reform, and a good sign of granting the private sector an important role in the economic development process