Chinese investors and contractors are participating in Egypt’s drive for growth, helped by the investment agency Connect. We spoke to Managing Partner Moustafa Moussa.
What projects are attracting Chinese attention in Egypt?
Transport infrastructure on land and sea is being upgraded. Egypt’s strategic position links China and Asia with Europe, Africa and beyond, making it a key part of the Maritime Silk Road initiative. Our ports on the Mediterranean Sea are congested and need to be developed. There is also great potential for shipping companies looking for a convenient base. On land, Egyptian roads and the rail network are expanding to keep pace with our rapidly growing population. An example is the Light Rail Transit system, which is being supported by Chinese banks working with the Egypt government.
What other investment priorities are there?
Energy and housing are among other opportunities. For example, China State Grid is working on a major project to modernise our electricity grid. We are also looking to harness more renewable energy, particularly wind power, and have growing needs for housing, where we are regenerating and building new urban centres. In particular, 2016 will provide good opportunities for infrastructure development in the education and health sectors.
How does Connect facilitate business for Chinese contractors and investors?
We provide every service required from the second we shake hands in China to the signing of the contract in Egypt, and ensure deliverables are secured during implementation and handover. Connect, with its expertise, works with Chinese businesses to circumvent business, legal or political obstacles and uses a wide range of expert contractors: agents, subcontractors, lawyers, engineers, etc. to get things done. The people behind Connect are industrialists that have been in business in Egypt for over 50 years. Connect provides assistance for a smooth implementation and handover of projects by managing an investor’s risk and aligning bilateral interests, as they approach Egypt’s exciting growth market.
What do Chinese investors need to know about Egypt?
The Chinese need to speak to people who have already made investments here. The first step for them is to come to Egypt. Come and see for yourself. See and experience Egypt, and then decide.