US targeting investment fronts in Egyptian ICT sector

A delegation of businessmen from the United States is in Egypt for a US-Egypt ICT workshop to explore investment opportunities in the country’s technology sector.

This is reportedly the largest delegation in the history of US trade missions to Egypt.

The delegation comprises 31 businessmen representing 12 companies. Others present include government officials by the Acting Deputy under Secretary for International Trade, Ken Hyatt.

The 2-day workshop, which began today at the Smart Village Conference Center in Egypt’s capital Cairo, will focus on developing ICT partnerships between the United States and the Egyptian stakeholders.

The workshop will also focus on accessing financial resources available for use in ICT projects in e-government, e-health, e-education, intelligent logistics systems, cloud computing and national broadband development.

The conference is being funded by the US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), and is a continuation of the Egypt: Forward Initiative, which USTDA launched in collaboration with the US Departments of Commerce and State in June last year.

Egypt’s ICT sector has experienced tremendous growth since it was separated from the transportation sector back in 2006. A recent Internet survey report by Egypt’s Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in partnership with the National Telecom Regulatory Authority places Egypt’s internet penetration at nearly 38 percent as of March 2012, with an annual growth rate of approximately 7 percent.

The number of ICT companies has also steadily grown, with nearly 4600 registered IT companies as at March 2012 representing an annual growth of 15 percent.

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