Al- Mashat: Agreement with Germany to launch the third tranche of the second phase within the debt swap program.
Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation, announced that the German Development Bank (KfW) provided financing worth €41 million as part of the debt swap program for the Ministry of Education and Technical Education to implement the Comprehensive Technical Education Reform Initiative (TCTI) in Egypt. This comes in light of the joint economic relations with Germany, and the Ministry of International Cooperation’s endeavor to support Egypt’s development agenda through international partnerships. The comprehensive technical education agreement in Egypt is the last one to receive financing within the second tranche of the second phase of the debt swap program between Egypt and Germany. The total value of the second phase amounts to €80 million, through which 3 development projects will be implemented in several sectors, including technical and vocational education. The Minister of International Cooperation explained that the new agreement supports national efforts to develop technical education, prepare students for the labor market, and boost employment opportunities, which comes in line with SDG 4: Quality Education; SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth; And SDG 17: Partnerships For the Goals. Al-Mashat commended the cooperation with Germany to secure grants and funds through contracts concluded between the Ministry of International Cooperation, state ministries, and the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ); as well as the projects funded by the Egyptian-German debt swap program and implemented in cooperation between Egyptian ministries and the German Development Bank (KfW). H.E. Al-Mashat pointed out that coordination is underway with Germany to make the third tranche of the second phase available during the next year, after coordinating with stakeholders in Egypt and receiving proposals on priority projects. The Minister of International Cooperation emphasized the Ministry’s eagerness to benefit from debt swap programs in providing funds for development priority projects in order to serve the national development agenda and achieve SDGs. These efforts come within the framework of the three principles for Economic Diplomacy: the Multi-stakeholder Platforms; the Official Development Assistance Mapping to the SDGs; and the Global Partnerships Narrative through People at the Core, with Projects in Action, with Purpose as the Driver. It is worth noting that the ongoing cooperation portfolio with Germany amounts to €1.7 billion financing 30 projects through funds and technical assistance grants. The projects covered a wide array of sectors; namely renewable energy, sanitation, water resource and solid waste management, migration, labor market, innovation in the private sector, technical education, vocational training, urban development, administrative reform, women, youth, and local development. The first phase of the debt swap program with Germany was completed, with total development financing worth €70 million, serving several projects: school development through feeding programs and improving the quality of education, rehabilitating hydropower plants, developing Assiut Barrages, and improving drinking water and sanitation . The first tranche of the second phase, worth €10 million, was made available for the Ministry of Education and Technical Education for the Education Quality Support Project (Phase II); in addition to the second tranche of the second phase of the program, which was worth €80 million. This fund was directed for several projects across various sectors: the development of the Human Capital in Rural Upper Egypt in collaboration with the World Food Program in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and Technical Education; the Improved water & wastewater services programme (IWSP) in the governorates of Qena, Assiut, Minya and Sohag; and the new the Comprehensive Technical Education Reform Initiative (TCTI).