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Egypt Forum for International Cooperation calls for attention to innovation and creativity in achieving growth

The participants in the fifth workshop of the Egypt Forum for International Cooperation and Development Finance, Egypt ICF, organized by the Ministry of International Cooperation, under the patronage of President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, and concluded its work yesterday, stressed the importance of creativity and technology in achieving economic growth in the African continent and highlighted the role of creativity and innovation for economic growth in Africa.


The workshop, which was moderated by Khaled Ismail, Director General of the Grow in Africa Fund, discussed tools and policies that increase youth participation in the achievement of the development agenda in Africa, and called for the need to explore opportunities and the role that entrepreneurs and youth in Africa can play to accelerate the pace of development in Africa. Progress towards achieving the sustainable development goals, during the forum’s workshop, which revolved around “Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Youth as the locomotive of development in Africa and the Middle East.”


Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation, said that the presence of all local, regional and global parties in the forum gives great importance to the issue we are discussing, which is entrepreneurship and the importance of creativity and innovation, especially in light of the rumors about the digital divide, whether between countries and the digital divide between genders. The Minister said, "Egypt has taken important steps in the field of technology, creativity, the Internet revolution, and digital transformation."


She pointed out that Egypt has a flexible system in the field of entrepreneurship and digital transformation, and that the government did not hesitate to provide investments and implement the necessary projects in this regard, and said: "Egypt aims to solve all problems related to entrepreneurs, especially in light of the high rate of youth in Egypt.


During the workshop, the participants highlighted the role of innovation and entrepreneurship in supporting the achievement of the sustainable development agenda, in light of the increasing pivotal role of digitization to support the global economy, amid statistics indicating that the value of the digital economy globally is about $11.5 trillion, equivalent to 15.5% of the total output Its contribution to the gross domestic product is expected to rise to 25% in less than ten years.


Vint Cerf, Internet founder and Vice President of Google, said that this is a time of unprecedented challenge and a global pandemic, and in light of the challenges there are opportunities. A necessity to exploit the advantages of technology and digital transformation.


He pointed out that the world's population has become more connected, and the increase in population contributes to this, and the matter is exacerbated by the spread of the Internet and fifth generation technology, pointing out that technology will not achieve any value without training people, describing the Egypt International Forum as an important stage for how to invest technology.


Eric Ochlan, director of the ILO office in Cairo, said that unemployment is increasing among young people and adults after the Corona pandemic, and that what we have witnessed in Africa is that technology is at the forefront of concerns at the present time. We need more support for youth and provide incentives for startups in the field of information technology, and we also need to support Internet services and the expansion of technology in Africa, despite the presence of obstacles and obstacles related to infrastructure such as electricity, language and the environment


He pointed out that he is working with Egyptian ministries to provide a lot of training targeting information technology, given the increase in young people entering the labor market.


Frederica Meir, representative of the United Nations Population Fund in Cairo, called for the necessity of dealing and said: "We must deal seriously with the population increase, which reduces the resources available to spend on education and other things. 60% of Africans are young, and we must benefit from them, with the need to invest in youth and that Women are ready as there is a digital divide


In his virtual speech, the UNESCO representative said that UNESCO has programs to address the demographic and digital divide, and young people must be involved in digital transformation, as well as attention to entrepreneurs, as well as the demand for start-ups.

He added: "We believe that we have great opportunities to benefit from the technological revolution and provide technology at a low cost, and this includes the digital tools revealed by the Corona pandemic, and we address illiteracy, pointing out that Africa has a different opportunity from all the world's continents through its advantages in human capital and financial flow in Africa. Making good use of it and the opportunities provided by the knowledge revolution that provided access to information as well as knowledge and add to human capital


Abdelaziz Sy, founder of Impact Hub Dakar, pointed out that we must determine the difference and diversity from one region to another, and it may differ in one country and one, and the best elements required to develop the entrepreneur to become an investor must be chosen. Even before graduation, they must be aware of what these sectors are witnessing,” he said, pointing out that there is cooperation with Egypt through delegations for training and skills upgrading.


Anna Eccleido, Executive Director of the Afriliizer Organization, stated that it is necessary to work to stop the flight of entrepreneurs and investors from Africa through solidarity, integration and cross-border cooperation to provide what entrepreneurs want, and that there must be roles for government, universities, civil society and various institutions


Claudia Macadristo said: “We have been investing in the continent for 7 years, and the first difficulty was finding companies that are looking for incubators from entrepreneurs. We do not have the appropriate ecosystem or the solidarity and participation of entrepreneurs, and the first categories of spending and training must be identified, providing them with incubators, and meeting their needs for the required talents, innovations and creativity.


“We have the same problems with education and through discussions with the Minister of Education we realized that digital education is the basis and therefore we are applying this in 50,000 schools,” said Aminata, Deputy Minister of Education of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.


She added that in the midst of the pandemic, we tried to take advantage of distance education, and called for progress and expansion of distance education in Africa through the available methods and means in line with the aspirations of tomorrow's Africa. in Egypt".


Takunda Tachiba, Director of Innovation and Technology at Botswana.ano Fish Hub, said: "From my point of view, the post-Covid period has increased the importance of an ecosystem to create entrepreneurs and develop their businesses, and it is a golden opportunity imposed by the Covid conditions. Time to an investor, support specialized services, provide the necessary funding from the local community or international organizations, and turn them into things of value.


He pointed out that there is a great opportunity for countries in the region to train entrepreneurs with creative means and innovative and new ideas, and to have links and platforms for the Internet to link connectivity and communication through well-structured systems. To become a suitable incubator for investors.


Mohamed Farid Saleh, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Egyptian Stock Exchange, pointed to the importance of applying digital transformation and technology in the Egyptian Stock Exchange in its various stages. Small companies and here the role is to develop and modernize small and emerging companies to develop and modernize them and increase their capacity with appropriate profitability and increase their income. He stressed the importance of using technology to attract dealers, pay attention to the human side, train them and educate youth financially.


Dr. Maha Afifi, Director of Government Relations and Public Policies at Google, said that we must discuss two points, which are the conditions before and after Covid 19, pointing out that Covid has drawn attention as technology is no longer recreational but rather necessary and the appropriate environment must be provided, and that because of Covid, the private sector will not be able to achieve success. Except by providing the required products, she added: We focused on 19 markets for success, especially in markets ready for digital transformation, and that the percentages of success will not be reflected in those markets.


She said: "Through digital transformation, we can transform assets for the better while increasing the use of the Internet, and called for the need to use computing and increase production. The Egypt Forum for International Cooperation and Development Finance concluded its work yesterday, and the ministers of international cooperation, local development, education and solidarity participated in the closing session. Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation, and Ambassador Colin Fixsen, President of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, delivered the closing speeches.