Egypt’s business environment is getting better and is set to attract greater foreign investments in the few coming years, Mahmoud Attalla, chairperson and CEO of CI Capital, said on the sidelines of an investors conference on Tuesday.
“The circumstances are improving and lots of investors see this is the proper time to invest in the Egyptian market,” he added.
Attalla was speaking on the sidelines of CI Capital’s second MENA Investor Conference in Cairo, which includes the participation of 200 investors from 75 leading global institutional investment firms, with aggregate assets under management (AUMs) in excess of $10tn, according to a statement from CI Capital.
The conference allows the participants to meet with ministers, senior government officials, and top listed companies on Egyptian and Arab stock markets
“The willingness of key policy makers to attend and participate in the conference reflects the positive sentiment that officials are keen to relay. It is also evidence of the greater level of transparency necessary to drive a clear roadmap for investors with medium and long term horizons, inspiring a fruitful partnership between the public and the private sectors in reaping the fruits of the economic reform and investment opportunities during the coming period,” Attalla added.
When he was asked about a potential initial public offering (IPO) of CI Capital, he said, “all cards are on the table. We are considering going public to raise capital for further expansion”.
Managing Director and Head of Brokerage at CI Capital Karim Khadr said that the decision to float the Egyptian pound in November 2016 had a clear impact in increasing the gross domestic product (GDP) and foreign reserves growth rates, and helped government treasury bills attract $19bn in cash flows.
He added that the floatation helped in reducing the budget deficit and eliminating the parallel market, with foreign reserves at the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) reaching $37bn.
This is in addition to economic growth of 4.2% during the past fiscal year, as well as 3.5% expected by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during 2017, Khadr added.
He also praised the role played by Arab governments to improve the investment environment in the region, and their seriousness in the process of economic and social reform by adopting new policies to push the growth of the private sector and allow for its participation in the management of state-owned assets.
The conference will run until 1 February and will be attended by Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr, Trade Minister Tarek Kabil, Minister of Public Sector Affairs Khaled Badawi, Deputy Minister of Finance Mohamed Moait, Deputy Governor of the CBE Rami Abul Naga, and Chairperson of the Egyptian Exchange Mohamed Farid, among others.