Egyptian change-makers gather to participate in policy development
More than 100 participants attended the event representing the essential stakeholder groups constituting the supportive ecosystem: Young and emerging green entrepreneurs; Grassroots environmental civil society organizations and NGOs; Support providers that cater to green entrepreneurship (public and private incubators, accelerators and hatcheries, etc) and other financial actors offering finance facilities for green startups and CSOs, as well as corporations and consultants; Public actors and policy makers of relevance; Academia and research institutions.
After the opening speech of Anna Ibanez, project Manager at SCP/RAC and SwitchMed representative, Stephano Panighetti, programme manager for environment at the EU delegation in Egypt took the floor to welcome participants and to inform them about EU funding for Egypt -from priority sectors to budgets- as well as available opportunities and calls for proposals.
"40% of total funding goes to economic modernization, energy and environment, we are talking about 210 million Euro. Check our website to know more about small grants we offer to initiatives working on sustainable development", Stephano Panighetti
The panel discussions included leading players in setting the strategy for supporting green entrepreneurship and CSOs in Egypt, including the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (MSMEDA), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Egyptian National Cleaner Production Center (ENCPC), the Global Environment Facility's Small Grants Program (GEF/SGP), together with the co-organizers, SCP/RAC, CEDARE, and EEAA. Video coverage of the panel discussions and presentations are made available online.
"We are glad we noticed an increasing potential and interest to green entrepreneurship in Egypt, among the two calls for SwitchMed green entrepreneurship training. Projects are diverse and the participation rate in governorates other than Cairo is higher" said Mazen Elshagie, representative of ENCPC, SwitchMed local implementing partner.
"Every green entrepreneur looking for financing need to understand exactly which funding institutions is relevant for his/her business at this very moment stage, to knock on the right doors and get the most of it" advised Omar Rabie, consultant in GIZ
SwitchMed is also supporting green entrepreneurs to access to finance through capacity building and match-making event with investors, as well as thanks to the recently developed financial toolkit. It is a practical tool for Green Entrepreneurs to better access to finance in the MENA Region. You can discover, in 4 easy steps, the right funding strategy for your green project by clicking here.
The space was afterward open for networking, and several initiatives showcased some of their products and services, such as upcycling products, cycling-promotion virtual reality tour (Alexandria), and nature conservation awareness through the project of Nature Conservation Egypt (NCE) showcasing the Wadi Degla natural protectorate virtual reality visit.
Based on this gathering, and on more than 30 interviews realized to different stakeholders, including policy makers, investors, business support organisations, green entrepreneurs (VWASTE, Dayma, Wild phenix) and civil society organisations (Go Bike, make your roof a paradise), the white paper will be drafted and will resume all recommendations to promote green entrepreneurship in Egypt and facilitate the switch into more sustainable consumption and production.
This white paper is developed by UN/MAP Regional Activity Centre for Sustainable Consumption and Production, the Centre for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE) and the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA) under the European Union funded SwitchMed Programme.