Industry and Trade Minister Mounir Fakhry Abdel Nour has announced that Henkel, one of the largest global companies that produces home and personal care products, will invest LE300 million in the company's Port Said factory, as well as its new factory in 6 October City.
The minister pointed out that these investments show confidence in the strength and sustainability of the Egyptian economy.
Abdel Nour said the ministry is eager to increase Egyptian industrial sector exports through the expansion of the consumer market size by way of bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, such as the African free trade agreement signed in Sharm el-Sheikh in June between the top three African economic blocs: the COMESA, SADC and the East African Community.
He pointed out that there are a number of agreements Egypt is endeavoring to conclude during the next phase, including the Mercosur convention to enter into force before the end of this year with Brazil, as well as a free trade zone between Egypt and the Eurasian Economic Community, which includes Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan.
Abdel Nour made the statements during a meeting with Peter Florenz, vice president of the Henkel global company. The meeting discussed the company's desire to increase its investments in Egypt, as well as a number of challenges the company is currently facing, particularly with regards to the provision of foreign currency and restrictions on bank transfers.
The minister pointed out that the government is keen to provide more facilities to improve the business climate in Egypt and, in particular, to facilitate the trading of foreign currency to serve export and import purposes.
Abdel Nour pointed out the importance of enhancing the company's export activities to provide foreign currency, especially considering the Egyptian market is linked to other markets comprising of up to 1.5 billion people.
Florenz stressed that Egypt is a pivotal market, adding the company hopes to increase its investments there through the establishment of new production lines which would in turn provide employment opportunities.
The company's aim is to be a leader in the production of detergents, home care and personal care products reaching 20 billion euros in sales and increase growth rates and profitability.
Florenz added that Henkel Egypt was founded in 1992 and employs no less than 1,000 Egyptian workers. New production lines for the company are planned for Madinaty, Port Said and 6 October City.