Egypt - The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (MSMEDA) held a meeting with officials from the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), to discuss how to benefit from the Japanese experience in improving the competitiveness of SMEs, especially those operating in the industrial and agricultural processing sectors.

The meeting was attended by Basil Rahmy, head of MSMEDA, Ueda Takafumi, the chief advisor for private sector development at JICA, and Mayada Magdy, the first regional representative of JICA in Egypt.

The meeting aimed to provide integrated technical services that would help SMEs improve their productivity and efficiency. This comes as a continuation of the existing cooperation between MSMEDA and various international bodies and donors to support the SME sector.

Rahmy stressed that the cooperation with JICA is in line with the state’s directives and the Prime Minister’s instructions to support SMEs and provide them with various facilities. He said that this would help them to continue and expand their businesses, meet the domestic market needs, produce local products, and reduce imports.

He added that JICA is one of the most important international institutions that MSMEDA cooperates with, in coordination with the Ministry of International Cooperation. He said that MSMEDA’s current work plan relies on reviewing, evaluating, and developing the project support services it provides, to help SMEs produce quality products that comply with international standards.

Rahmy indicated that it was agreed with JICA to start developing the services provided by MSMEDA to projects operating in the plastics sector in the Margham Industrial Complex in Alexandria, as well as the food and agricultural manufacturing sectors in Minya.

He said that during the past year, JICA’s delegation visited MSMEDA’s branches and project owners in various governorates, to learn about the technical services provided by MSMEDA, the mechanisms for providing them, and their impact on customers. He said that JICA praised MSMEDA’s efforts to develop the SME sector, and expressed its aspiration for more cooperation with MSMEDA in the coming period.

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