The General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI) has granted 13 companies the golden license, as per a statement on February 21. Of these, nine companies were given the license in December 2022, while the remaining 4 received it in February.
These companies include Bloom Real Estate Development, Hassan Allam Utilities, the National Company for Transport Industry, Vaccine & Biotechnology City Company, Al Arabi Group of Companies and Factories for Electrical and Home Appliances, Hyper Electric Egypt Limited Company, and Misr Green Ammonia Company, among others. The Golden license has been set in place in an effort to boost business and investment within Egypt.
The golden license
The golden license, also known as the “single approval license” was launched in late 2022 and allows for new investments that follow certain criteria to operate under a single approval, rather than going through several governmental departments, according to Waya Media. The companies eligible for the golden license fit under these two categories: those that are creating a strategic or national project within a sustainable framework; and those with a partnership between the private and the public sector, as per the official government website.
The sectors for potential candidature for the license include projects operating within the field of electricity and renewable energy, petroleum and mineral wealth, transportation, industry, and communications and information technology among others.
The new format for licensing comes in a bid to foster investment. The next stage will see steps taken toward reducing the timeline for acquiring this type of license, as per GAFI’s official statement.
Among the aforementioned companies receiving the golden license is the Misr Green Ammonia Company, which received it in December 2022 for a $5.5 billion project located in Ain Sokhna, as per the official statement posted on the Egyptian cabinet Facebook. The plant is set to generate green ammonia produced from renewable energy.
Over the past few years, Egypt has been working steadily on the road to building a green economy be it by launching green projects or encouraging the undertaking of sustainable ventures. Part of the sustainable development strategy Egypt 2030 includes the Go Green Initiative launched by the Ministry of Environment. The initiative works towards promoting sustainable development, raising awareness of the climate crisis, and reducing pollution, among other pillars, according to the official website Presidency.eg.
Egypt, which was the host country for COP27, covered an array of topics including water security, food security, and investing in a future of energy security.
Part of the country’s efforts sees the set-up of “the region’s first sovereign green bond,” according to a report published by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in June 2022. The bond serves to fund projects in transportation and water management that adhere to clean and sustainable practices.
A step closer to the transition to a green economy, the government also launched in that same year, the National Climate Change Strategy. The strategy has as its goals to push climate change action governance and management, and climate financing infrastructure, as per a report by Egypt’s Ministry of Environment.