Surface: 1,010,407.87 km².
Principal ethnic groups: Egyptian Arabs (about 90%)
Population under the age 15 years: 31.3%.
Child mortality: 22.4/ 1,000 born alive.
Maternal mortality: 730/100,000 births.
Children per woman: 4.2.
Life expectancy: 71.4/74.2.
Literacy rate (secondary and primary education): 55.3/61.7.
Human Development Index: 171° out of 186.
Source: UNData Country Profile, CIA World Factbook. March 2014
The sectors of intervention of the Italian Cooperation in Egypt have been identified with the active participation and dialogue especially with the Egyptian Ministry of International Cooperation and Development have been identified, and other donors such us the European Union Delegation in Cairo,
The sectors are in line with the new priorities of the EU-Egypt Partnership for 2017-2020 - and include the development priorities of Egypt, identified in the document "Egypt's vision 2030" and in the Strategic Framework for the National Economic Development Plan and Social up to 2022 published by the Ministry of International Cooperation.The Italian Cooperation acts within strategies and legal framework regularly agreed upon at the highest governmental level, in particular: The Development Cooperation Framework Agreement (2010) and the Memorandum of Understanding regarding a New Development Partnership (2010).
The Italian Cooperation in Egypt has as a main objective eradicate hunger and poverty by working on several dimensions : (i) the social dimension has as objective the protection and empowerment of the most vulnerable groups of the population, ,especially women, children, elderly and people with disabilities-;(ii) Human Capital development through technical and vocational education and training focuses to promotion job’s opportunities - especially for young people; (iii) economic development supports the development and access to credit in particular of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises ; (iv) Agriculture and Rural Development is an important and historical sector for the Italian cooperation in Egypt and it aims at improving water resource management and efficiency in agriculture, promote good agricultural practices and enhance socio-economic condition of local farmers; (v) cultural heritage is another dimension fundamental for the protection and enhancement of the beautiful natural, cultural, historical and archaeological Egyptian heritage, also through the promotion of forms of responsible tourism; (vi) Environment is a crucial sector for Italy and projects under this umbrella aim at protect the many natural protected areas of Egypt, to enhance the quality of air, water and to improve the waste management of the country.
The Italian Cooperation has different financial instruments to finance development interventions such as grants, aid’s credits and debt conversion. The Italian-Egyptian Debt for Development Swap (IEDS) Programme represents a joint impressive commitment resulting from the longstanding Italian-Egyptian partnership. In line with the Debt-Swap principles and policies that contribute to the reduction of Egypt’s foreign debt to be converted for financing development initiatives, the Programme’s actions have been prioritized in order to be socially and economically equitable and sustainable across all sectors of interventions.
Italy and Egypt have been cooperating in the field of development through the debt swap mechanism since 2001, the year of the signature of the bilateral Agreement of the IEDS for the first phase which was successfully concluded in 2008. The amount of this agreement was approximately USD 149 million, which funded 53 initiatives promoted by governmental entities and the civil society. Leveraging on the positive experience of IEDS phase I, the second phase Agreement of the IEDS was signed in 2007 and it covers a period of 10 years to be concluded in December 2017. Under this Agreement, 31 initiatives have been financed for a total of USD 100 million, promoted by Egyptian governmental entities and the civil society. The third phase Agreement was signed in 2012 and will be completed in 2023 for an amount of USD 100 million,
At the sectoral level, the Italian Cooperation focuses on six sectors of intervention:
- Agriculture and Rural Development
- Social Affairs
- Economic Development;
- Cultural heritage;