Egypt promotes exports through export promotion activities focusing on trade agreements, fiscal incentives, export promotion jurisdiction and the establishment of Export Commodity Councils.
A textile technology centre, established in cooperation with the Faculty of Engineering of University of Cairo, became operational by mid-2007. Further, Egypt focuses on technical assistance projects:
- EU technical, vocational and educational training reform programme
- World Bank skills development project
- National standardization project for skills sponsored by the British Council
- Mubarak-Kohl project, a Egyptian-German collaboration
A National Quality Plan has been launched to upgrade metrology, standardization, testing and quality systems. Further, industrial monitoring mechanisms will be implemented in the near future.
Policies and strategies, affecting the textile and clothing industry, include three regional trade agreements:
- Common Market of Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)
- Pan Arab Free Trade Agreement (PAFTA)
- Aghadeer Declaration, bilateral trade agreements with other Arab countries
Further, Egypt concluded eight bilateral trade agreements, six with Arab countries, one with the EU, and a recent one with Turkey. Moreover, Egypt negotiated a preferential trade agreement with the United States of America. These trade agreements guarantee the preferential treatment of Egyptian products in various markets and have a positive affect on the textile and clothing industry. These numerous trade agreements also protected the Egyptian textile and clothing sector from Asian competitors.
Key lessons to be drawn from the experience of the Egyptian strategies and policies:
- Preparation of a comprehensive development strategy
- Promotion of a conducive business environment in order to attract domestic and foreign investors
- Value chain development through skilled labour force, infrastructure improvement and quality control systems
- Export promotion and integration into global markets to stay competitive in the global value chain
- Higher share of value added products
- Tax incentives
- Modernization and industrial upgrading of the local cotton value chain
- Global and regional integration, the key driver for value chain development