AHK: Egypt It Is

The German-Arab Chamber of Industry and Commerce (AHK) in Cairo has launched a campaign with spots featuring German companies engaging in Egypt from a broad variety of sectors like Siemens Energy, SAP or Evonik. We invite you to watch the videos directly on the YouTube channel of AHK or the Website of AHK.

Egypt It Is

Basic Information on Egypt

Egypt Factsheet:

Official Name

Arab Republic of Egypt


94.7 Million (2017 Census)



Other Main Cities


Business Languages

Arabic and English, French also used

National Day

23rd of July

GDP growth rate

5.2% (2017/2018)

Exports in USD Billions

25.8  (2017/2018) (source CAPMAS)

Imports in USD Billions

63.1 (2017/2018) (source CAPMAS)

Economic Sectors


Agriculture is the an important pillar of the economy. The sector employed about 21.4% of Egypt’s workers in 2018 which is the highest economic sector share in employment. Farming is concentrated in the fertile Nile delta. The agricultural seasons in Egypt are divided into three seasons: the winter season, the summer season and the Nile season, as well as the permanent or annual crops whose production season extends to a whole agricultural year such as sugar cane, fruit crops, and timber.

Egypt’s marine fisheries account for approximately 11 million feddans, as well as lake fisheries, which include the Manzala lakes, El-Borlos, Bardawil, Mariout, Lake Nasser, and others.


Communication and Information Technology:

Egypt’s communications and information technology sector is a leading global outsourcing destination, Egypt is the leader in the MENA region and 14th worldwide on A.T. Kearney’s 2017 Global Services Location Index (GSLI). This puts Egypt ahead of competitors in the region.

The National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA) granted the Fourth Generation (4G) mobile service license to the four Egyptian telecoms; namely, Telecom Egypt (TE), Orange, Vodafone, and Etisalat.



Egypt is aiming to become an energy hub for the region. Recently it inaugurated the three giant power plants carried out by the German company Siemens in collaboration with local Egyptian partners, in the New Administrative Capital, Beni Suef, and Burullus with a total capacity of 14.4 GW, or about 50 percent of the electricity grid.

With regards to solar energy: the Benban Solar Park, in the south of Egypt, is set to be largest in the world upon completion at 1.8 GW total capacity.



The Egyptian economy is dependent on the industrial sector for growth, exports, and job creation. The main industries in Egypt are as follows:

The food processing industry is one of the most important industrial sectors, as it has an ever-growing customer base. There are over 7,000 food manufacturing companies operating in the country.

The Egyptian Textile Industry is completely vertically integrated, starting from raw materials up to finished products of Apparel and Home Textile.
During the beginning of 2018 the Ministry of Trade and Industry announced the construction of a new city for textiles and garments production in al-Sadat, to be the largest in Egypt, with a paid-in capital of USD 2 billion over a period of seven years. Over an area of 3.1 million square meters, the new city will include 568 factories, offering around 160,000 direct jobs, with a production capacity worth USD 9 billion per year. The first of five phases of implementation will be finished in 2020, with 57 factories and investments worth USD 230 million, while the last phase is scheduled to be completed by 2024.

The government also plans to modernize the state-owned Cotton and Textile Industries Holding company.

For more information:

Presentation by the Apparel Export Council of Egypt "Why Egypt?"

Brochure on the Apparel Export Council of Egypt

The leather industry in Egypt is considered one of the most important industrial sectors in the Egyptian economy. The tanning industry forms the backbone of the Egyptian leather industry, supplying raw material for the footwear and leather goods sectors.  The tanning and finished leather industry combined constitutes the fifth largest industrial sector in Egypt, employing more than 250,000 people.

El Robbiki Leather Cluster:
Robbiki Leather Cluster is designed to be the leading leather industrial city in the Middle East and Africa. It is designed to be a hub for value chain integration leather byproducts. This city is established on an area of 1629 acres, and currently houses 200 tanneries. Its current production of leather is 222 million square feet. It includes a well–equipped leather tanning technology center. The first phase is for tanneries and is already finished and fully occupied. The second phase is for tanneries expansion and feeding industries, and the third phase for finished leather products. This city is strategically located near 6 ports and the Cairo International Airport. Special tax incentives are also offered to investors in this industrial city.

The Egyptian furniture sector is one of the oldest and also most promising sectors in Egypt. It continues to be a lucrative business opportunity and a solid investment due to the various advantages it enjoys.

  • A highly skilled labor force, due to the historical and cultural significance of the craft, comprising 13% of the total work force of the manufacturing sector in Egypt at internationally competitive wages.
  • Immense comparative advantage due to its strategic location.
  • Backed by a solid foundation of industries within its supply chain, creating one of the largest and most cohesive value chains in the Egyptian industry, including the production and manufacturing of chemical products and metal parts, wood, glue, foam, painting, fittings, machinery and the general development of craftsmanship across various sectors.

Damietta Furniture City:
Damietta Furniture City was established with an authorized capital reaching 5 billion Egyptian Pounds, with a 521 million Egyptian Pound capital value and a 100% Egyptian capital contribution,  after the incorporation decision decreed by the General Authority for Investment in July 2016. An industrial area built on 331 acres according to the appropriation resolution No. 999 for the year 2015 issued by the Prime Minister, to establish furniture industries of different size and complementary industries and provide the infrastructure, services and facilities needed by those industries. It is allocated 20 minutes away from Damietta city and is near the entrance of Damietta governorate in Shata area. The industrial city will enable a qualitative leap to transform the local furniture industry into a global one. It contains 1500 small and medium workshops of 50 to 150 square meters and about 150 large and complete factories, besides the establishment of the furniture technology center in Damietta for preparing marketing studies for the furniture factories and test furniture before exportation.

For more info: http://damiettafc.com/?lang=en

Egypt is among the largest producers and consumers of pharmaceuticals in both the Middle East and Africa. The pharmaceutical sector in Egypt is one of the oldest strategic sectors in the country, founded in 1939 with the establishment of the Misr Company for Pharmaceutical Industries.

Currently investments in the pharmaceutical industry reach 120 EGP billion through 123 factories, which employ around 300,000 persons. 40% of the investments in the sector are foreign, resulting in around 65% of the sales. Local pharmaceutical production covers around 93% of local consumption.

Egypt’s automotive industry is mainly composed of 17 car assembly plants, employing around 86,000 workers. Egypt offers huge opportunities for this sector due to the availability of a large local market, in addition to the possibility of exporting duty free to neighboring countries as a member of the many Free Trade Agreements signed with them.

The auto components industry in Egypt consists of around 375 companies manufacturing many parts such as : glass, paint materials, wiring harnesses, car radios, air conditioning radiators and condensers, lamps, mirrors, wheel covers, suspensions, axels, seats, interiors, chassis and metal parts, exhaust systems, brake pads, filters, and fire extinguishers. Total automotive components exports reached 670 Million Euros in 2016 (including software exports).

Investment Framework in Egypt

- Investment Law no.72 / 2017 and its executive regulation

This law issued in 2017 aims at improving the investment environment by addressing the shortfalls in previous laws. It stated the role of the General Authority for Investment and Free zones (GAFI) as the One-Stop-shop for investors.

The law provides a number of guarantees for investors as follows:

  • All investments will receive fair and just treatment.
  • Foreign investors will receive the same treatment under law as Egyptian nationals.
  • Investments will not be governed by arbitrary procedures or discriminatory decisions.
  • Investment projects will not be nationalized.
  • No administrative authority can revoke or suspend investment project licenses without proper warning, and providing time to rectify the causes of the breach.
  • Foreign investors are guaranteed residence in Egypt during the term of a project.
  • Investors have the right to transfer their profits abroad, as well as the liquidation proceeds.
  • Investors' projects may employ up to 10% foreign employees, reaching up to 20% if needed.

For a first overview you may refer to the slide presentation: Invest in Egypt


To help attract global investors, the law has stated incentives for investing companies.

Companies will pay a unified 2% customs tax on the value of imported equipment and machinery. They will also be exempted from stamp tax and registration fees on articles of association, mortgages, loan agreements and land contract notarizations related to their investment for a period of 5 years.

The law provides deductions from taxable net profits according to a forthcoming investment map that will identify investment areas as Sectors A and B.

  1. Investors will receive a 50% discount off investment costs in Sector A which covers the Suez Canal Economic Zone, The Golden Triangle, and the Least Developed Regions as decreed by the Prime Minister’s Office,
  2. Investors will receive a 30% discount off investment costs in Sector B (which covers the rest of the country) for specified priority activities such as labour-intensive industries, small and medium enterprises, companies that export more than 50% of their production, automotive and feeding industries, ICT industries, etc.

Egypt's Council of Ministers may decree additional incentives.

An independent arbitration and mediation center will have the authority to pursue the settlement of investment disputes that arise among investors and state authorities.

  • A ministerial committee will be established to review complaints and disputes between investors and state authorities.
  • Committees within GAFI will examine complaints against resolutions issued in accordance with this law.


Investment Law (complete text for download)


- Investment Regimes

Egypt offers different investment regimes for domestic and offshore investors alike, designed to fit every business model. The different investment schemes in Egypt are as follows:

  1. Investment Zones
  2. Technological Zones
  3. Free Zones
  4. Special Economic Zones

Egypt has 114 industrial zones, 13 investment zones (three investment zones under construction), nine public free zones and one special economic zone.


A. Investment Zones

Investment zones were implemented based on the concept of business clusters, to enhance economic development and to attract FDI. In July 2007, the Egyptian government passed a decree allowing private sector investors to build, promote and manage investment zones, which are applicable for all types of industries and services. Government involvement in these zones is limited to facilitating regulations and procedures applied in the industrial zones.


B. Technological Zones

Upon a proposal by the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones’ Board of Directors and request by the minister concerned with the communications and information technology affairs, the Prime Minister may license the establishment of Technological Zones in the field of communications and information technology industry, including the industrial activities, design and development of electronics, data centres, outsourcing activities, software development, technological education, and other associated or complementing activities, as indicated by the Implementing Regulations of this Law. All the tools, supplies, and machinery required to conduct the licensed activity by all kinds of the Projects established within the Technological Zones shall not be subject to the taxes and customs duties, in accordance with the conditions and procedures indicated by the Implementing Regulations. The Projects established within the Technological Zones shall enjoy the special incentives provided for in Article (11) (Special Incentives Section) of Law 72 for 2017 according to the relevant sector.


C. Free Zones

Free zones were launched more than 30 years ago to grow export oriented industries and services investment, encourage technological advances and create jobs. Free zones are located within national territory but are considered offshore areas and therefore are exempt from many inland investment costs.

Egypt currently has nine public free zones around the country. They are located in: Nasr City (in the Greater Cairo Area), Alexandria, Damietta, Port Said, Suez, Ismailia, Shebein El-Kom, Media Production City and Keft. Three additional free zones are under development in Badr, East Port Said and Minya. In addition to public free zones, private zones may also be established, each limited to a single project.


D. Special Economic Zones

The Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone)
Suez Canal Economic Zone was established under Law No.330/2015. The Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone) is a world-class zone and trade hub along the banks of the newly-expanded Suez Canal. It was the first economic zone of a special nature to be established in Egypt, according to Law No. 83/2002 and its amendments. It is strategically located on the main trade route between Europe and Asia, more than eight percent of global trade passes through every year. Spanning 461 km², almost two-thirds the size of Singapore, the SCZone consists of two integrated areas, two development areas, and four ports.

The two integrated areas are Ain Sokhna including Ain Sokhna Port and East Port Said with East Port Said Port. The two development areas are Qantara West and East Ismailia. The four ports are West Port Said Port, Adabiya Port, Al Tor Port, and Al Arish Port.

Please see the presentation for more information: SCZone Presentation


- Industrial Licensing Law

Law no. 15 of 2017 was approved on facilitating the procedures of obtaining industrial licenses, The new regulation aims at simplifying the licensing process; cutting paperwork and reducing bureaucracy; hence, making it easier for investors and enterprises to obtain industrial permits, as well as resolving the issue related to operation permits.

Doing Business in Egypt

This section provides you with the basic information you need to start doing business in Egypt by giving an overview of the following:


In addition to the informationen on our website, we may present the latest edition (2021) of the Industrial Investment Guide by the Egyptian Center for Economic Studies:


Furthermore, you might also find the Egypt Business Guide published by Ghorfa (German-Arab Chamber of Commerce and Industry e.V.) interesting. You can download the Business Guide here:

There also are some slide presentations and brochures for you to download:


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