Penelope O.

Egypt, ITFC sign $3bn trade finance deal

The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) and the Egyptian government have signed two deals worth $3 billion, initiating the utilization of the 5th Framework agreement.

The Framework Agreement Initially signed on 30 January 2018, had the objective to finance the importation of commodities such as petroleum, petroleum products, gas, wheat, foodstuff and other goods for the benefit of the Arab nation.

The first Master Murabaha agreement was signed by Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, Chief Executive Officer ITFC and Mr. Ahmed Yousef, Deputy Chairman of the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) to support the provision of goods supplies worth $1 billion, benefiting 67 million citizens. The second agreement was signed by Eng. Abed Ezz El Regal, Chief Executive Officer of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) with total financing of $2 billion, in the presence of Eng. Tarek El Molla, Minister of Petroleum & Mineral Resources at the EGPC Head Office in Cairo.

To date, ITFC has signed five framework agreements with the Government of Egypt totaling $9.2 billion. The corporation described the agreement as indicative of strong ongoing links between the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), the parent group of ITFC, and the Arab Republic of Egypt.

Between 1985 and 2007, IsDB approved about $1.675 billion for the North African countryArab Republic of Egypt, mostly to finance the importation of petroleum and refined petroleum products as well as wheat. Since its inception in 2008 and until Aug 2018, ITFC has also approved about $7.274 billion to finance the importation of crude oil and petroleum products in addition to food commodities and other products.

“Here at ITFC, we recognize the immense strategic importance this agreement holds for our relationship with the government and people of the Arab Republic of Egypt. The benefits for economic development, social welfare development and intra-trade development cannot be understated,” said Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, ITFC Chief Executive Officer.

Meanwhile, the League of Arab States (Economic Affairs Sector) and the ITFC have signed an MoU to accelerate cooperation in the development of intra-Arab trade.

Formed in Cairo in 1945, the League of Arab States has 22 member countries, including Algeria, Djibouti, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Somalia, Sudan, Tunisia and Comoros.

The agreement was signed during the Ministerial meeting of the Economic and Social Council of the League of Arab States and ITFC in Cairo, the Egyptian capital city. It outlines clear objectives aimed at enhancing trade capacities and improving structures and mechanisms of trade cooperation among Arab countries.

Initial programs agreed under the memorandum of understanding, such as the Arab Africa Trade Bridges Program and the second phase of the Aid for Trade Initiative for Arab States (AfTIAS) Program have been earmarked for rollout in a bid to meet set objectives towards strengthening cooperation between the two parties. The MoU will support the Greater Arab Free Trade Area through hosting regional training courses, conferences and workshops covering trade development area.