Dr. Sherifa Sherif, Executive Director of the National Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development, participated in the closing ceremony of the “Visa Everywhere” competition for 2022, which was launched by Visa for the first time in Egypt in cooperation with the “Fintech Egypt” initiative of the Central Bank of Egypt, which aims to support companies Empowering startups and helping them open up new opportunities by providing a global platform to showcase their pioneering solutions.
During her speech, Dr. Sherifa Sherif said that investing in young people is always rewarding, as young people constitute more than half of the Egyptian population, stressing that engaging these young people in finding innovative solutions to promote financial technology, digital transformation and financial inclusion is a prerequisite for achieving intergenerational justice and economic growth. Ensuring the inclusiveness and sustainability of societies, thus achieving the goals of sustainable development.
Sherif explained that digital technologies have advanced at an unprecedented speed in the past few years, especially after the Corona pandemic, as the past two years have shown that everyone needs economic growth, dynamism and innovation to keep pace with this rapid progress in the coming years. She noted that these new digital technologies represent opportunities to enhance youth participation in the labor market and enhance their financial and digital inclusion.
Sherif stressed the importance of economic empowerment for these young people and benefiting from their innovations, by supporting start-ups and entrepreneurship, noting that small and medium enterprises and emerging companies are the main engine for stimulating economic growth, creating job opportunities, and playing an important role in alleviating poverty and reducing unemployment. Especially among young people, stressing that promoting entrepreneurship is one of the main objectives of the Egyptian government, pointing out that Egypt has witnessed a remarkable development in the field of entrepreneurship in the past years, as entrepreneurship today constitutes 40% of the Egyptian economy, according to the World Bank.
During her speech, Dr. Sherifa Sherif reviewed the Sustainable Innovation Lab project, which was launched in 2021 as the first laboratory of its kind in the Middle East and Africa, a project designed to build an integrated and comprehensive ecosystem for entrepreneurship that enables young people to establish their own businesses and projects, starting with training in entrepreneurship skills. To provide credit and investment financing.
The Executive Director of the National Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development also stressed the importance of promoting equality and equal opportunities for both genders with regard to entrepreneurship in a way that promotes inclusive and sustainable growth, explaining that one of the most important obstacles facing women in entrepreneurship is; The digital gender gap, where females have less access to technology and the Internet compared to males, pointing out that the institute, in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program and the global company Cisco, launched the national initiative “It is for a digital future” with the aim of bridging the digital gender gap, where about 2,000 women were trained. So far, it is targeted that the number of trainees will reach 8000 women by the end of 2022.