Banque du Caire, EBRD Partner to Empower Egyptian Businesses

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and Banque du Caire (BDC), one of Egypt’s most prominent banks, have inked a new partnership to enhance support for micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in the country, with a specific focus on empowering women entrepreneurs. 

The EBRD will provide a US$50 million (€46 million) financing package to BDC, aiming to increase access to finance for MSMEs and expand BDC’s reach across Egypt. Notably, US$10 million (€9.2 million) is specifically earmarked for women-owned or led businesses. 

This initiative leverages the EBRD’s Women in Business (WiB) program. Through this program, BDC will allocate the aforementioned $10 million to bridge the financing gap faced by women-led enterprises and bolster their competitiveness. Additionally, the EBRD will offer technical cooperation, providing beneficiaries with valuable advisory and capacity-building services. 

“The EBRD is delighted to collaborate with BDC on this impactful project,” stated Jürgen Rigterink, EBRD First Vice President and Head of Client Services Group. “This partnership strengthens our strategic alliance while allowing us to further support MSMEs, a critical pillar of the Egyptian economy. We are particularly pleased to promote inclusivity by encouraging lending to women-led businesses.” 

Tarek Fayed, Chairman and CEO of BDC, emphasized the bank’s commitment to supporting entrepreneurs, especially women. He highlighted that “the EBRD financing will prioritise projects beyond the capital city, leveraging BDC’s extensive network, particularly in Upper Egypt, where 55% of our microfinance clientele resides, with women and youth comprising 35% and 40% respectively.” 

This initiative marks a significant step forward in fostering economic growth and inclusivity in Egypt. The EBRD has been a long-standing partner of Egypt, having invested over €11 billion in 174 projects across various sectors since 2012. This collaborative effort aligns with the EBRD’s commitment to supporting sustainable and inclusive growth in the region. 

Mohamed Hashem (pictured) is Senior General Manager of the Legal Group at Banque du Caire.