Mounir Fakhry Abdel Nour made the announcement, reported in the Egypt Independent, following a meeting with Peter Florenz, vice president of the Henkel global company, about the German firm looking to increase its investment in the country.
Abdel Nour comments that such investments as the one made by the Schwarzkopf hair care maker, show confidence in the strength and sustainability of the Egyptian economy.
From a Henkel point-of-view, the company hopes to increase its investments in Egypt as it sees it as an important market, particularly through the establishment of new production lines which would in turn provide employment opportunities.
Henkel Egypt employs more than 1,000 Egyptian workers, and says its new production lines for the company are planned for Madinaty, Port Said and 6 October City.
The company's aim is to be a leader in the production of detergents, home care and personal care products reaching €20 billion euros in sales and increase growth rates and profitability.
Henkel says that one of the challenges it is facing is with the provision of foreign currency and restrictions on bank transfers; and in the meeting Abdel Nour stated that the government is keen to provide more facilities to improve the business climate in Egypt, particularly addressing Henkel’s concerns.
The Minister also added that he is eager to increase Egyptian industrial sector exports through the expansion of the consumer market size by way of bilateral and multilateral trade agreements.
Egypt has an African free trade agreement in place at the moment, which was signed in June between the top three African economic blocs, the COMESA, SADC and the East African Community.
There are also two more trade agreements in the pipeline, with the Mercosur convention due to be established with Brazil later this year, and a free trade zone between Egypt and the Eurasian Economic Community, which includes Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan.