10 projects in Upper Egypt by UNIDO
The United Nations Industrial Development Organization logo
By DALIA FAROUK

CAIRO:  The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) announced it would undertake 10 projects in Upper Egypt, Youm7 reported.

One such project would help women establish small projects and fix houses UNIDO, spokesman Ahmed Nabil Fahmy said in a Monday press conference. The total cost of the project will be $6 million and be organized by the Ministry of Local Development, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), the U.N. Trust Fund for Human Security, and the Japanese government.

There is a project to develop medicinal and aromatic plants in Beni Suef, Asyut, and Fayoum, a UNIDO official also said and that it is funded by the Swedish government at a total cost of $2.8 million and it will serve 1,200 facilities in order to create opportunities.

There is also a green trade initiative that started two months ago and will last for three years as part of a debt swap program with the Italian government in coordination with the Egyptian ministries of investment and industry, transport, and trade.

The projects include one to improve energy in the industrial field with $95.3 million funded by the Global Environment Facility.

UNIDO organization released a report in 2013 saying that since 1971 it has been supporting the Egyptian government of Egypt and also the private sector, even before it opened its office. Since then UNIDO organized over 350 projects.

One of these projects is “pro-poor horticulture value chains in Upper Egypt” that aims to enhance the abilities of famers with total cost of $ 7.5 million, according to the report.

The Head of Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics, Abu Bakr el-Gendy, said Monday that poverty in Egypt decreased but it is still high.

The poverty in the region was around 60 percent, according to different media reports, Gendy added during a workshop by ministerial representatives.

There are NGOs working to improve Upper Egypt including Terre des Hommes Foundation (TDF) that stated on its website that it “carries through its activities in Lower and Upper Egypt regions by supporting, monitoring, and coordinating local NGOs and projects to improve the situation of children.”

TDF added that it focused on helping children with disabilities for 25 years in Upper Egypt.

According to al-Wafd, the Ministry of International Cooperation and Planning announced last December that development indicators in Upper Egypt are the worst in all the country in all fields, whether economic growth, unemployment, or poverty.

Furthermore, the organization will also sign a protocol with the Egyptian government at the end of 2014 regarding using coal as a source of energy in the industry. It would do so by choosing experts to minimize the negative impact on the environment, according to Fahmy’s statements in the conference.

He added that UNIDO offers consultation to Ministry of Environment concerning using renewed energy sources.

“All U.N. organizations are working to support the Egyptian government technically in its decision to use coal in the industrial sector,” head of U.N. Information Centre in Cairo (UNIC) Khola Matar said, according to El-Balad Monday.

She said that the U.N. does not interfere in any political decision in Egypt and present officials with technical support based on their request.

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