Egypt's exports of raw materials accounts for a substantial part of the economy.
The Trade Ministry of Egypt has finalised a decision to ban all exports of raw materials, stating that exporting raw materials before the manufacturing stage wastes potential added value to the Egyptian product, according to Egypt Today.
The decision was made in a meeting between the Trade Ministry, Export Council for Building Materials, Refractories and Metal Industries, Metallurgic Industries Chamber and the Building Materials Chamber.
Minister of Trade, Amr Nassar, stressed on the importance of manufacturing the raw materials in Egypt before exporting the final product. Nassar added that Egypt’s building materials and metal industries have many potential in international markets, specifically in the markets of Africa, Central Asia and the Gulf.
Nassar also mentioned that Egypt is currently negotiating and concluding free trade agreements with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESSA), the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the East African Community (EAC). In addition, Egypt is also in the process of implementing a new shipping system – RORO (aka Roll-on/Roll-off) – a ship that's equipped to carry vehicles, making trade between countries a whole lot easier.
“[There are] great opportunities to increase Egyptian exports to the African market with a focus on West African countries,” Nassar is reported to have saidin the meeting.
Omar Mohanna – Chairman of the Suez Cement Group – supported Nassar in the decision, stressing the advantages that this will present to Egypt’s local industry; stopping raw material export will add value to the finished product, in the process create many employment opportunities to re-manufacture the large quantities of raw materials.
The raw materials facing the ban were not specifically mentioned.
Currently, Egypt’s raw materials exports contribute a large sum to the economy, including but not limited to cotton, sand, granite, crude oil, raw gold, white cheese, fruits and vegetables.
Main image from Wikimedia Commons