US State Secretary, Egypt FM discuss bloodshed in Gaza, stress strategic partnership    Egypt's Al-Sisi in Paris for Sudan Transition Conference    Sundance Institute names 20 fellows across upcoming summer labs    Grand Egyptian Museum opening to be as impressive as Royal Mummies Parade: El-Anani    Egypt to soon complete COVID-19 vaccination of tourism workers in Red Sea, South Sinai    EGP 308.3bn allocated to Egypt economic authorities to support services, development projects    Chief of Egypt's Financial Regulator elected as committee head at IOSCO    Washington calls for resumption of GERD talks    Egypt, Saudi Arabia aim to restore calm in Palestinian territories    Comedy actress Nadia Al-Iraqia passes away from COVID-19    Egypt's Health Ministry launches awareness campaigns against COVID-19    Sudan pledges to investigate killing of 2 protestors during peaceful sit-in    Egypt scales up readiness of hospitals nationwide for Eid Al-Fitr holidays    Egyptian hospitals in Sinai on alert amid Israeli aggression on Gaza    Egypt announces Thursday 1st day of Eid Al-Fitr    Nuweiba: Egypt's paradise of serenity    Egypt's trade deficit down 1.2% to $3.34bn in February 2021: CAPMAS    Global economic recovery to improve debt service coverage ratios: Moody's    Egypt's current account deficit jumps to $7.6 bln in 1H of FY2020/21: CBE    India signs an agreement to buy 300,000 doses of Remdesivir from Eva Pharma    Egypt will locally manufacture first 2m Sinovac vaccine doses by June-end    Turkey seeks to restore 'historic unity' with Egyptian people: Erdogan    Elneny's Arsenal targets 'remontada' in Europa League semi-finals    Zamalek eye return to victories at expense of Smouha in Egyptian Premier League    Al Ahly face injuries as they take on Al Ittihad Alexandria    Egypt buys 30 Rafale fighter jets from France    Direct flights between Russia and Egypt will resume in June, Ambassador    Egypt's Ahly is establishing a new stadium, expected to be 'sports complex'    Blinken presses Ethiopia's Abiy to ensure full withdrawal of Eritrean troops from Tigray    Forces opposed to Somali president control parts of Mogadishu    Nine people executed in Egypt over Kerdasa police killings in 2013    UEFA investigating Ibrahimovic's alleged ties to betting company    61 doctors died from coronavirus since start of April: Egypt's medical syndicate    Egypt targets 5.6% inflation rate in FY2020/21, 6% in FY2021/22    Egypt allocates EGP 132 bln to modernise railway system: Transport minister    Real Madrid not thinking about any Super League sanctions: Zidane    Total declares force majeure on Mozambique LNG after attacks    All the winners at the 93rd Academy Awards    Egypt's Ahly granted approval to build new stadium on Cairo outskirts    Aswan Int'l Women's Film Festival dedicates 5th edition to Kawthar Heikal    BREAKING: Egypt's information minister Osama Heikal resigns amid parliamentary criticism    'War was not Egypt's aim, but peace was the ultimate goal,' Sisi says on Sinai Liberation Day anniversary    Factbox: Key nominations for the 2021 Academy Awards    Old Cairo's Al-Fustat will be revamped on Egyptian President's directives    Veteran Egyptian journalist Makram Mohamed Ahmed passes away at 86    Allianz Egypt partners with IGNITE to equip brand ambassadors for 2021 Olympics    Hassan Allam consortium wins contract to manage, operate Grand Egyptian Museum    Seasoned Egyptian screenwriter Wahid Hamed dies at 76    

Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.

Worthy investments
Published in Ahram Online on 26 - 01 - 2021

Minister of Education Tarek Shawki issued a ministerial decree on 20 January allowing unlimited foreign ownership of international and private schools in Egypt. According to the decree, schools must be owned by a company registered in Egypt.
The company, however, could be owned by other companies, funds or individuals of any nationality.
The minister was amending a previous ministerial decree that was issued in 2019.
Over the past decade, Egypt has been witnessing a steady increase in private equity funds and investors interested in education. This was the case until the November 2019 ministerial decree was issued thus bringing the unprecedented, speedy increase of private sector investments in the education industry to a halt. The 2019 decree limited the ownership of foreigners in the capital of private schools, and schools applying an international curriculum in Egypt, to 20 per cent.
According to Reda Hegazi, deputy to the Ministry of Education, private sector investments are essential to the educational process.
“Egypt needs LE130 billion to establish new schools, while the budget allocated for this purpose does not exceed 10 per cent of the country's education budget, which amounts to LE158 billion.
Some 94 per cent of the total is spent on salaries, five per cent on building new schools, and one per cent on developing education.
We need 250,000 classes annually but what is being built are only 15,000 which is insufficient and being eroded by the country's overpopulation,” Hegazi said, referring to a population growing by 800,000 people a year.
Hegazi noted that the number of international schools in Egypt which are owned by foreigners or in which foreigners have a share is around 260 out of 56,569 public, language (private) and experimental schools. Most of these schools adopt the foreign curricula along with the Egyptian system.
Education expert Kamal Moghith believes the decision to allow unlimited foreign ownership is not being thought through carefully.
“This decree will destroy future generations, as schools will be owned by a company registered in Egypt but it could be other companies, funds, or individuals whose policies could be against ours, or they have a nationality which might be a threat to our national security,” Moghith said.
Moghith told Al-Ahram Weekly that the ministry should “protect the minds of the future generation against the foreign invasion which controls them. The minister must not allow foreigners to own Egyptian schools because they will set up a previously prepared curricula to form the coming generation in a way that serves their needs, not ours,” he argued.
The ministerial decree has however stipulated that the concerned authorities would have the right to refuse granting a licence to any educational entity if the ministry sees that it does not add any value to the educational process, or represents a threat to the country's national security.
Meanwhile, education investors are satisfied with the new ministerial decree as they believe it is a step towards re-attracting serious investors to the education industry. Ahmed Wahbi, CEO of GEMS Education Egypt, a private sector education provider, said the new ministerial decree will boost investment in the education sector and help current operators improve their services and meet the demand for education services.
The company, which is a joint venture with investment bank EFG Hermes, intends during the next two years to invest $300 million in building 30 private schools, with a capacity of 25,000-30,000 students, Wahbi said.

*A version of this article appears in print in the 28 January, 2021 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly.

Clic here to read the story from its source.