The Minister of Communications and Information Technology Amr Talaat has witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) and VISA, a global payments technology company. The aim is to enhance cooperation in supporting entrepreneurship, encouraging startups to develop innovative fintech solutions, and promoting electronic payments in Egypt.
The MoU was signed by ITIDA CEO Amr Mahfouz, and the General Manager at VISA North Africa Ahmed Gaber.
The three-year MoU aims to enhance cooperation in establishing and supporting Egyptian fintech startups, through selecting a number of entrepreneurs and startups and helping them benefit from VISA’s dedicated support to fintech innovators.
According to the MoU, the global Company will support startups and innovators through its fintech supporting program that includes offering technical training and business mentorship with respect to business models and needs, marketing, and success approach, to get onboarded fast with VISA; testing their payment solutions if applicable, and ensuring they meet VISA’s standards and specifications; and finding enablement partners leveraging VISA’s global partner network to extend their capabilities.
In addition, VISA is committed to provide entrepreneurs and startups access to its development application programming interfaces (API) to facilitate integration with VISA’s global network and experimenting with VISA’s sandbox.
The MoU, in addition, provides that the two sides cooperate in availing online business skills content to Egyptian entrepreneurs, where VISA will develop and maintain the content in English and Arabic, and ITIDA will upload it to its EgyptInnovate platform, through which it seeks to promote technological innovation and entrepreneurship in the Egyptian society.
The two sides will also collaborate in promoting the digitalization of payments among companies in Egypt, using IT. This is achieved through conducting awareness events to IT companies, on e-payments, explaining their significance and positive impact on the economy and the different segments of society.
The events will cover a number of topics, including: financial inclusion and cost of cash; government e-payment solutions; fostering a propitious e-payment ecosystem through engaging with companies specializing in software development and IT; and reducing the financial inclusion gender gap through empowering and supporting women in financial inclusion, and fostering the female entrepreneurs working in fintech.
Mahfouz highlighted the significance of the partnership between ITIDA and VISA in creating an enabling environment for the growth of entrepreneurship in fintech and raising awareness of e-payments. He referred to the technological development currently occurring in Egypt, within the efforts of building Digital Egypt.
MCIT attaches great importance to investing in young minds through launching a wide range of programs for building youth’s capacities and encouraging freelancing, said Mahfouz. He added that work is currently underway to establish more Digital Egypt innovation centers nationwide, to provide technical training to students and fresh graduates, and foster technological innovation and entrepreneurship.
For his part, Gaber stated that his company is proud to partner with ITIDA to catalyze the digital transformation, and establish and support fintech startups and Small And Medium-sized Enterprise (SMEs) that play a key role in boosting economic growth in Egypt, in light of the state’s efforts to drive development and achieve the transition to a cashless society.
Gaber added that they seek at VISA to nurture the e-payments ecosystem and support Egypt’s development plans for achieving financial inclusion by leveraging VISA’s global expertise to promote technological innovation and entrepreneurship among young people, as well as to support startups and encourage the participation of female entrepreneurs in technology and fintech.