ALEXBANK signs a cooperation protocol with the Ministry of Social Solidarity during the Artisan Design Fair
Cairo, May 2nd 2018: Today, ALEXBANK signed a cooperation protocol with the Ministry of Social Solidarity aimed at supporting more than 20,000 Egyptian craftsmen by committing technical and financial support up to EGP 3 million throughout the program which will span over two years period. The protocol goal is to enhance the marketing opportunities for the Egyptian craftsmen, by promoting them locally and globally through the organization of several exhibitions and by the publishing of a photographic catalogue to showcases handicrafts produced all across Egypt by craftsmen who keep alive and constantly evolve Egypt’s centuries-old handcraftsmanship traditions.
The protocol was signed in the attendance of H.E. Eng. Sherif Ismail, the Prime Minister, H.E. Dr. Ghada Wali Minister of Social Solidarity, Dr. Nevine El-Kabbag Assistant Minister of Social Solidarity, Mr. Dante Campioni, CEO and Managing Director of ALEXBANK, Ms. Laila Hosni, ALEXBANK’s Head of CSR and Sustainable Development, and several officials from ALEXBANK and MOSS, along with a number of journalists and media representatives.
The signature has taken place within the framework of the “Artisans Design Fair” sponsored this year by ALEXBANK, an event organized by the Ministry of Social Solidarity at the Cairo International Convention & Exhibition Center in Nasr City, that is taking place from the 2nd until the 5th of May under the auspices of H.E. the Prime Minister Eng. Sherif Ismail, where Alexbank’s pioneer initiative “Ebda3 Men Masr” is also on display. Through its commitment in the field of craftsmanship, Alexbank intends to help the participating artisans in nurturing and refining their talents, sustain the development’s capabilities of NGOs and civil society organizations operating in the handicrafts field, and support the opening of the Egyptian traditional handicraft products to new markets also abroad.
Dr. Ghada Wali, the Minister of Social Solidarity said “The protocol comes in line with the ministry’s strategy that entails cooperation with all entities whether governmental, private or NGOs that support developing and marketing for the handcrafted products. Speaking of which, we must praise the private sector role for its continuous efforts in supporting and developing the handicrafts and protecting our heritage - that represents Egypt’s civilized identity - from extinction. The protocol funds will be directed to develop and enhance presentation techniques, provide training on marketing and pricing, and inaugurate new markets in Egypt, Africa and Europe.”
Moreover, the minister added that signing the protocol with ALEXBANK is considered part of a bigger social security strategy through increasing income and operations in parallel, along with expanding in SMEs and micro-finance. Also, It always contribute in encouraging youth and supporting handicrafts through its leading initiative “Ebda3 Men Masr” as it has a great role in enhancing the promotional and marketing opportunities for these products in Egypt and abroad.
Dante Campioni, the CEO and Managing Director of ALEXBANK said: “ALEXBANK strongly support artisans, micro-enterprises and possibly SMEs committed to keep alive and develop the tradition of Egyptian handicrafts, convinced that there is big room in the market for such productions. We believe that it’s extremely important to support the talented creativity of Egyptian artisans that we perceive is well spread all across Egypt, as this can create immediate working and socio-economic inclusion’s opportunities, especially to the benefit of female and youth living in the rural areas of Upper Egypt. Our commitment aims at affirming the concept of “Shared Values Creation” (CSV), which mainly relies on pursuing economic value while serving the community that is an evolution of the “Corporate Social Responsibility” (CSR) notion, within the logic of valuable and sustainable development’s promotion.
He also pointed out that such efforts have a positive effect towards achieving financial inclusion, as the artisans supported within the “Ebda3 Men Masr” program can receive financial literacy training which favor their possible access to micro-finance products and to the adoption of POS in their workshops, in addition to the possibility to accede the B2C E-Commerce platform created by Alexbank (www.ebda3menmasr.org), through which their products can be purchased on-line. All this will favor also their progressive full inclusion to the formal economy, which falls in line with the national goals.
Regarding “Ebda3 Men Masr” and its participation at the Fair, Laila Hosni, Head of CSR and Sustainable Development at ALEXBANK said that “It comes at the forefront of the development projects pursued by the bank for social development. The initiative intends to revive the handicrafts industry and preserve the Egyptian cultural heritage, which is the main reason behind our participation to the fair, together with the promotion of the artisans and their products”.
She added: “Ebda3 Men Masr” is helping more than 4,000 handicraftsmen in Egypt by discovering their creative talents and supporting their development. The initiative also provides these artisans with marketing and promotion opportunities for their products — locally and globally — through the official website of the initiative and through the E-Commerce platform that is operated by Souq.com”.