Speakers at Egypt’s E-Commerce Summit agreed that the country is on the right track in terms of its planned digital transformation, and also highlighted its potential for a strong e-commerce sector.
Most of the attendees, speaking during the second annual E-Commerce Summit, held in Cairo on Tuesday, agreed that technology is reshaping the world of retail and said that all barriers preventing retailers from going online should be eliminated.
The head of the IT industry chamber at the Federation of Egyptian Industries (FEI), Walid Gad, said that 1,200 firms, both foreign and domestic, work in IT in Egypt, and e-commerce is one of the most important activities they perform.
Gad also asserted that Egyptian firms that are based on technology have the ability to be pioneers in digital transformation and e-commerce, with the support of the industry chamber and of the Information Technology Industry Development Authority (ITIDA).
ITIDA’s head Hala El Gohary said that there is a need for the government, private sector, and civil society to work together in this regard to help implement the digital transformation, and to strengthen the e-commerce sector.
Mahmoud Fawzi, legal advisor to both the speaker of the House of Representatives and to the minister of investment, said that Egypt has taken serious steps to pave the way for a robust digital transformation and a strong IT industry.
“The government has worked on amending current legislation and drafting new laws. Thus, the amendments to the customer protection law included an article that protects the customer’s rights to their online financial transactions. In addition, the government is working on drafting a new law to control online crimes and protect customer data from abuse, which will be discussed soon in the parliament. And the amendments to the economic courts law make judicial proceedings easier for online crimes,” he said.
In the same vein, a new law on financial transactions to regulate non-cash payments has been drafted and ratified by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, and the parliament is set to discuss the personal data protection law in the current parliamentary session after a social dialogue is conducted around it.
The speakers also called on Egypt’s legislative and executive bodies to clarify their position regarding reports on the imposition of taxes on e-commerce platforms, especially ones which generate profits, without giving a negative message to such types of investment.