Egypt, officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is on the border between north east Africa and south west Asia, with its northern border in the Mediterranean Sea. Its geographical position – near Europe and accessible from both he East and West – makes it ideal for outsourcing operations. Egypt’s close proximity to Europe (an average four hour flight time to most European capitals) and similar time zone supports advantageous business partnerships. In addition, Egypt is geographically closer to North America than India and the Philippines, and near to the Gulf, Asia and Africa. As an intercontinental business destination, it has access to a number of world markets on the strength of its location alone.
Egypt’s high quality infrastructure and services – such as power, telecoms and internet – support the country’s outsourcing industry and ensures Egypt can offer cost-effective business process outsourcing services. It has some of the lowest internet rates in the world and has low telecom costs with ready VoIP services.
As of early 2010, Egypt has more than 17.433 million internet users and around 1.108 million broadband connections. There are 1990 IT clubs scattered across rural areas to provide access to society. Egypt’s government hopes to increase bandwidth, internet penetration, fixed line and mobile phone use, WiFi, WiMax and broadband services, while providing free internet access and government programs in schools, universities, and IT clubs.
In 2007, Egypt spent nearly 1.17 million US Dollars on information technology, which included computers, peripherals, network equipment, packaged software and IT services. At 1% of the GDP, that expenditure sustained about 1,700 companies in the ICT sector, with a staff or around 49,000 and taxes of 77 million US Dollars. As a center for world technology and communications, Egypt has worked tirelessly to attain its global position in the industry. Foreign investors and companies looking to outsource to Egypt continually benefit from the country’s low costs, which surpass those of India, the Philippines, and Bulgaria.
The Smart Village outside Cairo offers a state of the art, modern infrastructure, with facilities for over 28,000 people working in offices of information technology. Additional Smart Village offices are being planned for Alexandria and Damietta, accommodating Egypt’s expanding ICT industry. The Maadi Contact Center Park in Cairo will be fully operational in 2012, offering 35,000 seats at full capacity and complementing Smart Village Cairo’s information technology offices. 3 buildings are seeing operation (11,000 sq m) with more than 4,000 direct jobs through 2,000 seats, plus an estimated 2,000 indirect jobs. Both the smart village and the Maadi Contact Center Park will be home to more than 135,000 employees working in the ICT industry.