EGYPT – The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Egyptian government have signed a US$330 million (44 billion Japanese yen) loan agreement to support the rollout of a comprehensive health insurance scheme in the country.

Egyptian government’s new universal health insurance system aims to provide all people with access to needed health services of sufficient quality to be safe and effective.

This move will ensure that the use of these critical services does not expose the Egyptian user to financial hardship.

With financial backing from JICA, Egypt will strengthen its health systems and ensure equitable access to critical healthcare services for its citizens.

These funds will be used to create, implement, and maintain Egypt’s universal health insurance system, and achieve the desired goals according to the specified timetable.

To fast-track the pilot project, Egypt will use the fresh funds to roll out the health insurance scheme in select governorates including Suez, Aswan, and South Sinai before the end of the Fiscal Year 2023.

The government plans to roll out the comprehensive health insurance scheme to the rest of the governorates in the remaining phases.

This health insurance scheme will help towards reforming the health sector and integrated health care for all citizens at an appropriate cost.

This financing will be used to advance the quality of medical services provided to citizens and help complete the implementation of the new health insurance system over the next seven years.

Universal Health Coverage (UHC) has been high on national and international agendas since its adoption as one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Japan International Cooperation Agency will back governmental efforts in realizing comprehensive health coverage for Egyptian citizens.

This strategic deal will also help to enhance the operational capabilities of the General Authority for Comprehensive Health Insurance.

Moreover, the agreement is a new impetus for the development cooperation process between the Egyptian and Japanese sides.

The loan-signing ceremony was presided over by Egypt’s Finance Minister Mohamed Maait and the Chief Representative of the JICA Egypt Office, Kato Ken.

This strategic deal is in line with the unprecedented development movement in Egypt, which aims to lay the foundations for a decent life for citizens.

In particular, the sector of human development, with its axes of health and education, is considered a top priority.

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