More than 200 leaders representing Egyptian business, government, civil society and academia gathered in Cairo on 9 February to formally launch the Global Compact in Egypt. The event, which was hosted by the Egyptian Federation of Industries, marks the first launch of the Compact in an Arab nation.
Addressing the opening session, Antonio Vigilante, UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt, stressed the role of the Global Compact for human development and applauded Egyptian businesses for their strong support of the initiative.
A special message to the launch from UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan was delivered by Under-Secretary-General Iqbal Riza, his Chef de Cabinet. Mr. Annan welcomed the launch and expressed his hope that the good example of the Egyptian business community will inspire similar initiatives in the region. "It will be a new and practical source of hope for citizens that the benefits of globalization will reach them too, and that economic progress will truly improve their lives - and our world," he wrote.
Following speeches by Dr. Abdel Moneim Seoudi, Chairman of the Egyptian Federation of Industries and Ahmad A. El Amawi, Minister of Manpower and Immigration, Dr. Abdel Moneim Bekhit, Managing Director of the Federation of Industries presented the Cairo Declaration, a joint statement issued by Egyptian Global Compact participants.