Egypt benefits from numerous preferential trade agreements with partners including the USA, the EU, COMESA, Turkey and GCC countries, making it a prominent hub for export-oriented companies like Arafa Holding.
The Egypt-EU Association Agreement:
This 12-year agreement allows Egyptian manufactured exports such as Arafa Holding’s to enter the EU tariff-free, giving companies like Arafa Holding greater access to the EU’s pool of 500 million consumers.
Qualifying Industrial Zones:
The Qualifying Industrial Zones (QIZ) protocol between Egypt, Israel and the US allows duty-free access to the US market’s 300 million consumers provided 35% is manufactured in a QIZ in Egypt with a minimum of 10.5% Israeli inputs. It has resulted in a more than tenfold jump in Egyptian textiles and ready-made garments exports to the US in its first four years of operation. Arafa Holding’s Chairman and CEO Alaa Arafa was Vice Chairman of the negotiation team for the initial brokering of the QIZ agreement.
Egypt-Turkey Free Trade Agreement:
In 2005, Egypt and Turkey signed a free trade agreement Egypt-EU Association Agreement. As a result, trade between the two nations tripled between 2005 and 2009. Arafa Holding will look to expand into this new market in the future.
The Greater Arab Free Trade Agreement (GAFTA):
This agreement includes 21 Arab countries including Egypt. Its aim is to gradually phase out customs duties and to eliminate all other trading barriers including administrative, monetary, financial and technical barriers.
The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA):
COMESA is a free trade area with 19 member states including Egypt, Libya, Uganda and Zimbabwe. It aims to remove all trade barriers between member states. COMESA provides Arafa Holding with duty-free access to a market of more than 400 million consumers.