On the 14th of October in Cairo, the conference ‘CSR in Egypt: Building on Experiences in the Netherlands’ was held. The central question was what Egypt can learn from the Dutch approach in order to stimulate companies in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and to see what role the government can play. The conference was organized by the Dutch Embassy, in cooperation with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Egyptian Ministry of Trade, Industry and SMEs.
CREM prepared the content of the conference, including carrying out interviews with 20 or so companies, governments and other organizations in Egypt. On the day of the conference, CREM filled the role of moderator.
From philanthropy to strategic CSR
CSR in Egypt is now mainly carried out in the area of social investment and philanthropy instead of in sustainable development. Because of the need to produce for export and for resource efficiency (for example the reduction of energy use), there is a growing need for CSR to take on a more integral and strategic part.
The important question is, what role can the government play in this? For example bringing relevant parties together, removing obstacles for CSR (e.g. legislation) and to stimulate innovation.
The conference was well attended by companies, consultants and civil societal organizations. Speakers from the Netherlands included SER, SMK, ANVR, CBL and Modint. The embassy and CREM are currently exploring the possibilities for a follow up.
Photo: Moderation by Wijnand Broer (CREM)
More info: Wijnand Broer