After moving to the new capital, what is the fate of government assets in Cairo?
Cairo – After years of controversy over the new administrative capital, this capital will become a fait accompli when the Egyptian government begins to move its headquarters there as of next December, based on the directives of President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, as Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly mentioned a few days ago.
As a result of the government’s move to the new capital, the ministries buildings located in Cairo are completely emptied, along with the Egyptian parliament building, which leads to the question of the fate of these buildings after their evacuation, especially as they are located in prominent and distinguished areas in central Cairo.
The Egyptian presidency indicated – in a statement issued last week – the end of what it called “the current preparation phase for the headquarters and facilities of the government district” in the new capital, which is about 60 km from Cairo, the largest Egyptian city and Arab capitals.
It is scheduled to move 34 ministries and official bodies during the first phase of the government’s move plan to the new administrative capital.
The fate of ancient assets
- The government headquarters in Cairo fall under 3 classifications: the first is not registered with the Ministry of Antiquities and does not belong to the unique architectural style, the second is historical with a unique urban style, and the third is archaeological belonging to the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
- The Administrative Capital for Urban Development Company will receive the cash consideration for selling some of the old headquarters that will be vacated inside Cairo, in the form of shares of shares after the ownership of the buildings and headquarters will be transferred to Egypt’s Sovereign Fund to explore the best ways to exploit them, according to a statement by the company’s head, Major General Ahmed Zaki.
- Those government buildings will be used in service or production investment projects for the benefit of citizens, or they will be sold or rented, with the return going to the Administrative Capital Company.
- The archaeological government headquarters will be entrusted to the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, to be managed as archaeological facilities after restoring and beautifying them as archaeological sites, according to government officials.
- The head of the Misr Real Estate Asset Management Company, Fathia Shteiwi, confirmed that according to a court ruling issued by the Constitutional Court, all government or investment companies that rent headquarters or buildings from the Misr Real Estate Asset Management Company must hand them over to the company.
- Misr Real Estate Assets Company, as one of the Misr Insurance Holding companies, owns 351 historical buildings at the level of Egypt’s governorates, most of which are concentrated in Cairo and Alexandria.
- Despite the statements of the head of the New Capital Company regarding the transfer of ownership of government assets to the sovereign fund, the head of the National Organization for Urban Coordination, Mohamed Abu Saada, announced the formation of a national committee to examine the real estate of the downtown Cairo area and to indicate the methods for restoring the unique constructive spirit to it, whether the building is antique or modern.
- And included in the examinations by the National Committee of the buildings to be evacuated, and they number more than 70 buildings, including villas, palaces and buildings of a unique civilized style.
- A study issued by the Capital Center for Economic Studies and Research entitled “The Fate of the Governmental Headquarters in Old Cairo after the Transfer of Its Employees to the Administrative Capital” revealed that the process of benefiting from the old ministries’ headquarters faces many difficulties due to the government’s lack of a clear strategy in this regard.
- According to the study, the prices of the buildings to be vacated have not yet been determined. However, the real estate assets of the ministries’ buildings in the downtown Cairo region alone may exceed 700 billion pounds (equivalent to 45 billion dollars).
- Egypt’s sovereign fund: It was established by Law No. 177 of 2018 to transfer ownership of unused assets in order to contribute to the economic development of the state, and its board of directors is formed by a decision of the President of the Republic, and enjoys financial and administrative independence from the government.
The board of directors of the sovereign fund includes the Minister of Planning, a non-executive chairman of the board of directors, representatives of the ministries concerned with planning, finance and investment affairs, as well as 5 independent members with expertise in economics, law and investment affairs.
It is concerned with buying, selling, leasing, leasing and exploiting fixed and movable assets, investing in securities inside and outside the country, borrowing, obtaining credit facilities, issuing bonds and financing instruments, and other debt instruments, and lending or guaranteeing investment funds and subsidiaries that he owns or shares with others.
Last week, Sisi met with Fund Executive Director Ayman Suleiman, in the presence of Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly and Minister of Planning Hala Al-Saeed, where Sisi directed By continuing the Fund’s study of the state’s untapped property and assets, and strengthening the efforts and role of the Fund to attract private investments.
- Misr Real Estate Asset Management: An Egyptian joint stock company affiliated with the Misr Insurance Holding Company pursuant to Minister of Investment Decision No. 53 of 2007, and is specialized in managing, buying, selling, leasing, leasing, establishing and maintaining real estate of all kinds, and in general all investments in real estate assets.
- The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities: The institution entrusted with protecting the Egyptian heritage from all historical eras. The Ministry is responsible for preserving antiquities, museums, stores, archaeological sites and areas, and historical buildings. It may, by a decision of the Minister, upon the proposal of the Board of Directors and after consulting the competent permanent committee, write off the registration of the immovable antiquity or part of it.
The most important assets
- Parliament seat: It dates back to the 19th century, and it consists of 3 buildings built in successive historical times. The oldest building witnessed the first meeting of the representatives of Egypt on December 26, 1881, and on March 15, 1924 a new hall was opened to hold sessions of the House of Representatives, while retaining the old hall of the House of Representatives. The sheikhs, and the third building was built in 1972 to hold parliamentary committee sessions. The area of the three buildings is 48,300 square meters, close to Tahrir Square in the heart of Cairo.
- Ministry of Education Building: It dates back to 1874 when the ruler of Egypt, Khedive Ismail, ordered it to be built on an area of 9 acres for his adopted daughter, Princess Faika, to live there with her husband, Mustafa Pasha, son of Ismail al-Muftis, who was Minister of Finance at the time. In 1931, the palace was transformed into the headquarters of Nazarat al-Maarif, which became the Ministry of Education, and is located in the center of Cairo.
- Ministry of Awqaf Building: It was built in the Mamluk architecture style in stages and opened for the first time in 1899, then witnessed expansion works in 1912, then another annex was built in 1929, and in 1936 a third extension of the building was built.
- Liberation complex: Its construction dates back to 1948. It is a building that brings together different government departments. It consists of 14 floors. It was built on an area of 28 thousand square meters. It includes 1356 rooms, accommodating 18 thousand employees. It is characterized by spacious halls, skylights, many windows, and many corridors in each floor. .