Monday, 25 June 2018

Eleven UK universities welcomed to Egypt by the Prime Minister His Excellency Engineer Mostafa Madbouly and Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research His Excellency Dr Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar

UK and Egypt sign an MOU aiming at developing strategic partnership between Ministry of Higher Education & Scientific Research and the University of Liverpool

A high-level delegation representing eleven UK universities is visiting Egypt from 24 – 27 June to explore higher education and research collaboration. The delegation was invited by H.E. Dr Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar, Egyptian Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research. The group was also welcomed by Prime Minister, H.E. Engineer Moustafa Madbouly.

During a meeting between the delegation and H.E. Dr Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar, the Egyptian Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MoHESR) and the University of Liverpool signed an MoU. The MOU aims at developing the strategic partnership between the Ministry of Higher Education & Scientific Research and the University of Liverpool through joint research and innovation activities, the exchange and training of the academic staff and students, as well as educational capacity building initiatives, together with other activities of common interest, relating to the development of institutional partnerships and the establishment of an International Branch of the University (IBC).

The signing follows a successful visit by H.E. Dr Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar to the UK in January 2018 during which a bilateral governmental Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed. This set out expectations of the conditions under which UK universities would be able to establish international branch campuses (IBCs) in Egypt. 

The UK delegation is led by Vivienne Stern, Director, Universities UK International. Universities UK International has organised the event in partnership with the Egyptian Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, the British Embassy in Cairo and the British Council in Egypt. 

During a series of high-level meetings, the delegation will discuss topics including:

  • How UK universities can respond to and support the Egyptian government’s aims under their national sustainable development strategy Egypt Vision 2030, for the mutual benefit of both countries and their higher education sectors.
  • The wide range of potential partnerships between Egypt and the UK including, but not limited to, IBCs; building on a position of comparative sector strength strategic. This includes: partnerships; collaborative research; student and staff exchange programmes; joint funding applications; and capacity building.
  • The UK’s interest in engaging both in the capital and across the country.
  • The success of current UK-Egypt higher education partnerships.

The University of Liverpool was the first to establish the study of Egyptian archaeology with the appointment of John Garstang in 1902. The University remains the largest centre for Egyptology research in the UK and now focuses on the preservation and access to important cultural heritage assets.  

Senior representatives from the following universities and organisations will be joining Vivienne Stern: Coventry University; Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh; University of Portsmouth; University of East Anglia; Edinburgh Napier University; Cardiff Metropolitan University; University of Hertfordshire; Canterbury Christ Church University; University of Leicester; University of Liverpool; Manchester Metropolitan University; UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office; UK Department for Business; Energy and Industrial Strategy; UK Department for International Trade; and British Council Egypt. 

The programme includes meetings with the Presidents of: Cairo University; Ainshams University; Helwan University; Mansoura University; Suez Canal University; American University in Cairo; Future University; New Giza University; Alexandria University; Zewail City of Science and Technology; and E-JUST University. The group will also engage with the Supreme Council of Universities; the National Authority for Quality Assurance and Accreditation of Education (NAQAAE); and the New Capital Development Authority.

Egypt is currently the fifth largest host country worldwide of UK transnational education – with over 19,800 students enrolled on UK programmes. The number of UK-Egypt co-authored research papers is also increasing, bolstered by bilateral initiatives such as the Newton-Mosharafa Fund, and the UK is currently Egypt’s fourth largest international research collaboration partner (source: SciVal).

Vivienne Stern comments: “UK and Egyptian universities have been working together for many years. It’s extremely important that we expand access to the highest quality of education to Egypt’s large youth population. It is exciting to mark the growth of UK-Egyptian university engagement across a variety of areas, particularly in the last five years: the delivery of UK degrees in Egypt; Egyptian scholars welcomed to the UK; and research collaboration. This high-level delegation is the next step in an ongoing relationship that saw the UK's Minister for Higher Education and Industrial Strategy, Sam Gyimah, sign an MoU on establishing branch campuses in Egypt with His Excellency Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar, Minister for Higher Education and Scientific Research, in January.”

University of Liverpool Vice Chancellor and President of Universities UK, Professor Dame Janet Beer says: “The University of Liverpool has an established reputation for its capabilities in developing international higher education partnerships. Strengthening our global reach in education and research is at the heart of our vision for the University’s future. The UK and Egypt have a strong bilateral relationship supporting the development of mutually beneficial partnerships in education, research and innovation and we are delighted that our governments have put such an emphasis on higher education co-operation. We are grateful for the support of the British Ambassador in Egypt and the British Council. The visit provides an opportunity for us to better understand the models of collaboration that will have the greatest impact.”

British Ambassador to Egypt John Casson says: “Britain is Egypt’s natural partner in education. Both countries have historic university systems that must be renewed to give us the world class education to succeed in the twenty first century. So it’s great to welcome the biggest high ranking UK university delegation ever in Egypt – 11 universities representing the quality and diversity of British education. We will be holding serious talks with Egyptian Ministers and university leaders to implement our recent MoUs and give Egyptians access to the best education in the world. Already 20,000 Egyptians are studying for UK degrees, but we want to see many thousands more benefit from the power of  British research and education.” 

Acting Country Director for the British Council in Egypt Alex Lambert says: “Years of work strengthening relationships in the international education sector lie behind a high-level meeting like this. The British Council has 80 years of experience developing education partnerships with the government of Egypt, working to build ties between organisations here and in the UK to provide international opportunities for young people.”


Notes to Editor

For more information please contact Miranda Thomas on or +44 (0)7870 653456 

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Last year we reached over 65 million people directly and 731 million people overall including online, broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government.

About Universities UK International

Universities UK International (UUKi) represents UK higher education institutions (HEIs) globally and helps them flourish internationally. To do this we actively promote UK HEIs abroad, provide trusted information for and about them, and create new opportunities through our unique ability to act at sector level. We draw on UK university expertise to influence policy in the UK and overseas, delivering information, advice and guidance to facilitate mutually beneficial collaboration between UK HEIs and a broad range of international partners. 

About the University of Liverpool

Founded in 1881 as the original ‘red brick’, the University of Liverpool is one of the UK’s leading research-intensive higher education institutions with an annual income of £523 million, including £95 million for research. Consistently ranked in the top 200 universities worldwide, we are a member of the prestigious Russell Group of the UK’s leading research universities and have a global reach and influence that reflects our academic heritage as one of the country’s largest civic institutions. The University has 33,000 students, 8,000 of whom travel from all over the world to study here, and a thriving community of 219,000 alumni in 171 countries. Our global focus has led to the establishment of a university in Suzhou near Shanghai, as well as a campus in London, and we are the largest provider of 100% online postgraduate degree courses in Europe, with over 10,000 students studying for Liverpool degrees around the world.