Egyptian authorities are to increase the penalty for those who force women into genital mutilation (FGM).
The statutory prison term recommended for offenders had ranged from between three months and three years.
The cabinet has approved plans to impose jail terms of between five and seven years, with harsher sentences if the procedure leads to death or deformity.
FGM has been illegal in Egypt since 2008 but it remains widespread.
The procedure involves the partial or full removal of the external sex organs, ostensibly to control women's sexuality.
It is practised by both Muslims and Christians in a number of African countries and in parts of the Middle East.
In May, an Egyptian teenager who had undergone FGM died of complications, prompting the UN to call on Egypt for tougher action.