Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Jaishankar in Egypt: Shared interests will take ties to next level

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External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar concluded his bilateral visit to Egypt on Monday, where he met with prominent foreign policy figures.

The External Affairs Minister went on to say that India and Egypt’s similar perspectives and interests will undoubtedly strengthen their ties.

In a Tweet, the EAM wrote, “Concluded my first official visit to Egypt. Our common perspectives and shared interests will surely take ties to the next level.”

Jaishankar was on a two-day official trip to Egypt for his first bilateral visit from October 15-16.

During the visit, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry here on Saturday and said that both of them discussed the Ukraine conflict and Indo-Pacific and also invited Egypt to the G20 summit to be chaired by New Delhi.

The minister also discussed a range of bilateral, regional and international issues of mutual interest with Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and also interacted with Indian community-based in Egypt, including students, and address a gathering of the Egyptian and Indian business community.

In an interaction with the Indian community in Cairo, he said, “There was a particular interest in Egypt about getting one of our IITs (Indian Institute of Technology) to set up a collaborative enterprise here. I will discuss this with our Education Minister in India.”

Addressing the India-Egypt Business Forum on Sunday, Jaishankar said, “Well-reputed Indian companies are coming out to a destination like Egypt, assessing the possibilities here favourably. I think this says a lot about our companies and your credibility as an investment destination. I see a world of possibilities here.”

Meanwhile, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi asked India to enhance trade turnover and stated that existing revenue was insufficient.

Jaishankar also mentioned Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s visit to Egypt, saying that India and Egypt have lately increased defence and security cooperation, and that the Indian Air Force and Egyptian Air Force held key drills and regular ship visits to Egypt.

He also emphasised India’s commitment to the success of COP27 under Egyptian leadership.

On Saturday, Jaishankar also stated that he will meet with Union Minister of Education, Skill and Entrepreneurship Dharmendra Pradhan to discuss collaboration with Egypt on renowned higher educational institutes such as the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT).

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the beginning of diplomatic relations between the two countries. Egypt has been asked to be a ‘Guest Country’ during India’s G-20 presidency in 2022-23.

Egypt is one of India’s greatest economic partners in Africa, and one of the visit’s focal points will be the promotion of bilateral trade, commerce, and investments. During the fiscal year 2021-22, bilateral trade between India and Egypt reached a new high of USD 7.26 billion.

India has invested more than USD 3.15 billion in Egypt. Over 50 Indian companies are working in Egypt in a variety of areas such as manufacturing, chemicals, energy, infrastructure, retail, and so on.

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