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Russia to build nuclear power plant to generate electricity in Egypt

Other investment projects are to include an Egyptian-Russian industrial zone to be established in Suez Canal area

Ahram Online , Tuesday 10 Feb 2015
Sisi and Putin
Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, right, shakes hands with visiting Russian President Vladimir Putin during their meeting in Cairo, Egypt, on Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2015 (Photo: AP)
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Egypt's President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Russian President Vladimir Putin have signed an agreement for Russia to construct a nuclear power plant to generate electricity in Egypt, the Ahram Arabic news website reported on Tuesday.

The power plant is one of several potential industrial and trade deals discussed during the Russian state head two-day visit to Egypt.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Putin said that "if final decisions are reached" regarding the power plant, construction would start straight away. He said the project would include capacity building and studies.

Egypt's El-Sisi said Russia had great experience in nuclear power.

Cairo has sought to strengthen its ties with Moscow, against the backdrop of strained ties with its long-time ally Washington, since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.

"The cooperation never ended and never will end, " El-Sisi said at the press conference. "We see in Russia a strategic friend and a real asset to balanced foreign relations for Egypt."

The heads of the two countries also discussed "endorsing military cooperation" and a collaborative approach to combating the "spread of terrorism".

Other investment projects are to include an Egyptian-Russian industrial zone to be established in Suez Canal area and infrastructure development.

Tourism and education are also possible forms of cooperation, Putin said, adding that around 3 million Russians visited Egypt in 2014, a 50 percent increase compared to past years.

"This indicates the positive outcomes of stability obtained after El-Sisi took office," Putin said.

Putin last visited Egypt a decade ago in 2005, when Hosni Mubarak was president. El-Sisi visited Moscow twice last year, first as defence minister in February, then as president in August.

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