Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi met on Tuesday with leading European energy officials to discuss transforming Egypt into an energy hub for the region, according to a statement by the presidency.
El-Sisi met with the European Climate and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete as well as Ulrich Spiesshofer, the German chief executive officer of the ABB Group, a leading power and automation technology company.
Spiesshofer discussed his vision for transforming Egypt into an energy hub for the Middle East and North Africa; while President El-Sisi expressed Egypt's readiness for cooperation projects in electricity and renewable energy.
Following the meeting, ABB said in an official statement that they are committed to Egypt’s energy and industrial future.
"We fully support Egypt’s goal of becoming an energy hub and a centre for export-oriented industrial production. We have been present here since 1926 and are proud to invest and provide job opportunities for Egyptians,” said ABB CEO.
ABB has invested more than $200 million in expanding and developing its facilities in Egypt in the past couple of years. About 20 percent of ABB’s production in Egypt is currently exported; the target is to increase that figure to 25 percent.
ABB’s recent landmark projects in Egypt include power stations serving the new Terminal 2 at Cairo International Airport; the control system for Cairo water treatment and the electricity for the Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza.
El-Sisi discussed with the EU Climate and Energy Commissioner Cañete the developmental steps that Egypt has taken in the fields of electricity, renewable energy and infrastructure.
El-Sisi highlighted that these developments qualify Egypt to become a bridge between the MENA region and European countries in electricity linkage projects.
El-Sisi and Cañete also praised the signing of a memorandum of understanding on Monday between the EU and Egypt in the field of energy.
The memorandum highlights six priorities in the context of EU-Egypt partnership, including “further assistance to the development of the oil and gas sector”, “continued support to electricity sector reforms,” and “development of the energy hub,” according to the statement.
Cañete stressed that Egypt has become an important gas hub in the region in light of its strategic geographical location, as well as recent gas discoveries that qualify it to move to the export stage in the future.
He also highlighted the European Union's support for Egypt's plans to export liquefied natural gas, in light of the interest of the Union in diversifying its sources of energy.