Singapore s Ambassador Dominic Goh, Ambassador Hazem El-Tahry, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for ASEAN, with a group of ambassadors
In the presence of Singapore’s Ambassador to Egypt Dominic Goh, the party was attended by Ambassador Hazem El-Tahry, deputy assistant secretary of state for ASEAN and Southeast Asian affairs, Egyptian politician, diplomat and former secretary-general of the Arab League Amr Moussa, as well as former foreign ministers of Egypt Mohamed El-Orabi and Mohamed Kamel Amr. An array of ambassadors and members of the diplomatic and consular corps of many countries were also in attendance.
Ambassador Goh said that “Singapore investments in Egypt now exceed $1 billion, making us the fourth-largest investor from East Asia. Our trade with Egypt also grew by 50 percent last year to reach more than $600 million. Our companies have been hard at work to increase their investments. This summer, PSA-BDP – Singapore’s port operator – opened its new head office in Cairo. Olam Food Ingredients established a new factory in Beni Suef, which will create jobs, support farming communities, and help increase Egypt’s exports.”
He added: “Indorama, another Singaporean company, is planning a big investment which will be announced soon. Our IT company Ohla has also established a research and development office in Maadi. We have active cooperation in the area of tourism and antiquities. For example, Neon Global, a Singapore company, is working with the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities to promote Egypt’s rich history by organizing the exhibition of Ramses II’s treasures in Houston, San Francisco, Paris, and the next stop will be Sydney. They are also planning future stops in Europe and Asia, and possibly going back to the US. So, Singapore is helping to promote tourism in Egypt by promoting global knowledge of your great antiquities.”
“In addition, Singapore recently welcomed His Excellency Major General Abbas Helmy, the minister of civil aviation, to witness the signing of two agreements: One to develop Cairo International Airport’s passenger terminal, and the second to provide feasibility studies for Cairo Cargo City,” Goh added.
He explained that “other visitors to Singapore in the past year included Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat, Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla, and GAFI President Hossam Heiba. Visits by Singaporean ministers included senior Minister Teo Chee Hean, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu, and Minister for Social and Family Development Masagos Zulkifli.”
Goh continued: “I would also like to take this opportunity to wish all our Egyptian friends a happy Egyptian New Year 6265, marking more than 6,000 years of Egyptian civilisation, congratulations.”
“My Egyptian friends have asked me many times to explain what is the reason behind our rapid economic success. Of course, I could speak the entire night about our strong governance, focus on education, and forward-looking economic policies. But let me just say one thing. What underlies all of this is our people. It is how we as Singaporeans come together regardless of race, language, or religion to give our best, and push Singapore forward. Just look at our presidents. Our former president, who is a good friend of Egypt and visited it in 2016, Tony Tan, is Chinese. Our current president Halimah Yacob is a Malay Muslim woman and our next president, just newly elected, is Indian.
'This represents Singapore. By harnessing our diversity, it becomes our greatest strength, and allows Singapore to punch above our weight both domestically and internationally.
“We also stick by each other even in the most difficult times. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate PERKEMAS, the Singapore Students Welfare Association in Cairo, which was awarded the COVID-19 Resilience Certificate by our president. This high honour is a recognition of their exemplary efforts to help bring Singaporeans home during the pandemic. I am also told that our 200 students in Al-Azhar are among the best students that they have, so thank you very much,” Goh stated.
"Yet, it is not enough for us to just come together within our own country. Singapore is too small for this. To succeed, we also rely on our friends overseas, such as ASEAN, and our key regional partners like Egypt.
“Let me say a few words about ASEAN, which is the world’s second most successful regional organization after the EU. ASEAN comprises the 10 countries of Southeast Asia, with a combined GDP of $3.66 trillion and a population of close to 700 million. This makes ASEAN the world’s fifth largest economy (after the US, China, Japan, and Germany). Combined, ASEAN is the number one foreign investor in Egypt from East Asia,” Ambassador Goh concluded.