Egypt committed to exploring new cooperation horizons with Greece, Cyprus: FM

Ahram Online , Saturday 23 Sep 2023

Egypt is committed to exploring new avenues for tripartite cooperation with Greece and Cyprus, Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry said while meeting with his Greek and Cypriot counterparts in New York on Friday.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Part of the meeting between Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry with his Greek and Cypriot with his Greek and Cypriot counterparts in New York on Friday 22 September, 2023. Photot courtesy of Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


The meeting took place on the sidelines of the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 78) in New York, the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

This meeting brought together Shoukry with his counterparts Giorgos Gerapetritis of Greece and Constantinos Kombos of Cyprus.

The top Egyptian diplomat said the tripartite mechanism reflects joint commitment to translating political consensus into tangible security, economic, and cultural cooperation.

The tripartite mechanism is an important and successful regional cooperation framework in the Mediterranean, aiming to combat joint challenges and emergency crises, Shoukry added.

Tripartite discussions

During the meeting, the foreign ministers underscored the need to hold the 10th summit among the three countries' leaders and the need to expedite project implementation.

Discussions encompassed a range of joint initiatives in fields such as gas, electricity, tourism, transportation, and agriculture, with a focus on identifying promising areas for cooperation in vital sectors.

Furthermore, the ministers stressed the need to enhance coordination within the East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) to maximize the use of gas resources in the Eastern Mediterranean.

They also addressed regional and international issues, including the Libyan crisis, the situation in the Palestinian occupied territories and efforts to revive the peace process, developments in Sudan, and the Russia-Ukraine crisis.

Shoukry also briefed the Greek and Cypriot ministers on developments in negotiations over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), highlighting Egypt's utmost priority to safeguard its water security.

Stressing the existential nature of the water security issue, Shoukry emphasized the need to reach a legally binding agreement on the dam's filling and operation.

Cyprus ties

Following the meeting, Shoukry met with his Cypriot counterpart to discuss economic and investment cooperation.

Egypt attaches great importance to promoting Cypriot investments in Egypt, Shoukry said.

Egypt is also keen to build on successful cooperation, especially in the natural gas and power linkage sectors, Shoukry said, adding that energy is a strategic field of cooperation between the two countries.

For his part, Kombos expressed the keenness of Cyprus to develop bilateral cooperation with Egypt and tripartite cooperation with Greece.

Kombos hailed Egypt as a pillar for stability in the Middle East and the East Mediterranean, praising Egyptian efforts to combat terrorism and address irregular migration.

Greek ties

Shoukry also discussed with his Greek counterpart means of enhancing economic and investment ties in sectors such as tourism, agriculture, green transformation, and maintaining coordination in the field of energy and natural gas.

Shoukry, for his part, called for activating the agreements signed by the two countries, with a special focus on the employment of Egyptian seasonal workers in Greece.

Over the past decade, Egypt, Greece, and Cyprus have deepened their tripartite cooperation across various fronts, including politics, energy, economics, and defense. Their collaboration has included high-level exchanges and numerous tripartite summits to advance planned projects and initiatives.

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