Sisi, Le Maire agree on boosting French investments in renewable energy in Egypt

Ahram Online , Friday 22 Jul 2022

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and French Minister of Economy and Finance Bruno Le Maire agreed Friday on the need to boost French development projects and investments in Egypt, especially in the renewable energy field.

Sisi, Le Maire

 

This comes as Egypt is set to host the 2022 UN Climate Change Conference (COP27) in the Red Sea city of Sharm El-Sheikh in November.

It also comes amid the country's ongoing plans to become a regional energy hub given its recent massive natural gas discoveries as well as its plans to transition towards a green economy.

Egypt and France are members of East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) - a regional block that seeks to unblock the full potential of the Eastern Mediterranean gas basin.

In their meeting in Paris, El-Sisi affirmed to Le Maire Egypt’s keenness to advance joint cooperation with France in the economic and commercial fields.

El-Sisi affirmed to Le Maire that Egypt looks forward to boosting French investments in Egypt in light of the promising opportunities created by the country’s mega projects.

Meanwhile, Le Maire affirmed France’s willingness to maximise cooperation with Egypt in various fields in order to support the ongoing development process.

The French minister also highlighted Egypt's pivotal role in consolidating security and stability in the Middle East.

El-Sisi started a visit to France on Friday as part of a European tour by the president that included Germany and Serbia.

Earlier in week, President El-Sisi affirmed in a joint press conference with Gernman Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin Egypt’s full readiness to lay the foundations of a firm partnership with Germany on energy, whether by exporting natural gas to Germany and the European Union or establishing anextended partnership.

After meeting with Le Maire , the Egyptian president held closed-door discussions with French President Emmanuel Macron.

The two leaders are set to address means of boosting bilateral relations and discuss a number of regional and international issues, according to the spokesman.

France has €4.6 billion in investments in infrastructure projects in Egypt, including the provision of €800 million in government loans, €1 billion from the French Development Agency and €2 billion in bank loans guaranteed by the French state.

Trade between Egypt and France amounted to $1.83 billion in 2021, while there are 168 French companies operating in Egypt, employing tens of thousands of workers.

In recent months, Egypt and France have also intensified their economic coordination to mitigate the impact of the Ukraine war.

In June, Egypt, which had relied heavily on Russian and Ukrainian wheat imports, imported 63,000 tons of wheat from France as part of the country's efforts to diversify its wheat sources.

In May, Egypt and France signed an agreement to manufacture 55 air-conditioned trains for Cairo Metro Line One and provide maintenance work for them for eight years.

France’s Alstom Co. will implement the project, which will cost €776.9 million, the Egyptian cabinet said in a statement.

In June 2021, Egypt and France also signed €1.7 billion worth of deals to fund projects in the fields of transport, housing, electricity, education and wholesale markets.

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