Suez Canal's navigation security vital for Singapore: FM to Shoukry

Ahram Online , Saturday 23 Mar 2024

Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan stressed on Saturday that ensuring safe and sustainable navigation in the Suez Canal is a supreme interest for his country, as it the ideal means of trading with Europe.

Sameh Shoukry
Egypt s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry receives his Singaporean counterpart Vivian Balakrishnan in Cairo, 23 March 2024. Photo courtesy of Egyptian Foreign Ministry


The Singaporean minister's remarks came during a meeting with his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry.

They discussed regional and international issues, most notably the ongoing war in the Gaza Strip and its repercussions on the security of the Red Sea and international navigation and shipping.

During the meeting, both ministers discussed ways to advance efforts to reach a permanent ceasefire in Gaza.

They also emphasized the conflict’s negative repercussions on the Egyptian and world economies, in addition to its consequences for regional security and stability.

In this regard, Shoukry reiterated Cairo's warning against the worsening of the already catastrophic humanitarian conditions in the Gaza Strip.

Egypt categorically rejects any forced displacement of Palestinians, the liquidation of the Palestinian cause, or any invasion of the southern Gaza city of Rafah, he said.

Furthermore, the Singaporean minister was keen to listen to Shoukry's assessment of the humanitarian catastrophe in the Gaza Strip. Shoukry highlighted Egypt's continuous efforts to facilitate the entry of humanitarian aid into the besieged strip and mediate a ceasefire.

Bilateral relations

During the meeting, both ministers agreed to continue developing bilateral relations between the two countries.

Specifically, Shoukry stressed Egypt’s interest in benefiting from Singaporean companies’ investment in the Suez Canal in such fields as logistics, port management, and transit trade.

Meanwhile, Balakrishnan expressed his country’s interest in cooperation on renewable energy, agriculture, and tourism.

The two ministers also discussed a proposal to establish a joint business council aimed at supporting and fostering cooperation between the private sector in Egypt and Singapore.

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