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Hollande visits Egypt Sunday to boost economic ties

Ahram Online , Sunday 17 Apr 2016
File photo: France's President Francois Hollande at the Elysee Palace, in Paris, Friday, March 4, 2015 (Photo: AP)

French President Francois Hollande is set to arrive in Egypt on Sunday, in the second leg of his mideast tour which started in Lebanon on Saturday.

This will be Hollande's second visit to the country in less than a year.

The French president, who will be accompanied by an economic delegation, is expected to oversee the signing of a number of bilateral economic agreements.

President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and Hollande are expected to sign memorandums of agreement in a number of fields and projects, including training, electricity, generating renewable energy, the Cairo metro, and sewage system projects.

The delegation accompanying Hollande will include over 60 French businessmen. 

The two presidents will also discuss the crisis in Syria, Libya and Yemen and the French initiative for the Middle East process peace, according to a statement by Egypt's State Information Service.

The French president visited last in Egypt on 6 August 2015, when he attended the inauguration of the new Suez Canal. His visit to Cairo comes as part of a Middle East tour that includes visits to Jordan and Lebanon.

Egypt and France have signed several large arms deals in the past two years.

Hollande’s visit will also include meetings with Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, Parliament Speaker Ali Abdel-Al, local cultural figures, and French expats.

According to the State Information Service, the value of trade between Egypt and France amounts to 2.6 billion euros annually, and France is Egypt’s sixth largest importer.

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