Egyptian Minister of Trade and Industry Nevine Gamea discussed on Wednesday with Japanese Ambassador in Cairo Noke Masaki boosting economic relations between the two countries, especially in the sectors of industry and trade as well as small and medium enterprises, the trade and industry ministry said in a statement.
Gamea hailed the two countries’ relations, saying that “Egypt and Japan are linked by distinguished bilateral relations” based on achieving the common interest of the Egyptian and Japanese peoples alike.
She stressed, according to the statement, that President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s visit to Japan last year paved the way for starting a new phase of strategic cooperation between the two countries in various political, economic and scientific fields.
“The naming of one of the axes in eastern Cairo after the former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe confirms the depth of the distinguished bilateral relations between Egypt and Japan,” Gamea said.
On 17 September, a presidential statement said that El-Sisi has ordered that a new road that links El-Shahid Axis with Suez Road be named after Abe, Japan's longest serving prime minister.
In late August, Abe announced his resignation for health reasons, saying he did not want his illness to get in the way of decision making, and apologised to the Japanese people for failing to complete his term in office.
The Egyptian minister of trade and industry indicated that the government “is keen on attracting more Japanese investments to work in the Egyptian market and benefit from the advanced Japanese industrial expertise.”
She also highlighted investment opportunities in Egypt and its strategic location as a hub for access to the markets of the Middle East and Africa.
Gamea stated that a study is currently underway to implement a Japanese financing program worth $150 million, of which $100 million is to be allocated for industrial and digital transformation projects, and $50 million for agricultural projects and projects with high credit risks, the statement noted.
She called on Masaki to follow up on the implementation of the Japanese authorities’ lifting of a ban on Egyptian citrus exports to the Japanese market, especially in light of the high quality of Egyptian citrus and its good international reputation in foreign markets.
According to a statement in May by Ahmed El-Attar, head of the Central Administration of Plant Quarantine, Egypt is the current leader in the worldwide exports of citrus fruit, mainly oranges, with annual exports of 1.8 million tons and accounting for nearly 40 percent of the global exports of oranges.
Masaki, who was appointed as Ambassador of Japan to Egypt in July 2018, said his country is keen on cooperating with Egypt in different fields as Egypt is a strategic partner to Japan in the Middle East and Africa.
Masaki also expressed hope that the coming stage “will witness a qualitative leap” in the level of economic relations between Egypt and Japan in order to rise to the level of the historical political relations that bind the two countries.