DR Congo’s president affirms to Sisi keenness to enhance economic ties with Egypt

Amr Kandil , Wednesday 15 Sep 2021

Egypt has deeply contributed to Congolese developmental efforts recently and boosted the level of political and diplomatic consultations with the African state, which currently chairs the African Union

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi (L) and his Congolese counterpart, Felix Tshisekedi (R). Photo compilation/Egyptian Presidency

President Félix Tshisekedi affirmed the DR Congo’s keenness to enhance trade exchange and economic relations with Egypt in a phone call with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi on Tuesday.

Tshisekedi also hailed the cooperative bilateral relations between the two countries, praising Egypt’s support for the DR Congo’s development efforts, Presidential Spokesman Bassam Rady said in a statement.

In response, El-Sisi hailed the qualitative progress witnessed in the relations between the two countries in terms of political consultation and coordination as well as economic cooperation, Rady said.

The Egyptian president affirmed that this progress has been reflected in the developmental cooperation and investments between the two sides.

These developments are especially apparent in the fields of infrastructure, digital transformation, building and construction, energy, water, and others, El-Sisi affirmed.

According to Rady, El-Sisi and Tshisekedi discussed a number of issues regarding bilateral cooperation between the two countries and developments related to the most prominent African issues of mutual concern.

Intensive cooperation

Egypt has extensively contributed to Congolese developmental efforts recently and boosted the level of political and diplomatic consultations with the African state, which currently chairs the African Union (AU).

This includes Egypt’s inauguration of a Rain and Climate Changes Forecast Centre in the Congolese capital of Kinshasa and the training of Congolese staffers by Egyptian experts.

The centre aims to protect Congolese citizens from any sudden climate disasters and floods.

Egypt is also carrying out construction projects in the DR Congo, including a 150km-long-road linking two key cities in the country. The project, which is worth €110 million, is being constructed by Egypt’s state-owned company Arab Contractors.

CEO of Arab Contractors Sayed Farouk said the project includes the establishment of three bridges of different lengths serving as intersections on the road as well as 33 industrial designs for rain drainage and road protection.

Arab Contractors has also recently started a project to build and furnish a five-storey building for the defence ministry in Kinshasa, Farouk said.

Additionally, The Egyptian construction company is currently finishing the implementation of a number of roads in Kinshasa and the development of a water plant in Uvira city in the South Kivu Province, Farouk added.

In July, Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly held a meeting in Egypt with a Congolese delegation headed by his counterpart, Jean-Michel Sama Lukonde.

During the meeting, Madbouly hailed the large number of Congolese investors interested in carrying out major development projects in Egypt in the fields of construction, infrastructure, digitisation, energy, water management, and other fields.

In February, Egypt and the DR Congo signed an agreement to establish a solar power plant in the DR Congo’s Kasai Province at a cost of $19.7 million, according to African reports.

The African state also signed agreements with Egyptian companies to construct a drinking water plant on the Lubi river in the province of Sankuru, according to the reports.

The DR Congo, as the AU’s chair, is also leading the trilateral talks between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam dispute.

Although the AU-sponsored talks — the latest of which was in Kinshasa last April — have failed to produce any results or agreements, the three parties have affirmed on several occasions their preference to let the institution mediate their negotiations.

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