Date: [25th June 2023]
Location: Cairo, Egypt
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi embarked on a two-day state visit to Egypt, reinforcing the growing ties between the two nations. This visit holds great significance as it marks the first state visit to Egypt by an Indian Prime Minister since 1997. The prime minister’s arrival in Cairo was met with a warm reception from Egyptian Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly, signifying the importance of the bilateral relationship. During his visit, PM Modi engaged in high-level talks, discussed countering extremism, and explored avenues for further collaboration.
Let’s delve into the key highlights of this historic visit and its potential implications for the future of India-Egypt relations.
Strengthening Bilateral Ties
The visit commenced with Prime Minister Modi’s arrival at Cairo’s international airport, where he was received by Prime Minister Madbouly. Expressing gratitude for the warm welcome, PM Modi took to Twitter, stating, “May India-Egypt ties flourish and benefit the people of our nations.”
The leaders proceeded to engage in talks aimed at strengthening Egyptian-Indian ties, with senior officials from both countries in attendance. This collaborative approach underscores the shared commitment to deepening cooperation in various sectors.
Countering Extremism and Radicalization
During his visit, Prime Minister Modi prioritized discussions on countering extremism and radicalization. He met with Grand Mufti Shawki Allam, Egypt’s esteemed Islamic jurist, to exchange views and explore strategies to address this global challenge.
This engagement signifies the commitment of both nations to combatting the spread of radical ideologies and fostering peace and stability in the region.
Exploring Cultural Connections
In addition to official engagements, PM Modi embraced the cultural aspects of the visit. He visited the historic Al-Hakim Mosque in Islamic Cairo, which recently underwent renovation with the support of the India-based Dawoodi Bohra community.
This cultural exchange symbolizes the deep-rooted historical connections between India and Egypt. Furthermore, the prime minister paid tribute to Indian soldiers who fought in World War I at the Heliopolis War Cemetery, acknowledging their sacrifice and strengthening the bond between the two nations.
India and Egypt have witnessed significant growth in economic collaboration over the years. During President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi’s visit to India’s Republic Day parade as an official guest, both leaders agreed to increase two-way trade to $12 billion within five years. This commitment aims to further enhance the economic partnership beyond the existing trade volume of $7.3 billion in 2021-22.
The visit also witnessed the signing of agreements to expand cooperation in cyber security, information technology, culture, and broadcasting. These ventures open up new avenues for mutual benefits and pave the way for increased investment and trade opportunities.
Trade and Investments
Egypt is among the top five exporters of various products to India, including crude oil, liquefied natural gas, salt, cotton, inorganic chemicals, and oilseeds. On the other hand, major Indian exports to Egypt comprise cotton yarn, coffee, herbs, tobacco, lentils, vehicle parts, ships, boats, and electrical machinery.
The bilateral trade relationship has thrived, with more than 50 Indian companies investing around $3.15 billion across various sectors of the Egyptian economy, such as chemicals, energy, textiles, garments, agri-business, and retailing.
Strengthening People-to-People Bonds
The visit also emphasized the importance of people-to-people bonds between India and Egypt. Cultural exchanges, educational collaborations, and tourism play a vital role in fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation of each other’s heritage.
Initiatives to promote tourism and facilitate easier travel are expected to strengthen the connections between the people of both nations, encouraging a more vibrant exchange of ideas and experiences.
India and Egypt share a common vision for regional stability and prosperity. They actively collaborate on various regional and international platforms to address common challenges and advance shared interests.
Both nations understand the significance of regional cooperation in achieving peace, security, and sustainable development in the Middle East and beyond. Strengthening ties between India and Egypt contribute to the collective efforts of regional stability and prosperity.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s historic state visit to Egypt has further solidified the growing relationship between the two nations. The discussions, agreements, and cultural exchanges during this visit have laid the groundwork for enhanced cooperation in various fields, including trade, investments, counterterrorism, and cultural exchange.
The people-to-people connections and regional collaborations are expected to strengthen, fostering mutual understanding and contributing to the long-term growth and development of both India and Egypt. As the visit concludes, the shared commitment to a prosperous future highlights the potential for a stronger partnership between these two nations in the years to come.
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Disclaimer: The information presented in this article is based on various sources and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the author.