Foreign Minister of Cyprus, Ioannis Kasoulides met with Prime Minister Sherif Ismail on Tuesday while he was later received by the country`s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
Kasoulides was accompanied in both meetings by his Egyptian counterpart, Sameh Shoukry, while the two of them embarked on official consultations, at the Foreign Ministry in Cairo.
Kasoulides discussed with President Sisi the preparation of an upcoming trilateral summit of Cyprus, Egypt and Greece, to be held in the Egyptian capital next October, the Cyprus issue and developments in Turkey.
Moreover, they talked about EU relations with Egypt, in the backdrop of the constructive role Nicosia plays in promoting ties, with Sisi expressing his appreciation to the Cypriot government.
Foreign Minister Kasoulides briefed President Sisi on developments concerning efforts for a Cyprus solution, with the Egyptian side appearing particularly keen to hear Nicosia’s view on developments in Turkey and the way these impact on the settlement process.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. UN-led talks between Anastasiades and Akinci have been underway since May 2015, aiming to reunify the island under a federal roof.
The two sides also discussed progress with regards to investment schemes that were decided at an earlier trilateral meeting, last December, in Athens. Two of them concern the construction of aquaculture infrastructure and the planting of olive trees in Egypt. Sisi and Kasoulides also discussed prospects in tourism, focusing on air transportation and cruise ship trips, connecting destinations in Greece, Cyprus and Egypt.
At the meeting with Prime Minister Ismail, Kasoulides discussed energy matters, focusing on natural gas developments following the third licensing round in the exclusive economic zone of the Republic of Cyprus, as well as on the cooperation between Cyprus and Egypt in relation to natural gas reserves at the “Aphrodite” gas field, off Cyprus.
The same source noted that the meetings reflected a positive climate for business and for Cypriot investments in Egypt, facilitated by political relations between the two countries.