Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said on Saturday that his country is looking forward to a new start of cooperation with Japan, especially in the fields of economy and development.
Sisi’s remarks came in a joint press conference with visiting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe following their talks in Cairo.
“I invited Prime Minister Abe and the Japanese businessmen forum for vast participation in the economic summit to be held in Sharm El-Sheikh in March,” Sisi said.
Sisi called on the Japanese companies to take part in the investment opportunities provided by Egypt in the Suez Canal Corridor project as well as in the fields of renewable energy and transportation.
Sisi and Abe also discussed international and regional issues of mutual concern, including the Middle East peace process and the situation in Libya, Syria and Iraq.
“We agreed about the urgency of achieving stability in the Middle East and reaching fair settlement for the Palestinian issue,” Sisi said.
For his part, the Japanese prime minister said that he brought with him senior officials of around 30 big Japanese companies to discuss investment opportunities in the Arab country.
Abe also said he will provide over 360 million dollars in loans for a number of infrastructure projects in Egypt such as the development of an airport and power distribution systems.
The two sides agreed on cooperating to put an end to the growing extremism, of which Egypt has been suffering since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 by then military chief Sisi.
Egyptian Minister of Trade and Industry Mounir Fakhry Abdel-Nour told Xinhua on Saturday that “Egypt is open to all countries, East and West, and it needs to cooperate and attract investments from all countries.”
Saeed al-Lawindi, political expert of international relations at Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, believes that following Sisi’s successful visit to Beijing, the Japanese prime minister’s visit to Cairo shows that Egypt seeks to develop its relations with China, Japan and all Asian countries in general.
“The Chinese experience is important for Egypt as China managed to economically prevail in the whole world. Japan is also important for Egypt to read its economic experience from defeat in the World War II to become a leading world country in technology,” Lawindi told Xinhua.
The expert added that Abe’s visit and the expected Japanese projects indicate a message that Egypt has restored its role and prestige that have been ruined during the time of ousted presidents.