Creating momentum to promote Vietnam-Egypt cooperation in fields with potential

Saturday, 2018-08-25 11:39:37
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President Tran Dai Quang and his spouse (Image: Ha Noi Moi)
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NDO - President Tran Dai Quang’s state visit to Egypt from August 25-28 comes at a time when the two countries are celebrating 55 years of diplomatic ties and aims to strengthen the fine traditional relationship while creating the momentum to foster cooperation in fields with potential.

The Republic of Egypt is located in northern Africa and has a population of 97 million. Since May 2014, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s administration has taken various measures to reform the Egyptian economy, helping to quickly stabilise its performance after years of turmoil following the political events of 2011.

In 2017, the Egyptian economy grew by 4.1% with GDP reaching US$332 billion and GDP per capita at US$3,750. In the first months of 2018, its economy expanded by 5.4%. Egypt has risen to become the largest economy and one of the largest recipients of foreign direct investment in Africa. Egypt’s main economic sectors are tourism, oil, garments, agricultural processing, chemicals and construction.

Last year, Egypt’s exports reached US$21.68 billion and were mainly crude oil, refined oil products, cotton, garments, steel, chemicals and processed food. Meanwhile, Egypt’s main imports were machinery and equipment, food, chemicals, timber products and fuels.

As a country with a geostrategic role and location in the region, connecting Asia and Africa, Egypt has made a significant contribution to the African Union’s operational budget. Egypt also houses the headquarters of the Arab League and represents the Africa/Arab group for non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council in the 2016-2017 term.

Egypt used to be a pioneer of the national liberation movement during the 1950s and 1960s and is a co-founding member of the Non-Aligned Movement. President el-Sisi is continuing to push Egypt’s “look east” policy, aiming to expand relations with Asian countries, including Vietnam.

We are pleased to witness the ever growing fine traditional cooperation and friendship between Vietnam and Egypt. Egypt was one of the first Arab countries to forge relations with Vietnam. On September 1, 1963, the two countries formally established diplomatic ties. In the same year, Vietnam opened its embassy in Cairo and one year later Egypt opened its embassy in Hanoi.

The fine traditional friendship between the two countries has been marked by historic events, including President Ho Chi Minh’s setting foot in Egypt in 1911 and 1946. In May 2017, the Vietnamese Embassy in Egypt organised a live TV programme on President Ho Chi Minh to be shown by Egypt’s national TV broadcaster.

Vietnam and Egypt frequently coordinate and support each other at international forums. Egypt endorsed Vietnam’s nomination to the UN Security Council (2020-2021), the UN Human Rights Council (2014-2016) and the UN Economic and Social Council (2016-2018). Meanwhile Vietnam also endorsed Egypt’s nomination to the UN Security Council (2016-2017), the UN Human Rights Council (2017-2019) and the UN Economic and Social Council (2016-2018).

The fine relationship between the two countries is also marked by mutual visits of high-ranking leaders. Vietnam and Egypt have signed many cooperative agreements in such fields as diplomacy, trade, transport, agriculture and culture.

As Vietnam’s fifth largest trading partner in Africa, Egypt’s imports from Vietnam include seafood, car parts, fabric, black pepper, coffee, rubber, consumer goods, oil products and milk. The value of bilateral trade reached US$350 million in 2017. Egypt is the first north African country to recognise Vietnam as a full market economy.

President Tran Dai Quang’s state visit to Egypt aims to promote cooperation in many fields, especially economic and trade cooperation, opening up the prospect for cooperation between Vietnam and Egypt as well as business opportunities for Vietnamese companies in Africa.

The visit is expected to help lift the multi-faceted cooperation between the two countries to new heights, contributing to peace, stability, cooperation and development in the world.

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