Egyptian president Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi held a meeting with Japanese PM Shinzō Abe to discuss several bilateral issues.
In a joint press conference, Abe said Egypt is the keystone of stability in the Middle East and expressed his respect for the state’s efforts to achieve democracy in the region. Abe said both sides agreed to establish Egyptian-Japanese educational cooperation, which will send 2,500 students to Japan over the next five years to benefit from the Japanese educational system.
Japan is willing to provide Egypt with aid in several fields, he said.
Al-Sisi said Monday that Egypt is looking forward to boosting relations with Japan. In his speech to the Japanese Parliament, Al-Sisi said economic cooperation with Japan is ongoing since it is executing several projects in the Suez Canal area as well as reclamation of an area of 1.5m acres project.
Al-Sisi praised Japan’s collaboration in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) projects owing to the number of job opportunities it provides.
Egypt welcomes Japanese investment and has taken several measures to facilitate foreign investment by introducing new laws and solving energy problems, Al-Sisi said.
Egypt has made efforts to address terrorism not only by military means but also with educational reform and by improving the economic situation and Japan’s experience in developing their education system. Regarding Egypt’s foreign policy in the Middle East, Al-Sisi said the nation is pushing for implementation of political processes in Yemen, Syria, and Libya.
Japanese Parliament speaker Tadamori Oshima congratulated Egypt on the new Parliament, with whom Japan aims to cooperate. He said Egyptian-Japanese relations have improved over the past few years, pointing to Egypt as the keystone of the Middle East.
In his meeting with Al-Sisi, head of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Shinichi Kitaoka highlighted the agency’s activities in Egypt, such as providing aid to Egypt on several occasions, Cairo’s metro project in particular.
Al-Sisi said he is eager for Egypt to benefit from Japan’s education sector. Kitaoka said JICA is ready to cooperate with Egypt in the education sector as well as in the field of climate change and renewable energy.
During his visit, the Egyptian President witnessed the signing of several loan agreements worth $500m. The loans will finance three national projects; the first being the construction of a passenger terminal in Borg Al-Arab Airport with $152m of the loan. The second project aims to increase the efficiency of electricity distribution companies with $243m while the third loans will fund the construction of a 20MW solar power plant in Hurghada with $91m.
Other agreements included the formation of an Egyptian-Japanese educational partnership project, which will receive Egyptian 2,500 students and trainees over the next five years, with the aim of introducing the Japanese educational system to Egypt.
The Egypt-Japan Joint Committee signed economic projects with a total value of $110bn in the energy sector.