The Italian Chamber of Commerce in Egypt (CIC), in collaboration with the Italian embassy and the Ministry of Transportation, hosted a group of nine representatives from the Italian Port System, including several Italian ports for a joint conference in Alexandria on Tuesday, sources at the CIC told Daily News Egypt on the condition of anonymity, adding that new agreements were signed over the Italian delegation’s visit with the Ministry of Transportation.
Sources noted that major businesspersons, Egyptian cargo firms’ representatives, Hisham Arafat, the minister of transportation, the CIC’s Chairperson Giancarlo Cifarelli, as well as Alexandria’s Governor Abdel Aziz Qonsowa, attended the conference.
Moreover, Italian-Egyptian relations were negatively affected following the murder of the Cambridge postgraduate Italian student Giulio Regeni, 28, who was kidnapped and murdered in Cairo in early 2016.
Italy decided to withdraw its ambassador to Egypt Maurizio Massari following the incident, while Egyptian officials have repeatedly denied any involvement in the murder of Regeni.
In September 2017, the new Italian ambassador to Egypt, Giampaolo Cantini, arrived in Cairo to assume his post after presenting his credentials to President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi, which played an important role to gradually restore relations between both countries.
On Monday, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi met with Italian parliamentary speaker Roberto Fico in Cairo, as the spokesperson for the Egyptian presidency, Bassam Rady, while Fico met with Egyptian parliamentary speaker Ali Abdel Aal on Sunday in Cairo, to discuss matters of mutual interest.
Abdel Aal highlighted that cases similar to Regini’s murder may take time, noting that Egypt vows to cooperate with full transparency with the Italian authorities, which reflects the size and nature of the solid relations between the two countries.