Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry headed on Wednesday to Brussels to take part in the eighth meeting of the Egypt-EU Partnership Council.
Shoukry is scheduled to head the Egyptian delegation at the council which will be held on Thursday. The EU High Representative Federica Mogherini will head the European side, according to the foreign ministry’s spokesperson Ahmed Hafez’s statement.
The meeting aims at resuming talks between Egypt and the EU to enhance the cooperation in various fields, and evaluate the progress in concluding the agreement of the Egypt-EU Partnership, the statement continued.
The statement added that the regional issues of common interest to be addressed include the process of peace in Libya and Syria, as well as countering terrorism and illegal immigration.
The EU-Egypt Association Agreement was signed in 2004. It is a free-trade area between the EU and Egypt by removing tariffs on industrial products, and making agricultural products easier to trade.
The agreement requires holding an annual ministerial meeting to address the recent updates and issues of common interest, according to the ministry’s statement.
The EU is Egypt’s biggest import and export partner, covering 29.7% of Egypt’s trade volume in 2017.
According to the European Commission’s official website, the partnership agreement improved trade conditions between Egypt and the EU, with the EU-Egypt trade more than doubling from €11.8bn in 2004 to €27.9bn in 2017.