New chairperson of the Egyptian-Portuguese Business Council (EPBC), Mohamed Abul-Enein, said that the council will start its first meetings in March, after a decision to form the council was recently issued by Minister of Trade and Industry Tarek Kabil.
“The first EPBC meeting will be held in the presence of council members to share views about how to boost economic relations between Egypt and Portugal in terms of investments and trade,” added Abul-Enein.
The official state gazette reported on Sunday that the minister of trade and industry decided to form the EPBC and that Mohamed Abul-Enein will preside over the council for three years.
The new council’s membership includes Alaa Ezz, secretary general of the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce, and many businesspersons like Ayman Nassar, Mohammad Abbadi, Gamal Afifi, Amr El-Sagini, and Mohammad Al-Gamal.
“Portugal is a very important country geographically and we are looking forward setting up new plans to enhance cooperation,” Abul-Enein said.
Kabil asked EPBC members to prepare a half-year report highlighting the activities of the council, suggestions, and future plans to boost bilateral relations.
According to statistics from the Ministry of Trade and Industry, bilateral trade with Portugal recorded $218m in 2017, increasing by $25m compared to the prior year, with leather, steel, cotton, and plastics being the main Egyptian exports to Portugal, while the main imports were paper, fuel, and furniture products.
Official Egyptian statistics mentioned that total Portuguese investments in the local market reached $404.7m, mainly in the telecommunications, renewable energy, and readymade clothes sectors.