Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry said that Egyptian policy towards Africa has changed since President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi assumed power in 2014, during an interview with Extra news on Friday.
The minister discussed Egypt’s position in the continent since 2014, reviewing how Egypt was able to restore its position and help development in other neighbouring countries in the continent.
Shoukry said that Egypt’s policy is clear towards African Union (AU) member states and is an extension for Egypt in its long history of cooperation between African nations and Egypt.
He explained that the situation has change after Egypt assumed the presidency of the African Union, and this was represented through the subsequent interest of the president in developing relations with sisterly African countries on the political, economic, and cultural level, and this was represented in many of the president’s visits to several African countries, and the leaders who visited Cairo as well.
He continued that the president attended all AU summits, whether regular in late January early February or semi-annual in June since 2014 until he took over the presidency of the AU in February of 2019.
Moreover, Shoukry reviewed during his discussion on Africa, some of the responsibilities placed on Egypt by virtue of the presidency of the African Union
He said Egypt chaired an extraordinary summit in February 2019 in Niger, which was the first coordination summit between the AU and regional economic group, as well as participation in G20 economic summit, African-Russian summit and the mini-summit held in Cairo to address the situation and developments in Sudan.
During the interview, the minister also spoke about the Aswan Peace and Development forum expected in 11-12 December, saying that it will discuss peace and development because they are main issues in the African continent.
He noted that the idea of the Aswan Forum came since Egypt assumed the presidency of the African Union, pointing out that the forum comes at the service of all African peoples.
He explained that during the forum, President Al-Sisi will emphasise post-conflict reconstruction, and resolve conflicts by peaceful means, so that it opens up prospects for development.
The fForum also aims to implement the agenda of the African Union 2063 and to recommend the idea of African integration and communication among African countries, as well as, discuss issues of terrorism and illegal immigration from a social, cultural, and economic perspective, and the extent of terrorism’s ability to attract and promote extremist ideology, according to Shoukry.
It will discuss strengthening the infrastructure of African countries to link them with each other whether through roads, energy, or in relation to all existing projects such as projects linking Cairo to Cape Town or Lake Victoria, Shoukry said, noting that all will serve to create arteries to expand the areas of trade and economy among African countries to achieve integration among them.