Egypt and India will create “a new partnership for a new era,” Indian ambassador in Cairo Rahul Kulshreshth said in a statement on Monday, on the occasion of the 71st Republic Day of India, scheduled on January 26.
Two visits by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to India have provided renewed impulse for bilateral ties, the ambassador added, noting that India and Egypt continue to share close political understanding and similar perceptions of bilateral, regional, and global issues.
Notably, Indian investments in Egypt have hit $3.3bn through more than 50 firms in the sectors of textile, chemicals, technology, health care, plastics, automotive, and other key sectors.
The Indian embassy said in 2019 that it adopted a new strategy to boost Indian investments in Egypt to about $5bn in the coming period.
Indian foreign policy has been driven by the impulse to share India’s experience, skills, knowledge and expertise with other developing countries and with Egypt as well, the ambassador said, adding that the Indian Technical and Economic Programme (ITEC)
launched on 15 September 1964, is a shining example of South-South partnership in capacity building. The ambassador said every year, 200 ITEC slots are assigned to Egypt for training in 54 institutes, offering courses in 280 disciplines, including IT, renewable energy, English language, skill development, and employment generation.
“It is also our approach that development cooperation incorporating the idea of partnership should be guided by mutual benefit, by the priorities of our partners, and should reach out to people, and make a difference to their lives,” the ambassador said.
The Centre for Excellence in Information Technology at Al Azhar University and the Jaipur Foot Artificial Limb Fitment Camp in Assuit in May-June, 2019, where 500 people were provided with 550 limb fitments under the “India for Humanity” initiative, are illustrative of India’s approach, the ambassador mentioned.
“Relations between both countries are rooted in antiquity. Some scholars have even suggested that Queen Hatshepsut sent ships to India. What is more certain is that maritime contacts between India and Egypt existed several centuries before Christ. Mahatma Gandhi had a special connection with Egypt,” he said.
“As we enter the second decade of this millennium, it is apt to and reflect upon India’s long journey since our independence on 15 August 1947. Indian democracy has emerged stronger with every successive election: in 2019, over 600 million Indians exercised their franchise in the general elections,” the ambassador added.