Egypt’s Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat has met with France’s Ambassador to Egypt Stéphane Romatet, to discuss boosting cooperation between the two countries.
The Ambassador’s Economic Advisor Michel Aldenberg was also present at the meeting, which took place to capitalise on the multi-sectoral development agreements.
These agreements were undertaken during a high-level visit by Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi and Minister Al-Mashat to France last month.
The minister’s meeting with Ambassador Romatet also saw the commencement of negotiations on the allocations under development financing projects and their execution by French companies.
The bilateral partnership achieves the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and serves Egypt’s National Agenda 2030 through the development financing that has been capitalized by the latest visit’s agreements. Egypt and France signed three new financing agreements, last December, worth a total of €715.6m.
Further deliberations are to take place in the next month, during a visit by France’s Minister of Finance Bruno Le Maire to Egypt. A line-up of meetings with various Egyptian ministries and governmental institutions are planned, in order to finalise the project’s details and the financing conditions.
The principles of Economic Diplomacy are the core of all multilateral and bilateral cooperation partnerships, Minister Al-Mashat emphasised during the meeting.
She said that the principles consist of the organisation of multi-stakeholder platforms that bring together the development partners and the governmental institutions.
This takes place to align objectives, and the mapping of the ODA under the UN’s SDGs. It ensures that the development financing is best allocated and utilised in various projects. It also takes into account the Global Partnerships Narrative that ensures transparency across all communications and with all stakeholders.
Romatet emphasised the importance of the Egyptian-French partnership, expressing the success of President Al-Sisi’s visit to France last month to discuss the sustainable development agenda for both countries.
Aldenberg further noted that Egypt’s Ministry of International Cooperation plays a major role in coordinating the meetings with the Egyptian institutions benefiting from the development financing. These are namely the Ministries of Transportation, Health and Population, Civil Aviation, and Housing, Utilities and Urban Communities.
During the presidential visit to France last December, Minister Al-Mashat signed a financing agreement worth €715.6m with the Chief Executive of the French Development Agency (AFD). The financing will go towards supporting Egypt’s Health, Transportation, Education, and Water sectors.
The history of cooperation between both countries dates back to 1974, with an economic cooperation portfolio worth €7.5bn. It has seen more than 42 protocols signed, covering Transportation, Electricity, Civil Aviation, Housing and Utilities, Health, Agriculture and Irrigation, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), Environment, Antiquities, and Education. The current cooperation portfolio between Egypt and France rounds up to €1bn.