Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi accepted his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron’s invitation to visit France and participate in the 28th Africa-France Summit from 4 to 6 June 2020, in Bordeaux, Hassan Behnam, managing director of the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Egypt (CCFE), told Daily News Egypt.
Al-Sisi will be accompanied by a huge business delegation during his planned visit in June, Behnam said, noting that the summit is expected to play a key role in encouraging French companies to boost their investments in Egypt and use it as a hub for exporting to African markets.
Macron already invited all African countries heads of states to attend the event, Behnam, said, adding that the high participation of African countries will strengthen the summit’s success.
“Over the last period, we hosted a French delegation that met with several representatives of Egyptian business associations, such as the Federation of Egyptian Industries (FEI), Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce (FEDCOC), Arab Organisation for Industrialisation (AOI), and others,” Behnam said.
French-Egyptian relations are strong in all levels including presidential, people-to-people, and businesses. The CCFE is supporting French small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to invest in Egypt and to cooperate with local partners.
Interestingly, an Egyptian business delegation visited France on 10 February 2020, to highlight the country’s investment opportunities. The delegation was headed by Elsewedy Industrial Development and Elsewedy Electric, in coordination with the French embassy in Egypt.
Al-Sisi’s visit to France is expected to witness the signing of several memorandums of understanding (MoUs) to boost business cooperation, especially since Macron’s historical visit to Egypt in January 2019 witnessed the signing of about 32 MoUs.
The agreements are very diversified such as in the sectors of infrastructure, roads, building materials, tourism, culture, and construction–which is a labour-intensive sector.
French investments in Egypt are about €5bn, while trade exchange between both countries surged 36.2% from January to May 2019 to reach €1.212bn, compared to €823.7m in the same period in 2018, according to the latest statistics of the Egyptian Commercial Service (ECS) released in August 2019.