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  • Wednesday, 24 May 2023

During the annual meetings of the African Development Bank (AfDB) in Sharm El-Sheikh, the Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat discussed future cooperation strategy with VP of the Korean Export-Import Bank for the joint annual policy dialogue set next June

● The Korean Export-Import Bank confirms its welcome to launch a regional office for the bank in Cairo, which represents a base for expanding operations in Egypt and the African continent.

● Al-Mashat: The Egyptian-Korean relations are witnessing continuous development with the support of the leaders of the two countries and based on the strategic partnership in the field of development cooperation.

The Minister of International Cooperation, H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat, held a bilateral discussion session with Sang Ho Lee, Vice President of the Export-Import Bank of Korea, during the activities of the 58th annual meeting of the AfDB, held in Sharm El-Sheikh. The meeting discussed ways to enhance cooperation and future between the two sides, in light of the strategic relations between the Arab Republic of Egypt and South Korea, and the keenness of the leaders of the two countries to move forward towards diversifying relations to advance development efforts.

The meeting witnessed a mutual affirmation by both sides of the priority of joint relations and their importance to advance development efforts, and a reference to the importance of formulating a framework for cooperation and a joint strategy for the next five years, reflecting development priorities and the strength of Egyptian-Korean relations, and benefiting from Egypt's accumulated experiences and successful partnerships with multilateral and bilateral development partners. This includes integration in development cooperation efforts, and maximization of the return. Thereof, the bank officials also welcomed the inauguration of a regional office for the bank in Cairo, as an affirmation of the strong bilateral relations between the two sides and as a base for expanding the scope of the bank's operations in Africa.

At the outset of the meeting, Al-Mashat welcomed Sang Ho Lee  to the annual meetings of the AfDB in Sharm El-Sheikh, stressing the Government of Egypt’s keenness to advance multilateral cooperation, in light of its importance in supporting development efforts, and meeting national priorities under the umbrella of Egypt's Vision 2030 and the UN SDGs 2030, referring to the continuous development in Egyptian-Korean economic relations, especially after South Korea chose Egypt to be a strategic partner at the level of development cooperation plans during the period from 2021-2025, and the Korean presidential visit to Egypt in early 2022, during which a framework agreement for development cooperation was signed between the two countries to implement a number of projects worth one $1 billion  dollars.

Al-Mashat pointed to the existing cooperation with the Korean side to promote and localize industries, in implementation of the directives of the political leadership to localize the railway industry, especially the manufacturing of mobile units, and their local production with high-quality to provide new trains for subway lines and various electric traction projects during the next six years, in cooperation with the Hyundai company alliance with Some Egyptian companies to localize this industry in Egypt in the east of the Suez Canal, thus achieving a new addition to the Egyptian state in the industry sector and transferring Korean technology to Egypt with the aim of raising local capabilities and promoting sustainable development in the country.

H.E. affirmed the government's keenness to provide an appropriate investment environment and facilities for Korean companies interested in investing in Egypt, and encourage economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, noting the importance of exchanging official visits between the two countries to enhance understanding and deepen cooperation in all fields.

Al-Mashat also referred to the Nexus for Water, Food and Energy platform, the "NWFE" program, where the possibility of the Korean side's participation in supporting the implementation of projects that the Egyptian state is working to implement in light of the national strategy for climate change 2050, especially in the areas of water, food, energy, and sustainable infrastructure and transportation, as well as contributing to the promotion of projects implemented within the framework of the presidential initiative "Haya Karima".

The two sides pointed out the importance of holding the annual consultation dialogue, scheduled for mid-June, to exchange views to diversify the portfolio of projects and discuss possible areas of cooperation between Egypt and South Korea, and stress the importance of the participation of the relevant parties from both sides to enhance the comprehensive dialogue that sets priorities for action for the coming period.

During the meeting, Sang Ho Le extended an invitation to Al-Mashat to participate in the “Korea-African Economic Cooperation Conference” to be held next September in Busan, South Korea, which aims to advance Korean development initiatives to Africa in the energy, infrastructure, information and communication technology, human resources development, agricultural development, support for green growth, exchange of Korean development experiences, and strengthening partnerships between the public and private sectors.

It should be noted that the Export-Import Bank of Korea is a financial institution within the Korean government and operates under the supervision of the Ministry of Economy and Finance in South Korea. It was established in 1976 and plays an important role in the development financing structure in South Korea.

As for the Economic Cooperation and Development Fund, it is a dedicated fund within the Korean Bank, established in 1987, and its role is based on supporting the provision of development funds and the economic and social development of many sectors in the partner countries, where the total size of the cooperation portfolio for implemented and ongoing projects with the Korean Bank so far has reached $771 million.