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  • Tuesday, 26 September 2023

During the 2023 Annual Meetings of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank in Sharm El-Sheikh: Minister of International Cooperation H.E. Dr. Rania A. Al-Mashat Meets with the Vice President of the Export-Import Bank of China to Discuss Cooperation in Providing Concessional Development Financing to Advance Development Efforts

• The Minister of International Cooperation discusses joint efforts in sustainable infrastructure and future cooperation in health and civil aviation with the Export-Import Bank of China. 

• Al-Mashat: Strengthening cooperation between the Export-Import Bank of China and development partners to maximize the benefit from concessional development financing.

•The Vice President of the Bank expresses the Chinese side’s keenness to explore opportunities for joint cooperation and coordination with development partners in areas of common interest. 

Within the activities of the 2023 Annual Meetings of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) held in Sharm El-Sheikh, H.E. Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, Minister of International Cooperation, met with Dr. Zhang Wencai, Vice President of the Export-Import Bank of China, in the presence of Ambassador Abu Bakr Mahmoud, Advisor to the Minister of International Cooperation for Asian Affairs, and Dr. Mohamed Abdel Gawad, Head of the Cooperation Sector with the United Nations, Multilateral International Financial Institutions, and officials from the Chinese side. The meeting included discussions on joint cooperation in light of the development of Egyptian-Chinese relations and strengthening joint efforts to advance sustainable development and stimulate concessional development financing.

At the beginning of the meeting, the Minister welcomed the delegation of the Export-Import Bank of China to Sharm El-Sheikh to participate in the AIIB annual meetings, stressing Egypt’s great appreciation for Egyptian-Chinese relations. In this regard, the Vice President of the Bank thanked the Government of Egypt for its support and organization of the meetings.

The two sides discussed various aspects of joint cooperation in accordance with the priorities of the Government of Egypt and the keenness to advance Egyptian-Chinese relations, including the development of joint cooperation efforts in financing the electric train (LRT) project, and future cooperation in the field of health and civil aviation.

The Vice President of the Export-Import Bank of China expressed his keenness to explore cooperation opportunities with Egypt and cooperate with other development partners in stimulating blended financing that enhances development efforts in areas of common interest, explaining that the bank cooperates closely with many regional financial institutions such as the African Export-Import Bank and the African Finance Corporation (AFC).

Al-Mashat explained that the Ministry of International Cooperation is responsible for strengthening economic relations with multilateral and bilateral development partners, with the exception of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in order to stimulate concessional development financing. H.E. added that the Ministry is working to push for more joint cooperation with multilateral and bilateral development partners, governments, international organizations, the private sector and civil society, to support the national development agenda that is consistent with the United Nations SDGs. Egypt is committed to achieving integration and coordination between development partners with the aim of maximizing the economic and social benefit from development financing, ensuring that development projects are consistent with international priorities and goals, as well as improving development cooperation management to implement projects effectively.

Moreover, the Minister stated that there are many opportunities for joint cooperation that can be built on with the Export-Import Bank of China and other development partners. Al-Mashat also referred to her recent visit to Hong Kong to participate in the Belt and Road Summit, and the meetings held with officials from Hong Kong as well as Chinese financial institutions, and the importance of the opportunities available to enhance economic cooperation in light of common interests.

The Minister stressed the importance of the memorandum of understanding that was signed during the visit to the Chinese capital, Beijing, last July, on the “Global Development Initiative,” which strengthens the Egyptian-Chinese partnership and includes a clause to establish a mechanism for consultation at the departmental level, as well as working to formulate an integrated strategy for development cooperation between Egypt and China for 3-5 years for the first time in light of the common relations between the two countries. This also includes the areas and projects that will be implemented through the development cooperation program.

The meeting also reviewed the efforts made, through the international cooperation framework, to implement debt swap programs with development partners, which is an important mechanism to stimulate development efforts by using the local equivalent of debt tranches to implement priority projects, and the possibility of cooperation with the Chinese side in this regard.

It is worth noting that the cooperation portfolio with China amounts to about $1.7 billion to implement many projects in various development sectors, including electricity, health, education, vocational training, and others. Recently, the Minister witnessed the ceremony celebrating the completion of the work on assembling and testing the satellite (Misr Sat 2), in cooperation with the Chinese side, at the headquarters of the Egyptian Space Agency.