The ministerial meeting of the first session of the Joint Committee between the UAE and Egypt kicked off in Abu Dhabi on Thursday 16/11/2017 under the co-chairmanship of Minister of Investment and International Cooperation Sahar Nasr and UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation Reem Bin Ebrahim al Hashimy .
At the onset of the meeting, Nasr and her accompanying delegation voiced happiness over their visit to UAE, noting that this meeting is a historical one for both countries which could enhance cooperation ties between the two sides .
Nasr called on the UAE and its business community to increase its investments in Egypt in view of the recent incentives and guarantees given to investors .
She said the Ministry has recently worked hard on developing service centers for investors to provide them with more facilities and reduce the time needed to issue their work licenses .
The minister also asserted that Egypt has achieved a big jump in implementing a local economic reform program along with taking measures to secure social protection programs for the most needy citizens .
She also said the Ministry is working hard to accomplish the investment map in coordination with other ministries concerned to shed light on the investment opportunities available in the Suez Canal Corridor, New Alamein, Upper Egypt and other fields such as tourism, industry, agriculture and housing .
At the start of the meeting, al Hashimy welcomed Nasr and her delegation, stressing that the joint co-ordination and co-operation between the two countries in all regional and international issues have reached a prominent level, due to the unified visions and aspirations and common fate of the leadership of both countries .
This advanced level of co-ordination is based on the solid foundations of understanding and agreement between the two countries in order to face their challenges, most notably combating terrorism and extremism, which pose a direct threat to both nations and their people, she added .
Al Hashimy renewed the commitment of the UAE to strongly and firmly stand with Egypt's government and people in standing up to brutal terrorism, which strives to undermine its security and national unity and support all the steps and decisions it takes in this regard .
She expressed her trust in Egypt's ability based on its will, history, and wise leadership to destroy the challenge of terrorism. She also stressed the UAE's pride in Egypt's central role as an ally and a partner on all levels in fighting terrorism and extremism. She pointed out Egypt's political, strategic and historic weight, which represents a main support point in the region .
Al Hashimy mentioned that the strength of the relations between the two countries reflected positively on all aspects, including the economy, commerce and investment. She further praised the exceptional growth witnessed by the non-oil commercial exchange between both countries during the past six years, as it reached nearly dlrs 4.8 billion in the year 2016 with a cumulative annual growth rate exceeding 13 percent .
Al Hashimy pointed out the noticeable growth in the size of UAE investments in Egypt. The UAE is one of the biggest countries internationally in terms of direct foreign investment in Egypt, with a total value of nearly dlrs 6 billion. She said that such economic accomplishments between the two countries open wider horizons for more bilateral co-operation in all fields related to tourism and business .
She said the UAE attaches great importance to developing relations with Egypt in development fields, adding that Egypt had topped UAE aid recipient countries for four years in a row .
She also noted that apart from political and economic fields, close cooperation between the two countries also covers other areas of mutual interest and the exchange of visits by leaderships of the two countries. She expressed hope that this coordination will continue to serve the common interests, to help overcome regional and international challenges and to increase the two countries' contribution to the development, security and stability of the region .