Egypt's newly-appointed Trade Minister Amr Nassar - CC
CAIRO – 19 February 2019: Trade exchange between Egypt and Kazakhstan rose 29 percent during 2018, reaching $80 million, compared to $62 million in 2017, Minister of Trade and Industry Amr Nassar said.
The minister elaborated that the Egyptian exports represent 80 percent of the trade exchange volume between both countries.
This came during the extensive discussions held by the minister with Kazakhstan's Ambassador to Cairo, Arman Isagaliev, to review the future of economic cooperation between the two countries and means of boosting bilateral trade and joint investments as well as a number of economic files of mutual interest during the coming period.
Nassar announced that an Egyptian trade mission will be sent to the State of Kazakhstan in March to review the opportunities of joint economic cooperation in the fields of trade, industry and investment, pointing out that the mission will be headed by First Assistant Minister Ahmed Taha.
According to the minister, the mission will include 31 Egyptian companies in the sectors of engineering, food, building materials, metallurgy, pharmaceutical and furniture industries, as well as representatives of the banking sector and the economic zone of the Suez Canal.
He noted that the visit aims to strengthen partnership between the private sectors of the two countries and discuss opportunities for industrial integration between Egypt and Kazakhstan, especially as the two countries have great opportunities and industrial potential.
Nassar explained that the Egyptian and Kazakh governments are currently coordinating to establish an Egyptian commercial center in the capital Astana to enhance the presence of the Egyptian producer in the Kazakh market, pointing out that a plan is also being implemented to promote industrial cooperation between Egypt and Kazakhstan through the establishment of investment projects in partnership between the private sectors in both countries.
The meeting also reviewed the importance of moving ahead with negotiations to conclude the free trade agreement between Egypt and the Eurasian Economic Community, including Kazakhstan, as soon as possible, and increasing trade missions between the two sides, in addition to intensifying participation in specialized international exhibitions held in both countries.
For his part, Isagaliev said that Egypt is Kazakhstan's main partner in the Arab world and Africa's largest trade partner, adding that the upcoming visit of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev to Cairo aims at boosting economic partnership between Egypt and Kazakhstan in various fields.
He pointed out that the Egyptian market represents an important axis for Kazakh exports to the markets of Africa and the Middle East, noting the importance of resuming cooperation between the two countries in importing Kazakh wheat.
The ambassador also noted the possibility of establishing a number of Kazakh logistics centers on the land of Egypt to store commodities coming from Kazakhstan and benefit from the Egyptian and regional markets.
Isagaliev said that the successful visit of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi to Kazakhstan and the Egyptian participation in Astana Expo contributed to the increase in the number of Kazakh tourists, where the number of tourists last year amounted to about 120,000, tourists compared to 5,000 tourists in the past.
He added that his country supports the free trade agreement between Egypt and the Eurasian countries, which will contribute to strengthening economic relations between the two countries to unprecedented levels.
In November, Egypt and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) signed a framework document for negotiations on the free trade agreement between the two sides.
The agreement will contribute to the enhancement and development of the joint relations between Egypt and the Eurasian countries, including Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan, according to a previous statement.
This agreement is expected to raise the trade volume between both sides to reach $15.7 billion, and to upgrade Egypt’s exports to the union’s countries to $1.9 billion.
The most important Egyptian exports to Eurasian countries are agricultural commodities, machinery, equipment and pharmaceutical products, while the main imports to Egypt include wheat, minerals, chemical products, plastic products, cars and tractors.