Tue, 22 Dec 2020 - 05:49 GMT
Minister Nevine Gamea: File Photo
CAIRO – 22 December 2020: Trade exchange between Egypt and Zambia reached $250 million during 2019, according to Minister of Trade and Industry Nevine Gamea.
This came during Gamea’s speech, at the activities of the "Egyptian-Zambian Business Forum", where she noted that organizing this forum at the present time is a positive step to encourage trade and investment cooperation between Egypt and Zambia, and to push the rates of intra-trade to distinct levels that reflect the bilateral relations and the historical joint ties between Egypt and Zambia.
She indicated the importance of the business circles in Egypt and Zambia taking advantage of the opportunities available in the various investment and commercial sectors, as well as the information available in this regard, to find out the comparative advantages that each country has in all sectors and to exploit these advantages in support of joint economic cooperation.
The Minister invited the companies participating in this forum to pose all their inquiries, express their observations and comments on the topics that will be presented, and put forward their proposals to achieve the maximum possible benefit from their participation, in a way that reflects positively on the joint trade and investment cooperation between the two countries.
She confirmed that the government is implementing a comprehensive strategy to develop joint cooperation between Egypt and the countries of the African continent, aiming at achieving regional economic integration by increasing trade exchange rates, enhancing investment cooperation, and exchanging industrial experiences.
Gamea added, that there are great opportunities to enhance trade and investment cooperation between Egypt and Zambia, supported by historical political ties and great facilities provided by the Common Market Agreement for East and Southern Africa (COMESA).
She said that the holding of this forum despite the repercussions of the spread of the new Corona virus "Covid-19", reflects the common desire of business circles in Egypt and Zambia to develop joint economic cooperation, and their keenness to develop bilateral relations in light of any challenges that may arise in the international arena.
The minister indicated the importance of exerting more efforts at the local and regional levels to face the current global challenges, especially since the current period is one of the most difficult periods in the global economic system, as imposed by the "Covid-19" pandemic, which is witnessing a decline and slowdown in economic growth rates in some countries of the world. .
“The Egyptian government has succeeded in facing the challenges resulting from the Coronavirus pandemic, and achieving positive economic growth rates in light of the precautionary measures that the state has taken at the economic and health levels, which included achieving a balance between continuing economic activities and maintaining the public health of citizens,” she stated.
She explained that the Egyptian state is aware that the African economy is one of the economies most affected by the "Covid-19" pandemic, noting the importance of making more joint efforts with Egypt's strategic partners in the African continent, foremost of which is the State of Zambia, and working to encourage joint trade and investment cooperation between the two countries to push the movement of economic growth and overcoming the recession imposed by the pandemic.
She stressed the importance of continuing coordination efforts between the two countries to organize more promotional events to encourage trade and investment exchange, with a focus on priority sectors and work to organize sectoral events to present the opportunities available in these sectors as well as benefit from the experiences of Egyptian companies present in Zambia, and work to repeat these experiences in various sectors.
She pointed to the importance of the private sector exploiting regional trade agreements to increase the movement of trade exchange and joint investments, especially in light of Egypt's expected presidency of the COMESA gathering next year, as well as the African Continental Free Trade Area agreement that will enter into force at the beginning of next year 2021.
For his part, Zambian Minister of Trade and Industry Christopher Yaluma said that the main goal of this forum is to deepen long-term cooperation between Egypt and Zambia at the commercial and investment levels, especially in light of the challenges facing the global economy currently, on top of which is the outbreak of the new Corona virus.
Yaluma added that the launch of this forum coincides with the Zambian president's launch of the Economic Recovery Program 2020-2023, which aims to address the economic challenges currently facing Zambia, chief among them stagnant growth, unemployment and declining economic activity.
For his part, Ahmed Mostafa, Egypt's ambassador to Zambia, stressed the importance of encouraging the private sector in the two countries to take advantage of the opportunities available in Egypt and Zambia, as Egypt seeks to enhance trade and investment exchange between the two countries in order to rise to the level of good political relations between the two sides, especially in light of the availability of trade agreements that bring together Egypt and Zambia, led by the COMESA agreement.
He pointed out that the forum is not the first meeting of its kind that includes industrialists and investors from both sides, as that was preceded by the visit of the Egyptian Industries Federation delegation to Zambia in 2019, to discuss the investment opportunities available between the two countries.
For his part, Ali Essa, President of the Egyptian Businessmen Association, affirmed his keenness to achieve the goals of the forum, which are the exchange of information about trade and investment relations and available solutions to facilitate trade and transport, as well as the financial facilities necessary for exporters and importers in both markets, especially in light of the availability of promising commercial opportunities. In front of investors from both sides in the fields of furniture, mining, engineering industries, leather products, food industries, chemicals, building materials, paper and packaging, and textiles.
He stated that the association doubt Under its umbrella was the Committee for the Development of Relations with Africa, so that its primary role would be to activate trade and investment between Egypt and the countries of the African continent, and to unify Egyptian efforts to increase Egyptian exports to African markets, and to develop an integrated strategy to move towards the African market.