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Egypt Eyes More Investment from China
2009-04-17
Brief:Egypt Eyes More Investment from China

Egypt is looking forward to more Chinese investment to help fuel the economy of the most populous Arab country in the future, Youssef Wali, chairman of the Egyptian-Chinese Friendship Association (ECFA), said on Wednesday.

Wali made the remarks at a ceremony organized by the Chinese embassy in Cairo to mark the 10th anniversary of the establishment of China-Egypt strategic cooperation relations. "China's total investment in Egypt has hit 500 million dollars," he said, "but it is still a modest figure compared with other Arab countries."

"I hope that we can boost the economic cooperation to a more advanced stage," he added.

He also said that Egypt should draw on China's experience in its changeover from planned economy to market economy, referring to Egypt's privatization scheme launched in 2004.

According to official statistics, foreign capital absorbed by Egypt, which has felt the pinch of global financial crisis, was 4.27 billion dollars in the first half of 2008-2009 financial year that started in July, down 48 percent from the corresponding period in 2007-2008.

Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Wu Chunhua hailed the bilateral cooperation in various fields in the past ten years, during which Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak had paid three visits to China and the total trade volume increased from 610 million U.S. dollars to 6.24 billion dollars.

"Egypt's exports to China zoomed from 30 million dollars to 430million dollars in the period and the latter's investment here created some 3,000 jobs," he said, adding that China's investment will focus on economic zones, infrastructure, tourism and finance in the coming years.

Earlier in the day, Egyptian Ambassador to China Mahmoud Allamsaid in Beijing that China is projected to be the largest trade partner of his country in 2010.

In April 1999, the then Chinese President Jiang Zemin and his Egyptian counterpart Hosni Mubarak signed a joint statement to build strategic cooperation relations.


Source: xinhua news
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