Egypt and China discuss trade ties

The Egyptian president and the visiting Chinese prime minister have discussed ways for the two countries to boost economic and trade relations.

    Trade between Egypt and China topped $2 billion in 2005

    The meeting on Sunday came a day after Wen Jiabao and Ahmed Nazif, his Egyptian counterpart, signed 10 agreements on oil and natural gas, telecommunications and the resumption of Egyptian citrus exports.


    China also agreed to give Egypt a $50 million loan and a $10 million grant to build an investment headquarters in an industrial area northwest of the Gulf of Suez.


    In Sunday's meeting, Wen told Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president, China was ready to increase investment in Egypt, especially in oil, natural gas and the telecommunications industries.


    Suleiman Awwad, the presidential spokesman, said that Mubarak assured Wen of Egypt's policy of recognising one China, referring to Taiwan's moves towards seeking independence.


    The two also discussed the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and the situation on the Korean peninsula, he said.


    Trade between Egypt and China topped $2 billion in 2005, an increase of 36% over the previous year. China has 186 projects in Egypt, with a total investment of $220 million.


    China, the world's fastest growing economy and most populous nation, has lavished attention on resource-rich Africa for decades, routinely sending the foreign minister and members of the leadership on visits there. Wen's trip came less than two months after Hu Jintao, the president, visited Nigeria, Morocco and Kenya.



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