Egypt's Sisi in Russia to discuss fighting terrorism (Africa Review)

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  • August 26, 2015
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August 26, 2015

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is to discuss Wednesday with his Russian counterpart Valdimir Putin the issue of fighting international terrorism.

The Egyptian leader is on a working visit to Russia.

“Russia supports Egypt’s vigorous efforts in this direction and is ready to render all-round assistance to strengthening Egypt’s armed forces and law enforcement,” a Kremlin statement said ahead of the meeting.

The situation in North Africa, specifically Libya, alongside that in Syria as well as the Israeli-Palestinian problem will also be on the agenda, the Kremlin said.

Egypt is one of Russia’s major Middle East partners. Trade and economic ties form an important aspect of Russian-Egyptian bilateral ties.

Energy and tourism

Energy, including the oil and gas sector, is one of the leading areas of cooperation. Russia’s oil company Lukoil extracts about 0.5 million tonnes of oil annually near the Egyptian city of Hurghada.

Another Russian oil company, Rosneft, has agreed with the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation on annual deliveries to Egypt of petroleum products and liquefied natural gas (LNG). Rosneft will also train personnel for the Egyptian oil and gas industry.

Russia’s Gazprom will also start supplying LNG to Egypt before 2019.

In February last year, the two countries signed an agreement on future construction of nuclear power stations in Egypt. The sides are studying the project’s technical and financial parameters, according to the Kremlin.

Tourism is another important area of reciprocal cooperation. A record number of Russian tourists – over 2.5 million people – visited Egyptian sea resorts in 2014. More than half a million Russians spent their vacation in Egypt in the first half of 2015.

President Vladimir Putin visited Cairo on February 9-10 this year for bilateral talks. The Russian prime minister, Dmitry Medvedev, then visited Egypt on August 6 to attend the unveiling ceremony of the major extension of the Suez Canal.