Egypt, Kenya deepen ties as El-Sisi holds talks with Uhuru

 

kenya-EgyptKenya and Egypt have agreed to increase bilateral trade to cement their historic ties that date back to the pre-colonial days.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi said Kenya and Egypt are working on concluding agreements that will remove hurdles hindering trade and investment between the two countries.

The two leaders spoke on Saturday at State House, Nairobi, when they addressed a joint press briefing after leading their delegations in bilateral talks.

President Kenyatta stressed the need for the two countries to implement agreements they have signed in the past and finalize others.

He said this would especially eliminate double taxation, reciprocate promotion and protect investments.

“It is not enough to sign agreements. We need to ensure they are fully implemented for the mutual benefit of the people of our two countries,” President Kenyatta said.

The President and his Egyptian counterpart endorsed the Kenya-Egypt Joint Commission for Cooperation (JCC) – which is in its sixth cycle – as the right vehicle for promoting political, economic and social cooperation between the two countries.

The two leaders said their countries would also work together to expand areas of cooperation including the fight against violent extremism and radicalization.

“Kenya recognizes Egypt’s good work in combating these vices, and I reiterated our desire to partner in that work,” President Kenyatta said.

The head of state applauded the technical cooperation between Kenya and Egypt, noting that Kenyan public workers have benefitted from training opportunities in specialized fields through the Egyptian Partnership Agency for Development.

He cited health, agriculture, security, ICT and diplomacy.

On his part, the Egyptian leader, who jetted into the country on Saturday morning for his first State visit to Kenya, said Egypt was keen to increase trading relations with Kenya.

He noted that that was a key element in enhancing the historical bonds between the two states that have been in existence for over 50 years.

President El Sisi also reaffirmed Egypt’s support to Kenya in the war against terrorism as well as ensuring regional peace.

“We have agreed to intensify our efforts to ensure peace and security in South Sudan and in Somalia,” President El Sisi said.

The Egyptian leader said his country will also remain steadfast in providing technical assistance to Kenya.

He assured President Kenyatta of Egypt’s support in ensuring the UN offices in Nairobi (UNEP and UN-HABITAT) are strengthened.