New Delhi, Apr.15 : Egypt's Trade and Industry Minister Rachid Mohamed Rachid and his Indian counterpart Kamal Nath on Tuesday signed agreements here, taking their key bilateral relationship forward. Terming Egypt as an important trading partner, Nath said India looked forward to the setting up of study groups to enhance trade cooperation.
"We consider Egypt as a very important partner for our economic engagement. Egypt is a gateway to Europe, Africa to the Mediterranean. We have discussed several issues encompassing setting up of joint business council for our business communities. We will be examining, setting up a joint study group for the economic cooperation agreement between India and Egypt," Nath said.
Rachid, who is accompanied by a 35-member business team, said he was keen on boosting trade ties between the two countries.
"Similar to what India has gone through in the last decade, Egypt has also gone through a very major transformation in her economy. From a growth rate of 2-3 percent 6-7 years ago, Egypt today is going at a rate of around 7-8 percent. Again similar to India, Egypt is attracting more and more Foreign Direct Investment, 11 billion dollars last year, 15 billion dollar expected this June and at the same time we have more than tripled our exports in the last 6 years," Rachid said. During Rachid's visit, the two countries are also expected to discuss the possibility of trade cooperation in textiles, home furnishing, automotive, shipping, leather and mining sector.
Egypt and India enjoy similarities in their approach to strategic and trade relations.
Bilateral trade between India and Egypt currently stands at around three billion dollars.