Wednesday,19 June, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1380, (8 - 14 February 2018)
Wednesday,19 June, 2019
Issue 1380, (8 - 14 February 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Al-Sisi on Gulf tour

Al-Sisi arrived in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday on the second leg of a Gulf tour that started on Sunday in Oman, reports Reem Leila


President Al-Sisi with Sultan Qaboos in Muscat (photo: AFP

The visit to Oman, President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi’s first since he came to power in 2014, is the first by an Egyptian president since 2009.  

Al-Sisi and Sultan Qaboos bin Al-Said held talks on the developments in the Middle East especially the situation in Syria and Yemen in addition to mutual relations between Egypt and Oman with special focus on trade relations, according to Presidential Spokesman Bassam Radi.

Economic cooperation between the two countries comes as part of the Great Arab Trade Agreement (GATA), an economic coalition of Arab countries for economic integration and low tariffs trade, established in 2005.  

The president and his accompanying delegation met 40 Omani businessmen to discuss possible means of opening investment markets up to them in Egypt.

“The visit to Oman at this particular time stresses the fact that Egypt will not allow Arab Gulf security to be threatened,” political science professor at the American University in Cairo Mustafa Al-Sayed pointed out.

“Egypt seeks to benefit from the current economic capabilities in Oman to guarantee ongoing economic coordination between both countries. This will take place by creating an economic zone to attract new investments to Egypt,” Al-Sayed said.  The visit to the UAE started with a meeting between Al-Sisi and Crown Prince Sheikh Zayed Al-Nahyan. During the meeting the two leaders discussed issues related to Gulf countries along with the Middle East region.

President Al-Sisi with Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the UAE and ruler of Dubai, in Abu Dhabi (photo: AFP)

According to Radi, both leaders agreed on developing a comprehensive strategy to prevent terrorist organisations from acquiring weapons and money, as well as ending any political cover provided to them.

“Zayed Al-Nahyan, as well as Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, vice president, prime minister and ruler of Dubai, affirmed the UAE’s support of Egypt in its war against terrorism as the centre of security and stability in the Arab world,” Radi said.

“Al-Sisi affirmed that the security of Gulf countries is part and parcel of Egypt’s national security,” he added.

The main aim of the Gulf tour is to enhance mutual cooperation and to discuss the current crisis between Egypt and Qatar along with other political issues, according to Hassan Nafaa, a professor of political science at Cairo University.

“The president is also keen on discussing current political challenges in the region as he stressed the importance of having a comprehensive plan to combat terrorism as well as Iranian intrusion in Arab countries,” Nafaa said.

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