Parliamentary Vice-Minister Kentaro Sonoura Visits Egypt
March 15, 2015
1. Mr. Kentaro Sonoura, Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, visited the Arab Republic of Egypt on March 14 and 15 and attended the Egypt Economic Development Conference as the representative of the Government of Japan in response to a direct initiative from Mr. Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, President of Egypt, to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe upon his visit to Egypt in January this year. In the conference, Mr. Sonoura delivered a speech (see attachment (PDF)) in which he stated that Japan would continue its proactive cooperation for the stability of the Middle East including Egypt even after the murder of Japanese hostages and would strengthen efforts and assistance/contribution by both public and private sectors of Japan for the economic development of Egypt, a key to stability in the Middle East. In his speech, Mr. Sonoura mentioned that the Government of Japan had expressed its policies to provide new yen loans of approximately 50 billion yen in the fields of water, transportation and electric power, all of which support the development of Egypt, within six months after President El-Sisi’s inauguration and added that a Cabinet decision had been made to newly extend grant aid of approximately 1.5 billion yen to Cairo University Children Hospital.
2. On the occasion of the conference, Mr. Sonoura met with H.E. Mr. Sameh Shukri, Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Dr. Naglaa El Ehwany, Minister of International Cooperation, and H.E. Dr. Hassan Fahmy, Chairman of the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI) and exchanged opinions on how to strengthen bilateral relations including the follow-up of Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Egypt and on regional situations including the fight against terrorism such as ISIL. Moreover, Mr. Sonoura also exchanged opinions on the promotion of investment to Egypt with representatives from Japanese enterprises who attended the conference.
3. Following his meeting with Dr. Naglaa El Ehwany, Minister of International Cooperation, Mr. Sonoura witnessed a signing ceremony of the Exchange of Notes and loan agreement concerning the Project for Construction of the New Dirout Group of Regulators, a yen loan project of approximately 5.9 billion yen. The project, which utilizes technology of Japan, aims to effectively use approximately 17% of the available supply of water of the Nile for irrigation to improve agricultural productivity in Egypt.
4. In Cairo, Mr. Sonoura visited the Cairo University Children Hospital which was constructed by the assistance from Japan and Cairo Metro for which a Japanese enterprise provides cars.