This was stated by Andrey Slepnev, Minister in charge of Trade of the Eurasian Economic Commission, during a meeting with Nazih Ali Bahaeldin Elnaggari, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Egypt to Russia.
"The issue of developing relations with Egypt is of utmost importance for us, and we give full attention to it. We see active trade development: the trade turnover has increased by almost 40% this year compared to last year, and an increase was registered before that as well,” Andrey Slepnev noted. “There is growth both in our supplies to Egypt and the Egyptian supplies to our countries. We intend to increase the scale of our economic interaction in the future".
For this purpose, according to the EEC Minister in charge of Trade, persistent efforts are being taken on a free trade agreement. The next round of negotiations is scheduled from October 11-13 in Sharm el-Sheikh.
"We attach much significance to this round, as it can become a turning point in a certain way. We hope to make decisive progress on the key issue – on parameters of mutual reduction of import duties, as well as on preparing the final draft agreement," Andrey Slepnev emphasized.
According to him, today the Eurasian Economic Union pays much attention to the project of the Russian Industrial Zone in Egypt. Along with that, not only companies from the Russian Federation, but also from other EAEU states show interest in the project. "I am convinced that companies from Belarus, Kazakhstan and other Union countries will become residents of this zone in the future," Andrey Slepnev stated.
In conclusion, the Minister confirmed his interest in holding a face-to-face meeting with Ahmed Samir Saleh, recently appointed Minister of Trade and Industry of Egypt, later in the year. They agreed to discuss the details upon completing the upcoming round of negotiations.