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METI State Minister Isozaki Visits the Arab Republic of Egypt (Japan-Arab Economic Forum)

September 10, 2019

On September 9, 2019, Mr. Yoshihiko Isozaki, State Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, visited Cairo, the Arab Republic of Egypt, and attended the Japan-Arab Economic Forum, an occasion jointly organized by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), the League of Arab States (LAS), the Japan Cooperation Center for the Middle East (JCCME) and the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO). In this forum, focusing on the subject of “Business Opportunities” for Japan and the Arab region, participants held discussions on promotion of cooperation mainly in the fields of 1) energy/infrastructure and 2) entertainment / startups.

Taking this opportunity, State Minister Isozaki held individual bilateral meetings with the Ministry of Investment and International Cooperation (MIIC) of Egypt, the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) of Egypt and the LAS.

1. Japan-Arab Economic Forum

The Forum brought together over 300 stakeholders of the governments and companies from Japan and LAS member countries, including H.E. Dr. Kamal Hassan Ali, Assistant Secretary General, LAS. In the Forum, State Minister Isozaki delivered an opening speech and called for further enrichment of the economic relationship between Japan and Arab countries and the importance of expanding the relationship to new economic fields. During the business session, stakeholders from the public and private sectors in Japan and the Arab region held active discussions on the enhancement of the relationship in the fields of energy and infrastructure and also in the fields of entertainment and startups as new fields for cooperation as well as the further development of those fields.

State Minister Isozaki delivering an opening speech

2. Meeting with H.E. Dr. Sahar Nasr, Minister, MIIC

The meeting with Minister Nasr also brought together representatives of Japanese companies that had attended the tour to the Suez Canal Economic Zone, which had been conducted prior to convening the Forum. At the meeting, State Minister Isozaki expressed his gratitude for Minister Nasr’s hosting of regular roundtable meetings with Japanese companies that are developing business in Egypt. Following this, the two sides exchanged views on specific requests from Japanese companies operating in the region for improving the investment environment in Egypt.

Meeting with Minister Nasr

3. Meeting with H.E. Eng. Amr Nassar, Minister, MTI

At the meeting with Minister Nassar, State Minister Isozaki expressed his gratitude for the participation of President El-Sisi and other officials of the Egyptian government in TICAD7 in August 2019. Following this, the two sides confirmed the recent development of Japan-Egypt economic ties, and based on this, exchanged views on various issues including the development of the investment environment in Egypt to expand the scale of Japan’s direct investments in the country.

Meeting with Minister Nassar

4. Meeting with Assistant Secretary General Hassan Ali, LAS

At the meeting with Assistant Secretary General Hassan Ali, the two sides confirmed the effects and achievements brought about by the past four Japan-Arab Economic Forums and they shared the recognition of the importance of examining the results of the 2019 Forum.

Meeting with Assistant Secretary General Hassan Ali

Division in Charge

Middle East and Africa Division, Trade Policy Bureau

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