Egyptian Prime Minister Stresses the Role of the Private Sector in Expansion of Trade with Russia

Yesterday, Prime Minister of Egypt, Atef Obeid, said that private companies should assume the leading role in strengthening Russian-Arab trade and economic links by creating joint ventures.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Arab-Russian Business Council meeting, Mr. Obeid stated that the high quality of Egyptian industrial and agricultural products would help expand exports to Russia and neighboring countries.

He also noted that Egypt could become a gateway for Russian exports to Africa, and called for signing bilateral long-term trade agreements as well as for establishment of a permanent exhibition of Russian and Egyptian goods.

The opening ceremony was attended by Egyptian and Russian officials and entrepreneurs.

The foundation of the Arab-Russian Business Council is an important step toward expansion of trade and investment connections between Russia and Arab countries.

Minister of Supply and Domestic Trade, Dr. Hassan Al-Khedr, who was also present at the ceremony, urged creation of an electronic information center that would provide Russian and Arab business people with information on investment opportunities in both countries. He also stressed the need to stimulate the exchange of goods, particularly oil and grain.

Before the meeting, Prime Minister Obeid, met with President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Trade, Ye. Primakov, who took part in the Council meeting. They discussed ways to expand Russian-Arab Economic Relations and to increase Russian investment in Egypt.