On 19/9/2019: Egypt and Italy signed an agreement to establish ten vertical farm silos and apply the information and communications technology (ICT) system to enhance wheat management sector at a cost of EGP 360 million. The agreement falls within the framework of the third phase of the Italian-Egyptian Debt Swap (IEDS) Program. The deal was signed by Investment and International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr and Italian Ambassador in Cairo Giampaolo Cantini along with Chairman of the Egyptian Holding Company for Silos and Storage (EHCSS) Sherif el Basili in the presence of Supply Minister Ali el Meselhi.
Italy is one of Egypt's most important trading partners in the EU. Egypt’s Non-oil exports to the Italian market have increased by 39% to 367 million Euros in the first quarter of this year compared to 264 million Euros in the same period of 2016.
The trade exchange between Egypt and Italy increased significantly during the first quarter of the current year 2017 by 30%, as the volume of trade between the two countries was up to 1.3 billion Euros compared to one billion Euros during the same period of 2016.
Iron, aluminum, fertilizers, methanol, plastics, molasses and fresh vegetables such as artichokes, potatoes and lettuce, as well as preserved vegetables, topped Egyptian exports to the Italian market.
Italy has shown great interest in many projects inside Egypt. This is well shown through its participation in the implementation of many major national projects that the Egyptian government is intending to implement, especially in the framework of the development of the Suez Canal axis, as well as projects in petrochemicals, automotive components and small and medium enterprises.
The number of Italian companies operating in Egypt amounted to 1.052 companies and the contribution of these companies in the issued capital amounted to 1.675 billion dollars, of which 359 companies in the service sector, 310 companies in the industrial sector and 13 companies in the ICT sector.
Italian investments in Egypt are distributed in several fields, of which about $ 1.5 billion is for more than 900 companies in the fields of industry, services, finance, information technology, contracting and agriculture. This is besides investments in gas fields, including INI and Edison in Abu Qir, bringing total investments to about $ 9 billion.
On October 13, 2018, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received CEO of Italian company "Pedreni" for marble and granite. During the meeting, it was agreed to establish a marble city in the Jabal al-Jalalah city, which includes seven factories for producing marble, a factory for producing granite and a factory for production supplies, in addition to a vocational training institute on the marble industry.
On April 16, 2020, Egypt and Italy signed an
agreement to expand the project of applied technology schools and enhance the
skills of teachers. The agreement is worth LE 40.8 million within the framework of the third phase of the Italian-Egyptian Debt for development Swap (IEDS) Program. Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, minister of international cooperation; Dr. Tarek Shawki, minister of education and technical education; and Giampaolo Cantini, the Italian ambassador to Cairo signed the agreement.
The project aims to contribute to developing technical education, providing technical and professional graduates appropriate for good jobs, and establishing a network that comprises a large number of applied schools to be managed by the Applied Technology Schools Unit at the Ministry of Education and Technical Education to ensure compliance with international quality standards.
Dr. Rania Al-Mashat praised the Egyptian-Italian cooperation, which varies between bilateral cooperation, the IEDS Program, and the Italian commodity import program. The cooperation focuses on several sectors, most notably small and medium-sized enterprises, food security, education and social dimension, agriculture sector, cultural heritage and environment.
The Minister noted the importance of this project in achieving the fourth goal of the sustainable development goals by providing quality education.
Dr. Tarek Shawki expressed his pleasure for the cooperation with the Italian side, and the trust of the Italian side in the project of applied technology schools. He chose this project, in particular, because of its active and essential role in the rehabilitation of young people for the labor market, and the creation of new job opportunities that would
provide a good standard of living whatever the circumstances of the country. He pointed out that the project of applied technology schools aims to enroll more than 130 thousand male and female students, and train more than 3,000 faculty members and administrators by 2030.
The value of the portfolio of cooperation between Egypt and Italy through the IEDS program is EUR 350 million. It is dedicated to using this debt in development projects instead of paying it back to the Italian side. The implementation of the first phase of the exchange program amounted to about USD 150 million, and the value of the second phase amounted to about USD 100 million, while the total of the third phase of the IEDS program amounted to USD 100 million.
Recently concluded Agreements, Announcements and Memoranda of Understanding:
• On the margin of the First Joint Strategic Summit on June 4, 2008, the following agreements were endorsed :
• Memorandum of Understanding on Launching a Promoted Strategic Partnership between the two countries
• Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Maritime Fish Farming.
• Agreement on offering technical support to the rail-way field in Egypt, with an annual five year grant with a total of 11.5 million Euros (before the summit).
• Agreement on restoration and protection of cultural heritage
• Establishement of an Egyptian-Italian university
Sharm Ehshiekh Second Strategic Summit on May 12, 2009:
• Memorandum of Understanding on Trilateral Cooperation in Africa.
• A Plan of Action for the period from 2009 to 2012 on promoting cooperation in the economic field and increasing trade. The plan includes supporting the establishment of small and medium enterprises, attracting Italian investments, developing human resources, technical training and elevating the Egyptian cadres competence.
• Joint Declaration on Bilateral Cooperation in the developmental field.
• Joint Declaration on the Implementation of The Debt Exchange programme for development.
• Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the field of energy, including renewable energy (solar and wind energy), technology transmission and joint production, and considering trilateral cooperation in this field in Africa.
• Memorandum of Understanding on Italy's offering a grant of 550,000 Euros to finance the feasibility study of a rail-way line of the Cairo - Alexandria fast train, and the possibility of extending it to reach Upper Egypt.
• Memorandum of Understanding on the establishment of joint cooperation council in the field of land and maritime transport and to link Egyptian ports with Italian ports (a new agreement was signed on maritime transport instead of the previous one signed in 1976).
• Memorandum of Understanding on Egypt's participation in the activities of EXPO 2015 exhibition in Milan.
• Joint declaration on expanding the geographic sphere before the vocational training schools affiliated to the DON BOSCO Institute in Egypt.
• Agreement between the Ministry of Petroleum and ENI Company to increase its investments in Egypt in the fields of oil prospecting, and joint production in Sinai, the Suez Gulf and the Mediterranean. The new investments will exceed 4.4 billion Euros. The agreement includes training, expertise transfer and joint work between the Egyptian Petroleum sector and the company abroad; it is expected to start projects in Libya and Iraq.
Third Strategic Summit on May 19, 2010,
• A Joint Declaration on the Implementation of an Economic and Social Development in the north western coast region.
• Memorandum of Understanding on a new Developmental Partnership.
• Memorandum of Understanding on Scientific Cooperation in agriculture
• Joint Declaration on Promoting the Development of Commercial and Industrial Cooperation, as linked with the follow-up of implementing the Plan of Action of the period 2009-2012.
• Agreement on Cooperation on the Implementation of Projects in the field of Gas production and exploration.
• Agreement on Cooperation between Egypt Post and the Poste Italiane Group.
D- The agreements signed at the Egyptian-Italian Summit held in Rome on 14/9/2012
• Agreement on bilateral cooperation in the tourism sector during the period 2012-2013
• Agreement to enhance cooperation in the field of technical and vocational education
• Agreement on the development of the second phase of the restructuring of the Egyptian railway
• Agreement on the establishment of bakeries in Egypt
• Joint Declaration of Support and Financing for Small and Medium Enterprises in Egypt
• Agreement on economic cooperation between the two countries during the period 2012 to 2015
Strategies of cooperation between the two countries
Egypt and Italy have established several development strategies aimed at enhancing economic cooperation and strengthening relations between the two countries.
In the First strategic summit between the two countries on June4, 2008 , a Memorandum of understanding was signed to launch a strengthened strategic partnership between the two countries, and another memo was signed in the field of marine aquaculture together with an agreement to provide Italian technical support to the Egyptian railway sector with a total grant of 11.5 million Euros for 5 years.
In The Second Strategic Summit on May 12, 2009, a Memorandum of Understanding on Trilateral Cooperation in Africa was indorsed and a Plan of Action for the period from 2009 to 2012 to promote cooperation in the economic field and increase trade. The plan includes supporting the establishment of small and medium enterprises, attracting Italian investments, developing human resources, technical training and elevating the Egyptian cadres competence.This comes in addition to a Joint Declaration on Bilateral Cooperation in the developmental field and other on the Implementation of The Debt Exchange programme for development.
Also a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the field of energy, including renewable energy (solar and wind energy), technology transmission and joint production, and considering trilateral cooperation in this field in Africa was signed.
A Memorandum of Understanding on Italy's offering a grant of 550,000 euros to finance the feasibility study of a rail-way line of the Cairo - Alexandria fast train, and the possibility of extending it to reach Upper Egypt was signed as well.
An Agreement between the Ministry of Petroleum and ENI Company to increase its investments in Egypt in the fields of oil prospecting, and joint production in Sinai, the Suez Gulf and the Mediterranean was signed. The new investments will exceed 4.4 billion Euros. The agreement includes training, expertise transfer and joint work between the Egyptian Petroleum sector and the company abroad; it is expected to start projects in Libya and Iraq.
In the Third Strategic Summit on May 19, 2010,a Joint Declaration on the Implementation of an Economic and Social Development program in the north western coast region was announced and a Memorandum of Understanding on a new Developmental Partnership was signed.
This is in addition to a Memorandum of Understanding on Scientific Agricultural Cooperation, an Agreement on Cooperation on the Implementation of Projects in the field of Gas production and exploration and postal services.