CAIRO, January 15. /TASS/. A number of cooperation agreements were signed by Minsk and Cairo on Sunday as part of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko’s official visit to Egypt.
After top-level talks in the narrow and extended formats, the Belarusian president and his Egyptian counterpart, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, put their signatures under a joint declaration. Apart from that, a memorandum of understanding in the area of military technical cooperation, a document on cooperation in the area of culture, an agreement on mutual assistance in the sphere of justice and a convention on extradition of criminals, as well as an agreement on cooperation in sport and a memorandum of understanding in the sphere of agriculture were signed in the presence of the two leaders.
"It is necessary to use promising possibilities to develop our cooperation in various spheres to ensure a qualitative breakthrough in our relations. We are satisfied with the current progress," al-Sisi told a joint news conference. "Cairo attaches major significance to creating a free trade zone with the Eurasian Economic Union" [of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia].
The Belarusian leader said in turn the representative delegation accompanying him on his visit to Egypt evidenced Minsk’s commitment to strengthen relations with Cairo. He said topics of his talks in Egypt included issues of encouraging trade between the two countries and prospects for increasing Belarus’ export, first of all machinery, to Egypt and creating joint ventures.
Lukashenko arrived in Cairo earlier on Sunday. The program of his visit includes talks with the Egyptian leaders on issues of the development of bilateral relations. The Belarusian president is accompanied by a representative delegation of about 40 businessman interested in investing into the Egyptian economy.
In 2017, the two countries are marking the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations. Minsk is interested in expanding markets for its heavy machine-building products, such as tractors, combines, trucks and buses, mining equipment, construction machinery and equipment for water treatment, as well as for it medical, agricultural and petrochemical products.