Cairo, Feb. Feb 10 (IANS) Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi and his visiting Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin agreed Tuesday to build a nuclear power station in Dabaa city in Egypt’s coastal Matrouh province.
“I attended with President Putin the ceremony of signing a memorandum of understanding to establish a nuclear power station in Dabaa,” Xinhua news agency quoted Sisi as saying in a joint press conference with Putin following their talks at a presidential palace in Cairo.
“The visit of President Putin adds to enhancing the Egyptian-Russian relations and takes them to wider horizons,” Sisi continued, noting that the two presidents have agreed to establish an Egyptian-Russian free trade zone as well as a Russian industrial city near the Suez Canal corridor region.
“We also agreed to continue military cooperation between our two countries,” Sisi added, appreciating Russia’s support for Egypt and its “war against terrorism”.
On his part, Putin said that he discussed with Sisi cooperation in various fields, including energy, assuring that establishment of a nuclear power station “will open new horizons for the Egyptian economy”.
Putin said there were more than 400 Russian companies operating in Egypt and that three million Russian tourists visited Egypt in 2014, a 50 percent increase compared to 2013.
The two heads of state shared same positions on regional and international issues, including the necessity for reaching political solutions to the turmoil in Syria, Libya, Iraq and Yemen and on implementing the two-state solution to end the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
It is Putin’s first visit to Cairo in 10 years while Sisi’s last visit to Russia was in August last year. The mutual visits aim to enhance relations between the two countries and to extend Egyptian-Russian cooperation in various fields.
Egypt has recently been working on creating a kind of balance in its foreign relations with world powers through strengthening strategic partnership with influential states including Russia, China and Japan.