India – Egypt Bilateral Relationship
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi of Egypt recently agreed to elevate the India-Egypt bilateral relationship to a “strategic partnership”.
- At least since the reign of Emperor Asoka, relations between Egypt and India, two of the world’s oldest civilizations, have existed.
- In modern times, Mahatma Gandhi and the Egyptian rebel Saad Zaghloul had similar aspirations for freedom from British colonial authority.
- Three days after India gained her independence, the two countries jointly announced the formation of ambassadorial-level diplomatic ties.
- President Gamal Abdel Nasser and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru shared a close connection, and in 1955, India and Egypt forged a friendship treaty. The Non-Aligned Movement was founded in 1961 by Nehru and Nasser, Josip Broz Tito of Yugoslavia, Sukarno of Indonesia, and Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana (NAM).
- India sees Sisi’s Egypt as a moderate Islamic voice among Muslim-majority countries and as a “friend” within the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), a 57-nation Islamic alliance that frequently issues statements denouncing India’s Jammu & Kashmir policy and the situation of Muslims in the nation at Pakistan’s behest.
- In June 2022, the Cairo administration declined to join at least 15 other nations in denouncing India’s political leader’s remarks about the Prophet.
- This decision was a significant indicator of Egypt’s evolving awareness of India’s predicament.
- Over the past few years, Egypt’s economy has been in complete disarray.
- It was severely damaged by the pandemic’s collapse in tourism, and the Russia-Ukraine war has hurt its foreign exchange reserves and affected its food supply (almost 80% of Egypt’s grain comes from these two nations).
- India had permitted shipments of 61,500 metric tonnes of wheat to Egypt last year despite limits on the export of wheat.
- Egypt has requested infrastructure investments from India, including funding for metro systems in Cairo and Alexandria, a second Suez Canal channel, a Suez Canal economic zone, and a new administrative centre in a Cairo suburb.
- Over 50 Indian businesses have made more than $3.15 billion in investments in Egypt.
Source The Hindu
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