China and India still keen on Egypt investment

Breaking News: Unperturbed by unrest gripping Egypt, Chinese and Indian companies are pushing ahead with expansion plans.

Far Eastern companies are clamouring to expand into Egypt despite recent turmoil engulfing the country.

The bullishness of Chinese and Indian firms contrasts with other companies re-evaluating their presence in Egypt.

Mass protests crippling the economy have dominated the headlines in recent weeks.

Yet, Asian tigers are focused on the rapidly growing population, proximity to Europe and wealth of raw materials that, they say, still make Egypt among the most attractive emerging markets in the long-term.

Jangho Group, a Chinese construction company, wants a share of the many infrastructure projects planned across the country.

"Egypt is the biggest market and has the biggest potential for construction," said company spokesman Brian Wu, based in the firm's regional headquarters in Abu Dhabi. "We do worry about the situation but in the future there will be big projects."

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Jangho, China's largest curtain wall contractor, has completed 25 projects in the Middle East. Now it is considering moving into Egypt.

The Indian conglomerate Essar Group has been reported to be interested in building a US$3 billion refinery in Egypt and buying a steel company  there but those talks are "on hold," said Sreehari Iyer, the company's  Dubai-based director of finance for the Middle East and Africa.

But he said the company is "definitely" interested in Egyptian projects in the near future.

Published: February 8, 2011 04:00 AM


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