UAE and Egypt agree to strengthen bilateral trade ties

UAE's Etihad Credit Insurance and Egypt's Export Credit Guarantee Company sign agreement to boost exports

MoU signed by Massimo Falcioni (front row, left), CEO of ECI and Mohamed Azzam (front row, right), Managing Director of ECGE in the presence H.E. Abdulla Ahmed Al Saleh (back row, 4th from left), Undersecretary of Foreign Trade of the UAE Ministry of Economy, and senior officials from both institutions.
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The UAE, the second-biggest Arab economy, and Egypt agreed to strengthen bilateral trade ties between the two Arab countries by identifying the scope for future business opportunities and offer companies export credit facilities.

The UAE's Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI) and the Export Credit Guarantee Company of Egypt (ECGE) have signed an agreement to boost exports and further grow non-oil trade between the two countries, according to a statement released on Monday.

"This agreement will pave the way for the identification and development of more business opportunities," Massimo Falcioni, chief executive of ECI, said. "ECI’s partnership with ECGE will not only reinforce the existing partnership between the two countries but will also boost the regional and global competitiveness of local businesses."

Non-oil trade between the UAE and Egypt, the most populous Arab country, last year reached Dh20.1 billion, a year-on-year rise of 14.6 per cent, according to data released by the UAE Ministry of Economy. The UAE ranks first globally in terms of investments in Egypt with total foreign direct investment (FDI) reaching Dh24.3bn from 990 Emirati companies investing in Egypt at the end of 2018. Meanwhile, Egypt ranks 28th globally in terms of FDI into the UAE with total investments worth Dh3.3bn during the same period.

Egypt is the UAE’s sixth-biggest trading partner in the region while the UAE is Egypt’s second-leading trading partner.

"These are indicators of the strong and deep relationship shared between the UAE and Egypt," Mohamed Azzam, managing director of the Egyptian export credit agency said. "For ECGE, the MoU [memorandum of understanding] offers optimistic prospects for SMEs [small and medium-sized enterprises] and businesses looking to enter high-growth markets through a broad suite of trade credit solutions.”

ECGE was founded in 1992 with the role of facilitating the development of Egypt’s foreign trade. It provides comprehensive services and support to exporters to help manage, protect and finance their receivables.

Under the agreement, ECI and ECGE will create a task force to explore trade and collaborate on technical and economic issues. These include insurance, reinsurance, Sharia-compliant insurance and finance solutions, trade promotional activities, facilitating access of SMEs, as well as sharing expertise and best practices.

The agreement was signed during the UAE-Egypt investor forum organised by the UAE Ministry of Economy, the UAE Investor’s Council and the Egypt-UAE Business Council to provide market information and build networks for businesses in the two countries, according to the statement.