Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi is visiting China Tuesday and will sign seven major development deals.
Morsi will meet with Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing, before continuing to Iran to participate in the Non-Aligned Movement Conference in Tehran Wednesday, the Egyptian daily Al-Ahram reported. Seven ministers and 70 businessmen will accompany Morsi in a concerted effort to boost Chinese investments in Egypt and develop China as a market for Egyptian exports, the daily reported.
Whereas Egyptian news sources focused Monday on the economic aspects of Morsi’s visit, Chinese news agency Xinhua quoted the president’s spokesman Yasser Ali as saying that Morsi will also discuss Syria with his Chinese counterparts.
“Morsi’s visit to China has a political aspect, including finding a solution to the Syrian crisis, and an economic aspect, including increasing the Chinese investments in Egypt,” Ali told Xinhua.
The contracts to be signed include ones for the building of a new power plant in the southern province of Aswan; infrastructure for high-speed internet; the building of 27 silos to store grain; a water desalination plant in the northwestern province of Marsa Matrouh; and three mega-sized bakeries in three Egyptian provinces. China will also give Egypt a $24 million grant for local development projects.
Nabil Abdul Hamid, an assistant to Egypt’s development minister, told Al-Ahram that China will also provide Egypt with 150 new police cars and 150 vans for prisoner transport.
Transportation Minister Mohammed Rashad El-Meteiny spoke of two projects proposed by his ministry: the construction of a high speed train from Alexandria to Cairo, with an extension to the southern tourist cities of Luxor and Hurghada; and the establishment of logistical centers at the northern and southern exits of the Suez Canal to enhance international trade.