Qatar, Egypt cement rapprochement as emir visits Cairo
CAIRO — Egypt’s leader discusses energy and investment with Qatar’s emir, who is in Cairo for the first time since the countries restored relations following a Saudi-led rift.
Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani tells Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi that his country is keen to “maximize Qatari investments in Egypt and take advantage of the vast investment opportunities available,” according to an Egyptian presidency statement.
The pair discuss developing cooperation “in various fields, especially in the energy and agriculture sectors,” and in trade and investment, “particularly the flow of Qatari investments towards Egypt,” the statement adds.
In late March, Cairo said the gas-rich Gulf state would be investing $5 billion in Egypt.
At the same time, Qatari hydrocarbon giant QatarEnergy announced an agreement with ExxonMobil to acquire a 40 percent stake in a gas exploration block off Egypt in the Mediterranean.
No new agreements were announced during the emir’s two-day trip, which concluded today and was his first to Cairo since 2015.
After relations between Egypt and Qatar were restored in January 2021, Sissi and the Qatari emir had only met twice, both times on the sidelines of summits abroad.
According to the Egyptian presidency, the emir also “praised Egypt’s ongoing efforts on reconstruction in the Gaza Strip.”
Doha and Cairo — key US allies in the Middle East — have both provided reconstruction aid to the territory and have been involved with mediation efforts between Israel and the Gaza Strip’s Islamist rulers Hamas.
The two leaders also welcomed next month’s Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Saudi Arabia, which will also be attended by the leaders of Egypt, Jordan, Iraq and the US, the presidency statement says.