New Delhi: Following bilateral talks with visiting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi here on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that India and Egypt would cooperate in the fight against terrorism through greater information and operational exchanges.
“President and I are of one view that growing radicalisation, increasing violence and spread of terror pose a real threat not just to our two countries, but also to nations and communities across regions,” Modi said in a joint pres statement with Sisi following delegation-level talks between the two sides.
“In this context, we agreed to further our defence and security engagement which would aim at: expanding defence trade, training and capacity building; greater information and operational exchanges to combat terrorism; cooperation on emerging challenges of cyber security; and working together to fight drug trafficking, transnational crimes and money-laundering,” he stated.
Describing Egypt as a “natural bridge” between Asia and Africa, Modi said: “Your people are a voice of moderate Islam. And, your nation a factor for regional peace and stability in Africa and the Arab world.”
The Prime Minister said that he and President Sisi have agreed on an action oriented agenda to drive the two countries’ engagements.
“An agenda that responds to our socio-economic priorities, promotes trade and investment ties; secures our societies, helps build peace and harmony in our region; and advances our engagement on regional and international issues,” he said.
Modi said that he and Sisi have agreed to build India-Egypt ties on multiple pillars of cooperation.
“We recognised that strong trade and investment linkages are essential for economic prosperity of our societies,” he said.
“We, therefore, agreed that increased flow of goods, services, and capital between our two economieshas to be among our key priorities.”
Modi said that the agreement on cooperation in maritime transport that was signed on Friday following the delegation-level talks would be an important facilitator.
“I would also urge our private sector to take the lead in building new business and commercial partnerships between the two countries,” he said.
“To diversify the portfolio of economic engagement, we will also deepen our cooperation in agriculture, skill development, small and medium industry and health sectors.”
Describing India and Egypt as “two ancient and proud civilizations with rich cultural heritage”, Modi said he and Sisi also decided to facilitate greater people-to-people contacts and cultural exchanges.
On the global level, he said India appreciated the “good work” Egypt has been doing during its current term on the UN Security Council.
“Our decision to consult more closely on regional and global issues, both at the UN and outside, will benefit our common interests,” the Prime Minister said.
“We agreed that the UN Security Council needs to be reformed to reflect the realities of today,” he said.
Sisi arrived here on Thursday on a three-day official visit to India at the invitation of President Pranab Mukherjee.
This is the first bilateral presidential visit from Egypt to India since the visit of then President Mohamed Morsi.
Sisi visited New Delhi in October last year to attend the India Africa Forum Summit.