South Korean President Park Geun-hye had a summit meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in Seoul on March 3. During the meeting, the two heads of state signed nine MOUs so that Korean companies take a bigger part in infrastructure construction projects in Egypt, including the construction of another Suez Canal that kicked off in May 2014 and the Egyptian Defense Ministry’s seawater desalination project worth US$850 million or so scheduled for this year.
In addition, Korean companies are planned to participate in the Cairo Metro Line 5 Project, which is expected to cost US$2.5 billion and have feasibility studies conducted this year. Furthermore, the two countries are going to share their experiences and expertise and work on construction and engineering with each other with regard to train system renovation, port development and many more.
The nine MOUs include one for financial cooperation, the purpose of which is to help Korean enterprises win more large-scale projects. The agreement consists of US$2.3 billion in export financing and US$0.7 billion in Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF). The South Korean and Egyptian governments also agreed to move ahead with solar power generation and waste recycling & energy production projects in the frameworks of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) and EDCF.
Moreover, Korea is expected to play a role in the construction of additional nuclear power plants in Egypt while striving to expand its bilateral trade with the country, which has remained at US$2 billion to US$3 billion a year since 2008.