Prime Minister Modi landed in Cairo on Saturday on his two-day (June 24-25) state visit to Egypt

Giving a glimpse of his country’s priority in making bilateral ties with India special, Egyptian Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouly went to the Cairo airport to personally receive Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his arrival in the North African country on Saturday.

The display of India-Egypt friendship took a new colour when the Egyptian Prime Minister facilitated Prime Minister Modi’s meeting with the ‘India Unit’ which is part of the North African country’s cabinet.

Headed by Egyptian Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouly, the ‘India Unit’ comprises several Ministers and senior officials.

During the meeting with Prime Minister Modi, the Egyptian Prime Minister and his Cabinet colleagues outlined the activities of the India Unit and proposed new areas of cooperation.

Both sides also discussed ways to strengthen cooperation in areas like trade and investment, renewable energy, green hydrogen, IT, digital payment platforms, pharma and people to people ties, the Ministry of External Affairs said.

The India Unit was set up earlier this year following the state visit of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi to India as the Chief Guest for the Republic Day function.

According to the MEA, Egyptian Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouly appreciated the positive response from their Indian counterparts, and looked forward to deepening India-Egypt bilateral relations in numerous sectors.

Prime Minister Modi, as per the MEA, appreciated the setting up of the India Unit and welcomed this ‘whole of the government approach’ to take forward bilateral relations with India, and shared India’s readiness to work closely with Egypt in various areas of mutual interest.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Modi met with Hassan Allam, CEO of Hassan Allam Holding Company, one of the largest Egyptian companies operating in the Middle East and the North African regions.

They discussed possibilities of forging closer cooperation with Indian companies in renewable energy, green hydrogen, infrastructure, and construction sectors, the MEA maintained.

Prime Minister Modi also met Egypt’s Grand Mufti Dr Shawky Ibrahim Allam who recalled his recent visit to India, while highlighting strong cultural and people-to-people relations between the two countries. As per the MEA, the Grand Mufti appreciated the Prime Minister’s leadership in fostering inclusivity and pluralism.

Discussions between Prime Minister Modi and Egypt’s Grand Mufti also focused on issues related to social and religious harmony in society and countering extremism and radicalisation. Prime Minister Modi conveyed that India would set up a Centre of Excellence in IT at the Dar-al-Ifta under the Ministry of Social Justice of Egypt.

Prime Minister Modi also met Tarek Heggy, renowned Egyptian author and petroleum strategist in Cairo and discussed issues related to global geopolitics, energy security, radicalism, and gender equality.

Despite a hectic schedule, Prime Minister Modi met with two prominent Egyptian Yoga instructors Reem Jabak and Nada Adel in Cairo. According to the MEA, the Prime Minister praised them for their commitment to Yoga and encouraged them to visit India. The duo informed the Prime Minister of the great enthusiasm for Yoga in Egypt.

Prime Minister Modi also interacted with Indian community members in Cairo and lauded the community for their contribution towards strengthening India-Egypt ties. Over 300 members of the Indian diaspora, comprising students, professionals, and businesspersons participated in the event.