Big numbers, big improvement for the country's maligned economy.
According to a statement by Trade and Industry Minister, Amr Nassar, trade between Egypt and the European Union has been recorded at $13.4 billion during the first six months of 2018, as reported by Al Ahram.
The Brits were the highest European traders, with trade between the UK and Egypt totaling $5.3 billion, followed by the Netherlands with $2.5 billion, Italy with $1.48 billion and France with $1.3 billion.
The increase of trade had looked on the cards since July 2017, when the first EU-Egypt Association Council meeting for seven years took place. An association agreement was signed between both parties, which laid out the facilitation of trade between the two markets by establishing a free trade area.
The EU's main imports of goods from Egypt in 2017 were fuel and mining products (€3.2 billion) and chemicals (€1.3 billion), as well as textiles and clothing.The EU's main exports to Egypt, on the other hand are machinery and transport equipment, fuels and mining products, and agricultural products. The EU is both Egypt’s biggest import and export partner, covering 29.7% of Egypt’s trade volume in 2017. In the long term, between 2004 and 2017, trade between both parties has more than doubled.
It's the latest news to shed a positive light on the country's maligned economy, following a UN report pinpointing Cairo as the most attractive city in Africa for foreign investment.
Main image from EEAS)