CAIRO: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi Saturday met with Chinese Politburo member Meng Jianzhu, the secretary of the Central Politics and Law Commission of the Communist Party of China, and was invited by Meng to visit China in December.
A statement from the presidency said Meng said China would hope to announce a strategic partnership between Egypt and China during the visit to commemorate 60 years of diplomatic ties between the two countries. Egypt in 1956 became the first Arab country to formally recognize the People’s Republic of China.
Presidential spokesperson Alaa Youssef said in a Saturday statement that the expected visit for Sisi to China reflects Egypt’s “huge appreciation and respect between the Chinese people and Egyptian leadership.” Also present at the meeting were Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and Chinese Ambassador to Egypt Song Aiguo.
Egypt’s long anticipated economic summit was recently postponed to mid-March to “avoid coinciding with the Chinese New Year,” Minister of Finance Hani Kadry announced.
Saudi Arabia called for the upcoming summit in June following the election of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, and invited “friends of Egypt” to support its economy. Sisi then embraced the idea and announced the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh as the host of the summit. The government had initially intended to host the summit as early as in November, but during the summer it was scheduled to be held from Feb. 21-22, 2015, only a few days after the Chinese New Year on Feb. 19, which is celebrated for days by several communities around the world.