On Wednesday (23 April) Mohamed Hosni Mubarak, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, will visit Berlin. President Mubarak is also due to meet Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier for an exchange of views.
In the run-up to the visit, Federal Minister Steinmeier and his Egyptian colleague Ahmed Aboul Gheit agreed today to further develop relations between the two countries. To this end, a joint steering committee led by the respective foreign ministries will be set up, with other ministries having the option of participating. The steering committee will meet annually alternating between Germany and Egypt and is mandated to identify topics for closer cooperation and launch concrete cooperation projects.
In the Middle East region which is troubled by many conflicts Egypt is an important and valued partner for Germany. The two countries share a dense network of bilateral relations in cultural, economic and political spheres. For example, 2007 was the first German-Egyptian Year of Science. The excellent cultural relations are dominated by the work of the Goethe-Institut, the three German schools and the German University in Cairo. Egypt is Germany's third largest export market in the Arab world. Building on this, the joint steering committee will identify further fields of cooperation to make relations between the two countries even closer.