From tourism to food and industry: Belarus-Egypt relations

From tourism to food and industry: Belarus-Egypt relations

For modern Belarusians Egypt is primarily a place for recreation and tourism. As for Egyptians, they are interested in Belarusian technologies of fresh water production as well as high-quality food products.

The country of pharaohs, pyramids and valleys is an attractive destination for tourists from all over the world. By the way, Egypt's resorts attract thousands of tourists from Russia and Ukraine annually. But Egypt is now afraid of losing their tactful and friendly guests from Belarus.

Samir Rashwan, the general manager of one of Sharm El Sheikh hotels, is familiar firsthand with the image of Belarusian tourists. Egypt’s resorts welcome around 90,000 Belarusians per year. In order to ease the transportation of our compatriots, the two countries are negotiating for the opening of regular flights Minsk-Sharm El Sheikh. Due to these measures the stream of Belarusian tourists will increase considerably. But we asked him another question: what Egyptians know about Belarus?

Samir Rashvan, the General Manager of the hotel (Egypt):
I treat Belarusian tourists with great respect. By the way, many travel agencies in Egypt think about the organization of tours to Belarus, because this country is an exotic one for us. And I believe, our visitors will appreciate your country soon.

After the accident with the Petersburg's aircraft tourism in the Republic has decreased by a half. Despite Russians don’t fly to Sharm El Sheikh so far, the situation has changed. The hotels are full of guests. And safety is guaranteed.

Georgy Mura, animator (Moldova):
The number of security forces has increased dramatically. At the airport, every passenger is carefully inspected as well as all the baggage. We have strengthened security requirements, that’s pretty positive.

Here - as, indeed, almost everywhere in the East - local people take care of visitors. And Bedouins, a nomadic ancient nation, are ready to welcome anyone who comes to their tents.

South Sinai is a huge territory. But mostly it is a lifeless desert. Now, the government of this province starts to implement a large-scale project that includes relocation of the people living along the Nile as well as improvement of the infrastructure in the region.

Egyptians do rely on Belarusian technologies, equipment and expertise.

South Sinai will become a second Sharm El Sheikh in 15 years. The government allocates billions of Egyptian pounds for the national program on mining. There will be a huge cite of granite and marble mining. The so-called Golden Triangle. The two countries have already been discussing the concrete models of mining equipment Belarus will supply to Egypt. Here, Belarusian equipment, and especially tractors, has a brilliant reputation.

Aiman Magrabi, the director of the farm (Egypt):
We are delighted with your tractors. They have been used in my household for many years. And we are interested in the methods of vegetables planting you practice.

Egypt has a great problem of fresh water deficiency. Even groundwater at a depth of thousands of meters contains salt. So, Egyptians are wondering how they could grow vegetables literally in the desert.

Andrei Mezhevich, the chief engineer of projects in the geodetic company (Belarus):
It is planned to plant gardens on the area of 25,000 hectares. I think, we will be able to irrigate these gardens. Our irrigation specialists have a better expertise than our colleagues from Egypt.

Khaled Fouda Seddik, the governor of South Sinai, appreciates the potential of Belarus very seriously.

There is a picture of Belarus on the wall of his study. His visit to the Minsk Region was the first in the history of relations between the two countries.

Khaled Fouda Seddik, the governor of the province South Sinai (Egypt):
Two visits (mine to Belarus and yours to Egypt) had a huge positive impact on the relations between our countries. The decisions made will definitely help our nations to become closer. We already knew that Belarus has advanced production and modern technologies. You produce excellent tractors and long-lasting agricultural machinery. You have developed woodworking, let alone with food production. We may have mutually beneficial cooperation in these fields.

By the way, Belarus plans to deliver diary, beef and poultry to Egypt. These are the products that Egypt really lacks. It is our food products that Egyptians want to see on the shelves of their stores.