Mursi vows to protect Saudi investments

Mursi vows to protect Saudi investments
Updated 15 July 2012

Mursi vows to protect Saudi investments

Mursi vows to protect Saudi investments

Egyptian President Muhammad Mursi has pledged that he would remove all obstacles facing Saudi investors in his country. He also reassured Saudis about their investments worth $ 27 billion in Egypt, saying it would be protected.
“We’ll tackle the problems facing Saudi investors in Egypt,” diplomatic sources quoted Mursi as saying following his meeting with Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah and Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense.
The sources said economic issues had figured high on the agenda of Mursi’s Jeddah talks, adding that Crown Prince Salman had suggested frequent exchange of visits by officials and business leaders of both countries.
“During his talks with President Mursi, Prince Salman raised a number of issues facing Saudi investors in Egypt and sought assurances from the Egyptian government to protect their investment,” Al-Eqtisadiah business daily quoted the sources as saying.
One source at the Egyptian Consulate in Jeddah said the two sides have agreed to solve all problems related to building a causeway near Dhuba and hold more talks on the project that would strengthen commercial ties between the two countries.
According to the sources, the Kingdom has agreed to employ more Egyptian workers to make use of their expertise in various fields.
Yasser Ali, spokesman of the Egyptian presidency, said the establishment of a democratic government in Cairo would bolster Egypt’s stability and help the country attract more foreign investment.
Meanwhile, Egyptian community leaders in the Kingdom have requested the president to give them more opportunities in the country’s new investment projects. They also urged the Cairo government to give Egyptian expatriates customs concessions to import cars, electronic goods and other products. There are about 1.7 million Egyptians in Saudi Arabia.
The expatriates also requested the president to set up a commission to defend Egyptians facing legal problems abroad. They also want the government to reduce the price of land required by them to build homes. Mursi urged the Egyptians to support his government’s move to make six million hectares of land cultivable in order to promote agriculture.
Mursi concluded his two-day official visit to the Kingdom on Thursday. It was his first foreign visit after taking oath as president on June 30.
Saudi analysts said the reception King Abdullah prepared for Mursi showed Saudi Arabia was willing to start a new era in relations with the new Egyptian government led by Muslim Brotherhood.
"The message is that we have no problem with the revolution or the Brotherhood and let's continue with the well-established Saudi-Egyptian relationship," said Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi analyst.
Hussein Shobokshi, another Saudi commentator, said: "Through this visit Saudi Arabia has made it very clear and obvious that it has got over the Mubarak era and started a new chapter with the new leadership of Egypt."
Saudi Arabia has pledged $2.7 billion to support Egypt's battered finances after the uprising that toppled Mubarak. "By choosing the Kingdom for his first visit abroad, ... Mursi recognizes that the two countries are the pillars of Arab national security," the editor of Al-Riyadh newspaper, Yousuf Al Kuwailet, wrote in a column.
The Arabic language Al-Watan daily said that Mursi's visit was a signal that Saudi Arabia and Egypt were ready to work together on critical regional issues, such as Syria.