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Thursday, 19 November 2020

Shoukry meets Eritrean foreign minister amid conflict in Ethiopia

Topping diplomatic coverage this morning: The Eritrean foreign minister was in Cairo yesterday to discuss the growing conflict in Ethiopia with Sameh Shoukry, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said in a statement yesterday. Eritrea is at risk of being pulled into the conflict after Tigray rebels this week launched missiles at its capital in response to its decision to side with the Ethiopian government in its ongoing offensive against rebel militia.

Elsewhere: Oil Minister Tarek El Molla discussed cooperation in mining operations in Nigeria with the country’s Mining Minister Uchechukwu Sampson Oga in Cairo, according to a cabinet statement. A follow-up meeting to flesh out possible partnerships was agreed to during the visit, but left unspecified. Mining industry players and government officials from both countries are expected to attend.

Meanwhile, International Cooperation Minister Rania Al Mashat met with 46 members of the United Nations’ Development Partners Group to discuss goals for 2021, the ministry said in a statement. The group agreed to meet for further consultations before the end of the year.

The Finance Ministry’s export subsidy program could reach a total EGP 23 bn this year if all currently eligible companies apply for dues from the program, minister Mohamed Maait told Al Mal. We may see subsidies inch upwards in the coming fiscal year if need be, with financing for the program potentially coming through additional allocations to the FY2020-21 budget, he added. Exporters can receive up to 40% of their dues in cash under the program and the remainder through either writing off taxes and customs or receiving discounted industrial land.

More military exercises: The Egyptian navy is carrying out joint military exercises with French forces, the Armed Forces said yesterday. By our count that makes it four simultaneous drills with different countries, also including Russia, Sudan and a group of Arab nations.

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