PM Modi may visit Egypt this month

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to visit Egypt this month, around six months after the two countries elevated their ties to the level of strategic partnership, diplomatic sources said on Wednesday.

It will be Modi's first visit to the African nation after he became prime minister in 2014.

The sources said the visit is set to boost cooperation in a number of areas including trade, investment, agriculture and defence. There has been no official announcement on PM Modi's trip to Egypt.

India is keen to further expand ties with Egypt, a key player in the politics of both the Arab world as well as Africa. It is also seen as a major gateway to markets in Africa and Europe.

The ties between the two countries were elevated to the level of strategic partnership during Egyptian President Abdeh Fattah El-Sisi's visit to India in January.

In the talks, the two leaders decided to take the volume of bilateral trade to USD 12 billion in the next five years from around USD 7 billion at present.

The 68-year-old influential Arab leader graced the Republic Day celebrations as the chief guest on January 26.

The sources said Modi's visit to Egypt is set to be alongside his trip to the US. Egypt has been traditionally one of India's most important trading partners in the African continent.

More than 450 Indian companies are registered in Egypt, of which around 50 are active in various sectors with a combined investment exceeding $3 billion, according to official data

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