Cairo: External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar thanked the Indian business community in Egypt for advancing national interests and shaping the country’s image in the region.
“I thank Indian businesses here because you are not only advancing our national interests but you are also shaping our image in this country, and that is something we very much appreciate,” Jaishankar, who was on a two-day visit to the nation at the invitation of his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry, said on Friday.
Indian companies are operating in all major sectors of the Egyptian economy including textiles and garments, power, chemicals, adhesives, pharmaceuticals, information technology, etc.
Around 50 Indian companies have invested in various sectors in Egypt with a combined investment exceeding $3.15bn, according to Indian ambassador in Cairo, Ajit Gupte.
Some of the Indian companies operating in Egypt include, TCI Sanmar, SCIB Chemicals (Asian Paints), Dabur Egypt Limited, Galaxy Chemicals(Egypt) SAE.
Overall, these companies provide direct employment to approximately 38,000 Egyptians, according to Gupte.
Jaishankar, who is on his first visit to Egypt as foreign minister, also recognised the contributions of the Indian diaspora across the world towards its mother country, especially during testing times of Covid.
“There is a sense of purpose today in India, and there is a sense of confidence that we’ve come through very-very difficult periods, and in all of this, the support that we have received from the Indian community abroad is something which I would like to recognise.”
The minister said that after Covid, health is an important concern for India.
“…In those very difficult days (of pandemic)… probably the most encouraging part of it was this huge outpouring of both good wishes and practical support that we got from so many community organisations, individuals,” Jaishankar said, referring to the time when Delta variant struck India.
World over, Covid cases continue to average approximately five lakh daily, while India reports about 3,000 daily cases.
At present, the Indian community in Egypt numbers at around 3600, most of whom are concentrated in Cairo. There are also a small number of families in Alexandria, Port Said and Ismailia, according to the latest Ministry of External Affairs data.
A majority of the Indians are either employed with Indian companies or are professionals with various multinationals.