At the invitation of the Chinese Association for Friendship, a delegation of the Council visited China from 7 to 11 May 2018, consisted of ambassadors: Mounir Zahran, Hesham Al-Zamaity, Ezzat Saad and Ali Al-Hefny. The Chinese delegation consisted of Chen Zhimin, president of the China Association of Friendship and member of the CPC Central Committee and deputy director of the Social and Legal Affairs Committee of the CPC Central Committee, and membership of Mr. Wang Sijie Director of China Association for Friendship and Former China’s Special Envoy to the Middle East, Mr. Yin Gang Researcher at the Institute of West Asia and Africa of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and Deputy Secretary General of Middle East Society of China, Mr. Wang Lincong Assistant to the Director at the Institute of West Asia and Africa of Chinese Academy of Social Science and Director of the Office of International Relations, Prof. Dai Xiaoqi Professor at the Department of Arabic Language of Beijing International Studies University, Mr. Chen Shaoxin Deputy Secretary General of China Association for Friendship, Mr. Gu Fan Deputy Secretary General of China Association for Friendship. The visit included participation in a seminar on "Egyptian-Chinese social issues ... stability and development"
The conclusions and recommendations of the symposium are as follows:
•The development process in any country depends on its stability, and there is an organic link between the two as development is to ensure stability. In this context, Egypt was the first country in the region to overcome the repercussions of the Arab Spring and restore its stability after the successful campaign to combat terrorism in the Sinai Peninsula.
•The Chinese side expressed its optimism about the future of Egypt, praising the foundations of the development process set up by President Sisi and the Egyptian economy witnessed in recent years, recovery and achieving growth rates of about 5% of GDP, all of which have positive repercussions on the movement of foreign direct investment to Egypt and its overall economic and social conditions.
•Egyptian-Chinese bilateral relations have witnessed positive developments since the June 30th 2013 revolution and the numerous visits by President Sisi to China, as well as the historic visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to Egypt in January 2016. In this context, emphasis was placed on the special importance of investing in the economic zone of the Suez Canal, especially in light of its importance to the economic belt of the Silk Road.
•The discussion touched on the situation of Muslims in China, especially in the Xinjiang autonomous Region in northwest China, where the Chinese side pointed out that there are no restrictions on the construction of mosques there and the improvement of economic and social conditions in the province, with positive implications. The Chinese side was interested in learning about the relationship between religion and politics in Egypt and the mechanisms provided by the Egyptian state to combat poverty. In this regard, the Chinese side pointed out that 25.2% of the Chinese, the overwhelming majority of whom are in rural areas, continue to suffer from poverty as the state seeks to develop the health and education services provided to them.
•The two sides agreed to intensify exchanges of visits between them and further consultation on issues of bilateral cooperation and regional and international issues of common concern.