Joint Statement on the Occasion of the Summit of Prime Ministers of the Visegrad Group and The President of the Arab Republic of Egypt

Budapest, Hungary 4 July 2017

1 The Heads of Government of Hungary, the Republic of Poland, the Czech Republic, the Slovak Republic and the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt convened in Budapest on July 4 2017 at the first summit meeting between the V4 countries and the Arab Republic of Egypt. The participating countries were represented by H. E. Mr Viktor Orbán, Prime Minister of Hungary, H. E. Mrs. Beata Szydto, Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland, H.E. Mr. Bohuslav Sobotka, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, H. E. Mr. Robert Fico, Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic and H. E. Mr. Abdel Fattah e -Sisi, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt.

2 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt noted with satisfaction their mutually beneficial cooperation in the political, economic, cultural and scientific fields, as well as the people-to people contacts between their countries. They expressed their wish to conduct political and strategic dialogues to identify new opportunities, coordinate efforts to explore them and discuss international affairs of common interest.

3 The V4 welcomed the progress the Arab Republic of Egypt has made with regards to the political transition process. The V4 expressed its readiness to share its experience of political and social transition. The five countries agreed that democracy building and human dignity is an essential factor in driving prosperity. The V4 appreciated the economic reforms the Egyptian government decided to implement. The inclusive and sustainable economic growth is the best guarantee of a stable society.

4 The V4 expressed its support to the Egyptian Government in its fight against terrorism and violent extremism. Both sides declared that terrorism, as a common enemy of all peace loving nations, should not be associated with any faith or religion. They agreed to exchange views and lessons learned on their efforts aimed at countering terrorism, violent extremism and incitement. The V4 highly appreciated the continuous efforts of the Government of Egypt to protect its citizens from the scourge of terrorism.

5 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt emphasized that the developments in the Middle East and North Africa, especially activities of different terrorist organizations, especially ISIL/Da'esh and the conflicts n Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya have considerable implications on the regional and global security situation. In this context, the leaders stressed the importance of diplomatic efforts aimed at finding lasting solutions to the conflicts. The leaders also confirmed their support for the Middle East Peace Process and the two-state solution. The V4 encouraged Egypt to continue playing a stabilizing role in the region.

6 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt agreed that tackling the current migration crisis requires first and foremost addressing its root causes. While appreciating the efforts of the Government of Egypt to curb illegal migration, the leaders shared the view that close cooperation with the countries of origin and transit should be reinforced.

7 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt underlined the importance of strategic partnership established between the Arab Republic of Egypt and the European Union (EU) and reiterated their determination to further invest in comprehensive, mutually beneficial and future or ented relations. The V4 declared its full support to the Arab Republic of Egypt to strengthen its ties with the EU. The parties agreed that holding the next EU-Egypt Association Council would be an excellent opportunity to take stock of the progress the parties have made and draw upon the EU-Egypt relations in the current geopolitical regional context.

8 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt affirmed their readiness to strengthen cooperation in other regional and international organizations, including the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the African Union.

9 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt affirmed their readiness to pay particular attention to further strengthening their economic ties and endeavour to increase the volume and the eve of their bilateral trade. They agreed to continue to encourage their respective companies to promote mutually advantageous cooperation, increase investments, establish joint venture companies and continue their cooperation, including collaboration in third markets, particularly in the fields of industry, agriculture, transportation, finances, telecommunication, tourism, as well as other areas.

10 The Arab Republic of Egypt encouraged the companies of the V4 countries to participate in the major development projects recently initiated by the Government of Egypt, particularly in the construction of a new economic zone adjacent to the New Suez Canal area, building of a new administrative capital city, modernization of railways and other infrastructure projects, renewable energy facilities, agriculture and land reclamation, water treatment and water management. At the same time Egyptian companies are welcome to consider V4 countries as a regional hub for their business and investment activities in Europe.

11 The V4 and the Arab Republic of Egypt recognized the importance of strengthening energy cooperation in a mutually beneficial way and agreed to consider opportunities to exchange views on the global and regional energy security situation and energy policies, with a special focus on the opportunities of natural gas use as well as alternative energy sources.