CAIRO, (The Southern African Times) – The trade and industry ministers of Egypt, Jordan and Iraq agreed on Thursday to start actual steps of implementing commercial and industrial integration among the three Arab countries, said the Egyptian cabinet in a statement.
During the virtual meeting, the three ministers agreed to send an Egyptian technical team to Iraq within the coming few days, with the participation of the Jordanian embassy in Baghdad, to assess Iraqi factories and find out the needs of the Iraqi market and the potential investment opportunities in the country.
Egyptian Trade and Industry Minister Nevine Gamea said that the meeting came as a result of the visit of the Jordanian and Iraqi ministers to Egypt earlier this month, where they discussed implementation of a number of joint projects in the fields of trade and industry.
Gamea noted that the targeted sectors of joint cooperation include pharmaceutical, chemical, petrochemical, leather and ceramics industries, besides studying the establishment of a permanent exhibition for Egyptian and Jordanian products in the Iraqi capital.
For her part, Jordanian Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply Maha Ali emphasized the importance of electronic linkage between the customs authorities of the three countries to facilitate the process of trade exchange among them.
Meanwhile, Iraqi Minister of Industry and Minerals Manhal Aziz al-Khabbaz, expressed his country’s keenness to open up to the Egyptian and Jordanian markets and to start urgent steps towards achieving economic integration, “in light of the Iraqi government’s aspiration to restore its strong economic relations with all partners, especially at the regional and Arab levels.”
The ministers also agreed on the necessity of lifting restrictions and obstacles that hinder the flow of intra-trade among the three countries, through granting easier access of their products to the three markets.