A year has elapsed since we celebrated the last National Day of Egypt in Bucharest; a year full of actions and achievements for both Egypt and Romania. Allow me, in the beginning, to congratulate Romania for successfully ending its first ever presidency of the EU Council, with an excellent performance that was respected by all.
While celebrating the 67th anniversary of Egypt’s Independence, I want to take a moment to reflect on the past, celebrate our present and look forward to our intertwined future. 67 years ago, on 23 July 1952, the long struggle for freedom from colonial rule that the Egyptians had waged was finally rewarded. The ideals and the values that guided our freedom movement became the corner stone of the new sovereign Egyptian Republic.
Today, Egypt remembers where it conceives of itself: a central piece in the global quest for freedom, equality and justice.
Egypt is one of the oldest civilizations, but we are also a very young nation. Over the last six and a half decades, Egypt has secured an unique and respected place in the committee of nations; the largest and most diverse democracy in the Middle East and Africa, buttressed by a vibrant media and an independent judiciary, Egypt is committed to tolerance, pluralism, equality, justice and rule of law.
Egypt and Romania enjoy long standing, civilization relations that cover the huge swaths of history: the Monastery of St. Catherine, Sinai, Suez Canal stand witness to reveal that the relations between the two countries are ancient.
Our present, which testifies to a bigger, more diverse interaction of mutual trust, is what defines our relations indeed, both in economical and political arena, as the first visit for an Egyptian President in 15 years coincided with both the Egyptian presidency of African Union till February 2020 and the First Arab President visit to Romania in 10 years.
The successful State visit of H.E. President Abdel Fattah Al Sissy to Romania on 19-20 June 2019 and the participation of H.E. President Klaus Iohannis in the meetings of the first Arab European Summit hosted by Egypt on February 2019 in Sharm El Sheik and the volume of bilateral trade between the two countries that elevated Egypt to be the biggest African trade partner of Romania are all practical proves for these warm relations and mutual trust, and are also powerful incentives to exert more efforts towards more improvements and consolidation of relations.
Finally, I want to convey my best wishes to Romanian officials and friends for the warmth, kindness and generosity I felt and experienced in your beautiful land. Please know and be sure that Egypt will always stand by your side as a true friend every step of the way.