ECONOMY

Egypt offers Turkish firms space in Cairo

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt is offering Turkish companies 200 hectares of land on the outskirts of Cairo to set up an «cluster» of industries intended to produce goods mainly for export to Europe and the United States, ministers said yesterday. Visiting Turkish Foreign Trade Minister Kursad Tuzmen said the incentive for Turkish companies would be the relatively low labor costs in Egypt and access to raw materials such as high-quality Egyptian cotton. If the companies meet certain conditions, including a minimal content of Israeli origin, the goods will also have preferential access to the US market under Egypt’s Qualified Industrial Zones agreement with Israel and Washington. Tuzmen and Egyptian Trade and Industry Minister Rachid Mohamed Rachid yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding on preparations for the zone west of Cairo. Although it will be open to all kinds of industry, the ministers said they expected textiles and garments to dominate in the early stages. «Other sectors will follow,» added Tuzmen.