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Egypt, Russia Finalize Arrangements for the Completion of Nuclear Plant Agreement | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi hold a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the BRICS Summit in Xiamen, Fujian province, China, Monday, Sept. 4, 2017. (MENA via AP)

Cairo– Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said on Monday that his country has completed an agreement with Russia on the building of a nuclear power plant, noting that the contract was ready to sign.

He stated that he has also invited Russian President Vladimir Putin to Egypt to mark the start of construction.

The nuclear plant will be established in the region of Dabaa, about 130 km northwest of Cairo on the Mediterranean coast.

Sisi met with Putin on the sidelines of the BRICS summit in the Chinese city of Xiamen. Alaa Youssef, spokesman for the Egyptian presidency, said that the two officials have reviewed a number of issues related to bilateral relations, including the resumption of Russian flights to Egypt.

Air traffic between Egypt and Russia has been suspended since the end of 2015, in the wake of the crash of a Russian passenger plane in the Egyptian airspace on October 31, 2015, killing 224 passengers and crew.

Youssef noted that the Russian president praised efforts exerted by the Egyptian authorities in securing airports.

He expressed hope that Russian flights would resume soon after the conclusion of the current technical consultations between the two sides.

Putin underlined the importance of promoting close ties with Egypt in all fields, especially the economic and trade relations, praising the increase of trade exchange between the two countries by 14%, according to the Egyptian presidential spokesperson.

Political sources linked Moscow’s decision to resume air traffic to Egypt with the completion of negotiations on the nuclear plant, for which a preliminary agreement was signed in November 2015. The sources added the completion of the agreement would accelerate the resumption of Russian air traffic and the flow of Russian tourists into the country.

According to the agreement, Egypt will receive a $25 billion Russian loan to cover 85 percent of the plant, with a capacity of 4,800 MW.