New Delhi, Jan 24 (PTI) Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi arrived here on Tuesday on a three-day state visit with a focus on enhancing bilateral ties in a range of areas including agriculture, digital domain and trade.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sisi will hold wide-ranging talks on Wednesday following which the two sides are expected to ink half a dozen agreements to boost ties in a number of areas.
"Warm welcome to India, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Your historic visit to India as Chief Guest for our Republic Day celebrations is a matter of immense happiness for all Indians. Look forward to our discussions tomorrow. @AlsisiOfficial," Modi tweeted.
The 68-year-old influential Arab leader will grace the Republic Day celebrations as the chief guest.
Minister of State for External Affairs RajKumar Ranjan Singh welcomed President Sisi at the airport.
"This visit will further deepen the long-standing India-Egypt friendship," External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said on Twitter.
Sisi is accompanied by a high-level delegation.
The Egyptian president previously visited India in October 2015 to participate in the third India-Africa Forum Summit which was followed by his state visit in September 2016.
This is for the first time that the President of Egypt has been invited as the chief guest to India's Republic Day celebrations. A military contingent from the Egyptian Army will also participate in the Republic Day parade.
Sisi will be accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Wednesday ahead of his talks with Modi.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will also call on Sisi.
"The forthcoming visit of President Sisi is expected to further strengthen and deepen the time-tested partnership between India and Egypt," the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement on Saturday.
India is keen to further expand ties with Egypt, a key player in the politics of both the Arab world as well as Africa. It is also seen as a major gateway to markets in Africa and Europe.
The MEA said the multifaceted relationship between the two countries is based on shared cultural values, commitment to foster economic growth, collaboration in the fields of defence and security and convergence on regional and global issues.
The bilateral trade between the two sides has been on an upswing in the last few years.
The bilateral trade between India and Egypt achieved a "record high" of USD 7.26 billion in 2021-22, according to the MEA.
More than 50 Indian companies have invested around USD 3.15 billion in diverse sectors of the Egyptian economy, including chemicals, energy, textile, garment, agri-business and retail. PTI MPB ANB ANB