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China to invest $55 billion in Middle East infrastructure

Chinese president Xi Jinping has pledged $55 billion in investments and loans to the Middle East region, according to media reports. 27 Jan 2016

In a speech to the Arab League in Cairo, Xi announced that China will establish a common investment fund worth $20bn for the UAE and Qatar. A further $10bn will be provided as commercial loans to boost cooperation in the energy sector in the Middle East, while a further $10bn will be offered as preferential loans to stimulate investment, Abu Dhabi's The National news site said.

Xi also said that he had signed deals worth $15bn with Egypt, covering 15 projects in the electricity, transport and infrastructure sectors, The National said.

China and Egypt signed a five-year outline plan to boost cooperation in political; trade and economic; military and security; science and technology; cultural; environmental and agricultural; energy; medical and law-enforcement domains as well as global and regional affairs, Chinese state-owned news agency Xinhua said.

The two sides will encourage Chinese companies from 'competitive sectors' such as textiles and steel to invest in the China-Egypt Suez Economic and Trade Cooperation Zone, which is being build near the Suez canal, Xinhua said.

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