Overview of the EU's relations with Egypt
Relations between the European Union and Egypt are governed by an Association Agreement. Negotiations between the EU and Egypt for the conclusion of an Association Agreement started in 1995 and lasted four and a half years. Following its signature in June 2001, the Association Agreement was ratified by the Egyptian People’s Assembly and all the EU Member States. The Agreement entered into force on 1 June 2004.
In order to speed up the implementation of the Association Agreement, an exchange of letters was signed between Egypt and the EU to allow the Trade provisions of the Association Agreement to enter into force as from 1 January 2004.
From 1977 to mid-2004, EU/Egypt bilateral relations were governed by a Co-operation Agreement, which provides for economic co-operation between the parties and establishes provisions for non-reciprocal trade liberalisation and market access. Under its provisions, Egypt enjoys free market access for its industrial exports to the EU, while EU exports of industrial products enjoy the Most Favoured Nation treatment. On agriculture, following the 1987 Protocol, Egypt enjoys preferential treatment on access to the EU market by means of tariff quotas and export calendars for its traditional flows. EU exports of agricultural products take place under MFN treatment. In the framework of the economic co-operation under the Co-operation Agreement, four financial Protocols have provided EC funding for programmes and projects in Egypt until the mid 90’s.