71.The Association Agreement between the UK and Egypt (the Association Agreement) was laid on 14 December 2020, and the scrutiny period is scheduled to end on 4 February 2021. It was considered by the International Agreements Committee on 28 January 2021.
72.The precursor agreement to the UK-Egypt Association Agreement is the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement, which entered into force 1 June 2004. The UK-Egypt Agreement seeks to ensure continuity of effect with the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement by incorporating it mutatis mutandis with only minor amendments.
73.The UK-Egypt Association Agreement includes provisions on:
74.It also incorporates the wider provisions of its precursor on human rights, setting these out as an essential element of the Agreement. In this context, we note that the UK Government has expressed concerns about human rights issues in Egypt in its 2019 Human Rights and Democracy Report and has designated Egypt as one of 30 human rights priority countries. The human rights situation in Egypt should therefore be kept under review in relation to this Agreement.
75.The UK-Egypt Agreement has been provisionally applied from 1 January, pending the completion of full ratification procedures by the Parties.
76.An overview of UK-Egypt trade is provided in Box 3.
Egypt is the UK’s 48th largest trading partner, accounting for 0.3% of total UK trade. In 2019, trade in goods and services between the UK and Egypt was worth £3.6 billion.
Trade in goods
The UK exports more goods to Egypt than it imports, with £1.5 billion worth of exports, compared to £0.9 billion of imports in 2019.
Top goods exports to Egypt include machinery and mechanical appliances, and iron and steel. Top goods imports include electrical machinery and equipment, and mineral fuels and oils.
Trade in services
In 2019, the UK exported more services than it imported from Egypt, exporting £826 million in services and importing £399 million.
Legal, accounting, management consulting, and financial services, collectively classed as “Other Business Services”, were the largest UK service export. “Other Business Services” were also the largest service imported from Egypt.
77.HMRC has estimated that around 2,600 VAT-registered UK businesses exported goods to and 800 imported goods from Egypt in 2018. The Parliamentary Report explains that these figures are likely to be an underestimate, as they do not include UK companies providing services in Egypt.
78.The UK-Egypt Association Agreement includes the following notable changes from the underlying EU Agreement:
79.We report the Association Agreement between the UK and Egypt to the House for information.
42 Agreement, done at Cairo on 5 December 2020, establishing an Association between the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Arab Republic of Egypt, CP 350, 2020: [accessed 12 January 2021]
43 Agreement, establishing an Association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Arab Republic of Egypt, of the other part, , (30 September 2004:)
44 Foreign & Commonwealth Office, The 2019 Human Rights and Democracy Report, CP 273, July 2020: [accessed 28 January 2021]