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Egypt became a member of the International Organization of la Francophonie (IOF) in 1970 in light of its belief in the important values enshrined in the Organization, namely cultural and civilizations’ diversity and the promotion of peace, development and rapprochement among peoples. Egypt's membership in the IOF, which members are predominantly African, reflects the importance and centrality of the relationship with the Continent’s countries. Egypt is considered as one of the most influential members of the Organization, as Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali was appointed to the post of the first Secretary-General of La Francophonie as soon as this position was introduced in 1997.
Egypt also hosts one of the most important bodies of the educational and cultural organization, the French-language international university in the service of African development, known as the Senghor University and founded in 1989 in Alexandria. Egypt's hosting of this university has an important political value as it embodies the wisdom of the fathers of the African Continent’s independence, led by the former Senegalese President Leopold Senghor, who has long envisaged establishing a distinguished educational edifice in one of the major African countries, that would seek the formation of young leaders specialized in the fields of development and modernization in various fields in the Continent, which is the dream adopted by the Organization of La Francophonie.
Egypt is keen on regularly participating in the OIF Summits and successive Ministerial Conferences, and organizes annual celebrations to mark the International Day of la Francophonie every year on March 20th.
In October 2015, Egypt
and the International Organization of la Francophonie signed a
memorandum of understanding in the framework of the program "French in
International Relations" over the period 2015-2018. Egypt has been
selected as one of sixteen Member States of the OIF to benefit from the
aforementioned cooperation program, taking into consideration that Egypt
was in the first rank of the most successful countries in benefiting
from this program during 2011-2014.
The cooperation program aims to
train diplomats and government cadres in the various ministries and
governmental bodies working in the field of international cooperation on
mastering the French language and granting the distinguished trainees
internationally recognized French language certificates. The number of
beneficiaries of the cooperation program 2015-2018 is estimated to about
2000 Governmental cadres working in the field of international
In July 2016, the Egyptian Agency of Partnership for
Development signed a memorandum of understanding with the University of
Senghor, granting it a number of scholarships to help African students
obtain Master's degrees, as the Egyptian side believes in the importance
of education as a main pillar of achieving development, cultural and
societal impact, as well as extending ties among countries.