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Algeria and Egypt have signed cooperation agreements in health and science.

The agreements were among 19 signed by the two countries in Algiers last week (3 March). They will involve the exchange of scientific delegations, as well as the establishment of scientific symposia, workshops and joint research projects. Exact details are due to be discussed at a meeting in Algiers in early April.

Algeria hopes to learn from Egyptian scientists' experience in the development of scientific, technological and medical research centres, and Egyptian doctors' experience of surgical techniques and participation in seminars.

"The agreements are promising and we do expect to boost our scientific research and benefit from the experience of our Egyptian friends," says Arezki Saidani, director of cooperation and foreign exchange at the Algerian Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research.

Saidani says the agreements — together with the recent decision of the minister in charge of scientific research, Souad Bendjaballah, to invest more in Algerian science — will help provide a stable environment for Algerian research.

Algerian prime minister Abdelaziz Belkhadem has hinted that further cooperation in scientific and technological research between the two countries is expected in the next few months, according to the Algerian Press Agency.

The agency quoted Belkhadem as saying, "I've talked with my counterpart Ahmed Nadhif on possibilities of strengthening these agreements in the future, to benefit as much as possible from the experience of Egypt in these domains."