A Three-Way Summit: Israel, Egypt and UAE Leaders Meet   in Sharm el-Sheikh

A Three-Way Summit: Israel, Egypt and UAE Leaders Meet in Sharm el-Sheikh

Over the past few years, Israel's diplomatic relations with Arab countries have steadily improved. While historically Egypt and Jordan were the only countries with which Israel had official diplomatic relations, in 2020 Israel signed the Abraham Accords, a series of normalisation agreements with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan.

Now, in March 2022, the Jewish state's relations with its Arab neighbours have witnessed a new turning point: the Israeli Prime Minister, Naftali Bennett, and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan met for a three-way summit hosted in Sharm el-Sheikh by Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. This is the first summit of such magnitude organised by an Arab state in which the three countries have participated.

During their talks, the three leaders discussed a variety of topics, including energy security, economic and financial stability, the Iran nuclear deal currently under negotiation as well as food security, a hot topic since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which has dealt a blow to the stability of food prices worldwide.

Egypt imports most of its wheat from Russia and Ukraine. The war in Ukraine severely affected the Egyptian economy, leading to a dramatic increase in energy and food prices, which precipitated a devaluation of the national currency by 14%.

During the summit, the three leaders also discussed ways to alleviate the adverse consequences of recent world developments on the stability of the region.

A Historic Axis of Cooperation

In September 2021, Prime Minister Bennett paid an official visit to Egypt – the first visit by an Israeli premier to the country in more than a decade. During this meeting, the two leaders discussed the possibilities of deepening their cooperation. In December of the same year, Bennett also visited the UAE, the first official visit by an Israeli leader to the Gulf country.

Since the signing of the Abraham Accords, Israel, the UAE and Egypt, have formed a unique axis of cooperation in the history of the region’s geopolitics. And judging by recent events, this trend is expected to continue in the foreseeable future.