The US and Egypt are looking at ways of boosting bilateral trade and investment, with talks between officials earlier this week set to continue in Washington next month.

Among this issues under discussion are increased cooperation to facilitate trade at the border and to reduce regulatory barriers, joint support for small- and medium-sized exporters, ways to create a welcoming environment for investment, intellectual property rights protection to encourage innovation, and deepening ties between the American and Egyptian private sectors.

The US says it is keen to help the Arab country complete its transition to democracy, and believes efforts to strengthen economic policies that enhance trade and investment integration between the two economies and with the region more broadly, can help support this goal.

"We are working hard to fulfill President Obama's commitment to enhance our bilateral trade and investment ties with Egypt and the broader North Africa and Middle Eastern region," added deputy US trade representative Miriam Sapiro.

As part of these plans, the US earlier this month re-launched bilateral trade and investment talks with Tunisia in a bid to support the North African country's transition to democracy and an open economic system.

Two-way goods trade between the US and Egypt was valued at $9.1bn during 2010, an increase of more than 30% over 2009.

Total textile and apparel imports into the US from Egypt rose 13.7% during the period to $1011.9m, up from $890.3m the year before. In the first eight months of this year, textile and apparel imports have risen 7.35% to $746.9m. Within this, shipments of apparel are up 9.1% to $619.2m.