Egypt finishes work on new Suez Canal
Aug 4, 2015 Egypt is set to open a new 72-km section of the Suez Canal. The project, which is widely touted as a symbol of national pride, was completed in 11 months following President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s order that the project be finished in one year.
The new canal, which cost the government $8-billion, is flanked by the 145-year-old waterway and is expected to stimulate the employment rate in the country. Mohab Mameesh, chairman of the Suez Canal Authority, announced recently that the canal is part of a more elaborate plan to expand trade along the fastest shipping route between Europe and Asia.
“God willing, on the sixth of August we are announcing the start of the New Suez Canal operation. Work will start and we will start receiving all kinds of ships. With the orders of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi we will start operating the new Suez Canal from the first day until the end of time. God willing the Suez Canal will continue operating and will continue being a symbol of Egyptian efficiency and capability to challenge and achieve,”
Following the 2011 uprising that led to a low turnout of tourists and withdrawal of several foreign investments, the Suez Canal is a major source of income for the country
The existing canal brings in about $5 billion per year, and so with the introduction of the new canal, which will allow two-way traffic of larger ships, revenue is expected to grow to about $15 billion per year by 2023.
On the heels of the Suez Canal unveiling on the 6th of August, Mohab Mameesh, chairman of the Suez Canal Authority, went on to say that, effective August 7th, work will begin on a new side channel that connect East Port Said to the Mediterranean.