World Economy

Egypt to Complete Port Said by June

Egypt to Complete Port Said by JuneEgypt to Complete Port Said by June

Egypt plans to complete a side channel in East Port Said, near the Suez Canal, that would speed up shipping and allow ships direct entry into the port by the end of June 2016, said Mohab Memish, head of the Suez Canal Authority.

The new channel dredging will cost $36 million, of which $7.5 million will be financed by the Suez Canal Container Terminal, Memish said. SCCT is 55% owned by APM Terminals, part of Maersk Group. (APM Terminals is an international container terminal operating company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands), NewsNow reported.

“We are building the side channel which will allow the ships to enter from open waters directly into East Port Said,” said Memish at a news conference in Ismailiya. Currently vessels that come through East Port Said have to be coordinated with the Suez Canal convoy.

“There was a problem with the ships that enter East Port Said which have to wait between seven to 10 hours to enter the port,” Memish said, adding that he expects the new channel to increase traffic at the port by 2020 to reach 12 million containers.

The new channel will be 9.5 kilometers long, 17 meters deep, and 250 meters wide and the total cost of the project will be $60 million, according to a statement from the SCCT.

In August Egypt launched an $8 billion canal extension project which it expects to bring in $13.23 billion in annual revenue by 2023 from just over $5 billion in 2014.

Meanwhile, the new waterway of the Suez Canal has achieved revenue of $1.4 billion during the last three months following the inauguration of the new canal branch in August.

Mahmoud Rizq, a member of the board of directors of the Suez Canal said during a press conference on Wednesday that “the results of the long-term projects are not measured in months, and it is not logical to expect higher revenues after only one or two months of the new canal opening.”

Rizq noted that the canal has accomplished $4.3 billion during the past 10 months, which is equal to 32 billion Egyptian pounds.