The launch of East Port Said harbour will take place on the third day of the Suez Canal Global Conference (SCGC), Chairman of Suez Canal Authority (SCA) Admiral Mohab Mamish said.
Work conducted in the port will help double the capacity of ships it can receive. “One in four ships passing through the Suez Canal used to have to unload its shipment in Port Said,” he said.
The admiral said to head to Port Said, ships had to wait between eight to 10 hours in the Suez Canal axis; the time ships spent waiting has a high cost. “The cost of fuel, delayed shipments, and delayed delivery of products is a burden on passing ships,” Mamish said. After the work is conducted in the port, “ships can go from the open sea to the harbour of Port Said directly”.
The construction work in East Port Said began in November 2015 and was expected to be finalised by July 2016. “We were able to complete construction in three months and 10 days,” head of SCA said.
On 21 and 22 February, a successful trial took place in East Port Said to examine how efficiently the port will function. “A huge ship successfully passed through the port,” Mamish said.
Minister of Transportation Saad El-Geoshy said the ministry concluded its studies on a strategy to help Egypt become an international logistical hub and develop the transportation sector, particularly Egypt’s fleet of ships. The study also focused on redistributing traffic movement to avoid road congestion.
During his speech, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail said the Suez Canal project is part of a bigger plan to improve the Egyptian economy. “We want the Suez Canal to be the first choice of the global trade flow,” Ismail said. Through the Suez Canal development, Egypt can be a meeting point for foreign investments.
During his speech at the launch of the harbour project in November, President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi announced the project’s features along with the scheduled date of completion.
The Armed Forces Engineering Authority was responsible for laying out the various stages of implementation, along with details of development projects in the province.
During the celebration, Al-Sisi interrupted Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces Engineering Authority and the general supervisor of the new Suez Canal project, General Kamel Al-Wazir, during his statements about the East Port Said development projects, when he said the project would end in three years. Al-Sisi said the project could be completed in two years instead.
Al-Sisi said the government is working hard for future generations and that the project will include “the establishment of a coastal city”. The Suez Canal Global Conference (SCGC) started on 22 February under the patronage of the president.
The event was attended by several ministers including Minister of Investment Ashraf Salman, Minister of Trade and Industry Tarek Qabil, and Minister of Supply and Internal Trade Khaled Hanafy.
Representatives from 15 countries were also in attendance, as well as businessmen and global maritime companies.