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Egypt President leads celebration of new Suez Channel

The channel has been finished on schedule, but economists say it is unlikely to transform the water passage from the Mediterranean to the Red Sea

Baku. 6 August. REPORT.AZ/ An image of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt triumphantly piloting a ship full of smiling Egyptians appears Wednesday on state Akhbar al Youm newspaper, to mark the successful excavation of what he has called a new Suez Channel, Report informs citing foreign media. 

Mr. Sisi, the former general who ousted Egypt’s first freely elected president two years ago, announced the plan last year and he vowed that the bigger channel would be completed in less than 12 months is a grand national project for the public to rally around. He declared it a cornerstone of his plan to revive the Egyptian economy.

The channel has been finished on schedule, but economists say it is unlikely to transform the water passage from the Mediterranean to the Red Sea. The added capacity will do little, they say, because the canal has not been operating at full capacity anyway, and global shipping remains in a slump.

Mr. Sisi will inaugurate the new canal at an elaborate ceremony on Thursday in Ismailia, about midway between the canal openings at Port Said in the north and Suez in the south. The Egyptian state news media is celebrating as if he had just won a military victory.

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