Sisi responds to criticism about gov't priorities while inaugurating Fayrouz Fish Farm project

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Sat, 23 Jan 2021 - 04:58 GMT

President Sisi at the inauguration of Farouz Fish Farming project in Port Said

President Sisi at the inauguration of Farouz Fish Farming project in Port Said

CAIRO – 23 January 2021: President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi touched on a few projects that have been the subject of public debate while his inauguration of Fayrouz Fish Farming project in Port Said Saturday.

The project is one of the largest of its kind in the Middle East, built on 15,000 feddans to contribute to the Suez Canal Economic Zone and Sinan Peninsula through industrial and urban complexes.

Sisi said Fayrouz project, which is expected to provide 10,000 job opportunities, is only a step in the way to mega fish farming projects in the country to ultimately achieve self-sufficiency and export.  

The president tackled the express train connecting Ain Sokhna Port on the Red Sea to Alexandria Port on the Mediterranean and the port in Gargoub near the borders with Libya, crossing on the way several new settlements, including the Administrative Capital.

He highlighted how the transport of goods from and to the three ports would benefit trade, noting that if Egyptians wanted to live on more than 4 percent of their territory along the narrow banks of the Nile, this requires infrastructure to serve new communities.

He emphasized that the historical railways of Egypt connecting the governorates along the river have not been ignored. He said that in 80 years, the railways have not seen any development. But he promised that by the end of 2021, there would not be one old train on the railways. He also said that meanwhile, the railways system is being automized and train stations upgraded.

Another project serving the older cities is a brand-new train line connecting 6th of October City and Aswan and all the cities in between in only four hours from the first to the last station over 850 kilometers.

He said Egypt negotiated with Siemens a very good price for the train line of 1,000 kilometers, which would cost L.E.360 billion. The president noted that in an earlier tender, Egypt was offered a cost of $19.5 and $10 billion for only the first phase of the project of 460 kilometers. He also underscored that Egyptian companies partaking in the project would take most of the budget.

The president said such projects are not a luxury but a target, because infrastructure is one of the powers of a nation.

In response to some criticism, Sisi said exhausting most of the state budget on education would not work in Egypt, perhaps in other countries, but not Egypt because other necessary sectors are also in great need.

He pointed to the project to upgrade 1,500 villages in Egypt, with waterways lined and never used to dump waste again, streets paved, and the power network supplied. In the process, the government will call on local producers and investors of every designated village to cooperate in the upgrade. In fact, many small companies have developed themselves owing to cooperation with the government, which pays a good amount in down payments to give them a chance to grow.  

The president reiterated the need for family planning, as the rate of population growth may diminish any other growth rates in the economy.

 

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