Egypt is preparing to build a new military base on the country’s eastern border to secure the Suez Canal, according to reports, as the country marks the 150th anniversary of the opening of the waterway.
“The new base will secure the canal’s shipment activity, tunnels, as well as its economic zone,” the sources noted, as reported by the Middle East Monitor. The new base would be located in the Ismailia governorate’s Abu Sultan, adding that it would be built along an area of 160,000 acres, according to sources.
Last week, the head of the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone) announced plans to create an investment arm to channel funds to projects along the Suez Canal to take advantage of proximity to one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes.
The government has been directing billions of dollars of investment over recent years to upgrade infrastructure around the Suez Canal, which connects the Red Sea to the Mediterranean Sea, seeking to attract the logistics, maritime services, manufacturing, information technology and power industries. The zone, one of the country’s megaprojects, has been in the pipeline for at least two decades but has received fresh impetus since Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi became president in 2014. Egypt doubled the waterway’s capacity in 2015 with the opening of the “The New Suez Canal.”