Egypt Inaugurates Major Expansion to the Suez Canal

On August 6, 2015, Egypt inaugurated a major expansion to the Suez Canal.

Taking a year to complete and costing over $8 billion, the project widens and deepens part of the canal to increase traffic and revenue. Seventy-two kilometers (45 miles) of new waterways have been added, according to the Suez Canal Authority. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi led an opening ceremony which was attended by numerous heads of state, including French President Francois Hollande. Egyptian officials have announced the expansion as a “gift” which “changes the map of the world.” The ceremony invoked both national pride and a global outlook, including remarks by President el-Sisi, a musical performance, and jets flying overhead. One of the most important waterways in the world, the Suez Canal links the Mediterranean with the Red Sea. It opened in 1869 after a decade of construction by tens of thousands of workers.


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