Egyptian Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Mohamed Abdel Ati said that the Nile navigation project has become a development corridor, especially since linking with the Alexandria-Cape Town land route.
The 2,500-mile navigational shipping line connecting Lake Victoria and the Mediterranean Sea via the Nile River is being directed by the African Union Steering Committee that is headed by Egypt.
The Nile navigation project which entails building of a shipping lane along River Nile for both small and medium sized commercial vessels is being carried out under the umbrella of New Partnership for Africa’s Development and is expected to boost bilateral trade.
Its main objective is to create a link to Europe and to solve the poor infrastructure problem and the high cost of transportation, which tends to reduce the economic viability of investment projects in the African continent.
The head of African Ministers Council on Water’s Technical Committee Mr. Nihal Adel tsaid that the Nile navigational line plan will be implemented in four stages: pre-feasibility studies, feasibility studies, design and blueprints, and execution and operation.
The pre-feasibility study was already completed in Egypt in May 2015 with US $ 500,000 funding. The total cost of implementing the whole programme will be around US $10-12 billion. The LAPPSSET corridor in East Africa also complements the navigational line project.
Mr. Nader Masri who is overseeing the studies on the Nile navigational line explained that the project consists of rectifying the course of the Nile, setting canal locks to overcome waterfalls and traffic areas of the dams in the Nile, and providing elevators for the transportation of cargo from one level to another in the Nile.
The 10 countries who are partners in the project will be responsible for deployment of any concerted efforts to overcome any developments that could hamper the completion.
This new partnership for Africa’s Development to execute the Mediterranean is expected to solve numerous problems in the African Continent as well as create an ‘Africa without borders’