Egypt’s ‘New’ Suez Canal Opens to Questions About Need and Costs

Egypt’s ‘New’ Suez Canal Opens to Questions About Need and Costs
A bulldozer works on the new section of the Suez Canal, Ismailia, Egypt, July 29, 2015 (AP photo by Nariman El-Mofty).

Billboards in New York’s Times Square advertise it as “Egypt’s gift to the world.” An expansion of the Suez Canal, completed in just a year—at President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s request—is set to formally open Thursday, with a party estimated to cost $30 million and full of foreign dignitaries. Those ads in Times Square, which have also appeared in London and, curiously, in a special cover wrap of some editions of The Economist, claim that “Egypt boosts the world economy.” How? By allowing two-way shipping traffic that, the Suez Canal Authority says, will cut transit time by seven hours. But plenty […]

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