Egypt Doubles Up With Suez Canal No. 2

Hailed as 'rebirth,' passageway expected to make billions
By Brownie Marie,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 27, 2015 1:02 PM CDT
Egypt Doubles Up With Suez Canal No. 2
FILE - In this Feb. 4, 2015 file photo, a dredger floats on a new section of the Suez canal during a media tour in Ismailia, Egypt. The Suez Canal Authority said Saturday, June 13, 2015, that work on a parallel waterway to allow two-way traffic on the key trade route will be finished in time for a gala...   (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar, File)

After $8.5 billion and a year of construction, Egypt's second Suez Canal welcomed vessels in a trial run on Saturday along its 44-mile stretch, reports the BBC. The passageway, which runs in part alongside its namesake, is wide enough for large container ships to pass in two-lane traffic. Egypt hopes it will increase jobs and trade, with the Suez Canal Authority leader Admiral calling it a "rebirth" for the nation; his administration projects a nearly $8 billion increase in revenue by 2023. Some question that figure, but an investment analyst put the endeavor in perspective. "It's a patriotic project first of all, and that's very difficult to quantify," he says. The canal will officially open next week. (More Suez canal stories.)

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