Egypt's Investment and International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr followed up on the implementation of development projects in North Sinai by the Armed Forces, stressing that "developing Sinai is key to eliminating terrorism."
The Sinai Development Programme includes 12 financing agreements with the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) as well as other financing agreements with Arab funds including the Kuwaiti Fund for Arab Economic Development, which is contributing to Sinai development with approximately $900 million, according to a statement on the ministry's website.
The programme includes establishing six water desalination plants and connecting electricity to 26 Bedouin areas.
The minister hailed the rate of progress of implementing the projects, saying that "the president instructed the government to quickly complete development projects in Sinai given their role in providing services to citizens, such as providing youth and women with job opportunities and raising the standards of living."
Nasr stressed her keenness on supporting women, emphasising that priority has been given to grants targeting the most vulnerable groups, noting that she is interested in supporting Bedouin women given their role in raising future generations.
During her visit to North Sinai, the minister checked the establishment of development zones at the El-Nathila 1 and El-Nathila 2 areas in El-Nakhl City, financed by the SFD with $340 million.
The El-Nathila 1 project, which is 30 percent complete, involves developing an agricultural area of over 1,000 feddans.
Al-Nathila 2, which is 65 percent complete, involves developing an agricultural area of over 100 feddans.
Both Al-Nathila complexes include a residential area with 105 homes for local Bedouins over 175 square metres, a Diwan, a mosque, an elementary school, a health unit, a sports arena, and a shopping complex.
The minister also inspected the development zone at Taweel El-Hamed in El-Nakhl City, where the development of agricultural land is 85 percent complete.
She also inspected the development zone at Abu Rusasa Village, which has 50 feddans agricultural of land as well as two schools for basic education that include 11 classrooms divided into two kindergarten classes, six classes for the elementary stage and three for the preparatory stage.
The latter project will be implemented by Egypt's Armed Forces, North Sinai governorate, and the Sinai Development Agency in coordination with the General Authority for Educational Building.
Nasr also inspected the establishment of two schools at El-Swan and Wadi El-Haj villages, as well as the Taba Tunnel Road Development Project, which is financed by the SFD with $280 million and aims to serve the new residential areas east of the Suez Canal. The project is 34 percent complete.