Egypt's transport ministry is to start building a new river port in Upper Egypt as part of a recent drive to improve the country's river transport system.
The new 15-acre port in Sohag governorate, about 500 kilometres south of Cairo, is the second in the country's south, with the ministry commencing building the first port in the governorate of Qena in April.
The move is part of the ministry's plan to improve the country's river transport system and set up ports in all Upper Egypt governorates with the aim of promoting goods transport through the Nile River from the country's south to the northern governorates of the Nile Valley and vice versa.
Transport Minister Hisham Arafat took part in a cornerstone placing ceremony for the construction of the new port on Thursday, the ministry said in a press statement.
The minister said the ports will help reduce transportation costs, cut down fuel consumption, ease congestion on roads and create new job opportunities.
The new port has a storage capacity of 255,000 tons and can handle 6.6 million tons of goods annually.