Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi attended on Saturday the opening ceremony of the King Salman International University in the resort city of Sharm El-Sheikh.
The university comprises 15 faculties distributed among its three branches in El-Tor, Ras Sedr, and Sharm El-Sheikh cities, and can accommodate over 25,000 students, according to a video played during the inauguration.
The president opened the two other branches in El-Tor and Ras Sedr via video-conference.
The university provides professional and academic programmes to prepare qualified human resources to meet the needs of the local, regional and international labour markets.
Egypt’s higher education minister Khaled Abdel-Ghaffar said the university is an example of the friendship and cooperation between Egypt and Saudi Arabia to develop the Sinai Peninsula.
“The King Salman University branch in Sharm El-Sheikh offers study programmes commensurate with the touristic nature of the city, and provides qualifications that match the needs of local, regional and global labour markets,” Abdel-Ghaffar said at the ceremony.
He added that that King Salman University is one of 24 new universities in Egypt, including technological, private, and international universities.
El-Sisi said each million people in Egypt need a university, be it private or governmental, adding that "If in Egypt we have 100 million people, we need 100 universities, regardless of the classification of these universities."
He added that Egypt needs 125 universities by 2030. "We now have 72 universities in Egypt... and if it is expected that in 2032 the population will reach 125 million, then we need 125 universities."
Each university costs from EGP 8 billion to EGP 10 billion, El-Sisi said, estimating such project would cost EGP 400 billion.
"The universities that we seek to build are not just concrete... we are working to construct Egyptian universities according to international standards ... in order to have an advanced level of education, and for young people to find real job opportunities after graduation," the president said.
Inauguration of Sharm El-Sheikh Museum, other national projects
At the ceremony, El-Sisi opened the Royal Vehicles Museum, Sharm El-Sheikh Museum, and the Kafr El-Sheikh Museum via video-conference.
The Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Khaled El-Anany said 17 museums have been inaugurated or developed throughout the past six years.
The opening of the Sharm El-Sheikh Museum is a dream come true since its inception in 2003, El-Anany said.
El-Sisi witnessed the opening of several national projects established to develop the Sinai Peninsula, including new roads, residential complexes, potable water stations and sea water desalination plants.
The projects included El-Bardawil Airport in North Sinai, a 231km road connecting the Ahmed Hamdy tunnel with the ports of Taba and Nuweiba, and a new sea water desalination plant in Sinai’s Arish city.
“The instability that followed the events of 2011 had a negative impact on all sectors, including the antiquities sector and the development of museums,” El-Sisi said, adding that the evidence is that “we are 10 years late in developing one of the museums.”
“As long as we have stability, we can overcome any challenge, continue our march and succeed... instability costs too much," the president said.
In the past six years, he said, Egypt spent EGP 600-700 billion to develop national projects in Sinai.