Egypt's Sisi discusses boosting mining sector with PM and petroleum minister (Photo Courtesy of Egyptian Presidency)
Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has called for outlining a comprehensive vision for developing the country’s mining industry, a presidential spokesman said.
The plan intends to tap unused mineral resources nationwide with the aim of boosting the sector’s contribution to gross domestic product and supporting the country’s comprehensive development efforts, spokesman Bassam Rady said in a statement following El-Sisi's meeting on Saturday with Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly and Petroleum Minister Tarek El-Molla.
The meeting discussed the petroleum ministry’s efforts to develop the sector, especially the mining, petrochemicals, and natural gas industries. The officials looked at projects including refining and petrochemical plants in the Gulf of Suez, efforts to boost natural gas production and the government plan to gradually convert public buses to natural gas.
El-Sisi called on authorities to tap into the country’s natural gas output including through expanding access by households to natural gas.
The meeting comes nearly two weeks after Egypt discovered a gold deposit in its eastern desert containing estimated resources of over 1 million ounces of gold and a high extraction potential of 95 percent.
The discovery comes amid a plan by the petroleum ministry to boost the sector to raise its contribution to gross domestic product, the petroleum ministry said. The plan has two phases, with the first running from 2018 until the end of 2021.
Egypt is looking to attract foreign direct investments of $375 million to the mining sector in the next two years and increase the forecast for direct investments from $700 million to $1 billion by 2030.