Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi
President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi directed the government on Saturday to keep working with all the relevant bodies towards the efficient use of available resources nationwide, in line with the National Canal Lining Project.
The president made the directives during a meeting in Cairo with Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, the ministers of irrigation and agriculture, and head of the Armed Forces Engineering Authority Major General Ihab El-Far.
El-Sisi was briefed on the ministries' joint efforts for rainwater collection and distribution in rainy areas, especially in the Sinai Peninsula, along the Northern Coast of Egypt and the Red Sea coast, Presidential Spokesman Bassam Rady said in a statement on the meeting.
The president also followed up on ongoing efforts to rehabilitate and repair old wells to restore them to working condition and upgrade their efficiency.
Meanwhile, Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Mohamed Abdel-Aati reviewed the progress in the ministry's hydrological and engineering studies needed for building the dams and dikes for better rainwater conservation.
The meeting also took up the state's efforts to embrace modern irrigation systems, as well as a national seed project aimed to increase availability of high quality pest-resistant seeds.
Egypt, which is considered one of the most water-scarce countries in the world, receives around 60 bcm annually, mainly from the Nile. However, its needs stand at around 114 bcm, placing the 102-million-plus country well below the international threshold for water scarcity, at 560 cubic metres per person annually.
The large gap in water resources in Egypt is overcome by importing 54 percent of its virtual water and reusing 42 percent of its renewable, Abdel-Ati said in an earlier statement.
Virtual water – which is the embedded water required to produce commodities – is measured as a percentage of the already existing water resources and is increasingly recommended as a good policy for water-scarce areas.