An Egyptian soldier stands guard on a watchtower on the border between Israel and Egypt (Photo: Reuters)
The Egyptian Ministry of Industry and Foreign Trade is planning to build a new industrial zone in the city of Abu Zenima in the southern Sinai Peninsula, Industry Minister Hatem Saleh told Al-Ahram's Arabic-language news website on Monday.
The project is seen as a main pillar of the government's overall development plan for Sinai, Saleh explained.
The economic and industrial development of the peninsula had been a primary aspect of President Mohamed Morsi's presidential campaign.
According to Saleh, Egypt's Cabinet has agreed to allocate almost 4000 acres of land near the city of Abu Zenima to the ministry, which would then be tasked with building the industrial zone. The project, Saleh added, would serve to jumpstart development initiatives throughout the entire peninsula.
The ministry also plans to coordinate with Egypt's Suez Canal Authority and South Sinai governorate to secure communication routes from and within the new industrial zone in order to facilitate the passage of cargo.
The move is seen as the first major step in President Morsi's National Sinai Development Project, which aims to promote development and create jobs in Sinai.