Egypt, China discuss expanding partnership in New Administrative Capital

Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli discussed the construction of a mega project with a delegation from the China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC), state-run Ahram newspaper reported Saturday.

The two sides discussed the latest developments concerning the construction of a mega project in New Administrative Capital on Friday, the report said.

The CSCEC, China's largest construction and real estate conglomerate and biggest building work contractor, has participated in the construction of the Central Business District (CBD). It is taking the long lead of China's international contracting business.

"The CBD came at top of the projects of mutual cooperation with the Chinese side," Madbouli said, highlighting the CSCEC's capabilities.

"The construction has started and I expected to see the Chinese miracle on the ground," he said.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has said that "the project would be completed in two years," Madbouli told the delegation.

Sisi would sign with CSCEC's officials legal documents for launching the second phase of the project, the report said.

Sisi has also called for optimizing reliance on up-to-date technology in the development of the country's new capital, highlighting the importance that all the installations in the new city should reflect the modern standards of smart and environmentally-friendly buildings.

The CBD will include 20 residential, administrative, commercial and service towers scattered on the 1.7 million square meters ground.

Among them, a 385-meter skyscraper attracts the most attention, as it will be the tallest building in Africa once completed.

Madbouli said Sisi has called on "the Chinese company to finish the project on time to put it in Guinness World Records."

Hao Peng, an official with the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, said that "China-Egypt relations are very friendly."

The two sides are actively implementing the consensus reached by the two heads of state and pushing China-Africa pragmatic cooperation into a new stage, he added.

The project has started construction in March this year and is currently under construction, he said.

Upon completion, the CBD would help China-Egypt comprehensive strategic partnership to reach a higher level, Peng added.

Chang Weicai, CEO of the CSCEC Egypt company, told Xinhua last month that the construction work is scheduled to be finished within 3.5 years "at maximum."

The project is intended to offer thousands of jobs and stimulate the economy, while Egypt's government institutions are scheduled to move to the new capital within the second half of 2019.

"The project reflects the depth of the Egyptian-Chinese relations," said Mostafa Ibrahim, a member of the Cairo-based Egyptian Businessmen Association.

"China's participation in the Egyptian national projects, especially the new capital, signaled strong political support from Egypt," Ibrahim said, adding that more Chinese contribution to Egypt's mega projects attracts positive attention from the Egyptian people.

Ibrahim predicted that the economic relations will expand in light of the two sides' unique historical cooperation.

Editor: 董平
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