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Qatar signs deal for two major ports in Egypt

Qatari official says projects will create more than one million jobs.
NEWS, Ports & Free Zones

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Qatar said on Sunday that it had signed an agreement with Egypt to establish two new ports with the potential to create more than a million jobs.

The ports will be built in Port Said and Alexandria, Khalid bin Mohammed Al Attiyah, Qatar's Minister of State for International Cooperation said.

After leading a delegation to Egypt, he said there will also be bilateral cooperation in establishingtwo investment companies in Africa, with one focused on Sudan.

In comments published by Qatar News Agency, he said that one million job opportunities would be created by the Port Said project with another 200,000 jobs as a result of the Alexandria proposal.

The Minister said that the two sides would draw up a plan to carry out their agreements and set a time frame for the establishments of the ports. He added that a delegation of Qatari businessmen would visit Egypt next month to look for investment opportunities. Al Attiyah left Cairo on Sunday afternoon after a three-day visit.

Last week, Qatar said it was drawing up potential projects worth at least $10bn to help Egypt's economy after the popular uprising that ousted president Hosni Mubarak in February.

Egypt has been asking donors and the International Monetary Fund to help to bridge an estimated $10-12bn balance of payments gap for the fiscal year that begins on July 1, economists say.

In the last week, Saudi Arabia, the US and other international donors have also pledged assistance to Egypt.

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