The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) has signed an ODA loan agreement totalling ¥5.732bn with the government of Egypt for the Borg El Arab International Airport Modernisation Project.
The project consists of the construction of an air terminal with the capacity to handle 1mn passengers and 4,000 tons of cargo each year, as well as improvements in related facilities at Borg El Arab International Airport, including the apron and the taxiway. The airport is located around 40 kilometers southwest of Alexandria, the second largest city in Egypt after Cairo. The proceeds of the loan will be used for building and improving these facilities and consulting services, which cover detailed design, bidding assistance, monitoring and supervision during implementation.
About 6mn foreign tourists visited the country in 2003, and their visits are forecast to grow at an annual rate of about 10% through till 2021. Since almost 80% of tourists will come by air, improving airport facilities is an urgent issue for the prosperity of the tourism industry – one of Egypts major industries and sources of foreign currency earnings. Tourism also has an important role in regards to the country’s economic development through broader industrial advances.
The site of this project, the vicinity of Alexandria, is not only the country’s trading capital but also an area where many industries have developed. Among them are petrochemicals, metal refining, agriculture and tourism. Given these developments the number of air passengers visiting Alexandria, and its vicinity, is expected to increase from 440,000 in 2002 to 1mn by 2014.