Egypt has opened its Suez Canal expansion, which deepens the main waterway and provides ships with a 22-mile channel parallel to it, in a move to increase the traffic handled by the canal.
At the celebration, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi welcomed foreign dignitaries aboard a historic yacht as helicopters and fighter jets flew by.
Egypt hopes the canal’s revenues will boost the economy, but analysts are unsure about the government’s projections, noting the volume of world trade has not been growing at the rate needed to deliver the sums Egypt hopes to collect.
Some Egyptians have asked if the $8.2 billion expansion cost could have been better spent on improving infrastructure and public services.
The expansion will allow for two-way traffic along part of the route, as well as accommodate larger vessels overall.
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