Launching Experimental Operation of Egypt- Sudan Arqin Border Crossing

29 September 2016

Dr. Nasr: "The Egyptian President and his Sudanese counterpart will inaugurate Arqin Border Crossing soon, which is considered the starting point for the Alexandria-Cape Town Corridor project".

On 29 September 2016, the Minister of International Cooperation Dr. Sahar Nasr launched the experimental operation of Arqin border crossing linking Egypt and Sudan, in presence of the Minister of Transportation Dr. Galal El-Saeed and his Sudanese counterpart as well as the Governor of Aswan Maj. Gen. Magdi Hegazi.
According to Dr. Nasr, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and his Sudanese counterpart President Omar al-Bshir will officially inaugurate the Egypt- Sudan Arqin border crossing.
The Minister commended Egyptian- Sudanese relations and joint cooperation, noting that Arqin is the starting point for the Alexandria-Cape Town Corridor project; given that the crossing will connect Africa from the Mediterranean Sea to the Pacific Ocean and will serve the trade movement in 15 African countries located on the crossing line. 
This occasion would add up to Egypt- Sudan relations and to the fruitful cooperation between both governments as well mutual understanding between both countries' political leadership, stated Dr. Nasr, noting the completion of Arqin-related buildings within the framework of MoIC's chairing of the Egypt-Sudan border crossing committee. The crossing is ready to operate in a manner that would serve the transportation of goods and passengers between both countries and enhance cooperation and integration between them in various areas, added the Minister.
As indicated by the Minister, the joint border crossing committee held 7 consecutive meetings until April 2016, which resulted in several achievements, the most important of which was the pavement of roads leading to Qastal-Ashkit crossing and to Arqin as well as the inauguration and operation of Qastal- Ashkit border crossing. 
Dr. Nasr emphasized that Arqin crossing would contribute to developing the relevant surrounding areas and to obtaining optimum benefit from Egyptian- Sudanese distinguished relations in important developmental projects up to the level of citizens' ambitions in Egypt and Sudan.
This project would boost trade between Egypt and Sudan and facilitate the transportation of goods, services and individuals to open up new horizons of cooperation and to facilitate access to markets, in a manner that supports development efforts in both countries and maximizes the opportunities of economic inclusion in the global economy through boosting economy in the region, added the Minister.
The Minister called for achieving integrative trade between both countries so that Sudan would be the first destination for the Egyptian importer and vice versa, thus a strong cooperation front would be formed to serve as the core of Arab economic integration, in favor of Arab citizens. 
At the end of her speech, the Minister expressed her appreciation for those who contributed to the completion of Arqin crossing from both Egyptian and Sudanese sides, specifically the Egyptian Armed Forces.
The Ministers of International Cooperation and Transportation were briefed on the work system in Arqin and the ship line of exports and imports as well as customs and traffic procedures to be followed and implemented. Arqin crossing is located west Lake Naser and about 150 km away from Abu Simbel City along Egyptian- Sudanese borders, with a capacity of 7,500 passengers daily and more than 300 trucks and buses. 
Relevant specialists explained that Arqin crossing includes a residential city over 1000 square meters with 22 housing units, besides providing roads for those with special needs, specifically in the customs area. This is in addition to providing green spaces on an area of 7000 square meters as well as other service buildings such as cafeteria, clinics, mosque, fire department, 10 separated stores, residential areas for Arqin security forces and policemen, 3 electricity generators with a capacity of 3 mw, 2 potable water tanks with a capacity of 100 cubic meters and a communication tower with a sum of EGP 5.4 million. They also referred to the pavement of the 110 km Tushka- Arqin road which is 11 m wide with a total amount worth EGP 190 million as well as the completion of the 360 km Arqin- Dongola road with a width of 7 m. 
The opening of the crossing is an important event for Egypt, Sudan and Africa as it reflects Egypt's keenness on enhancing Egyptian- African relations and boosting joint cooperation with various African countries, el-Saeed stated. 
This crossing emphasized the political leadership's keenness on boosting trade with the Nile basin countries and Africa as well as Egypt's pivotal role in Africa; in addition, it would contribute to developing South Egypt and Tushka through the movement of trucks and passengers along the road, added el-Saeed.
The General Authority for Ports and Dry Land built the Western Nile Arqin Crossing with investments of EGP 93 million, indicated el-Saeed, noting that Arqin is considered the second border crossing after Qastal crossing inaugurated in August 2014, within the framework of boosting trade between Egypt and Sudan. 

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