The River Transport Authority is planning to make a series of arrangements to facilitate investment in the sector and raise capacity to ten percent of locally transported goods, in addition to attempting to widen trade in Africa.
Abdel Qader Darwish, president of the River Transport Authority , revealed that the authority would hold a global conference during the first week of December under the auspices of the European Union, with the attendance the Minister of Transportation Dr Ibrahim El-Demery, to discuss the best paths for investment in the transport of goods and passengers on the Nile and to open direct lines of communication with foreign and Egyptian investors.
Darwish indicated that it would be a good opportunity for serious companies to display their capabilities and to show the world the ability of the Nile to absorb large investments. He confirmed that a monthly press conference would be held to discuss the accomplishments of the River Transport Authority.
Darwish told “Logistics” that the River Transport Authority began the second phase of a programme to develop and restructure the authority with a meeting of experts from the European Union responsible for the development programme to discuss a new organisational structure for the authority.
He added that during this phase of the programme, the authority will open new investment areas to bring the it closer than ever before to the market and to companies working in river transportation.
Darwish pointed out that work is being done to end all obstacles for companies that want licenses to engage in river transportation. He added that the authority is only interested in whether the company has adequate structure, capital, workers, and technology to engage in this activity and that it has a serious intention to work and invest so that the near future can witness an increase in the transportation of goods and passengers between the companies and the authority.
The president of the River Transport Authority said that the French Development Agency (AFD) remains in contact with the authority to monitor the development programme to facilitate its participation in anticipated projects in the future.
He indicated that the Dutch Embassy informed the Egyptian government that the Netherlands wants to invest in river transport, especially the movement of people, confirming that they are very interested in participating in the funding of studies and projects including the proposed river taxi project expected to launch within months.
Darwish explained that the River Transport Authority will deal with investors in a way that reassures them about their investments in Egypt, emphasising that the authority will attend to all companies serious about investment in river transportation.
He spoke of the soon to be open Qena River Port, saying that it will be the door for goods entering Egypt through the Safaga Port, which will be transported over land to Qena and then to everywhere in Egypt. He added that the authority would put engineering conditions on the building to bring Qena in line with international standards for equipment and safety.
Darwish pointed to the issue of a cabinet decision to adjust conditions on all river ports on the banks of the Nile that lack equipment and safety standards, adding that there are a number of such unlicensed ports currently.
He stated that the authority would work immediately to execute the cabinet decision to adjust conditions on the river ports so that every operator on the Nile has licensing from the authority and works under its umbrella.
Darwish discussed the fact that Al-Ahly Capital Holding, the investment arm of the National Bank of Egypt, is constantly reviewing operations to restructure the River Transport Authority and intends to fund large investment projects in river transport.
He confirmed that the authority has taken the conditions of Al-Ahly Capital Holding officials for the bidding process into consideration and included them in its structural study.
The first stage of the development programme and restructuring of the authority ended by dividing the authority into two principle sectors: the infrastructure sector, which includes the navigational and technical areas, the market entrance sector, which includes the involvement of the private sector in projects and ports and works to build the authority’s credentials to deal with private companies with cooperation from the partnership unit of the Ministry of Investment.
Translated from Borsa Newspaper http://goo.gl/Freyfh