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In Support of the Aviation Sector and Towards Financing the Development of Saint Catherine and Sphinx Airports…
Banque Misr and the National Bank of Egypt – being the guarantee agents and main financing arrangers – arranged two joint loans; the first being in favor of Egyptian Holding Company for Airports and Air Navigation valued EGP 1 billion and the second for the Egyptian Airports Company for EGP 2 billion, towards financing both the Saint Catherine and Sphinx airports.
Mr. Mohamed El-Etreby – Chairman of the Board of Banque Misr – noted that the Bank is keen on supporting the aviation sector by way of comprehensive financing solutions, in line with the state's strive to upgrade this economically-influential sector. He added that the plan for developing Saint Catherine and Sphinx airports includes increasing the capacity of each, by building a new passenger terminal and expanding current runways; thus allowing Saint Catherine airport to accommodate 600 passengers/hour to serve the touristic region in the city. This is in addition to expanding and increasing the capacity of the main runway to boost passenger traffic, while also alleviating the pressure away from Cairo International Airport. The development of Sphinx airport involves upgrading its capacity to 900 passengers/hour – or triple its current operating capacity – together with constructing ancillary buildings. Mr. El-Etreby asserted that both loans seek to finance the investment cost of the two airport development projects, adding that total financing amounts to EGP 3 billion, extending over 10 years, to enable EHCAAN and EAC to complete their development plans and payback their financial commitments within a suitable duration.
On his part, Mr. Hisham Okasha – Chairman of NBE – stated that the bank plays a leading role in financing pivotal national projects in various sectors, the most important being the aviation sector and boosting the state's resources therefrom. He confirmed that the joint financing arranged by the bank will directly contribute to the development of Saint Catherine and Sphinx airports, which will drive air traffic and improve the quality of services rendered to passengers at these airports. This, in turn, will strengthen the pioneering stance of Egypt in the field of air transport, while being in line with the state's efforts for developing the city of Saint Catherine and maximizing the utilization of its unique touristic features. On the other hand, the development of Sphinx airport will significantly serve tourism activities surrounding the Pyramids and Giza plateau, especially the Grand Egyptian Museum, which will constitute a qualitative leap in showcasing the relics of Ancient Egypt. Mr. Okasha expressed his gratitude and pride in the role played by the Egyptian banking sector in supporting national projects that are conducive to the prosperity of the state and its citizens.
Both banks seeks to enhance their distinguished services and to maintain their long-term success by actively partaking in partnerships that positively reflect on their roles, insofar as endorsing economic activities in all fields – and the aviation sector, being a pivotal domain – since the values and strategies of Banque Misr and NBE consistently underscore their commitment to attain sustainable development and prosperity for Egypt, through supporting the local national economy.