CAIRO: Egypt’s Minister of Local Development Adel Labib announced that the ministry has finished the demarcation of three new governorates; Central Sinai, el-Alamain and Bahariya Oasis, Youm7 reported Monday.
“Redrawing the boundaries of Egyptian governorates will increase residential areas from 6 percent to 12 percent of the total area of Egypt; besides, it will achieve social justice by blending poor areas with areas of economic resources,” said Labib.
Central Sinai would be a third governorate in the large Sinai Peninsula, currently divided into only two governorates. El-Alamain is a Mediterranean city west of Egypt, while Bahariya Oasis is a depression 370 kilometer away from Cairo.
The ministry added that Upper Egypt’s governorates will have a coast on the Red Sea, which would support all fields of development in these governorates, especially in stretching their territories.
Labib noted that for the next period, an “economic regions system” will be applied to achieve full integration between the governorates of each region.
Regional Director of the United Nations Development Program Alia al-Dalli said it established a new program to provide the ministry with technical support to support decentralization and achieving sustainable development in some governorates.
The total number of Egyptian governorates is expected to increase from 27 to 32, Labib said in a press conference in June 2014.
The anticipated new map of Egypt is part of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s electoral platform to increase agricultural hinterlands.
Sisi’s platform also involved establishing new cities and industrial zones in the desert, to enable the country’s growing population to live on more than just 6 percent of Egypt’s territory.
By the end of 2013, Egypt’s population reached 91 million, out of which 83 million live inside the country and using only five to six percent of the total land area.