The Suez Canal Economic Zone announced that it has signed a contract with Agility to develop and operate a customs and logistics centre in the Suez Canal Economic Zone.
The agreement with the Kuwait-based Agility was signed during the Egyptian-Kuwaiti Economic Forum in the presence of Walid Gamal El-Din, chairman of the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZONE), and Tarek Sultan, vice vhairman of Agility.
"Agility will work with SCZone to implement its strategic vision in the areas of services, logistics, and industrial zone support by establishing a technical and logistical arm that will automate customs processes and operations in the SCZone," the statement said.
It added that the automation piece will link the SCZone's customs departments and relevant government agencies concerned with inspection work.
Global logistics hub plan
"The project, intended to turn the zone into a global logistics hub, will improve the flow of goods and commodities and bring efficiency and lower costs to international companies and investors operating there," it added.
Suez Canal said Agility invest US$60 million to build a 100,000 SQM customs and logistics centre in the industrial zone in Ein Sokhna, as well as another 100,000 SQM customs and logistics centre in East Port Said.
The project will be implemented during the second half of 2023.
"The signing of this contract today with Agility, a leader in customs modernization, is consistent with the Suez Canal Authority’s strategic plan 2020/2025, which aims to create an enticing investment environment and further one of Egypt's key development goals," said Walid Gamal El-Din.
"This agreement will enable the Suez Canal Authority to improve visibility over inbound materials and finished goods and enhance efficiency through a single-window customs platform. The result will be increased commercial activity, the quicker release of cargo and better overall operations," Gamal El-Din added.
Gamal El-Din further said that the agreement comes in line with the state's policies in developing the customs clearance services by building an integrated and automated system that raises the overall efficiency of customs operations, reducing the accumulation of shipments and goods, while providing the best services possible to investors.
This is in addition to the facilitated coordination and integration between the Ministry of Finance, tax and customs authorities as well as other government bodies within the economic zone.
Tarek Sultan, vice chairman of Agility, said Egypt plays a vital role in global and regional trade. He said the ambitious modernization project, along with the other strategic development efforts undertaken by the government, demonstrate the country's determination to be an economic leader in the future.
"By developing and modernizing the customs and logistics centre, the SCZone and the Egyptian government are positioning Egypt to be one of the world’s most advanced operators and an indispensable 21st-century trade partner for MENA, Asia and Europe," said Sultan.
"Companies with a presence in the Suez Canal Economic Zone will have access to the world's best logistics infrastructure and services. They will be situated at the trade crossroads of the world, amid the fastest-growing markets," the Agility executive added.