Egypt Launches Second Largest Project in History to Ensure National Preservation
Egypt is implementing huge agricultural development projects to increase agricultural area and increase productivity in order to save the country from a shortage of strategic crops.
The government is implementing the Sharq Al Awainat project, which is the second largest agricultural development project implemented in the south of the valley in southwest Egypt (after the Toshka project) from the Western Desert between 2200-23.3 N and 27.55 longitude. 29.3 E in an area of 16,000 km2, 365 km south of Dakhla Oasis in New Valley Governorate, 500 km from Lake Nasser; Where the soil is rich and free of pollutants, which makes it ideal, and its area is 528 thousand acres divided into plots, half of which is distributed to agricultural companies that produce various crops estimated at 3 million tons annually.
The project aims to add about 230,000 acres of agricultural land, which is completely irrigated from the waters of an underground reservoir in the region. The project applies a clean farming method to ensure that agricultural products are exported abroad without pollutants. The number of companies allocated for land in the region is 16, all of them have begun to be implemented.
The most important crops of the project
The most important crops grown in the region are “wheat – barley – vegetables – potatoes – peanuts – fodder crops – melon – garlic”, as well as medicinal plants (rapeseed – cumin – mint).
As well as horticultural crops (mangoes – guava – oranges – lemons, palms – figs) and 6 million seedlings of windbreak trees were provided in order to install a fence to prevent sand intrusion.
Fibrous crops such as cotton, fodder crops (alfalfa, broad beans, sorghum, Sudanese hashish), cereals (wheat and sorghum), legumes (lentils and soybeans), oilseeds (peanuts and sesame), vegetables and medicinal crops . plants (hibiscus – cumin – anise – licorice – marjoram), horticultural crops (dry and semi-dry dates, dried figs, pomegranates and citrus fruits).
Investment companies in East Al Awainat are targeting agriculture and livestock activities, as well as contributing to the production of large quantities of meat for the local market, and the largest Egyptian ostrich farm in the region is located here. a £120 million silo project with a capacity of 60,000 tons.
The Ministry of Agriculture has been keen to promote animal husbandry in the New Valley, especially in the East Al Awainat region as it is an area free from environmental pollution and is one of the best areas for breeding and improving breeds. Therefore, the Horticultural Services Department of the Department of Agriculture, in partnership with the Australian side, established a livestock farm with a capacity of 5000 heads attached to it, 3 feed production enterprises, Australian mixed calves were imported, and fattening heads were also imported. from Germany, except for the old livestock station located in the area with the herd. From the cows, the Friesian mix, the herd of sheep, the herd of camels.
Maj. Gen. Ehab Saber, head of the Department of Veterinary Services at the Ministry of Agriculture, said the ministry is playing an important role in implementing major development projects in the East Al Awaynat region. As production sector farms in the region, which are located on an area of 37,000 feddans, in addition to livestock production farms, there are open crops: corn and palm trees.
He stressed the importance of improving performance and efficiency to increase productivity, with the need to use modern systems and apply scientific research related to increasing productivity and improving breeds.
Adding 500 thousand feddans to agricultural area
Dr. Hala Al-Saeed, Minister of Planning, said the plan for 2022/2023 aims to increase farmland by about half a million acres through horizontal expansion projects, especially Egypt’s Future and New Delta. the Dabaa Axis project on the northwest coast, the Toshka development project south of the New Valley, and the East Owainat project in southwestern Western Sahara.
She added that the main goal is to increase the self-sufficiency of Egyptian agriculture for food security. Therefore, the plan for 2022/2023 is designed to monitor and track changes in the yield of major crops, and to monitor the pace of improvement in the degree of its self-sufficiency, according to the tasks The Ministry of Agriculture, in terms of numbers, is expected to raise self-sufficiency in wheat from 45% in 2020 to 65% by 2025, yellow corn from 24% to 32% over the same period, local beans from 30% to about 80%, lentils from 12% to 16%, oilseeds from 3% to 10%, from red meat from 57% to 65%, and from fish from 82% to 85%.
The most important services in the project
Water research has proven the existence of a huge underground reservoir that can be operated within safety limits for 100 years. The salinity ranges from 200-700 ppm, so it is between excellent and very good for irrigation. Several land surveys have also been conducted on an area of 3.30 million acres. These studies validate the 1.1 million acre area, which is considered one of the best arable land.
The state has set up a 200-acre solar energy farm to test and evaluate renewable energy in the East Al Owainat region.
Most of the soils are located within sandy and loamy lands, and they are considered one of the best lands suitable for cultivation. A developed irrigation system with various types of it (sprinkling – drip irrigation) is used in this area, by digging wells to use groundwater reserves.
The state provided many services in the region. Where a local unit has been established in East Al Awainat, located in Al Ain village and includes the following services: “medical station, police station, agricultural block, veterinary station, 2 gas stations and warehouse, bakery, TV reception, a development and agricultural credit bank, a youth center, a mosque, a gas station.” sifting and sieving station.
Landing strips (widows) were widened and lengthened, and the airport was illuminated at night to take large planes for export directly from East Owainat to all countries of the world.
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