19 August 2014       Download

ASCOM, a leading regional mining and quarrying company, tapped to provide excavation services at critical national project; ASCOM is one of three Qalaa Holdings companies working to develop the Suez Canal area


Qalaa Holdings (CCAP.CA on the Egyptian Exchange, formerly Citadel Capital), an African leader in infrastructure and industry, announced today that its key portfolio company in the regional mining industry is one of 42 companies that have been tapped to work under supervision of the Egyptian Armed Forces on an initial phase of the New Suez Canal.

ASCOM Geology and Mining (ASCM.CA on the Egyptian Exchange) has been assigned to complete dry sand excavation on a 1-kilometer-long, 0.4-kilometer wide section of the New Suez Canal. ASCOM has completed initial survey work on its assigned segment and has committed to the excavation of 25,000 cubic meters per day until such a time as they strike wet soil.

“ASCOM brings to this project clear experience as the leading provider of quarrying services to Egypt’s cement industry,” said Qalaa Holdings Chairman and Founder Ahmed Heikal. “The importance of this contract to our company lies not in its economic importance, but in the opportunity to help expand a pillar of the national economy. It is an honor to have one of our companies selected to provide services to a project that is so critical to our nation’s future economic development.”

The New Suez Canal is a c. EGP 60 billion project that will include a 72-kilometer long parallel waterway and a 76,000 square kilometer industrial zone and logistics hub. The channel parallel to the current canal will also include tunnels for motor vehicles and trains.

ASCOM is not the only unit of Qalaa Holdings working to help develop the Suez area. Mashreq, a Qalaa Holdings unit in the energy sector, holds a lease for a 210,000 square-meter plot of land in East Port Said near the Mediterranean terminus of the Suez Canal. The company is building the first tank terminal and logistics hub of its kind in the region to facilitate global trade and help Egypt make maximum use of the Suez Canal. The facility will primarily serve the liquid bulk market in the Middle East and the broader Mediterranean region. Mashreq will also provide fuel bunkering services for ships transiting the Suez Canal as well as an integrated logistics facility.

Nile Logistics, a Qalaa Holdings company in the river transport industry, is meanwhile providing fast, efficient container transport services using river barges between the Port Said Container Terminal and the Suez Canal Container Terminal (Sharq Al-Tafrea), including a naval service bay at the Suez Canal. The container transshipment service, which uses inland barges to transship containers between port terminals in less than one hour, compared the a minimum of 4-6 hours for truck convoys, was the result of close cooperation between the Suez Canal Authority, Qalaa Holdings and agencies at the Ministry of Transport.