Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek El Molla witnessed the convening of the founding assembly of the Egyptian Soda Ash Company, which is responsible for the Soda Ash Production Complex project.
This came in the presence of Mahmoud Esmat, Minister of Public Business Sector, via video conference, and Mokhtar Abdel Latif, Chairman of the Arab Organization for Industrialization.
El Molla stated that the petroleum sector attaches great importance to projects to maximize the added value of natural resources and to add manufacturing workshops that increase the ability of the vital petrochemical industry to maximize returns on the national economy, support the localization of the Egyptian industry, and replace imports with hard currency. Among these developments is the very important soda ash industry, which President Abdel Fattah El Sisi spoke about during the industry’s first forum recently, emphasizing the enhancement of this industry in Egypt to replace imports.
The minister indicated that the entry of the private sector into the coalition based on the implementation of the project by 45% confirms the government’s openness to increasing the contribution and participation of the private sector within the projects it is interested in.
The new project aims to produce around 600,000 tons of soda ash annually, including 320,000 tons of light soda ash and 210,000 tons of heavy soda ash, and sodium bicarbonate with a capacity of 50,000 tons and sodium bicarbonate with a capacity of 10,000 tons, in addition to silica (silicon dioxide). The investment cost is estimated at about $500 million.
The value of Egypt’s imports of soda ash and its derivatives amounts to about $300 million annually and the feasibility study of the project indicates great success, due to the availability of the basic raw materials as well as the necessary land and technical expertise.