Photographer's Note

The Suez Canal Bridge or the “Egyptian-Japanese Friendship Bridge” was built through a Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA) grant. It was agreed to implement this joint project between Egypt and Japan during the visit of President Mubarak to Japan in March 1995, as a substantial contribution by Japan to the plan approved by the Egyptian Government in 1994 to develop Sinai Peninsula (through developing agriculture in the north of Sinai, mining in the south and tourism industry on shores of the Red Sea, with the settlement of three million population in Sinai by 2017).

The bridge was inaugurated in October 2001. The Japanese Government bore 60% of the total cost of the bridge, 13.5 billion yen, while the Egyptian Government bore 40% of the cost, about 9 billion yen. Japan made use of its accumulated expertise gained from building bridges in Japan which has many islands and rivers. Modern techniques were transferred to Egypt, and mutual friendship was deepened through the joint work with Egyptian counterparts.

The bridge is 9 km long, including 5 km approaching roads and a 4 km cable stayed bridge. The clearance of the bridge is 70 meters above the water level of Suez Canal, and that makes it the highest clearance of the bridges in the world that have been built on a flat land. The height of the two main pylons supporting the main span of the bridge is 154 m each.The towers were designed in the shape of Pharaonic obelisks, which were established to commemorate kings’ achievements in ancient Egypt.

With the completion of the bridge, the time of moving from the main land to Sinai has decreased, and a new road connecting Asia and Africa was established. A memorial panel depicting the Egyptian and Japanese flags conbined as a handshake was placed in the middle of the main part of the bridge. This sends a message to the passing ships in the Suez Canal announcing the friendship between the two countries and peace of the region.

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Additional Photos by Krystian Pomaranczowy (tangerine) Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 34 W: 11 N: 51] (633)
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