August 7 - One year after the announcement of a development programme, Egypt's expanded Suez Canal is open for business.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi led the inauguration ceremony, which marked the official opening of a 23-mile parallel channel that will allow two-way traffic and reduce waiting time.

Egypt forecasts the widening to increase traffic to about 97 ships per day and nearly 34,000 annually.

The Suez Canal Authority expects the upgraded canal to boost annual revenue to about USD13.5 billion in 2023 and anticipates growth by at least another 4 percent.