Initial losses incurred from infringements on state land and conversions of desert farm land into tourist resorts have been estimated at nearly LE78 billion, according to an official source. The same source told Al-Masry Al-Youm that this sum would have been sufficient to finance the irrigation and drainage networks required for the reclamation and cultivation of 6.5 million acres of land.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation is currently preparing a list with the names of businessmen involved in illegal acquisitions of state lands. The ministry is also documenting all unauthorized conversion of desert farmland into tourist resorts, which threatens agricultural development in the West Delta region.
According to a report issued by the ministry, the total area of desert farm land infringed, which the state has failed to recover despite court orders, amounts to nearly 185,000 acres in various governorates.
Ministry sources estimate losses from infringements on land under the ministry’s jurisdiction at LE37 billion, in addition to LE41 billion in losses from the conversion of agricultural land into tourist resorts by 28 businessmen.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.