Assomac sign Cairo contract30 November 2004
In October, Italy and Egypt signed two important contracts for the establishment of the Robaiky Leather District at Badr El City, near Cairo. The two organisations involved are the General Organisation for Industrial and Mining Projects (IMC) of the Egyptian Ministry of Industry and Trade and the service department of the Italian Association of footwear, leathergoods and tannery machine manufacturers (ASSOMAC). The two contracts were signed by IMC president, Said Abdel Latif Othman and by Assomac managing director, Dr Amilcare Baccini. The Italian partners will supply technical assistance for the establishment of the Robaiky Leather District and for the creation and operation of the Technological Centre supporting the Egyptian private enterprises. The contracts are part of the wider Italian financing project in the district which, thanks to refunding, includes an allocation of about €21 million. The initial instalment of more than half a million euros marks the official start of the project. The new industrial district at Badr El City is sited approximately 45km from Cairo on the Cairo-Suez line. It is an Egyptian attempt to make quality processed leathers and transform products such as shoes and leathergoods, making them competitive on the international market. The Egyptian government expects that relocation of the tanneries from Old Cairo to the new centre will help to solve the existing environmental problems. The transfer will take place in three stages. The study of the master plan by Assomac foresees that each stage will operate autonomously. The first stage will enable the transfer of about 50 tanneries and includes the establishment of a suitably sized wastewater treatment plant and a chrome recovery unit. They will later be enlarged to bear the waste from a further 60-70 tanneries, around 190 footwear factories and leather product manufacturing laboratories, byproducts processing units, maintenance laboratories and a service centre which will house restaurants, bars and post offices. The three stages will be constructed over a six-year period and the first earth moving and levelling activities, where the first stage will be built, are scheduled to begin on December 1. The first phase of the Technological Centre for training, managerial assistance to enterprises, laboratories for quality control and product and water analysis, is destined for the tanning sector, which will be the first to be operative in the new district.