Egypt eyes Gaza reconstruction

Egypt is banking on a $500-million Gaza reconstruction project to shore up its influence in the Middle East, capitalising on clout it garnered by brokering a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi pledged the cash injection to rebuild the Gaza Strip after it was left in ruins during an 11-day exchange of Hamas rocket fire and Israeli air strikes.

The aid package is in the form of construction undertaken by Egyptian firms — a playbook that Sisi has used to great effect domestically since taking power in 2014.

Sisi has employed the military’s engineering arm for large-scale infrastructure projects such as the construction of a new administrative capital, as well as dozens of flyovers and highways nationwide.