EU supports Egypt in the transformation of the Egyptian Museum of Cairo
Last November, while celebrating the 116th anniversary of the
Egyptian museum and the opening of the new display of the wonderful collection
of Youya and Thuya, we announced to the whole world that the new museums, GEM
and NMEC will not be a threat to our beloved Cairo Museum.
This historical museum should get all the
support and attention it deserves, to continue the role it
has played over a century now, as one of the most significant
museums in the world. This museum has over the years attracted millions of visitors and scholars with its
unique and diversified collection.
The time has come to shed a new light on the
museum’s rich exhibitions, upgrade its physical structure, and improve its
research and programing activities, to reach the highest
And it is with great pleasure that I welcome
you all this evening to witness the first and most important step in our plan
to develop this iconic museum.
Tonight we launch the European Union
Funding Project “Transforming the Egyptian Museum of Cairo,” which will
transform the museum into a world-class institution, in order to be recognized
as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The three-year project (2019-2021), funded by the EU with a
grant of 3 million euros, provided from the
“Promoting Inclusive Economic Growth Pogramme”, embodies a remarkable
cooperation between Egypt and the European Union, bringing together egyptian scholars and their colleagues from a prestigious consortium
of five European museums: The Egyptian
Museum of Turin, the British Museum of London, the Egyptian Museum and Papyrus Collection of Berlin, the Louvre
Museum in Paris and the Rijks museum van Oudheden in Leiden.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank
the European Union, especially the delegation in Cairo headed by H.E.
Ambassador Ivan Surkosh, for their support to the
project, as well as our partners from the European Museums for sharing their
expertise and knowledge.
A special « thank you » goes to HE Dr. Sahar
Nasr, Minister of Investment and International Cooperation, for her sincere efforts and tremendous support
to make this project to come to light.
Let me take a moment to share something with
you on this joyful occasion on which we are celebrating our joint efforts with
the EU to preserve one of the most important museums in the world. While Egypt
is paying billions of EGP on building new museums and on restoration and
preservation projects, and while more than 25 countries are leading
archaeological missions in Egypt to preserve and study the Egyptian sites, I am
deeply saddened to see every now and then some Egyptian antiquities put on
sale in the international market. We have succeeded in repatriating thousands of
Egyptian objects that were smuggled out of Egypt illegally, and we will
continue to do so. I would like to take this opportunity to ask the
ambassadors, the international organizations, the UNESCO and all the Colleagues
present here this evening, to join efforts to stop the looting, selling and
illicit trafficking of antiquities, and to work closely to
protect and preserve our cultural and archaeological heritage for future
Finally, it is my pleasure to invite all of you
to join us here in the museum next Thursday morning at
10:00, for the opening of a new
pathway for the visual impaired, organized in
collaboration with the Italian Embassy, and also, to attend the opening of a
temporary Exhibition about « Sports through the Ages », on the occasion of the
opening of the 32nd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations.