Egyptian museum to be managed internationally
Egypt’s antiquities minister said Tuesday that the long-planned Grand Egyptian Museum will have an independent, international directorship in an effort to overcome bureaucracy.
Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty said the awaited museum near the Pyramids of Giza will be run “independent” of the government, similar to the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, an elaborate piece of architecture which opened in 2002 under a special act of parliament guaranteeing its administrative independence.
“We have a plan for it to have independence and an international board of trustees like the Library of Alexandria,” he told reporters at a news conference near the museum’s 50-hectare construction site.
Former antiquities minister and famed Egyptologist Zahi Hawass told The Associated Press in June that the museum must be international because “government routine cannot work for museums.”
Private, international sponsorship was needed, he said, suggesting that the names of individual donors be written on the walls of the museum as an incentive.
The Egyptian government is trying to revive its battered tourism industry after four years of turmoil.
Only the foundation and a few structures of the museum have been built so far. It was originally scheduled to have opened years ago but was repeatedly delayed over what the government said was lack of funds. The latest official target aims for a 2018 opening.
The main achievement so far is the construction of a new conservation center to restore damaged antiquities, which is already being used to work on artifacts that will eventually be displayed at the museum.
Camera operators film the stone laboratory of the restoration center at the partially opened complex of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Aug. 25. Egyptian Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty said the long-planned museum will have an independent, international directorship in an effort to overcome bureaucracy. The museum was originally scheduled to already have opened but was repeatedly delayed over what the government said was a lack of funds.