Egypt's President Abdelfattah el-Sisi attended a ceremony yesterday to unveil a major extension of the Suez Canal. The original canal was completed in 1869 and took 10 years to build. The new, $8.5 billion canal was constructed in just under 12 months, beating all predictions by industry experts that it would take five years. The canal provides a passageway between the Mediterranean and Red seas. President Sisi sailed up the canal in his presidential yacht, the El Mahrousa, wearing military fatigues to attend the inauguration. The El Mahrousa was the first ship to officially sail through the original canal nearly a century-and-a-half ago. President Sisi described the new canal as Egypt's "gift to the world".
Egypt's government hopes the new canal will provide a much-needed boost for the country's economy. The head of the Suez Canal Authority, Mohab Mamish, said the new canal was important to ensure Egypt earns revenues from its waterways in the future. He told reporters: "If I can't handle this and turn it into revenue for the Egyptian treasury, alternative routes will emerge." He hopes revenues will increase from the current annual $5.3 billion to $13.2 billion by 2023. That means shipping traffic would need to grow from 49 per day at present to 97 by 2023. This would entail a nine per cent increase in global trade. Some economists have cast doubt on whether these figures can be met.
1.cast doubt on 引起对…的怀疑
例句：Candidates cast doubt on their rivals’ competence, character, and leadership qualities.
2.Red seas 红海
例句：The Suez Canal, a 100 miles of artificial waterway connecting the Mediterranean and Red Seas, had predecessors dating back possibly 3,000 years.
3.describe as 描述为
例句：They described the man as a scoundrel.
4.be important to 对…重要
例句：Other problems may lurk in software that may be important to you.
1.When was the original Suez Canal built?
2.How long did the original canal take to build?
a) 10 years
b) 9 years
c) 8 years
d) 7 years
3.How long did experts think the current extension would take?
a) 2 years
b) 3 years
c) 4 years
d) 5 years
4.What did Egypt's leader wear as he sailed to the inauguration?
a) jeans and T-shirt
b) military fatigues
c) a business suit
d) a white robe
5.What did President Sisi describe the canal as?
a) the final piece of a jigsaw
b) a global superhighway
c) a gift to the world
d) a masterpiece
6.What does Egypt's government hope the canal will give the economy?
b) a boost
7.What does Egypt need to get from its waterways?
8.What will emerge if the canal can't make enough money?
b) alternative routes
d) traffic jams
9.How many ships per day are needed by 2023?
10.Who doubted whether figures could be met?
a) shipping companies
b) Mohab Mamish
c) Egypt's leader
d) some economists