The Cabinet approved the Ministry of Housing’s request to utilize land in the Petrified Forest Protectorate in Cairo to establish residential units, reported Al Borsa News.

The Ministry of Housing had previously submitted a request to the  Ministry of Environment in 2014 to exploit part of the neighboring protected area in the Petrified Forest Protectorate, but the request had been declined, fearing potential damage to the area.

Prime Minister Sherif Ismail however agreed to offer the Ministry of Housing land, provided that the ministry allocate EGP 50 million to the Ministry of Environment to be used to repair any damage done to the protectorate.

“The ministry plans to expand investment in the natural reserves sector, and that the Cabinet has agreed to propose five natural reserves to investors within a few days,” said Minister of Environment Khaled Fahmy.

“These reserves are in El Rayan Valley, Degla Protectorate, Museum of Hitan Valley, Qurun Lake, and Valley of the Camels, ” added Fahmy.

The  ministry has formed a committee to study the laws that are in line with the investment in the reserves before offering it to investors, said Fatima Mohsen, an advisor to the Minister of Environment.