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Why is the Suez Canal a big deal? Explained in 60 secs

6 August 2015 Last updated at 05:34 BST

Egypt has just completed a multi-billion dollar upgrade of its strategic Suez Canal.

But why is this relatively poor country spending so much money on this project?

And what role has the canal played in forming Egypt’s national identity?

The BBC’s Mohamed Madi explains, in 60 seconds.