Grand Egyptian Museum to open in May 2018

State-of-the-art Cairo museum nears completion.

The Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) near the Giza pyramids in southwest Cairo is scheduled to open in May 2018, according to the project's management company Hill International.

Billed as the largest archaeological museum in the world, the museum will have a 93,000-sqm exhibition area housing 100,000 ancient Egyptian artefacts.

When construction began in March 2012 the estimated cost of the project was $550 million, however the final price tag is expected to be nearer $1 billion. The majority of the funding comes from the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) with the remaining funds granted by the Egyptian government.

The state-of-the-art building was designed by Irish-based architectural firm Heneghan Peng which beat more than 1,550 other entries to win the international competition to design the museum in 2003.

Also known as the Giza Museum, the building will include a conference centre, children's museum and educational facilities. It is located on a 50-hectare site two kms from the Giza pyramids and will be able to host up to 15,000 visitors per day.

The museum has faced numerous setbacks since it was first launched in 1992, including funding shortfalls, bureaucracy, and security difficulties relating to political instability.