Turkey will build a new waterway to bypass the heavily congested Bosphorus Strait, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced.
He said the 150m-wide (492ft) “Canal Istanbul” would link the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara that opens to the Aegean Sea via the Dardanelles.
Mr Erdogan said the canal would be about 45km-long (31 miles), describing it as “the greatest project of the century”.
He did not disclose the exact location.
“We are rolling up our sleeves for Canal Istanbul, one of the greatest projects of the centuries that will outshine the Panama and Suez canals,” Mr Erdogan said.
He said the waterway would have a depth of about 25m and would afford the daily passage of up to 160 vessels.