Chasing Egypt’s Economic Tail

Source: Carnegie Endowment
Author(s): Yezid Sayigh

Original Link:

A little-noticed decree issued by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi at the end of November 2015 empowered the agency responsible for managing real estate no longer used by the Egyptian Armed Forces to engage in profit-making enterprises and form commercial ventures with domestic and foreign counterparts. A few weeks later, in early January 2016, he instructed the central bank to incentivize the country’s banking sector to inject $25 billion into small and medium-sized businesses, which are increasingly struggling in today’s Egyptian economy.

These and a host of other decrees issued since Sisi assumed the presidency in 2014 are symptomatic of his routine bypassing of the government institutions nominally responsible for economic policy making and management. This reflects his sense of urgency regarding the need to resolve the country’s social and economic problems. But his exercise of an inordinate role in setting Egypt’s economic agenda and overall direction is unlikely to deliver on the intended goals, and may exacerbate existing problems or generate new ones…

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