Source: Pomed – Project On Middle East Democracy
Author(s): Amy Hawthorne
In a new POMED Report, Rethinking U.S. Economic Aid to Egypt, POMED Deputy Director for Research Amy Hawthorne takes a detailed look at U.S. bilateral economic aid for Egypt. Since the 1979 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty, economic assistance, along with military aid, has been a pillar of the U.S.-Egypt relationship. The aid relationship often has been contentious and the program has long needed an overhaul, but it especially has struggled for purpose and direction since 2011, in the face of growing Egyptian government restrictions. As frustration and fatigue has grown among American officials, some question whether maintaining the aid still serves U.S. interests.
Despite its limitations, economic aid remains an essential tool to help address Egypt’s development challenges and to engage positively with Egypt’s citizens in a relationship otherwise dominated by security cooperation with an authoritarian regime. Thus, the paper argues that the next U.S. administration should make efforts to continue the bilateral economic aid program, though significant changes are needed to enable the assistance to achieve its objectives in an extremely difficult context…
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