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Introduction Egypt
regularity and richness of annual Nile River flood, coupled with semi-isolation provided by deserts to east and west, allowed for development of one of world's great civilizations. A unified kingdom arose circa 3200 B.C. and a series of dynasties ruled in Egypt for next three millennia. last native dynasty fell to Persians in 341 B.C., who in turn were replaced by Greeks, Romans, and Byzantines. It previously Arabs who introduced Islam and Arabic language in 7th century and who ruled for next six centuries. A local military caste, Mamluks took control about 1250 and continued to govern after conquest of Egypt by Ottoman Turks in 1517. Following completion of Suez Canal in 1869, Egypt became an important world transportation hub, but also fell heavily into debt. Ostensibly to protect its investments, Britain seized control of Egypt's government in 1882, but nominal allegiance to Ottoman Empire continued until 1914. Partially independent from UK in 1922, Egypt acquired full sovereignty following World War II. completion of Aswan High Dam in 1971 and resultant Lake Nasser have altered time-honored place of Nile River in agriculture and ecology of Egypt. A rapidly growing population (the largest in Arab world), limited arable land, and dependence on Nile all continue to overtax resources and stress society. government has struggled to ready economy for new millennium through economic reform and massive investment in communications and physical infrastructure.
Geography Egypt
Northern Africa, bordering Mediterranean Sea, between Libya and Gaza Strip, and Red Sea north of Sudan, and includes Asian Sinai Peninsula
Geographic coordinates:
27 00 N, 30 00 E
Map references:
total: 1,001,450 sq km
land: 995,450 sq km
water: 6,000 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly more than three times size of New Mexico
Land boundaries:
total: 2,665 km
border countries: Gaza Strip 11 km, Israel 266 km, Libya 1,115 km, Sudan 1,273 km
2,450 km
Maritime claims:
contiguous zone: 24 NM
territorial sea: 12 NM
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to depth of exploitation
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
desert; hot, dry summers with moderate winters
vast desert plateau interrupted by Nile valley and delta
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Qattara Depression -133 m
highest point: Mount Catherine 2,629 m
Natural resources:
petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, phosphates, manganese, limestone, gypsum, talc, asbestos, lead, zinc
Land use:
arable land: 2.85%
permanent crops: 0.47%
other: 96.68% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
33,000 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
periodic droughts; frequent earthquakes, flash floods, landslides; hot, driving windstorm called khamsin occurs in spring; dust storms, sandstorms
Environment - current issues:
agricultural land being lost to urbanization and windblown sands; increasing soil salination below Aswan High Dam; desertification; oil pollution threatening coral reefs, beaches, and marine habitats; other water pollution from agricultural pesticides, raw sewage, and industrial effluents; very limited natural fresh water resources away from Nile which is only perennial water source; rapid growth in population overstraining Nile and natural resources
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol
Geography - note:
controls Sinai Peninsula, only land bridge between Africa and remainder of Eastern Hemisphere; controls Suez Canal, a sea link between Indian Ocean and Mediterranean Sea; size, and juxtaposition to Israel, establish its major role in Middle Eastern geopolitics; dependence on upstream neighbors; dominance of Nile basin issues; prone to influxes of refugees
People Egypt
Total Population:
74,718,797 (July 2003 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 33.9% (male 12,964,852; female 12,346,808)
15-64 years: 61.9% (male 23,375,037; female 22,865,190)
65 years and over: 4.2% (male 1,359,685; female 1,807,225) (2003 est.)
Median age:
total: 23.1 years
male: 22.8 years
female: 23.5 years (2002)
Population growth rate:
1.88% (2003 est.)
Birth rate:
24.36 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Death rate:
5.35 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Net migration rate:
-0.23 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female
Population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2003 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 35.26 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 34.46 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
male: 36.02 deaths/1,000 live births
Life Expectancy:
Population: 70.41 years
male: 67.94 years
female: 73 years (2003 est.)
Total fertility rate:
3.02 children born/woman (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
less than 0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
8,000 (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
noun: Egyptian(s)
adjective: Egyptian
Ethnic groups:
Eastern Hamitic stock (Egyptians, Bedouins, and Berbers) 99%, Greek, Nubian, Armenian, other European (primarily Italian and French) 1%
Muslim (mostly Sunni) 94%, Coptic Christian and other 6%
Arabic (official), English and French widely understood by educated classes
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Population: 57.7%
male: 68.3%
female: 46.9% (2003 est.)
Government Egypt
Country name:
conventional long form: Arab Republic of Egypt
conventional short form: Egypt
local short form: Misr
former: United Arab Republic (with Syria)
local long form: Jumhuriyat Misr al-Arabiyah
Government type:
Administrative divisions:
26 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah); Ad Daqahliyah, Al Bahr al Ahmar, Al Buhayrah, Al Fayyum, Al Gharbiyah, Al Iskandariyah, Al Isma'iliyah, Al Jizah, Al Minufiyah, Al Minya, Al Qahirah, Al Qalyubiyah, Al Wadi al Jadid, Ash Sharqiyah, As Suways, Aswan, Asyut, Bani Suwayf, Bur Sa'id, Dumyat, Janub Sina', Kafr ash Shaykh, Matruh, Qina, Shamal Sina', Suhaj
28 February 1922 (from UK)
National holiday:
Revolution Day, 23 July (1952)
11 September 1971
Legal system:
based on English common law, Islamic law, and Napoleonic codes; judicial review by Supreme Court and Council of State (oversees validity of administrative decisions); accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
18 years of age; universal and compulsory
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Mohammed Hosni MUBARAK (since 14 October 1981)
head of government: Prime Minister Atef Mohammed ABEID (since 5 October 1999)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by president
elections: president nominated by People's Assembly for a six-year term, nomination must then be validated by a national, popular referendum; national referendum last held 26 September 1999 (next to be held NA October 2005); prime minister appointed by president
election results: national referendum validated President MUBARAK's nomination by People's Assembly to a fourth term
Legislative branch:
bicameral system consists of People's Assembly or Majlis al-Sha'b (454 seats; 444 elected by popular vote, 10 appointed by president; members serve five-year terms) and Advisory Council or Majlis al-Shura - which functions only in a consultative role (264 seats; 176 elected by popular vote, 88 appointed by president; members serve NA-year terms)
elections: People's Assembly - three-phase voting - last held 19 October, 29 October, 8 November 2000 (next to be held NA November 2005); Advisory Council - last held 7 June 1995 (next to be held NA)
election results: People's Assembly - percent of vote by party - NDP 88%, independents 8%, opposition 4%; seats by party - NDP 398, NWP 7, Tagammu 6, Nasserists 2, LSP 1, independents 38, undecided 2; Advisory Council - percent of vote by party - NDP 99%, independents 1%; seats by party - NA
Judicial branch:
Supreme Constitutional Court
Political parties and leaders:
Nasserist Arab Democratic Party or Nasserists [Dia' al-din DAWUD]; National Democratic Party or NDP [President Mohammed Hosni MUBARAK] - governing party; National Progressive Unionist Grouping or Tagammu [Khalid MUHI AL-DIN]; New Wafd Party or NWP [No'man GOMA]; Socialist Liberal Party or LSP [leader NA]
note: formation of political parties must be approved by government
Political pressure groups and leaders:
despite a constitutional ban against religious-based parties, technically illegal Muslim Brotherhood constitutes MUBARAK's potentially most significant political opposition; MUBARAK tolerated limited political activity by Brotherhood for his first two terms, but moved more aggressively since then to block its influence; civic society groups are sanctioned, but constrained in practical terms; trade unions and professional associations are officially sanctioned
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in US:
chief of mission: Ambassador M. Nabil FAHMY
chancery: 3521 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, New York, and San Francisco
FAX: [1] (202) 244-4319
telephone: [1] (202) 895-5400
Diplomatic representation from US:
chief of mission: Ambassador C. David WELCH
embassy: 5 Latin America St., Garden City, Cairo
mailing address: Unit 64900, Box 15, APO AE 09839-4900
telephone: [20] (2) 797-3300
FAX: [20] (2) 797-3200
Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and black with national emblem (a shield superimposed on a golden eagle facing hoist side above a scroll bearing name of country in Arabic) centered in white band; similar to flag of Yemen, which has a plain white band; also similar to flag of Syria, which has two green stars, and to flag of Iraq, which has three green stars (plus an Arabic inscription) in a horizontal line centered in white band
Economy Egypt
Economy - overview:
Egypt improved its macroeconomic performance throughout most of last decade by following IMF advice on fiscal, monetary, and structural reform policies. As a result, Egypt managed to tame inflation, slash budget deficits, and attract more foreign investment. In past four years, however, pace of reform has slackened, and excessive spending on national infrastructure projects has widened budget deficits again. Lower foreign exchange earnings since 1998 resulted in pressure on Egyptian pound and periodic dollar shortages. Monetary pressures have increased since 11 September 2001 because of declines in tourism and Suez Canal tolls, and Egypt has devalued pound several times in past year. development of a gas export market is a major bright spot for future growth prospects. In short term, regional tensions will continue to affect tourism and hold back prospects for economic expansion.
buying power parity - $289.8 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
3.2% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
buying power parity - $4,000 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 17%
industry: 34%
services: 49% (2001)
Population below poverty line:
22.9% (FY 95/96 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 4.4%
highest 10%: 25% (1995)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
28.9 (1995)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
4.3% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
20.6 million (2001 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 29%, industry 22%, services 49% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate:
12% (2001 est.)
revenues: $21.5 billion
expenditures: $26.2 billion, includes capital expenditures of $5.9 billion (2001)
textiles, food processing, tourism, chemicals, hydrocarbons, construction, cement, metals
Industrial production growth rate:
2.2% (2002 est.)
Electricity - production:
75.23 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 81%
hydro: 19%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
69.96 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
816,900 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
562,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves:
3.308 billion bbl (37257)
Natural gas - production:
21.2 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
21.2 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
1.264 trillion cu m (37257)
Agriculture - products:
cotton, rice, corn, wheat, beans, fruits, vegetables; cattle, water buffalo, sheep, goats
$7 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
crude oil and petroleum products, cotton, textiles, metal products, chemicals
Exports - partners:
US 18.3%, Italy 13.7%, UK 8.4% (2002)
$15.2 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports - commodities:
machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, chemicals, wood products, fuels
Imports - partners:
US 16.9%, Germany 7.9%, Italy 6.7%, France 6.5%, China 5%, UK 4.1% (2002)
Debt - external:
$30.5 billion (2002 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
ODA, $2.25 billion (1999)
Egyptian pound (EGP)
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
Egyptian pounds per US dollar - 4.5 (2002), 3.97 (2001), 3.47 (2000), 3.4 (1999), 3.39 (1998)
Fiscal year:
1 July - 30 June
Communications Egypt
Telephones - main lines in use:
3,971,500 (December 1998)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
380,000 (1999)
Telephone system:
general assessment: large system; underwent extensive upgrading during 1990s and is reasonably modern; Internet access and cellular service are available
domestic: principal centers at Alexandria, Cairo, Al Mansurah, Ismailia, Suez, and Tanta are connected by coaxial cable and microwave radio relay
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean and Indian Ocean), 1 Arabsat, and 1 Inmarsat; 5 coaxial submarine cables; tropospheric scatter to Sudan; microwave radio relay to Israel; a participant in Medarabtel and a signatory to Project Oxygen (a globel submarine fiber-optic cable system)
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 42 (plus 15 repeaters), FM 14, shortwave 3 (1999)
20.5 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
98 (September 1995)
7.7 million (1997)
Internet country code:
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
50 (2000)
Internet users:
600,000 (2002)
Transportation Egypt
total: 5,105 km
standard gauge: 5,105 km 1.435-m gauge (42 km electrified) (2002)
total: 64,000 km
paved: 49,984 km
unpaved: 14,016 km (1999 est.)
3,500 km
note: includes Nile, Lake Nasser, Alexandria-Cairo Waterway, and numerous smaller canals in delta; Suez Canal (193.5 km includes approaches), used by oceangoing vessels drawing up to 16.1 m of water
condensate 327 km; condensate/gas 94 km; gas 6,145 km; liquid petroleum gas 382 km; oil 5,726 km; oil/gas/water 36 km; water 62 km (2003)
Ports and harbors:
Alexandria, Al Ghardaqah, Aswan, Asyut, Bur Safajah, Damietta, Marsa Matruh, Port Said, Suez
Merchant marine:
total: 170 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,284,197 GRT/1,907,734 DWT
note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Denmark 1, Germany 1, Greece 6, Lebanon 3, Monaco 1, Ukraine 1 (2002 est.)
ships by type: bulk 20, cargo 50, container 5, liquefied gas 1, passenger 63, petroleum tanker 15, roll on/roll off 13, short-sea passenger 3
89 (2002)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 71
over 3,047 m: 13
2,438 to 3,047 m: 38
under 914 m: 3 (2002)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 17
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 18
under 914 m: 9 (2002)
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 6
2 (2002)
Military Egypt
Military branches:
Army, Navy, Air Force, Air Defense Command
Military manpower - military age:
20 years of age (2003 est.)
Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 19,895,370 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 12,867,160 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 743,305 (2003 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
$4.04 billion (FY99)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
4.1% (FY99)
Transnational Issues Egypt
Disputes - international:
Egypt and Sudan retain claims to administer triangular areas that extend north and south of 1899 Treaty boundary along 22nd Parallel, but have withdrawn their military presence - Egypt is economically developing "Hala'ib triangle" north of Treaty line
Illicit drugs:
transit point for Southwest Asian and Southeast Asian heroin and opium moving to Europe, Africa, and US; transit stop for Nigerian couriers; concern as money-laundering site due to lax banking regulations