A Story of Infitah: Egyptian Liberalization Under Stress

Authors: Hamz a Ates, Mehmet Duman, Yuksel Bayraktar

Economic Review

Download full article here: Egypt under stress

Date Published: June 2006

This article proves as a good supplement to that of the previous post. The past four decades of Egypt’s economic history are lucidly outlined.  This includes a description of the pre-Infitah atmosphere, the pressures in transition, and the policies of Mubarak leading up to the revolution.  Because the article was written in 2006, the connection between this economic transformation and the uprising are not made. However, the article discusses that one of the major consequences of liberalization was that of enhanced budget deficits. WIth these deficits, came restructuring polices which included some fairly drastic austerity measures, including reduced government subsidies to the poor and cuts in social services. These measures were pushed on the Egyptian people in a time when there was large numbers of unemployed and a stagnant real wage.  Could these dramatic economic conditions pushed the Egyptian youth (who were experiencing levels of unemployment greater than 20%) to the street?

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