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Oct 22, 2014

Egypt tourism minister confident of recovery, despite challenges

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s tourism minister hopes to fully revive one of the country’s most vital industries by next April but persuading the world that it is safe to visit the ancient pyramids or Red Sea resorts after three years of upheaval is a daunting task.

Hisham Zaazou is mounting public relations campaigns, inviting foreign officials to visit and assess Egypt’s stability for themselves and boosting security at airports and hotels.

Oct 21, 2014

Egypt needs billions to upgrade telecom infrastructure-minister

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt is seeking billions of dollars in investment to upgrade its telecommunications infrastructure as part of efforts to attract multinationals and restore growth after three years of political upheaval, the telecoms minister said.

Political unrest, protests and militant violence since the 2011 uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak has battered Egypt’s finances, spooking investors the most populous Arab country needs to create growth and much-needed jobs.

Oct 21, 2014

Egypt turns to illegal buildings to tackle housing crisis

CAIRO, Oct 21 (Reuters) – Egypt plans to offer cheap loans
for completing apartments in unfinished buildings thrown up
illegally across its cities, hoping to tackle a housing crisis
that has helped to topple two presidents since 2011.

Housing Minister Mustafa Madbouly said the cabinet had
approved the project designed to help Egyptians who built or
bought bare apartments in the unplanned buildings but can’t
afford to finish them, many living in the empty shells.

Oct 21, 2014

Egypt will fix the economy but don’t expect miracles: PM

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s Prime Minister urged the country’s citizens not to expect instant results from large-scale infrastructure projects the government has embarked on to create jobs and strengthen the economy.

Ibrahim Mehleb faces the monumental task of repairing finances battered by political upheaval, street protests and Islamist militant violence.

Oct 20, 2014

No plan for Egyptian military action against Islamic State in Iraq, Syria

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt has no plans to provide the United States with direct military assistance in its war against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria even though American aerial bombardment may not be enough to defeat the group, the country’s prime minister said.

But Ibrahim Mehleb left open the possibility of military action if Cairo’s Gulf Arab allies are threatened by the al Qaeda offshoot.

Oct 20, 2014

Egypt planning minister calls for legal review, ‘economic revolution’

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt needs an “economic revolution” to recover from damage caused by political instability as it seeks to attract billions of dollars in foreign investment and repair its state finances, planning minister Ashraf al-Arabi said.

The Arab world’s most populous nation has struggled since a popular uprising toppled veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011. Last year, then army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi toppled elected president Mohamed Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood after mass protests against his rule.

Sep 25, 2014

Egypt blasts Turkish leader Erdogan after U.N. speech

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt has accused Turkish leader Tayyip Erdogan of supporting terrorists and seeking to provoke mayhem in the Middle East after he questioned the legitimacy of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in a speech at the UN General Assembly.

Ties between Ankara and Cairo have been strained since then army chief Sisi toppled elected President Mohamed Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood last year after mass protests against his rule.

Sep 16, 2014

Power cuts biggest hurdle to investment in Egypt: minister

CAIRO (Reuters) – Power cuts dogging Egypt have become the biggest obstacle to luring back foreign investment after three years of political upheaval, the country’s investment minister said on Tuesday.

Electricity shortages mean the country often has intermittent outages for hours a day, hitting factory production, frustrating many Egyptians and raising questions over whether foreign firms can operate here effectively.

Sep 16, 2014

Finance minister hopeful reforms can revive Egyptian economy

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt will press ahead with plans to cut costly energy subsidies and introduce further tax reforms to boost the economy and halve the budget deficit within seven years, the country’s finance minister said on Tuesday.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi raised fuel prices by up to 78 percent shortly after taking office in June — a politically-sensitive step that his predecessors had shunned.

Sep 15, 2014

Egypt tourism could fully recover in 2015: minister

CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s tourism industry, battered by three years of political upheaval, violence and street protests, could fully recover by the end of next year if regional turmoil does not spread to the Arab world’s biggest country, the tourism minister said.

While Egypt is by no means wholly stable, Hisham Zaazou said in an interview with Reuters late on Sunday that he hoped tourist numbers would rise by up to 10 percent this year, and recover to pre-uprising levels of 14.7 million visitors in 2015.