Sunday, July 07, 2013

Egypt: A Foreshadowing of Things to Come.

The math for Egypt is unrelenting.  Along with other countries in the Middle East, Egypt is among the last to bring it's birthrate down close to replacement rates.  With the ascendancy of a fundamentalist government, population planning programs have gotten lost in the shuffle.  As a result, birth rates have soared, surpassing 32 for every 1,000 people,  — a level last seen in 1991.

Egypt's population has risen from 28 million in 1960 to 84 million in 2012.  With little fertile land, Egypt must import forty percent of its food and sixty percent of it's grain.  For a while, Egypt was a modest oil exporter which helped raise money needed for these imports.  But production peaked in 1996 and the country became a net importer by 2007.

With food and fuel increasingly difficult to import and prices relentlessly rising, it doesn't matter who rules the country--the unrest is likely to continue.  Barring any international intervention to help right the country, the situation will continue to slide downhill.


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