Weekly Stock Review: Moving between red and green, Egypt stocks make slight improvement

CAIRO: The stock market zigzagged throughout the week to post a mix of green and red, mirroring performance of regional and global markets.Overall,...

With a Grain of Salt: Off with who’s tongue?

I traveled to Canada to attend the Montreal International Book Fair, leaving behind our venerable press busy with the killing of a Lebanese singer,...

Rights group: Arab human rights deteriorate

CAIRO: A leading Egyptian human rights group said Friday that human rights in the Arab world have deteriorated over the past year and the future...

Oil prices slump towards $40

LONDON: Crude oil prices slumped close to $40 a barrel in trading on Friday as the United States lost a stunning half a million jobs in November,...

News in brief

Egypt conference on future of chemical industries The National Research Center (NRC) will hold the third International Conference of Chemical...

The Human Face of Climate Change

A clever new gadget was described in a newspaper a few weeks ago. It pulls water out of the atmosphere and delivers you a glass of clean, chilled...

National name: Jumhuriyat Misr al-Arabiyah


Capital: Cairo
Major Towns: Alexandria, Aswan, Luxor, Gizeh, Suez, Dahab, Sharm el-Sheikh
Location (geographical coordinates/latitude and longitude): 30°2'N, 31°13'E
Time Zone: UTC+2
Size (Land and Sea): 1,001,450 sq km
Borders with Gaza Strip 11 km, Israel 266 km, Libya 1,115 km, Sudan 1,273 km
Elevation extremes: Lowest point: Qattara Depression -133 m; highest point: Mount Catherine 2,629 m

Head of State: President: Hosni Mubarak (1981), Prime Minister: Ahmed Nazif (2004)
Form of Government: Semi-presidential Republic
Independancy (from UK): June 18, 1953 
Currency: Egyptian pound (EGP)


Main industries: Textiles, food processing, tourism, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, hydrocarbons, construction, cement, metals, light manufactures
Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, phosphates, manganese, limestone, gypsum, talc, asbestos, lead, zinc
Agriculture: cotton, rice, corn, wheat, beans, fruits, vegetables; cattle, water buffalo, sheep, goats

Population and People 

Population: 80,335,036 (July 2007 est.)
Population density per sq mi: 209
Growth rate: 1.7%
Birth rate: 22.53 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Total fertility rate: 2.77 children born/woman (2007 est.)
Infant mortality rate: 30.1/1000
Religion: Muslim (mostly Sunni) 90%, Coptic 9%, other Christian 1%
Languages: Arabic (official), English and French widely understood by educated classes
Ethnic groups / Tribes: Egyptian 98%, Berber, Nubian, Bedouin, and Beja 1%, Greek, Armenian, other European (primarily Italian and French) 1%
Average age: 0-14 years: 32.2% (male 13,234,428/female 12,631,681); 15-64 years: 63.2% (male 25,688,703/female 25,082,200); 65 years and over: 4.6% (male 1,576,376/female 2,121,648) (2007 est.)
Life expectancy: 71.6
Literacy (definition: age 15 and over can read and write): Total population: 71.4%; male: 83%; female: 59.4% (2005 est.)

  • Land bridge to Asia
  • Sinai Peninsula
  • Most populous country in the Middle East and the second-most populous on the African continent
  • Sahara Desert
  • Nile Delta
  • Ancient civilization
  • Some of the world's most famous monuments, including the Pyramids and the Great Sphinx
  • Ancient Egyptian names of the country: "black land", is derived from the fertile black soils deposited by the Nile floods
  • One of the oldest cultures in the world
  • Economy depends mainly on agriculture, media, petroleum exports, and tourism
  • Cairo is Africa's largest city
  • Egypt has the highest number of Nobel Laureates in Africa and the Arab World
  • Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouz was the first Arabic-language writer to win the Nobel Prize in Literature
  • Cairo International Film Festival
  • Actor Omar Sharif was born in Egypt
  • Egypt receives the least rainfall in the world
  • Valley of the Kings
  • Magical underwater world
  • Desert oases
  • Camel trains
  • Bazaars
  • Alexandria, 'The Pearl of the Mediterranean' 
  • Mount Sinai, revered as the site of God’s revelation of the Ten Commandments
  • Sufi dancing
  • Karnak Temple
  • Aswan Dam
  • The Suez Canal links the Red Sea with the Mediterranean