Tuesday, August 29, 2017

And here it comes : Privatization of Railways in Egypt "Updated"

The Egyptian state railways It was coming to this either ways, but the government wanted to pick up the perfect timing to go on with its plan.

On Sunday, Al-Ahram Daily Newspaper announced on its Front page in Arabic that Egypt’s transportation ministry finished drafting a law that would allow the private sector to participate in the railways' projects and services in the country for the first time since the 18th century.
In other brief and realistic words, the transportation ministry is drafting a law that would allow the privatization of railways in Egypt.

According to an informed unnamed source in the ministry of transportation, the new law would end “the monopolization” of the government in the railway sector.

The draft law will be sent to the cabinet to issue it officially accordingly then it will be sent to the State Council for legal and constitutional revision before sending it to the Parliament.

It is not a coincidence that many Pro-regime MPs suggested that the railways should be privatized following the terrifying Alexandria train collision that killed not less 41 people and injured 179 others earlier August

It seems that the government was waiting for some train disaster to push that agenda for real !!

The informed source told Al-Ahram Daily that the draft law currently got one article only and that it would be in effect till a comprehensive legislation was drafted by the government in cooperation with the World Bank as well law experts for Railways.

The one-article law which stipulates that the Egyptian Railways authority or others whether people or companies can found and operate railway networks on a national level. 

It also stipulates that the current railways can be operated, maintained and managed by the private sector under usufruct right for maximum 30 years.

If you remember in November 2016, Minister of investment and international cooperation Sahar Nasr wrote an Op-Ed in the Wall street journal announcing that the Egyptian government would “divest” partially from state-owned enterprises and public utilities.
That Op-Ed caused a controversy then.

As I said then, it was only a matter of time.

Now my two cents. Before the Egyptian government goes with its plan to satisfy both the World Bank and International Monetary fund, it should first try to fix the Railways authority as well the railways themselves for real.

I can not count the number of times I have been reading about the plan to improve the Egyptian railways since the time Mubarak.

I can not count the number of how many millions or rather billion have been allocated to fix authority either for 3 decades !!!

Do you know that the Egyptian government took loans and grants over LE 20 billion Egyptian pounds from 2006 to 2016 according to the basic estimations? 

Do you know that the losses of Egypt's railway authority since 1989 reached 43 billion Egyptian pounds including 22 billion Egyptian pounds as debt for Investment Bank !!?

Also, according to a survey issued by the Egyptian Railway Authority and Central Agency For Public Mobilization & Statistics "CAPMAS" that the number of train accidents in the past decade "2006-2016" reached to 12,236 accident, from small accidents to major ones !!! 

Where did all that money go in that decade alone ? 

I do not understand how this government or rather this regime spent billion of dollars on constructing a new administrative capital when the railways in the country need to be revamped for real !!

Now here is a very sad infograph about the most deadly train crashes in Egypt from 2007-2017.


  1. good job of the new graph

  2. Despite all the loss 40+ billion Egyptian Pound , the RR Authority gives bonuses to employees several times a year!!!


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