Egyptians are complaining on Twitter about the country’s unemployment

Published March 23rd, 2017 - 12:15 GMT
Dozens of Egyptians take part in demonstration in front of a government office in downtown Alexandria on March 7, 2017, against cuts in government bread subsidies. [AFP]
Dozens of Egyptians take part in demonstration in front of a government office in downtown Alexandria on March 7, 2017, against cuts in government bread subsidies. [AFP]

“Have you found a job or not yet?” asks the hashtag trending on Cairo’s Twitter feeds today. “Patience,” this user laughingly suggests with a picture of the country’s President, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi:

The complaints come amid a dire employment situation amongst the country’s youth, with a Brookings Institution study last year reporting that the percentage of young people without jobs was 31.3%.

This user expressed hopelessness about ever finding a job, no matter what he did:

Not when we finish college or after that the army or after that when we sit in the house for ten or fiteen years.

Egypt has faced a number of economic difficulties recently, with spiralling inflation raising the cost of living in the country dramatically. Egyptians recently took to the streets to protest subsidy cuts that had affected the cost of bread.

This person expressed scepticism that the government was doing anything to help the ordinary person:

Each one of us has to rely on themselves because the country is not working with anyone. We start with a small project and grow it with our strenuous labours and fatigue.

Activists have suspected that government figures might even be undercounting the extent of the problem. In November 2015, the independent Labor Union organizer Fatma Ramadan told Egyptian newspaper Mada Masr that, “the real unemployment rate may be up to double that which they are currently claiming.”

“Apparently, this unemployment rate doesn’t include or take into account factors such as seasonal unemployment, temporary employment, masked and hidden unemployment, or child labor.”

This tweet suggested that even if it was possible to find a job, it might not be the end of your troubles:

I found a job but I didn’t find money, and if I [a job with] found money I wouldn’t have the time to do what I wanted with it! #cursed

JB

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