Egypt’s Higher Birthrates Following Arab Spring Could Lead To Economic Destabilization, Food, Water Scarcities
Bloomberg Businessweek: The Arab Spring’s Riskiest Legacy May Be Egypt’s Baby Boom
“…Higher birthrates may prove the most lasting of many unforeseen consequences of Egypt’s Arab Spring. … The country added about 11 million people — the population of Greece — in a span of just seven years, as fertility surged to 3.5 children per woman rather than continuing its gradual decline to the government’s target of 2.1, the so-called replacement rate. … Failure to reduce birthrates will lead to scarcities of water and food, as the productivity of agricultural land degrades, says [Tarek Tawfik, an epidemiologist who is Egypt’s deputy minister of health and population.] … Tawfik says the trouble began before the revolution, when the U.S. Agency for International Development, an arm of the American government that funds development initiatives abroad, began winding down generous funding for family planning programs in Egypt in 2005…” (Champion/El-Tablawy, 3/13).