Awful and sad, but unlike the Tunisian example, where there was a direct link to government abuse and that man’s poverty, this might be different. Taxi drivers in Alex are not always the poorest of the poor. But maybe the poorest are passive and, generally, they are not in Alex..
Talking of which, regional figures on poverty, or indeed on anything, are hard to get. Possibly because they would show wide disparities and this might get the punters thinking.
The latest national poverty figures issued by the government put about 28% of the population below the poverty line.
Poverty in Cairo and Alex is much lower than in rural areas.
The only recent reference I’ve read on the rate for rural Upper Egypt is 57%. This is published in the well regarded, but hardly pro-government, The Arabist in a recent article:
http://arabist.net/blog/2016/8/2/in-tra ... ng-economy
Other, dated, figures put it at 51% http://www.ruralpovertyportal.org/count ... tags/egypt
So if its 57% in Upper Egypt the poverty rate is likely much lower than the national average in Cairo and Alex.
Trouble rarely comes from rural disaffection but from pesky urbanites so governments usually look after the cities. On the other hand costs of living are higher in cities.
If the life of an Alexandrian taxi driver is hard the lives of Upper Egyptians are probably much worse.
On a positive note the World Bank has recently announced a major $500 million 4 year (?) initiative for Upper Egypt. It would create jobs but has a focus on local government reform and infrastructure. http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P1573 ... tDocuments
and http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P1573 ... b=overview
. It’s the usual World Bank stuff but in this case with a priority on Sohag and Qena – which is interesting given the minority populations in these two cities. Good luck on trying to reform local government whilst national government is untouched.
On another negative note Reuters reports core inflation, which most affects the poor, as up, although al Ahram is spouting that its down.