Egypt’s Minister of Planning & Economic Development participates in Al-Gomhuria seminar on population growth
22 August 2021
Dr. Hala El-Said, Minister of Planning and Economic Development, participated today in the seminar held by the state-run newspaper of Al-Gomhouria on population growth m, in the presence of Dr. Ali Moselhi, Minister of Supply, Dr. Mohamed Maait, Minister of Finance, Dr. Nevin Al-Kabbaj, Minister of Social Solidarity, Engineer Abdel-Sadiq Al-Shorbagy, head of the National Press Authority, and Dr. Maya Morsi, head of the National Council for Women.
During the seminar , El-Said reviewed the state's efforts in developing planning based on a comprehensive and ambitious vision for the future, represented in Egypt's Vision 2030, pointing to the three main dimensions - social, economic, and environmental - of the vision and the importance of achieving a balance between them.
El-Said said that after the occurrence of the Corona pandemic, Egypt was the only country that achieved a positive economic growth rate of 3.6%, explaining that the current year Egypt targets record a growth rate close to 3% .
El-Said stressed that the human resource is the most important resource and basic wealth that is relied upon in completing the development process, following up that to achieve sustainability in development, there must be a citizen capable of productivity.
El-Said added that the population in Egypt has reached 102 million, explaining that the average fertility rate is 3.4 children per woman, stressing the need to reduce the fertility rate for each woman, adding that there is a specific and accurate database at the governorate level.
El-Said explained that since 1950 the rate of population increase has been 20 million every 28 years, then every 21 years, then every 14 years, then 8 years, following up on that there are 14 births every second, which reflects the successive population increase.
El-Said pointed out that there are many countries, including Islamic countries, that have already managed to reduce fertility rates over several years.
“Indonesia reduced rates from 5.6 to 2.3, Bangladesh decreased from 6.9 to 2.1, Thailand from 6.1 to 1.5, and Malaysia from 6.4 to 2 and Iran from 6.5 to 2.1,.” She said.
El-Said highlighted that since the sixties, Egypt and all countries have begun to develop population plans that have been able to achieve sustainability in this regard, but that Egypt is making a lot of effort to reduce population rates and then rise again, explaining that this is due to the lack of integration between policies and the absence of an integrated population policy to be worked on.
El-Said referred to the importance of achieving a balance between population increase and available resources, explaining that any imbalance could lead to devouring all development efforts, declining per capita economic growth,as well as high unemployment rates, low average income, and increased demand.
El-Said-talked about the effects of the population increase on the social dimension, which is represented in the decrease in the per capita share of education and health services.
She explained that during the past 7 years, investments that were allocated only to health and education increased by 506%, which reflects the state's interest in building people and investing in the element. It also reflects the state's ability to pump investments with the successive population increase.
El-Said-added that if the birth rate continues at 3.4 children per woman in 2050, it will need 4 times the current capabilities in terms of education, 9 times the current capabilities in terms of health services.
El-Said talked about the initiative for a decent life, stressing that it represents an unprecedented development experience for the Egyptian society.
El-Said explained that for the first time, the population component is being integrated into economic and social development plans, noting that the goal is not only to control population growth but to improve population characteristics through better investment in education, health, nutrition, training, and others.
El-Said referred to the economic empowerment of women as one of the most important things that achieved a high degree of success, providing job opportunities for women, not confiscating women from education, and stopping and toughening the penalty for participants in the crime of early marriage, explaining that according to the data of the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMS) there is a percentage of births at the age of below the official marriage age.
El-Said explained that the national project for the development of the Egyptian family represents a national plan that parallels the Decent Life initiative in terms of developing the Egyptian family, adding that this plan will include the pillar of economic empowerment, and the pillar of service intervention by providing family planning services where all-female trainers and rural women are trained, as well as the pillar of cultural and media intervention,education, training, and job opportunities for one million women.
El-Said referred to the pillar of digital transformation, which aims to increase health initiatives for women, stressing that women are the backbone of society.