7 interesting facts about modern Egypt

Posted on Sep 17, 2022      25

Egypt is quite popular with tourists. Pharaohs, sphinx, lots of deserts and pyramids. What else do you know about this country?

We have collected 7 interesting facts about modern life in Egypt. They are unlikely to be told at school or on a tour.

An Egyptian mummy has been issued a passport

The picture of the passport is not real. But it may well have looked like that.

The first and most unusual fact about Egypt is related to the mummy of the pharaoh.

Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses II was born back in 1303 BC, but he received a passport only in 1974 AD (almost 3 thousand years after his death).

Researchers noticed that the mummy of Ramses II began to rapidly decompose because of fungus. In order to save the mummy, it had to be urgently airlifted from Egypt to France for examination and restoration.

The Mummy of Ramses II.

French laws required a passport to enter the country, regardless of whether the person was alive or dead, or how long they had been dead.

To transport a pharaoh as a museum piece, it took a long time to process the paperwork. But the mummy had to be delivered to the French specialists as quickly as possible. Then the Egyptian authorities issued a passport in the name of Ramses II.

An interesting fact is that in the line “Profession” the following was stated: “King (deceased)”.

The mummy of the pharaoh was eventually saved.

Rapid population growth and low standard of living

According to the UN, as of July 1, 2020, Egypt has 102 million people. It is the most populous country in the Arab world.

In the last 13 years alone, the number of residents in the land of the pyramids has grown by 30 million people.

It is noteworthy that 98% of Egyptians live in only 4% of the country - in the valley and delta of the Nile River (near the fertile lands).

According to expert forecasts, Egypt’s population could grow to 140 million people by 2030, which would finally bring down the economy, the resource base of which is already insufficient.

  • According to the UN food agency, 31% of Egyptian children under the age of five are undernourished. This is one of the highest rates in the world.
  • According to Australia’s Future Directions International, one in five Egyptians struggle with access to the safe food they need to live healthy lives.
  • According to CAPMAS, the Egyptian state agency, 5.2 percent of residents go hungry.
  • According to official figures alone, one-third of Egyptians - over 30 million people - live below the poverty line.

Egypt will have a new capital

The project of the new capital of Egypt.

Back in 2015, Minister of Construction Mostafa Madbouly announced the construction of Egypt’s new administrative capital. The cost of the project is 45 billion dollars.

The new capital already has an unofficial name - Wedian. The city will be located 45 kilometers east of Cairo. The primary goal of this project is to unload the overpopulated Cairo, where over 20 million people live.

Cairo was originally designed for 6 million people.

It is known that in Wedian over 70% of the roofs of residential buildings will be covered with solar power units, which will allow the city to function almost autonomously.

The “new Cairo” was planned to be home to 5 million people by 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic and funding problems have slowed down the “great relocation” until at least 2021.

Cairo is recognized as the most dangerous metropolis for women

The Egyptian capital topped the rating of the charity organization Thomson Reuters Foundation as the least safe city for women to live in. At the second line in the list is Pakistan’s Karachi, and the capital of the Congo, Kinshasa, is at the bottom of the three.

19 major cities in the world took part in the rating. London was recognized as the safest metropolis for women, followed by Tokyo and Paris.

The key evaluation criteria were the level of sexual violence and domestic violence, access to medical care, harmful cultural traditions, economic opportunities - including access to education and employment.

Cairo was ranked the most dangerous because of the high levels of sexual harassment and violence against women.

Pink Taxi for Women in Cairo

This is not only in Cairo, but all over the country. In order to make women’s lives safer, there are several innovations.

  1. Sexual harassment is punished not only by the perpetrator but also by his close relatives.
  2. In the Cairo subway, two carriages of each train are reserved for women only. However, women are free to use all the other cars.
  3. Women-only buses run throughout the country.
  4. In Cairo there is a pink cab (Pink Taxi). Only women work as drivers in the company, and only women can use the services of this cab too.

Soccer and Records

Egypt’s Soccer Team

Soccer in Egypt is considered the most popular sport. The Egyptian national team is one of the strongest on the African continent.

The national team has won the African Cup of Nations seven times - the best result among all the national teams.

According to one version, soccer first appeared not in England, but in Egypt. And women’s soccer came before men’s.

74-year-old Egyptian Ezzeldin Bahader made it into the Guinness Book of World Records

On October 18, 2020, it became known that 74-year-old Egyptian Ezzeldin Bahader entered the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest professional footballer in history.

The grandfather of six grandchildren could have set the record officially before, but the coronavirus pandemic prevented it.

Before him, the 73-year-old Israeli Isaac Hayek was considered the oldest professional player.

Egyptian pyramids could disappear

Erosion, strong winds and emissions from Cairo’s never-ending development may wipe out some of Ancient Egypt’s greatest monuments.

The pyramids were originally lined with granite or limestone slabs, but the people of Cairo in the Middle Ages removed the linings in order to build new houses. So the pyramids became less secure.

People can save the pyramids by treating them with special chemical compositions, as with the Cheops pyramid. But it is a very time-consuming and expensive procedure.

And as we have seen from the previous facts, the authorities have many other problems. Therefore, unless other countries help Egypt, it is unlikely that humanity will preserve the pyramids for the next generations.

Egyptian pyramids used to combat coronavirus

In March 2020, appeals were projected on the Great Egyptian Pyramids in Giza to stay home and words of gratitude to all who work despite the pandemic.