Corruption, Food Security and National Security

Published on 22nd May 2012

Lessons from Egypt

Rising food prices drove Egyptians to the streets and partly contributed in fueling the revolution popularly referred to as the “Arab spring.” Egypt’s recent arrest and conviction of its former Minister for Agriculture, Yussef Wali, exposes the role of corruption in driving up food insecurity. Yussef Wali allegedly transferred thousands of hectares of public land near Luxor worth 208 Million Egyptian pounds for only 8 million Egyptian pounds to a friend of the former president Hosni Mubarak (; accessed April 30, 2012). Corrupt deals alongside donor prescription that focused on fruit production transformed Egypt into a key exporter of fruits but could not meet its annual demand of 15 million tonnes of wheat. 

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