Egypt’s upcoming presidential election may not remove the incumbent President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, but many problems lie ahead if he wins, notes Carnegie analyst MICHELE DUNNE. Assuming Sisi makes it through the election escapade and begins a new term in early April, plenty of difficulties await. He has been unable to deliver the prosperity and security he promised, and neither seems to be on the horizon, notes Dunne (right), a board member of the National Endowment for Democracy:
Austerity measures that are helping to keep the government afloat are biting deeply for middle class and poor Egyptians, and so far there remains high unemployment and high inflation. The Nile water dispute with Ethiopia and Sudan is far from resolved, and has finally come into public view as a looming national security threat. Sisi’s efforts to balance all his various foreign patrons and arms suppliers—Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United States, Russia, France, Germany, and North Korea—have become increasingly complicated. Regarding the terrorist insurgency, it is not yet clear whether the current campaign will succeed to the extent of preventing any more major attacks before the presidential election.