Egyptian protests hurt small businesses

Emad Nouh Hafez in his gift shop in Cairo.

Many governments around the world are warning travelers to avoid vacationing in Egypt due to the violent clashes continuing between protesters and police.

And most recently, the Egyptian military has announced that it will give President Mohamed Morsi a limited period of time to sort out the crisis and meet the people's demands. Many are predicting the unrest to continue.

For small business owners in Egypt, that news is not good. 

"Our life depends on the tourists," said Emad Nouh Hafez, who runs a gift shop in the famous Khan el-Khalili bazaar in Cairo. "Everyone in our family needs tourists. That is our life. ... We are a big country for tourists. What happened two years ago: No tourists come to Egypt."

Hafez said he would welcome military intervention: Although it might prove to be a tough transition at first, he said, he is confident that Egypt is slowly moving in the right direction.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, public radio’s program on business and the economy.


I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...