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Sunday, 8 December 2019

Talk shows on 7 December: Sawiris acquires Thomas Cook, anticipated cabinet shuffle, developing Egypt’s education

It was a mixed bag of nuts on the airwaves last night, with the talking heads keeping busy with an assortment of topics.

The most interesting business-relevant topic last night was Samih Sawiris’ acquisition of defunct tour operator Thomas Cook’s German franchise (we cover the story in detail in this morning’s Speed Round, below). Sawiris downplayed the magnitude of the acquisition, telling El Hekaya’s Amr Adib that this is a tiny acquisition in the context of his track record (watch, runtime: 7:34).

The anticipated cabinet shuffle was the subject of a phone-in from Rep. Ahmed El Segini, who explained to Masaa DMC’s Eman El Hosary the House of Representatives’ process for reviewing and ratifying a ministerial change-up. El Segini didn’t indulge in gossip over who’s in and who’s out, but did say the government needs to see a few new faces. The MP also didn’t provide any clarity on when we should expect the shakeup to be announced (watch, runtime: 4:55).

Education development plans: The Education Ministry is pushing through its plans to overhaul the country’s education system to focus on developing children’s skills, ministry official Reda Hegazy told Lobna Assal, who is now flying solo on Al Hayah Al Youm. Hegazy stressed that the development plan is part of the state’s overall policy and its continuity is not contingent on a specific minister (watch, runtime: 6:01).

Government-owned cars and taxis could be switched out for electric vehicles in the near future, once the infrastructure for EVs is put in place, Public Enterprises Minister Hisham Tawfik told Adib on Friday evening. Tawfik noted that, theoretically, Egypt could see 10k taxis turned into electric models per year, but with 380k cabs driving around the country right now, we’re not sure if the plan is to spend 38 years making the transition for all taxis on the road. Tawfik also briefed Adib on last week’s visit from Chinese auto company Dongfeng, with which Egypt is set to sign an EV manufacturing agreement next month (watch, runtime: 7:55).

Meetings on new capital preparations: President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly, and Planning Minister Hala El Said met yesterday to look into the process of moving ministries and other government bodies to the new administrative capital, Reham Ibrahim and Amr Khalil reported on Min Masr, which replaces Hona Al Asema (watch, runtime: 1:01).

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