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Documentaries and Reports

After the Storm

Stimulus or stagnation? Will the political reforms produced by the "Arab Spring" protests lead to economic reforms, as well? We take a look at the current situation in Egypt and Tunisia.

11.2012 DW Highlights November Nach dem Sturm

11.2012 DW Highlights November Nach dem Sturm

After the Storm: A New Beginning for Egypt's Economy

"After the Storm - Part 1" as video on demand

One of Egypt's Most Serious Problems is Social Inequality.

One of Egypt's Most Serious Problems is Social Inequality.

Almost two years after president Hosni Mubarak was overthrown, Egypt's leading political parties are still struggling to chart a new political course -- and to improve the country's economy. Decades of mismanagement and corruption have left Egypt's economic- and social-welfare system in tatters. Half the population lives in poverty, unemployment is alarmingly high -- especially among young people, and the gap between the haves and the have-nots is huge. The new government, led by Islamist president Mohammed Mursi, has promised a number of improvements. The people of Egypt are waiting impatiently to see what he will do.

Filming at a market in Cairo. Have prices for fruit and vegetables changed in the wake of the revolution?

Filming at a market in Cairo. Have prices for fruit and vegetables changed in the wake of the revolution?

Deutsche Welle reporters Jaafar Abdul Karim and Thomas Hasel travelled to Egypt in the Fall of 2012 to assess the current social- and economic situation in Egypt. They talked to people from all walks of life -- average citizens, politicians, activists, labor lawyers, and various experts. They wanted to find out why Egypt's transition from a developing country to a modern industrial state has stalled. Many of the country's economic- and social problems can be traced back to the system created over decades by the Mubarak regime -- including a sprawling bureaucracy that stifles innovation, and a military elite whose economic privileges distort competition. It's a system in which personal relationships count more than individual effort -- a system that benefits the wealthy at the expense of the poor.

Egyptians hope that president Mursi will be able to bring about rapid social- and economic improvements.

Egyptians hope that president Mursi will be able to bring about rapid social- and economic improvements.

But our reporters also found cause for optimism. Many Egyptians have now decided to take control of their economic situation, instead of relying on the government to help them. It's still not clear whether social- and economic conditions will improve any time soon. But one thing is certain: if those improvements don't come quickly, there will be a second revolution.

After the Storm: A New Beginning for Tunisia's Economy

"After the Storm - Part 2" as video on demand

Almost two years after the "Jasmine Revolution," the political situation in Tunisia has stabilized to a certain extent. But the government has not yet been able to provide the protesters' key demand: jobs. Deutsche Welle reporters Anne Hoffman and Selim Harbi traveled to Tunisia -- and found a country that is still in a state of transition. They met many people who are worried about their future. But they also encountered well-educated young people who have brought new ideas and new energy to the effort to make life better in their country.

For example, Slim Nasraoui and his brother Khaled. After the revolution, they built Tunisia's first solar-power facility. It's located in Oued Zarga -- an economically-depressed region near the border with Algeria -- and it's provided jobs for 30 local residents.

Solar-Powered Water Pumps in Oued Zarga.

Solar-Powered Water Pumps in Oued Zarga.

Further south along Tunisia's Mediterranean coast, near the city of Sfax, you'll find one of the country's largest olive-oil producers, Domaine Fendri. Slim Fendri's family has owned and operated the company for three generations. Their organically-produced olive-oil was recently judged by the German magazine Biopress to be one of the 25 best in the world. Much of their oil is sold in gourmet shops -- particularly in France. That would not have been possible under the old regime.

There are also glimmers of economic hope in Tunisia's poorest regions -- for example, the area around the city of Kasserine, where some of the first anti-government demonstrations were held in 2011. A group of local women have formed a co-operative to produce traditional rugs, hand-woven items and pottery. Artist Sadika Keskes from the capital Tunis came up with the idea for the co-operative. Her organization, called "Femmes, montrez vos muscles" -- or "Women, Show Your Muscles" co-ordinates the women's work and also provides some financial support.

Femmes, montrez vos muscles Sadika Keskes in her gallery.

"Femmes, montrez vos muscles" Sadika Keskes in her gallery.

There's also been some slight improvement in Tunisia's barren southern region, but the people there are deeply concerned about their economic future. For example, the new government hasn't done much to improve the lives of people who work in the phosphate mines near Redayef and Metlaoui. The first anti-government demonstrations took place here in 2008, and were hushed up by the regime. Four young men were killed in the protests. The state-run mines pay low wages, and don't offer labor protection or health insurance - and the people who work there are fed up.

Anne Hoffmann and Selim Harbi filming on location.

Anne Hoffmann and Selim Harbi filming on location.

Tunisia's unemployment rate is about 25-percent. And those who do have jobs often go out on strike. The economic reforms that the government promised haven't happened yet. Foreign investors aren't much interested in putting their money to work here. And radical Islamists have recently held a number of vocal and occasionally violent protests. The country's ruling Ennahda party, itself a moderate Islamist group, has done little to rein in these demonstrations. Will true democracy be able to take root and flourish here? And what are the chances that the economy will improve anytime soon?

Broadcasting Times:

Part 1: Egypt’s Economy and a New Beginning

DW

THU 22.11.2012 – 22:15 UTC
FRI 23.11.2012 – 06:15 UTC
FRI 23.11.2012 – 13:15 UTC
FRI 23.11.2012 – 17:15 UTC
SAT 24.11.2012 – 04:15 UTC
SAT 24.11.2012 – 10:15 UTC

Cape Town UTC +2 | Delhi UTC +5,5 | Hong Kong UTC +8
San Francisco UTC -8 | Edmonton UTC -7 | New York UTC -5

DW (Europe)

FRI 23.11.2012 – 04:15 UTC
FRI 23.11.2012 – 17:15 UTC
SAT 24.11.2012 – 06:15 UTC
SAT 24.11.2012 – 13:15 UTC

London UTC +0 | Berlin UTC +1 | Moscow UTC +4

DW (Arabia)

FRI 23.11.2012 – 13:15 UTC
SAT 24.11.2012 – 04:15 UTC
SAT 24.11.2012 – 11:15 UTC

Tunis UTC +1 | Cairo UTC + 2 | Dubai UTC +4

DW (Asien)

THU 22.11.2012 – 22:15 UTC

Delhi UTC +5,5 | Bangkok UTC +7 | Hong Kong UTC +8

DW (Amerika)

FRI 23.11.2012 – 06:15 UTC

Vancouver UTC -8 | New York UTC -5 | Sao Paulo UTC -2


Broadcasting Times:

Part 2: Tunisia’s Economy and a New Beginning


DW

THU 29.11.2012 – 22:15 UTC
FRI 30.11.2012 – 06:15 UTC
FRI 30.11.2012 – 13:15 UTC
FRI 30.11.2012 – 17:15 UTC
SAT 01.12.2012 – 04:15 UTC
SAT 01.12.2012 – 10:15 UTC

Cape Town UTC +2 | Delhi UTC +5,5 | Hong Kong UTC +8
San Francisco UTC -8 | Edmonton UTC -7 | New York UTC -5

DW (Europe)

FRI 30.11.2012 – 04:15 UTC
FRI 30.11.2012 – 17:15 UTC
SAT 01.12.2012 – 06:15 UTC
SAT 01.12.2012 – 13:15 UTC

London UTC +0 | Berlin UTC +1 | Moscow UTC +4

DW (Arabia)

FRI 30.11.2012 – 13:15 UTC
SAT 01.12.2012 – 04:15 UTC
SAT 01.12.2012 – 11:15 UTC

Tunis UTC +1 | Cairo UTC + 2 | Dubai UTC +4

DW (Asien)

THU 29.11.2012 – 22:15 UTC

Delhi UTC +5,5 | Bangkok UTC +7 | Hong Kong UTC +8

DW (Amerika)

FRI 30.11.2012 – 06:15 UTC

Vancouver UTC -8 | New York UTC -5 | Sao Paulo UTC -2

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