Entrepreneurship is the activity that involves evaluation, discovery, and utilization of the opportunities to incorporate new services and goods, and methods of organizing, markets, processes in a manner that previously had not existed. Notably, the recognition of the opportunity is the core concept of entrepreneurial processes. However, there are several factors that negatively affect an individual's decision to be an entrepreneur or start a new business. Particularly, there are several of such factors in Egypt that if not carefully handled by the government, the country will not only lack jobs for its citizens but may also have a low economy.
One of the factors that affect entrepreneurship culture in Egypt is gender differences. Despite the efforts that have been exerted on women to be creative and innovative to start their own businesses, their participation remain wanting in the business sector due to the cultural perception that women should not own businesses. According to Hussain and Norashidah (2015), The Early-Stage Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) prevalence rate for women is 2.4%, and that for men is 13.1%. On the absolute basis, women make up around 14% entrepreneurs while men make the remaining 86%. According to the study carried by El-Gohary (2012), the numbers of women are a bit higher than the number of men in the country, this further make put the entrepreneurship culture in the country in jeopardy since the largest population are the reluctant ones. Further, the percentage of the entrepreneurial men is still on the increase. This is because the major motive of men to be entrepreneurs is to pursue the market opportunity that is at 5.4 percent rather than a necessity at 4.5%. On the other hand, for women, no difference exists between necessity and opportunity motives. In this regard, the government and the private sector should come out fiercely to encourage and support women to be innovative.
Another factor that hinders the entrepreneurship is the financial status of the majority of the entrepreneurs. In terms of the actual numbers, most of the entrepreneurs are aged between 25 and 44 years with the majority in their late 20s and early 30s. However, the financial capability of this group is quite wanting. According to Ghanem (2013), apart from the major aspect of entrepreneurship that are ideologies, skills, and innovativeness, the financial requirement is also very important to actualize the ideas. Conversely, the adults who are known to be at the peak of their ideas are the people who have the money leaving the young people desperate and unable to start a business. In this regard, the government should actualize the youth funds in a manner that it is accessible to most individuals without much struggle. On the same note, this should be all inclusive without considering the location and the cultural background of persons. El-Gohary (2012) adds that the fresh minds from the universities should be put into action as soon as they get out of the school, and that can only happen when they are assisted financially. Another hindrance is the perception that certain regions are the best to start a business in Egypt. This has halted the opportunities that can be fetched from other places. In simple terms, most individual believe that there are certain places that are meant for business while some are not (Hattab, 2014, p. 10). This has made particular towns or regions have more entrepreneurs than others. For example, Great Cairo has the most number of entrepreneurs and well-established businesses that gives citizens an opportunity to start their own businesses. This is followed by the Delta region. However, certain regions such as Alexandria and other rural areas have a low number of entrepreneurs. In this regard, the government has to do what is called devolution of opportunities where every region in the country has the equal opportunity. For example, devolution has assisted the neighboring country like Kenya to ensure that all individuals have the same opportunity in terms of development.
Lastly, the current political unrest in Egypt has averted the urge to start a business in the country. Although entrepreneurs may be available, the current environment may discourage individuals who have viable ideas to actualize them. According to Hattab (2014), the new entrepreneurs fear risks; hence, putting a business in an environment that subjects them to losses is an aspect that they cannot take with much ease.
Following the discussion herein, it suffices that there some aspects and factors that still hinder the culture of entrepreneurship in Egypt that the government should deal with decisively. The first one is the gender gap and roles in Egypt. The efforts to look for new opportunities have been left for men despite the higher number of women in the country. Moreover, the financial availability does not favor young people who have the entrepreneurial ideas and skills to start new businesses. Additionally, there are no equal opportunities to actualize certain business skills. Lastly, the political unrest that has existed in the country has averted the comfortable business environment that is ideal for business.
El-Gohary, H. (2012). Factors affecting E-Marketing adoption and implementation in tourism firms: An empirical investigation of Egyptian small tourism organisations. Tourism Management, 33(5), 1256-1269.
Ghanem, H. ( 2013).The Role Of Micro And Small Enterprises In Egypts Economic Transition. Global Economy & Development Working Paper, 55 (1)1-34
Hattab, H. W. (2014). Impact of Entrepreneurship Education on Entrepreneurial Intentions of University Students in Egypt. Journal of Entrepreneurship, 23(1), 1-18. doi:10.1177/0971355713513346
Hussain, A., & Norashidah, D. (2015). Impact of Entrepreneurial Education on Entrepreneurial Intentions of Pakistani Students. jebi, 2(1), 43. doi:10.5296/jebi.v2i1.7534
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