Egypt’s population surpasses 100 million

FILE PHOTO: Egyptian Muslims gather for Eid al-Fitr mass prayer to mark the end of the holy Muslims’ holy fasting month of Ramadan at El-Seddik Mosque, 05 June 2019, Cairo, Egypt. Photo: Gehad Hamdy/dpa (Photo by Gehad Hamdy/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Egypt’s population has surpassed 100 million, with statistics showing that a baby is born every 17.9 seconds according to the state statistics body.

The North African country has witnessed a rapid population growth in the past three decades, having risen from 57 million in 1990.

In about two years, Egypt’s population grew by nearly four million.

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly said last week that overpopulation was the single biggest challenge facing the country.

The population growth rate has caused concerns among authorities who have recently responded by encouraging people to have smaller families.

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly told a cabinet meeting last week that “population growth is the single largest challenge facing the state … and affects national security.”

As with most Arab countries, Egypt has a youthful population with just over 60 percent under the age of 30.

Around 10 million Egyptians live outside the country, most of them in the Gulf in search of better economic opportunities.