Air force chief picked to head new aviation ministry

15 March 2002

President Mubarak has decided to appoint a dedicated minister for the aviation sector as part of a limited cabinet reshuffle arising from the resignation of Ibrahim el-Demiri as transport minister following the 20 February train disaster in Upper Egypt (see also Seven Days).

The new civil aviation minister is General Ahmed Shafiq Zaki, who previously held the post of commander of the Egyptian air force. Over the past 30 years, civil aviation has come under the authority of other ministries. The need for a separate minister in charge of the sector has become apparent in recent years, as efforts to modernise Cairo airport have become bogged down, analysts say.

The new transport minister is Hamdy el-Shayeb, who was previously head of oil and gas construction company Petrojet.

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