Thursday, April 21, 2011
In 1946, Egypt celebrated the 80th Anniversary of its first postage stamp, by issuing a set of four stamps (Scott #B3-6) and two souvenir sheets, in perf. and imperf. form (Scott #B6a-6b). While the basic set is common, only 7,196 of the two souvenir sheets were issued, and Scott '11 prices them unused at $70.00.
I recommend purchase of all better stamps from Egypt, as the country is likely to experience rapid economic growth over the coming decades. Aside from these sheets' low printing, the 1m + 1m value pictures Egypt's first stamp, and is therefore of interest as a Stamps-on-Stamps topical.
With an estimated 76 million people, Egypt possesses one of the most developed economies in the Mid-East, with a GDP growth rate of 5%-7%. Hopefully, its new government will continue the policy of undertaking major economic reforms to further spur development, including massive investments in infrastructure and liberalizing economic and tax policies to encourage foreign investment. Egypt's main challenge in the years to come will be one of social and political democratization - how to assure that enough of the new wealth trickles down to the majority of the population to lessen the problems of poverty and political instability.