The round table, titled “The Future of Oil & Gas Agreements in Egypt,” gives insight into behind-the-scenes negotiations. The arrogance in the room was palpable, as was the frustration at not getting the desired public recognition. Country managers from major companies grumbled, “People don’t understand how difficult life is for us as oil companies ... All they see is the billions we make — not our efforts for the country.” After all, “The oil sector was the only industry to have kept operating through the revolution, despite labor issues.”
The oil managers feel they’ve been patient: “We still have many problems, including labor problems. Since the revolution, people say that Egyptians are becoming different — now they are fighting for their rights. Who pays for this? The companies.” Workers and local communities might be forgiven for not enjoying being reduced to “problems” and “challenges.”
Nature begins with reason and ends with experience; Change begins with experience and ends with reason.