me of Egypt's most successful businesses are working with military precision. That's partly because in the four years since general turned president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi came to power, companies owned by the military have quickly expanded. From engineering units, to fish farms, and even holiday resorts. Some Egyptian businessmen and foreign investors say they're unsettled by the military's push into civilian activities.
They complain about tax breaks and other advantages granted to military owned firms. But Egypt's government says it's an even playing field, with the military simply filling gaps in the market.
lwan Iron Foundries, which makes cast products, said the military asked them to stop manufacturing everything locally.>> Before they were imported, but they asked us if we could manufacture them and brought us the technology we needed to produce them.
And we did it ,and succeeded as well.>>
>> Egyptian military firms seem to be flourishing under Sisi. He says the military can deliver large, complicated projects faster than the private sector. Sisi's estimated they account for up to 2% of the economy, while stressing they pay taxes and are subject to regulations and auditing.
ministry of military production alone is predicting operating revenues of 850 million US Dollars by 2018 to 2019 from its 20 firms, 5 times higher than in 2013 to 2014. The military also owns 51% of a firm developing a new $45 billion capital city east of Cairo.
Another military owned company is building Egypt's biggest cement plant.>>
> Isham Ibrahim, Marketing Head at a diesel engine factory owned by the military, says it's actually reducing Egypt's reliance on expensive imports. He wants to see Egyptian products that, quote, help the national economy but also revitalize the military economy.