Egypt’s Political Unrest Affects Oil Prices

August 9, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. turmoil [TUR-moil] (n.) – the condition of disorder or of being troubled
Example: Citizens worry about their safety because of the political turmoil in the country.

2. persistent [per-SIS-tuhnt, -ZIS-] (adj.) – being determined to do something despite its difficulty
Example: The politician has been persistent in trying to win the election.

3. oust [oust] (v.) – to remove a person from his or her position by using force
Example: Upon discovering the illegal actions of the president, the public now wants to oust him from his position.

4. commodity [kuh-MOD-i-tee] (n.) – a product that can be traded or sold commercially
Example: Oil is one of the most important and widely used commodities in the world.

5. abruptly [uh-BRUHPT-lee] (adv.) – unexpectedly or in a sudden manner
Example: Fuel prices increased abruptly during the war.


Read the text below.
The political turmoil in Egypt is now affecting the price of oil, one of the most important goods in the world.

Egypt started facing political problems when persistent protesters called to oust Mohammed Morsi, the country’s recent president. Although President Morsi expressed his intention to stay in his position, he is now ousted after massive protests.

Although Egypt does not produce oil, the country still plays a huge role in transporting the commodity. Egypt controls the Suez [soo-EZ, SOO-ez] Canal, one of the most important routes [root, rout] through which oil is transported. In fact, more than two million barrels of oil are transported through this route daily. Unfortunately, the transportation of oil has recently slowed down because of the political issues in the country.

On the first week of July, the price of oil exceeded $100 for the first time since September last year. It increased to $102 a barrel. Patrick DeHaan, a senior petroleum analyst, says that the oil price may even become higher in the coming days.

On another light, DeHaan assures people that prices will not abruptly increase. He assured them that the increase will be gradual.

An increase in oil prices, however, may not be good news.  Oil is commonly used to produce a variety of fuel, such as gasoline and diesel. The demand for oil is very high since fuel is widely used all over the world. Thus, countries who import large quantities of oil will extremely be affected.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you think the end of political turmoil in Egypt will lower oil prices? Why is that so?
·         What can happen if oil prices remain high?

Discussion B

·         How can a leader and the people be in mutual understanding?
·         What are the qualities of a good leader? Please explain briefly.


August 9, 2013