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Business Etiquette In Egypt

Business etiquette combines the best elements of social etiquette and business protocol. It’s the knowledge and skills that an impeccable professional must have.

It plays a key role in the success of businesses but here in Egypt the level of etiquette and the level of success of an average Egyptian business is greatly under developed.

Business dress in Egypt is one aspect of etiquette that needs to be addressed. Business wear should not be sloppy. It should convey the impression of a professional. Dress Codes should be established to help staff showing up for work properly dressed. They should not be confusing. and style should reflect the business atmosphere. The pants or skirt must be long enough so as not to show under the table.

Those who are in positions of authority should wear high heels and hose. They must also wear a long skirt or at least a polo or long sleeve top that is not too tight. This will keep them looking professional.

Further there should be a dress code for employees that is encouraged not required.

Men should always wear long pants, and a button down shirt that is not too tight. Whatever they wear it should never be a “wife-beater” shirt or anything else that is revealing or offensive.

Dressing well is nothing new. In the days of Pharaoh’s success depended on the impression he gave to his people. He always dressed in the finest and most ornate clothes he could find.

So please make an effort in your business appearance. Dress well and you will find that you will go further in life. It is more effective than anything else you could do to manage the impression you make upon others.

Egyptian Business Law and Customs

Egyptians have very strict laws regarding business. Egyptian law is based upon two main sources: civil law and Islamic law. Egyptian civil law is quite similar to that of many western countries, being heavily influenced in the 19th and early 20th centuries by the modern Italian civil code.

In the 21st century, and especially in the past ten years, Egypt has been modernizing its laws, bringing them more in line with global standards.

Business dealings

Business dealings in Egypt are often based on family bonds and long term relationships. While this is changing, the average Egyptian business will be dealing with people with whom they have had a long-term relationship. This is important to consider as part of the business etiquette.

In a business situation, it is always best to give a letter of introduction. This letter should be hand written. It should include a personal note and ask something from the receiver. Receiving a letter from a business owner shows that they value you as a person. Sending it to an internet address makes it look like spam. Make an effort to get to know the people that you are trying to do business with.

Hours of operation

Most businesses in Egypt operate from approximately 9:30 to 5:00. There are also some government offices that are open earlier and close later. If you are scheduled to meet someone, call to confirm the appointment early in the morning or late in the evening to avoid any mix ups. This isn’t an etiquette advice, but you can probably tell that it would be a wise thing to do.

There are also businesses that work under an Islamic calendar. This calendar does not follow the same rules as the Gregorian calendar, but it is important to check into this when making appointments of Islamic businesses.

Meeting people

Meeting people is more about relationship building than it is about memorizing protocol. ː Good business etiquette in Egypt encourages open-mindedness. Approach every business situation with a positive attitude. Meetings are an opportunity to create and build relationships. Strong relationships form the foundation of good business etiquette in Egypt.

In business, success is an outcome of relationships. It is better to have strong business relationships than to have strong business contracts.

Business relationship is about more than just making money. It is about building trust. Building trust can be easiest demonstrated through good communication. Being clear about what you want and establishing a positive attitude is a good way to open channels of communication.

Business etiquette in Egypt encourages a humble beginning. You must be committed to establishing your working relationship. Your commitment to the project must come from compassion and humility. This will encourage trust which will make it easier for you to get to know the person you wish to do business with. Building good relationship takes time. It must be based on honesty, integrity, and faithfulness. This is the most important element of business etiquette in Egypt.

Negotiating

Negotiating is an important element of business etiquette in Egypt. Egyptian negotiating is based on relationship. Egyptians put a lot of stock in how they negotiate. You should take time to learn your negotiating skills and language. When you are dealing with a vendor or customer, do not be afraid to act like a child by using simple language when you need to. Do not be afraid to be a friend.

Business etiquette in Egypt should also include social etiquette. This means that you must be familiar with some of the social customs. A good starting point is complementing the host or hostess on his home, hospitality, or generosity.

These are some of the most important points that business etiquette in Egypt encourages you to remember. Studying business etiquette and learning about the culture through careful observation can be rewarding. American business etiquette in Egypt tends to reflect that of the United States, where business is based on contractual obligations and formalities. Most Arab business etiquette in Egypt is based on previous dealings with those involved or a common family tradition. 

Egyptian Tax System

Egyptian taxes are based on a variety of government fees and taxes. There are taxes on income, on use of fuel and on business. Every year, businesses must get a business license which is provided by the state, but Egyptian taxes must also be paid to the state.

Business licenses are obtained from the local Chamber of Commerce, where the business will be located. The business would also have to obtain a number of other permits from the Chamber of Commerce and from the Ministry of Trade, as well as registering with the government Tax Authority.

These taxes or permits are not only required for the company, but for every member of the company. This means that every employee of the company must be registered and licensed individually. The number of their name is the same as the number of the business itself, with one exception.

The company needs a representative, who will handle everything that is related to the business. This permits the business owner to remain in the background if they so desire. This representative is not required to be Egyptian by law.

The representative is usually someone who is well known and respected in the business. They would act for the business, as the government wouldn’t come to the business owner, they will come to the representative of the business for appropriate documents.

In order to be licensed, the business must provide a bond and a guarantee letter from a reputable bank. They will also have to pay a deposit to the government for the license.

How Are Egyptian Business Contracts Drafted?

Contracts can be draft by either party in Egypt. The drafting party must consider the following:

Legal form of the contract

Choice of the contract language (English, Arabic or any other language acceptable to the parties)

Arrangement of the details of the contract

  • Signature
  • Witnesses

The parties in Egypt can choose to draft the contract in any language or in the legal languages. This can be in Arabic or in English. It can also be in French or any other legal language.

In Egypt, an unwitnessed document may be considered not valid. Therefore, it is important to have at least one witness. Egyptian law requires that at least two witnesses must sign every contract. The best choice in this would be the witnesses who have knowledge of the contract terms.

Is there a state department that handles laws and regulations?

Business law is basically the same in Egypt as it is in the United States. There are, however, a number of separate laws that apply to specific industries. Many of these laws do apply to the general businesses. In order to conduct a business, you must know about the rules. If you are a business owner, you are responsible for knowing and following the law.

Whether it is a small business or a large corporation, business law is very important to understand. It is important to understand the state laws, the local laws, and the federal laws, if applicable.

All businesses must follow the state and local laws. The state law must be followed, but the local laws can be more complex in nature. In addition, the state and local laws must be followed.

Companies must follow laws set by the federal and state government such as tax law, product safety law, and anti-discrimination law.

Federal laws are enforced by the federal government. The Federal Trade Commission regulates all of the violations of the law, such as antitrust, environmental, and consumer protection violations. The Environmental Protection Agency regulates any state or federal violations of the law, such as air or water pollution, in addition to the state law.

Important state laws make it illegal to discriminate against people because of their race, gender, disability, or age. There are laws on sexual, language, and job discrimination, which a business must observe.

The laws for drug companies are very complex. The laws are for both prescription and non-prescription drugs. All of these laws are administered by the Federal Drug Administration.

What laws apply to unions?

It is illegal to discriminate against employees who are members of unions. It is illegal to harass them. It is illegal to discharge them without cause.

There are laws that make it illegal to discourage union activity. It is illegal to discriminate against any employee for joining, or attempting to join a union.

It is illegal to reward employees who are not part of the union. It is illegal to receive a wage of less than eighty percent of the normal wage rate.

What are some of the employment laws?

Workers must be paid at least the minimum wage.

They cannot be discriminated against and must be treated fairly.

Employment age if sixteen. No person under the age of sixteen may work.

What laws apply to quality control?

The free trade agreement must be respected. All products must be properly labeled.

All products must be properly tested and certified.

No company can export any goods that have been banned in the US because of health violations.

All trade to and from the US must be done with all proper documentation and permits.

Substandard products cannot be shipped to or bought by the United States.

What laws apply to intellectual property?

Under the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, all original works, including computer software, published in one of the ninety-nine member countries must have proper intellectual property rights.

In order for an original work to carry the Berne Convention, it must either be published or registered in the member country. Or, the copyright owner must have followed all the requirements to be met by the law regarding the protection of intellectual property.

Intellectual property refers to any original work, including:

-literary works, such as books, poems, and plays

-choreographical works, such as ballets and choreographed works

-musical works, including any music performed with instruments, ditties, and a capella works

-dramatic works, such as plays, operas, and movies

-pantomimes and other artistic works, such as paintings, drawings, sculptures, and photographs

-pictures of light-works of glass, produced by a total immersion of the matter in a resource fluid whose solvent can be evaporated by heat

-applied art, such as a craft, any useful item, and any property having an intrinsic artistic character

-total or partial reproduction, whatever the process of making

-more or less artistic works, whether the result of their own skill or that of others, consisting of the collection and assembly of materials of any kind that are selected and organized by an author or authors, whether for a qualitative purpose or a purpose of commercial exploitation of the work under copyright; videorecording of choreographic works

-computer programs

-translations

-adaptations

-versions

-condensations

-arrangements

What laws apply to health and safety?

Under the Occupational Safety Health Act, employers must protect their employees. Employers must provide a safe and healthy work place. This includes providing safe drinking water, hazard identification, hazard prevention and control, employee training, recordkeeping, and quality control.

Employers must educate their employees on safety.

All employers must have written policies and procedures in case of emergencies.

Employers must keep records of injuries, illnesses, and costs incurred.

How do I know a law has been violated?

The law must be worded in a very specific way. Otherwise, the law is not complied with. There must be clear evidence that a law has not been obeyed. There must be intent to break the law. Otherwise, if both parties knowingly break the law, the law is considered to be willingly made.

Place of violation must be proven. Double jeopardy does not apply.

Prosecution of laws lies with the state or local government.

Who determines the punishment?

The prosecution determines the punishment. Jail time, fines, and community service are all legal punishments. However, the punishment is not always necessary.

It is possible to be charged with multiple offenses.

What is an important federal law that applies to businesses?

The Sherman Antitrust Act prohibits “every contract, combination or conspiracy to limit the production, raise the price or lower the quality of goods.”

What law is an example of a felony law?

It is a felony for a person to take a federally protected species from federal land (felony).

If a person has the intent to aid in a crime, such as committing arson, burglary, escape, kidnapping, robbery, or murder, (felony) then the person is guilty of aiding the principal.

What law deals with drunk driving?

Under Title 23 of the United States Code, drunk driving is illegal. A driver may not operate any motor vehicle if they have a blood alcohol content level of .10% or higher. Under the law, the driver is legally considered as having a BAC level of .10%. However, a state may impose a lower limit. The National Minimum 0d for Driving is .08%.

You may be required to take roadside sobriety tests.

What are some of the criminal law basics?

There must have been an intent to commit a crime. The act must be illegal. There must be a crime committed. The crime did not happen because of mistake or accident. The crime does not fall into the exceptions of the law.

Who can be prosecuted?

There must be a principal and an accessory. The accomplice can be charged. Accomplice is anyone who aids, abets, requests, commands, instigates, aids, assists, blames, or advises someone to commit a crime.

Accessory is anyone who makes their equipment available for a crime, conceals escape for someone who has committed a crime, receives or harbors someone who has committed a crime. Accessories do not have to be involved with the crime. They just have to be present. The law does not punish the accessory for being present.

Children under the age of criminal responsibility cannot be charged with a crime, nor can someone who was insane at the time of the crime.

What is the M’Naghten Rule?

M’Naghten rule applies to defendants who do not have the capacity to know what they did was wrong.

How does insanity work?

Insane defendants can ask to plead “not guilty by reason of insanity.”

A defendant is deemed not guilty of the crime by reason of insanity if the court finds that defendant:

-was incapable of knowing that what he did was wrong

-lacked a faculty to conform his conduct to the law

-did not understand the nature and consequences of his actions

What is a legal defense?

Legal defenses are reasons why someone accused of a crime cannot be prosecuted. They are not the same as arguments in defense of a crime. They are legal reasons why someone cannot be prosecuted.

Some of the common legal defenses are:

-Justification

-Mistake of fact

-Misunderstanding the law

-Unlawful search (if evidence has been seized illegally)

-Entrapment (when the offense is induced by law enforcement)

-Lack of intent



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