<![CDATA[rss-Business & Economics]]> All Rights Reserved for The Cairo post <![CDATA[Business & Economics]]>]]> 100 29 <![CDATA[US dollar price goes down at Egypt's major banks]]>
The Egyptian pound continues to rise against the US dollar, recording its highest value in three years today.

At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr, the dollar price declined two piasters, registering LE 15.59 for buying and LE 15.69 for selling.

The dollar price slumped two piasters to record LE 15.57 for buying and LE 15.67 for selling at the Arab African International Bank.

At the Commercial International Bank the price went down one piaster to reach LE 15.57 for buying and LE 15.67 for selling, while the price of the US dollar at the Suez Canal Bank retreated one piaster to register LE 15.59 for buying and LE 15.69 for selling. ]]>
2/18/2020 4:06:04 PM
<![CDATA[EBRD finances hospitals program in Egypt, Morocco by $125M]]>
EBRD commented that it is supporting the development of high-quality hospitals in Egypt and Morocco, teaming up with other international financial institutions to deliver funding under an Islamic finance structure known as a “Commodity Murabaha” that the Bank is using for the first time.

“The project aims to improve the quality of hospital services in Egypt and Morocco beyond the current standards. The facilities will benefit from internationally recognized certification, which rare in these two countries,” the bank noted.

In addition to raising the quality of available healthcare services, the developers are also committed to delivering high standards of efficiency in the use of energy, water and construction materials, according to EBRD statement.

This is the first time the EBRD has used a Commodity Murabaha, which is just one of many financial products that are compliant with the Islamic law.

“A Murabaha transaction is a multilateral sale arrangement whereby the financier – equivalent to the lender –purchases existing commodities from a supplier and immediately resells them to its client – equivalent to the borrower – on terms that provide for deferred payment,” it clarified.

“The deferred payment is calculated as the original purchase price of the commodity plus a premium to include the financier’s profit margin," the bank explained.

According to EBRD, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) led the structuring of the “Commodity Murabaha” financing, which comprises $20 million from the EBRD, $25 million from the OPEC Fund for International Development, $18.75 million from the Finnish Fund for Industrial Cooperation, and $61.25 million from the IFC itself and the IFC Managed Co-Lending Portfolio Program (MCPP).

The EBRD started operating in the southern and eastern Mediterranean region in 2012 and to date has invested more than €11 billion in 255 projects in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and Tunisia.]]>
2/18/2020 3:38:28 PM
<![CDATA[LE 37B debt settled for 45 clients: CBE]]>
According to Amer, this step was taken after waiving LE 5.4 billion in interest and loan payments.

Moreover, CBE’s governor said that a total of 8,600 customers are included in the bank’s initiative for funding customers in default, including 800 in the industrial sector.

He clarified in a statement that non-performing loans (NPLs) worth LE 18.4 billion owed by 142 customers, including 89 in the industrial sector, have been settled until February 6, 2020, adding that LE 10.6 billion have been waived from interest and loan payments.

The number of companies that will re-open or raise the capacity of its factories reached 81, and lawsuits against 90 customers have been suspended, according to Amer.

On a similar note, CBE announced earlier that it has upped the capped loans limit for mortgage finance from 5 percent to 10 percent from the overall bank loan portfolio.]]>
2/18/2020 3:29:32 PM
<![CDATA[EGX loses LE6.6B of market cap. with turnover of LE4.4B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 declined 1.18 percent, or 163.32 points, to close at 13,636.93 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 1.60 percent, or 29.94 points, to end at 1,846.17 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dropped 1.49 percent, or 18.74 points, to close at 1,237.46 points and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 1.15 percent, or 15.83 points to 1,358.65 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 6.6 billion, recording LE 692.36 billion, compared to LE 698.97 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 607.25 million shares, traded through 20,636 transactions, with a turnover of LE 4.42 billion.

Egyptian investors were net buyers at LE 380.85 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 54.63 million , and LE 326.22 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 422.79 million, and LE 663,809, respectively, while Arab individuals were net sellers at LE 9.5 million.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 41.94 million, LE 45.12 million and LE 326.88 million, respectively.

El-Nile Co. for Pharmaceuticals and Chemical Industries, Ismailia National Food Industries, and Sarwa Capital Holding were top gainers of the session 9.98 percent, 5.08 percent and 5.06 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Egyptians Housing Development & Reconstruction, Rowad Tourism (Al Rowad), and Heliopolis Housing were top losers of the session by 8.39 percent, 6.80 percent, and 5.86 percent, respectively.

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2/18/2020 3:27:34 PM
<![CDATA[PM chairs economic committee meeting]]>
Central Bank of Egypt Governor Tareq Amer attended the meeting alongside Ministers Mohamed Shaker of Electricity, Hala el Saeed of Planning, Mohamed Maait of Finance, Amr Talaat of Communications, Niveen Gamea of Trade and Industry and Hisham Tawfiq of Public Sector Enterprises.

The meeting reviewed the steps taken so far to implement the directives of President Abdel Fattah El Sisi on accelerating the automation of customs procedures.

Communications Minister Amr Talaat said the ministry finalized the optical fiber network linkage among the authorities concerned; Cairo Airport and the harbors of Port Said, Ain Sokhna and Damietta.

The minister said the National Telecom Regulatory Authority
signed a cooperation protocol with the Egyptian Customs Authority for exchanging data and documents on clearing shipments which obtained technical approvals.

Meanwhile, CBE Governor Tareq Amer reviewed the efforts exerted to get financially strapped clients to settle their debts in line with an initiative launched in tandem with the government in this respect.

He said about EGP 18.4 billion debts have been settled so far.

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2/18/2020 3:14:59 PM
<![CDATA[Min. reveals plans to achieve "Digital Egypt" strategy]]>
The minister added that the digitization of Port Said and transforming it into a smart city will be one of the earliest achievements of the strategy, which is based on two key pivots; digital transformation and development of human capacities.

The minister made these remarks during a meeting with members of Eitesal organization. The meeting was held as a part of "Meet The Government" initiative that has been launched by Eitesal a few years ago.

The first stage of the pilot digitization project in Port Said was launched in mid-2019, minister Talaat said, noting that the fourth stage will be launched in the coastal city in the coming few weeks.

Talaat said that the initial launch of digitized public services will take place nationwide in the next couple of months, noting that these services cover many areas including notarization, renewing driving licenses, utilities and electricity, municipalities and agriculture and marriage officiants.]]>
2/18/2020 3:04:42 PM
<![CDATA[EGX Roller of 2019]]>
The benchmark EGX30 climbed 925.79 points during 2019, ending the year at 13,961.56 points, compared to 13,035.77 points by the end of 2018. Meanwhile, the small and mid-cap index EGX70 declined 159.36 points by the end of 2019, to close at 534.47 points, compared to 693.83 points at the last session of 2018. The broader index EGX100 dipped 329.11 points, to record 1,398.10 points, from 1,727.21 points by the end of the previous year. The equally weighted index EGX50 fell 182.28 points, recording 1,967.45 points by the end of December of 2019, down from 2,149.73 points in the prior year.

A year in review

Vice President of research department at Shuaa Securities - Egypt Ahmed Abdelnaby reviewed the 2019 market performance in a recent report, stating that after Egyptian equities had gotten off to a bright start in January and February, they struck mixed notes throughout the rest of the year. Egyptian equities pumped the breaks in March and April with shallow liquidity and margin calls throwing shade over the market, the report reads.

“In May, a stronger EGP helped pull stocks lower; and later, in June, margin calls added more pressure on the market. In August, the execution of Global Telecom Holding’s (GTHE) MTO by VEON Ltd. and an unclear picture on Qalaa Holdings’ (CCAP) subsidiary Egyptian Refining Co. (ERC) sent even higher waves of margin calls through the exchange. Investors dived deeper into the market in August, encouraged by CBE’s decision to cut interest rates by 150bps,” Abdelnaby noted.

He further added that in September, the EGX witnessed severe sell-offs sparked by street unrest, before calming down in October on wide expectations by economists that CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee would continue its easing policy. In November, almost all EGX sectors were down as a ‘sell on fact’-themed scene unfolded after the interest rate cut had become a fact. Finally, EGP appreciation was the headliner of December, breaking below the EGP16/USD level for the first time since early 2017.

Foreigners ended 2019 as net buyers, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net sellers, Abdelnaby stated, clarifying that the former ended 2019 as net buyers with LE 1.7 billion of net inflows, driven by institutions, while Egyptians were net sellers in 2019 with LE 798 million of net outflows, led by individuals, and Arabs closed out 2019 as net sellers with EGP927 million of net out-lows, topped by institutions.
Abdelnaby further noted that throughout most of the year, Egypt was the fourth cheapest market in the MENA region, trading at a discount to MSCI EM and MSCI FM, clarifying that Egypt’s equity market was the third top performer compared to its MENA peers in 2019. EGX30 gained 19% (+1% in December) in USD terms as it exhibited the best performance in many months during the year. In terms of valuation, Egypt ranked the fourth cheapest market among its MENA peers behind Oman, Dubai, and Kuwait by the end of 2019. Meanwhile, EGX30 is trading at a 32% discount to MSCI EM.

EGX in December

The benchmark EGX30 rose by 0.81% (112.1 points) to close at 13,961.56 points in December, compared to 14,849.46 points in November. The small and mid-cap index EGX70 jumped 0.23% (1.21 points), to close at 534.47 points, compared to 533.26 points at the last session of November. On the other hand, the broader index EGX100 dipped 0.28% (3.9 points), to record 1,398.10 points, down from 1,402 points by the end of the previous month. The equally weighted index EGX50 declined 2.20% (44.17 points) to end the month at 1,967.45 points, down from 2,011.62 points the prior month.

As per market capitalization, the EGX gained around LE3.2 billion in December, recording LE 708.3 billion, compared to LE 705.1 billion in November, which marks an increase of 0.45%.

The total value traded in December recorded LE 35.1 billion, while the total volume traded reached 3,534 million securities executed over 373 thousand transactions. In comparison, the total value traded in November recorded LE38 billion, while the total volume traded reached 2,705 million securities executed over 367 thousand transactions.

Stock trading accounted for 49.25% of the total value traded of the main market, while the remaining 50.75% were captured by bonds over the month.

Listed Stocks recorded a trading volume of 2.50 billion during the month, through 365,587 transactions, with a turnover of LE14.07 billion, compared to a trading volume of 2.38 billion shares, through 360,837 transactions, with a turnover of LE 11.71 billion in November.

Egyptians represented 64.1% of the value traded in listed stocks after excluding deals during the period. Foreigners accounted for 28.8%, while Arabs captured 7.0%. Foreigners were net buyers, with a net of EGP 581.0 million, and Arabs were net sellers, with a net of EGP236.9 million, after excluding deals in listed stocks.

Since the beginning of the year, Egyptians have represented 66.8% of the value traded in listed stocks after excluding deals, foreigners accounted for 24.5%, while Arabs captured 8.7%.

Foreigners were net sellers by EGP1,682.8 million, and Arabs were net sellers by EGP1,082.4 million, after excluding deals in listed stocks, since the beginning of 2019.

The fourth quarter of 2019

The benchmark EGX30 dipped 2.08% (296.19 points) to end the quarter at 13,961.56 points, compared to 14,257.75 points during the last session of September. The equally weighted index EGX50 lessened 3.21% (65.22 points), to end the month at 1,967.45 points, compared to 2,032.67 points the prior month.

On the other hand, the small and mid-cap index EGX70 jumped 2.71% (14.08 points), to close at 534.47 points, compared to 520.39 points by the end of September. The broader index EGX100 climbed 0.36% (5.03 points), to record 1,398.10 points, from 1,393.07 points by the end of September.

As for market capitalization, the EGX lost around LE7.1 billion during the last quarter of 2019, ending the quarter in LE708.3 billion, compared to LE715.4 billion in September, which marks a decrease of 1%.

The total value traded during the fourth quarter of 2019 recorded LE117.4 billion, while the total volume traded reached 11,788 million securities executed over 1,211 thousand transactions. In comparison, the total value traded during the prior quarter recorded LE158.9 billion, while the total volume traded reached 15,453 million securities executed over 1,281 thousand transactions.

Listed Stocks recorded a trading volume of 9.57 billion during the quarter, through 1.18 million transactions, with a turnover of LE40.37 billion, compared to a trading volume of 14.52 billion shares, traded through 1.2 million transactions, with a turnover of LE62.12 billion in the third quarter of 2019.

Stocks trading accounted for 40.53% of the total value traded of the main market, while the remaining 59.47% were captured by bonds over the quarter.

Egyptians represented 68.6% of the value traded in listed stocks after excluding deals during the period. Foreigners accounted for 23.9%, while Arabs captured 7.5%. Foreigners were net buyers, with a net of EGP100.3 million, and Arabs were net sellers, with a net of LE521.3 million, after excluding deals in listed stocks.
Since the beginning of the year, Egyptians represented 66.8% of the value traded in listed stocks after excluding deals, foreigners accounted for 24.5%, while Arabs captured 8.7%. Foreigners were net sellers by EGP1,682.8 million, and Arabs were net sellers by LE 1,082.4 million, after excluding deals in listed stocks.

Offerings in 2019

By the end of February 2019, Egypt floated a stake of Eastern Company on EGX, and the public and private offerings on the course were completed on March 6, with a total value of LE1.72 billion, as apart of its state offering program.

In 2018, Egypt delayed listing shares of state-owned companies on the Egyptian Exchange, such as the 4.5% stake of Eastern Company slated for October. The government attributed the delay to volatility in the global market, noting that if the shares had been floated, they would have failed to be covered at proper valuation.
In 2016, Egypt announced the launch of the government’s IPO program offering shares over three to five years in several state-owned companies in fields such as petroleum, services, chemicals and real estate.

As part of the economic reform program, the government targets offering 15-30% of stakes in state-owned companies on the stock exchange (EGX) to increase funding to Egyptian companies, maximize the benefit from state assets, and attract local and foreign capital flows to Egypt.

As per the offering of private companies, EGX witnessed floating of two companies in 2019, which are Fawry and Tenth of Ramadan for Pharmaceutical Industries and Diagnostic Reagents (Rameda).

EGX welcomed, on August 8, Fawry for Banking Technology and Electronic Payment, a newly listed company under the number 216, to its main market with a trading code “FWRY.CA”.

“A ringing of bell ceremony was held today in the presence of the upper management of Fawry and EGX,” EGX stated. EGX also revealed that the private offering was oversubscribed by 16 times and that the public offering was covered by 30 times.
The company offered 254.6 million of its shares, representing 36% of its total shares, at LE6.46 per share with a total value of LE 1.64 billion.

On December 11, trading commenced on Rameda (RMDA.CA) with a celebration of company number 217 on EGX’s main market platform. Public and private offering covered 376,60 million shares representing 48.99% of the company’s total shares with a price of LE4.66/share and with a total value of LE1,754,983,960; LE1.6 billion for private placement and LE87.7 million for public placement.

“The IPO resulted in allocating 18.83 million shares representing 5% of the total shares offered, while the private placement allocated 357,77 million shares representing 95%,” the EGX clarified, adding that the private placement was oversubscribed by 1.2 times and the IPO by 36 times.

Expectations for 2020

Investment Bank Pharos has expected the Egyptian stock market to reach levels of 16,000 points during 2020, marking an increase of 20%, with the support of several incentives, including inflation declines, more expected rate cuts, a series of successful offering and the trend of the US federal towards more expansionary monetary policy.

Beltone Investments has agreed with Pharos, recommending buying in the Egyptian market as a result of the macroeconomic recovery and continued monetary easing, and justifying this by expectations of lowering interest rates, a better view of the macroeconomic and support to the industrial sector and improved growth with a strong potential rise in stocks in the event of improved liquidity levels, noting that the government’s initial offering program is a catalyst for the market in 2020 because it boosts liquidity.

Investment bank Hermes has anticipated an increase in the relative weight of the Egyptian Stock Exchange during 2020, due to the fact that stock prices are close to pre-2016 levels, and the return on shares is on the path to growth, indicating that there is no reason why the Egyptian Stock Exchange is trading at a lower rate of 25% compared to the emerging markets and the Gulf. Branch manager of a brokerage firm Ahmed Mortada expects the Egyptian Stock Exchange to perform positively during 2020, for eight local and international reasons, including continuing recovery of the tourism sector.

Another reason is that “Egypt’s transformation into a regional energy hub raises expectations for energy price revaluation, which reflects positively on energy-intensive factories,” he notes. He also refers to the resumption of the government offerings program, as well as the announcement of the launch of new companies affiliated with the army, which would increase the depth of the market and attract new capital to the stock exchange.

In December, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi affirmed that Armed Forces’ companies will be offered on EGX, stating that the stocks will be available for all Egyptians and not just the private sector.

The reasons also include the new central bank initiative for real estate financing for middle-income customers, for which about LE 50 billion has been allocated. Banks give it to customers with a 10% discount, and for a repayment period of up to 20 years, which is expected to reflect positively on real estate companies, especially those that set up small and medium units.

The Central Bank’s decision to raise the maximum percentage of the total loan installments from total monthly incomes to 50%, up from 35%, contributes to the revitalization of the consumer goods sector as well as the banks that expand personal lending, according to Mortada. He adds that CBE completes the cycle of monetary easing in the event that the pace of the trade war between China and the US subsides.

The last reason links to the Libyan army’s ability to resolve the internal conflict. According to Mortada, it is expected that this will affect the Egyptian economy positively through the travel of Egyptian manpower to Libya, as well as the high demand for Egyptian products in general, especially commodities, construction materials and construction.

Mortada predicts that EGX30 will target levels of 14,800 points during the first quarter, just in case trading on levels above 13,000 points. “The most prominent sectors expected to have positive performance in 2020 are tourism, petrochemical, construction, building materials, consumer goods and a number of real estate companies,” he notes.




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2/18/2020 1:49:30 PM
<![CDATA[CBE doubles capped loans limit for mortgage finance]]>
The move falls within the framework of a new initiative adopted by the CBE to promote the real estate market via providing funds worth up to LE 50 billion to help middle-income homebuyers obtain mortgage loans, said a statement released by the bank on Monday.

However, the increase will not apply to the Egyptian Arab Land Bank and the Housing and Development Bank, the statement noted. ]]>
2/18/2020 12:54:56 PM
<![CDATA[Oil Ministry: West Delta initial reserves expected to hit 236B cubic meters]]>
A statement released by the Oil Ministry on Monday said Molla's remarks were made during his chairing of the general assembly meeting of Rashid Petroleum Company/Burullus Gas Company (Rashpetco) to approve the amended budget of 2019/2020 and the draft budget of 2020/2021.

Meanwhile, Rashpetco’s Chairman Sabry El Sharkawy said there are currently studies on in the 10B phase of the West Delta Deep Marine (WDDM) which is expected to add production of around 236 billion cubic meters after drilling seven wells.

He said drilling in the deep waters (Swan) in East El Burullus Lake has successfully resulted in increasing the well's production to reach 110 million cubic meters of gas daily, with an estimated increase of 50 million cubic meters than targeted.

Sharkawy also noted that work is currently underway to link three wells named "Simian, Sapphire D and Sapphire East DC) of the 9B phase which have been discovered in WDDM few months ago.

All digging operations of wells of the 9B Phase have been finalized and are expected to add an initial production of 180 million cubic meters of gas daily, he added, noting that the planned production rate is around 420 million cubic meters of gas daily and 11,000 oil barrels during the coming fiscal year.

Construction is also underway in "Muntu" well in the WDDM with initial cost of dlrs 99 million, Sharkawy added.]]>
2/18/2020 12:50:57 PM
<![CDATA[Trade exchange bet. Egypt, world countries reaches $5.3B in 11 months]]>
The bulletin included the trade exchange between Egypt and the most important countries in the world during November 2019, and the period from January-November 2019, compared to 2018.

CAPMAS revealed that the trade exchange between Egypt and African countries slightly rose during 2019 to reach $131.35 million, up from $128.74 million in 2018.

Kenya topped the list of the most important African countries in trade exchange with Egypt, as the volume of trade exchange reached about $17.69 million in 2019, compared to $20.49 million in the same period of 2018, with a decline of nearly $2.79 million.

In the second place came South Africa, as trade exchange recorded about LE6.52 million during 2019, compared to $4.64 million in the same period in 2018, with an increase of about $1.87 million.

Moreover, Ethiopia ranked third with a trade exchange that amounted to about $175,000 in 2019, compared to $1.29 million in 2018, witnessing a decrease of about $1.12 million.

Egypt headed the African Union during 2019, and Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi attended the 33rd African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, where Egypt handed over the presidency of the AU to South Africa.

"Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry chaired the 36th session of the Executive Council of the African Union in Addis Ababa earlier this month, and reviewed the achievements made in Africa during Egypt’s presidency of the AU," the Foreign Ministry spokesman said.

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2/17/2020 3:24:44 PM
<![CDATA[DHL invests LE 1B in Egypt for expansion]]>
This intention to expand comes within the framework of the company's keenness to turn Egypt into a center for electronic commerce in Africa, as it is one of the main markets in the region.

"The company has made great achievements in the Egyptian market in 2019, starting with achieving an advanced position in the logistics sector at the regional level, followed by strengthening the position of the company and Egypt as a major market by concluding a cooperation agreement with the National Post Authority to facilitate postal services and activate shipping traffic at the local and continental levels.

This is in addition to developing the required processes with its global expertise in the field of electronic commerce, which contributes to supporting the capabilities of the post office in Egypt as a distribution center for the entire African continent,” CEO of DHL Express in the Middle East and North Africa region Nour Soliman said.

Soliman clarified that those come within the global DHL strategy to work on more automating systems and enable digital transformation in the Egyptian market, including the continent.

For his part, General Manager of DHL Express Egypt Ahmed al-Fangary said, “We are proud of our ability to enable global trade operations by exploiting the distinguished strategic location of Egypt, as a logistics center. So we are working to develop our supply chains and improve their operations in a way that supports Egypt’s goal to turn it into a major destination for foreign direct investment.”

This announcement came following the meeting of the CEO of DHL Global Express John Pearson with Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli in Egypt, when Madbouli stressed the Egyptian government's support for DHL investments that aim at turning Egypt into an e-trade hub in the Middle East and Africa.

For his side, Pearson clarified that DHL company has been working in Egypt since 1980, noting that the Arab country is a vital place of action in Africa and the Middle East.
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2/17/2020 3:23:31 PM
<![CDATA[7 companies confirm coronavirus has no negative impact on operations]]>
This came as a response to EGX’s inquiry about the negative effect of the virus on the business of the Egyptian companies.

Canal Shipping Agencies Company stated that its association with the Chinese market is limited by vessels transiting the Suez Canal only, and therefore the potential impacts on supply and operational plans are weak.

Among the unaffected companies by the Coronavirus are Alexandria Container and Cargo Handling, El-Nasr Clothing & Textiles Co. (KABO), Delta for Printing and Packaging, Egyptian Chemical Industries - Kima, Arab Polvara Spinning and Weaving (APSW), Misr Fertilizers Production Co. - MOPCO, and Alexandria Spinning and Weaving.

Oriental Weavers Carpet Company announced several points regarding the negative effects of the spread of the virus. First, the wholly owned subsidiary of the Oriental Weavers Carpet Company, OW China, located in the industrial area of Tianjin, contributes 1 percent to the company's total revenue. Second, China is a major competitor in many export markets for printed and non-woven carpets, which account for about 20 percent of the company's sales. And, based on how long the virus will remain untreated, this represents an opportunity for the Weavers Carpet Company to create new export markets.

Third, imports of raw materials for Oriental Weavers Carpets from China represent 5 percent of the total imports of raw materials for the industry. “We are currently looking for other suppliers in India and Turkey,” the company stated.

On December 31, the first case of coronavirus was reported from Wuhan, China. In January, the virus transmitted to Thailand. The World Health Organization (WHO) announced the outbreak of the virus after more than 40 cases were reported positive and one person died.

The number of confirmed cases worldwide reached 71,431 and 1,775 deaths worldwide.

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses found in both animals and humans. Some infect people and are known to cause illness ranging from common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), according to World Health Organization (WHO).

"A novel coronavirus (CoV) is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans. The new, or “novel” coronavirus, now called 2019-nCoV, had not been previously detected before the outbreak was reported in Wuhan, China in December 2019," it clarified.

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2/17/2020 3:13:14 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to become 6th largest world economy by 2030: Economist]]>
During a program wired on Russia Today news channel, he said countries like Egypt and India which have large population and the highest numbers of youth have a great chance for accelerated growth.

He added that the growth rate of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Egypt exceeded 8 percent which is the highest in the world and even surpasses China whose growth rate stands at 6 percent.

He added that the coming generations will reap the fruits of the current Egyptian investments. ]]>
2/17/2020 2:05:14 PM
<![CDATA[GVC: Egypt ranks Africa’s 1st in regular shipping lines, Cabinet says]]>
Global Value Chains involve different countries in the production process to help increase international trade and productivity.

These factors include regular shipping lines, as Egypt ranked first in Africa and the second in the Arab world in this regard, with a value of 66.7 points in 2019, compared to 62.38 points in 2018, said Osama Al-Gohary, an assistant of Egypt’s prime minister. Improvement in this index means easier access to the global shipping system and thus effective participation in international trade.

Concerning logistic performance, Egypt ranked third in Africa, and is looking forward to boosting the handling capacity of ports from 120 million tons to 370 million tons by 2030, through several procedures including developing infrastructure of a number of ports and upgrading the Port Said port, in northern Egypt, Gohary added.

The waiting time of ships is another factor that influences Egypt’s participation in the Global Value Chain. Egypt ranks 18th in this index, with an average waiting time of 34.6 hours, Gohary said, noting that Egypt is working to improve its ranking by improving the competitive capabilities of ports through digital transformation.

As the political leadership has put much effort into digital transformation, the Ministry of Finance in August last year said Egypt is moving towards digital transformation and achieving the goals of financial inclusion.

Thanks to the government's electronic payment and collection system, launched in May, government services have become more accessible to citizens at their actual prices, whether online or through payroll, bank, prepaid or credit cards, the ministry added in a statement, state’s news agency MENA reported.

The ministry has supplied all administrative bodies nationwide with E-collection systems; however, some of them have been found to be unused, the ministry said.]]>
2/17/2020 1:40:54 PM
<![CDATA[Foreign inflows into Egypt hit $12B since start of 2020: CBE]]>
Speaking to MENA on Sunday, the source said the inflows were in the form of remittances of Egyptians working abroad and new foreign investments.

The inflows reflect international financial funds' interest in the Egyptian market as one of the most important markets attracting investments in the region, the source said.

He added that the Egyptian economy is on the right track thanks to economic reforms taken by the Egyptian government in 2016. ]]>
2/17/2020 12:27:23 PM
<![CDATA[CBE issues LE 7B in T-bonds Monday]]>
The T-bonds were offered in two installments, with the first valued at LE 3.75 billion with a three-year term and the second worth LE 3.25 billion with a seven-year term.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates were declined to 12.75 percent from 13.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
2/17/2020 11:56:27 AM
<![CDATA[Minister: We seek to revive textile industry, restore Egyptian cotton glory]]>
He said that the developed gin in Fayyoum and other new gins would produce pure cotton with special standards to help improve the price of exported cotton.

Minister Tawfik called for pumping huge investments to restructure and develop spinning and weaving companies in two and a half years.

He said the development of cotton and spinning industries would provide high quality materials for ready to wear clothes, especially for the private sector factories.

For his part, Chairman of the Cotton & Textile Industries Holding Company Ahmed Mostafa reviewed a report on the development and restructure plan of the cotton companies at 21 billion pounds during fiscal year 2018/2019. ]]>
2/16/2020 5:49:35 PM
<![CDATA[ Gov't seeks increasing financial allocations for health, education in FY 2020/21]]>
Maait made the remarks on Sunday while he was announcing the launch of a social dialogue on some basic assumptions and financial targets for the next fiscal year, which stated in the draft law of the public budget for fiscal year 2020/2021.

He added that the government also seeks to achieve an initial surplus of 2 percent of GDP and reduce the public debt to 83 per cent of GDP, as well as cutting the budget's overall deficit to 6.2 percent.

Participants in the first meeting of the dialogue called on the state to raise spending on the areas of health, education, roads, agriculture and industry, in addition to spurring the investment climate and securing jobs for young people.]]>
2/16/2020 5:40:26 PM
<![CDATA[Remittances from Egyptian expats record $11.1B in 5 months ]]>
CBE added in a statement that remittances of Egyptians abroad increased during November to $2 billion, compared to $1.9 billion in November 2018.

In October, remittances from Egyptian expatriates hiked 12.7 percent during October 2019, reaching $2.3 billion, compared to $2.1 billion in October 2018.

CBE clarified earlier in a statement that the remittances of Egyptian expats during the first four months of fiscal year 2019/2020 (from July to October 2019) recorded about $ 9 billion, up from $ 8 billion registered during the same period of 2018, marking an increase of 13.4 percent.

Earlier, CBE announced that the remittances from Egyptian expatriates hiked 13.6 percent during the first quarter of 2019/2020, reaching $6.7 billion, compared to $5.9 billion in the same quarter of the prior fiscal year.

CBE announced in Nov. that the remittances of Egyptian expats increased by $277.1 million or 5.5 percent in July and August of 2019, reaching $4.4 billion, up from $4.2 billion during the same months of 2018.

In 2018, remittances from Egyptian expatriates hiked 3.1 percent or $778.2 million, reaching $25.5 billion, compared to $24.7 billion in 2017.

Remittances are one of Egypt’s main foreign currency sources, which have been on the rise since Egypt floated its local currency in November 2016.
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2/16/2020 5:37:20 PM
<![CDATA[GAFI, IDA agree on executive steps to encourage industrial investment]]>
This came on Sunday during Abdel Wahab's meeting with Chairman of the General Authority for Industrial Development (IDA) Magdy Ghazi to define measures needed to lure industrial investments and encourage the private sector to actively participate in national industrial projects.

During the meeting, they stressed that quick solutions should be found for any problems facing investors in industrial zones.]]>
2/16/2020 4:36:49 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Sunday's session in red, market cap. loses LE4B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 declined 0.88 percent, or 122.05 points, to close at 13,737.4 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 1.69 percent, or 32.04 points, to end at 1,868.1 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dropped 1 percent, or 12.69 points, to close at 1,253.84 points and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.89 percent, or 12.3 points to 1,371.79 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 4.06 billion, recording LE 696.59 billion, compared to LE 700.65 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 100.58 million shares, traded through 14,909 transactions, with a turnover of LE 323.24 million.

Egyptian investors were net buyers at LE 3.65 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 726,394, and LE 2.92 million, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 14.95 million, and LE 2.45 million, respectively, while foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 939,740.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 11.3 million, LE 3.18 million and LE 1.98 million, respectively.

United Housing & Development, Rakta Paper Manufacturing, and Mena Touristic & Real Estate Investment were top gainers of the session 9.02 percent, 8.13 percent and 5.44 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Raya Holding for Financial Investments, El-Nile Co. for Pharmaceuticals and Chemical Industries, and Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co were top losers of the session by 9.02 percent, 8.13 percent, and 5.44 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Thursday’s session in green, as: EGX 30 inched up 0.10 percent, EGX 50 rose 0.14 percent, EGX 70 hiked 0.72 percent, and EGX 100 increased 0.27 percent.
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2/16/2020 4:30:38 PM
<![CDATA[US dollar price goes down at Egypt's major banks]]>
The Egyptian pound continues to rise against the US dollar, recording its highest value in three years today.

At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr, the dollar price declined four piasters, registering LE 15.62 for buying and LE 15.72 for selling.

The dollar price slumped six piasters to record LE 15.60 for buying and LE 15.70 for selling at the Arab African International Bank.

At the Commercial International Bank the price went down seven piasters to reach LE 15.59 for buying and LE 15.59 for selling, while the price of the US dollar at the Suez Canal Bank retreated four piasters to register LE 15.62 for buying and LE 15.72 for selling.]]>
2/16/2020 3:51:17 PM
<![CDATA[Oil Ministry seeks to increase crude oil, natural gas production, reduce costs]]>
The minister's remarks were made during chairing the general assembly meeting of Gulf of Suez Petroleum Company (GUPCO) to approve the financial budget for 2020-2021 and the amended budget of 2019-2020.

In a statement released by the Petroleum Ministry on Sunday, Molla asserted that occupational safety and health and environment protection are considered as cornerstone for the ministry's strategy to provide safe work environment for the employees.

Meanwhile, Board Chairman of GUPCO Mohamed el Meligui said the company's estimated budget reached dlrs 543 million, with a targeted production rate of 77,000 barrels per day, adding that the company's activities and projects during the fiscal year 2020-2021 aimed at increasing the drilling of wells to improve the production rates of crude oil along with conducting maintenance of old wells.

He made it clear that the company is preparing a project for the treatment of industrial water at the maritime platforms in Ras Shuqeir with the aim of protecting environment from industrial wastes.]]>
2/16/2020 2:41:34 PM
<![CDATA[Planning Ministry targets 6% growth rate in 2020-2021: min.]]>
The minister made these remarks during a meeting with the leaderships of the ministry to outline the plan for the fiscal year 2020-2021.

The upcoming year's plan highlighs the relationship between the development plan and the sustainable development goals, minister Saeed said.

The plan attaches great importance to spatial development and promoting sustainable development goals along with shedding light on the projects set to be finalized by 2020-2021, the minister added.

The plan should entail the key challenges facing development and their location nationwide, the minister pointed out. ]]>
2/16/2020 2:37:56 PM
<![CDATA[PM: Govt seeks to set up investment zones in each governorate]]>
It is likely that we could have more than one investment zone in the same governorate, Madbouli said during a visit to Banha city in Qalioubiya governorate, north of Cairo in the Nile Delta region.

These investment zones will help local manufacturers to make their products in their governorates at affordable prices then market them, which will consequently help control prices in market, he said.

Madbouli, accompanied by CEO of the General Authority of Investment Mohamed Abdel Wahab, visited the investors' service center in the investment zone in Banha.

The center facilitates license issuance procedures of projects.

Madbouli said Banha investment zone is specialized in food industries because of its closeness to cultivated lands.

The zone, covering 46 feddans, houses 187 units at the cost of 1.1 billion pounds, said Abdel Wahab. It also includes warehouses,
refrigerated storage spaces and sales outlets.

It is expected to create 3,500 jobs, he added.

Meanwhile, Abdel Wahab said 11 new investment zones are now under construction nationwide in the logistics, educational, service and industrial domains to provide 208,000 jobs and attract investments worth 78 billion pounds.]]>
2/16/2020 2:36:19 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 14.5B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 4 billion with a 91-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 273-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are to 12.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
2/16/2020 2:32:59 PM
<![CDATA[BT100 jury agrees on scientific criteria to measure performance, selection of award winners]]>
BT100 is a tribute to the leaders of the governmental and private sectors, and corporate for their significant and effective role in improving the Egyptian economy.

The ceremony aims at encouraging other companies to improve their performance, and develop their marketing methods and their selling skills.

The jury of the BT100 celebration met today, Saturday, to determine the criteria and names of the final candidates, from companies, business establishments and the best performing public figures during 2019, in preparation for its official announcement in a big ceremony that will be held next March 3, in the presence of senior officials, heads of companies and banks, and symbols of the Egyptian and international business community.

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BT 100 Jury

The committee agreed on several criteria for selecting the 2020 edition candidates, which are in line with the scientific rules for awarding prizes and honoring business enterprises, most notably, the rate of profit growth for institutions and registration in the Egyptian Stock Exchange. Keeping pace with the concepts of development and research. The contribution of the company or institution in supporting the gross domestic product of Egypt and supporting concepts of sustainable development.

Participation in community service projects. Partnership between public and private sector institutions. Brand strength. Improvement of the work environment for company employees. Performance development. Rate of return on investment for company shareholders, and customer satisfaction rate for service level. The quality of products provided by the company. The new rate of employment of the company. The requirements of environmental safety. The proportion of women's representation in the Board of Directors.

The final evaluations of the candidates will be subject to a vote by 11 members of the jury, according to a specific point assessment system, with a study of the complete file of the results of each candidate's work, market and sector research to measure the performance of the winning institutions.

The list of juries, which included former investment ministers Mr. Osama Saleh and Mr. Ashraf Salman, former telecommunication minister Mr. Maged Osman, former Stock Exchange Chairman Mr. MagedShawky, Mr. Khaled Salah, father and editor-in-chief of prominent Egyptian daily Youm7, Editor-in-Chief of El Watan newspaper and Chairman of DMC News Channel Mr. Mahmoud Mosallam, chairman of Al Dostor Foundation Mr. Mohamed Al-Baz, Mr. Mohamed Abdelbaky, editor-in-chief of Business Today and Egypt Today magazines and news website and Mr. YossifAyoub, editor-in-chief of the Sout Al Omma newspaper.

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2/16/2020 12:08:23 AM
<![CDATA[BT100's judicial panel announced, preparations for grand opening ongoing]]>
BT100 is a tribute to the leaders of the governmental and private sectors, and corporate for their significant and effective role in improving the Egyptian economy.

The ceremony aims at encouraging other companies to improve their performance, and develop their marketing methods and their selling skills.

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The organizing committee of the ceremony has announced the completion of its list of juries, which included former investment ministers Mr. Osama Saleh and Mr. Ashraf Salman, former telecommunication minister Mr. Maged Osman, former Stock Exchange Chairman Mr. Maged Shawky, Mr. Khaled Salah, father and editor-in-chief of prominent Egyptian daily Youm7, Editor-in-Chief of El Watan newspaper and Chairman of DMC News Channel Mr. Mahmoud Mosallam, chairman of Al Dostor Foundation Mr. Mohamed Al-Baz, Mr. Mohamed Abdelbaky, editor-in-chief of Business Today and Egypt Today magazines and news website and Mr. Yossif Ayoub, editor-in-chief of the Sout Al Omma newspaper.

Candidates for the prizes will be chosen according to certain criteria by the jury and evaluation to select a number of companies in different sectors, including the financial, industrial and investment sectors, the real estate sector, and the communications and information technology sector.

All candidates will be chosen based on certain criteria and standards that rely on market studies and research to evaluate the activities of all companies operating in the Egyptian market, including companies with innovative creative ideas and practical and effective solutions, in addition to prizes for the best corporate social responsibility initiatives, the best market share and investment performance, and the best sustainable agreements and partnerships between the private sector and the public sector that would serve the country's goals in the comprehensive economic development plan for Egypt 2030

Major companies and institutions are sponsoring the event, including CIB, Marseilia Group, PepsiCo, Etisalat Egypt, Talaat Moustafa Group, Al Ahli Real Estate Development, Banque du Caire, GLC, Vodafone Egypt and a number of other institutions.

104450-bt100 ]]>
2/15/2020 3:40:58 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet: Egypt achieves highest growth rate in 11 years, tops ME economies]]>
An info-graphic published by the cabinet's media center indicated that the Egyptian growth rate hit 5.6% in 2018/2019, compared to 5.3% in 2017/2018.

The figures show the continued improvement of the Egyptian economic performance and the success of the reform policies that the state has adopted since 2016, the cabinet said.

Egypt's growth rate was expected to remain the best across the Middle East in 2020 for the third consecutive year, according to the info-graphic.

The targeted growth rate in 2020 is 6%, followed by Iraq whose growth rate is targeted to reach 5.2%, the cabinet added.]]>
2/15/2020 3:08:50 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's unemployment rate fell by 09% in 2019: CAPMAS]]>
According to a statement released by CAPMAS that the unemployment rate reached 8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to 8.9 percent in the same period a year ago.

The number of jobless people reached 28.950 million people during the last quarter of 2019, the statement added.

In the third quarter of 2018, the unemployment rate declined 1.9 percent, compared to the same quarter of 2017, and in the first quarter, it decreased 1.4 percent, compared to 12 percent in the same period of 2017.

Head of Sustainable Development Unit at the Ministry of Planning, Howaida Barakat, stated in September that Egypt's unemployment rate witnessed an unprecedented decline, recording 11.3 percent in 2017/2018. She added that this rate is expected to reach 8.4 percent in 2022.

The Finance Ministry also said that the unemployment rate is anticipated to reach 7.1 percent in June 2022, down from 9.9 percent in June 2018.

Egypt’s budget seeks to lower the unemployment rate to 10.4 percent with an inflation rate of 13 percent.

Egypt 2030 Vision aims to reduce unemployment from the current percentage to 4 percent.

Planning Minister Hala el-Saeed previously said that Egypt aims to provide about 750,000 job opportunities in 2018/2019 by developing the absorptive capacity of the labor market to gradually provide 870,000 opportunities in 2021/2022.

In 2017, Egypt’s unemployment rate slipped to 11.8 percent, compared to 12.5 percent in 2016.
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2/15/2020 1:18:17 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt key regional player in oil, gas sectors: French ambassador]]>
In statements to MENA, Romatet lauded Egypt-France strong relations in all fields, which he said was made clear in close coordination and exchanged visits between the two countries at all levels.

In this regard, the ambassador highlighted the recent visit made by a delegation from the French-Egyptian Friendship Group of the French Senate, headed by Catherine Morin-Desailly, to Cairo, where they were received by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi.

The coming stage is set to witness an exchange of visits between the two sides, Romatet said, noting that the French Embassy is preparing high-profile visits to Paris and Cairo.

He added that French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian would meet with his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, which kicked off on Friday.

Meanwhile, he pointed out to 10 France-based energy companies’ participation in the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020).

He added that other French firms working in Egypt have also taken part in the three-day event that was wrapped up on Thursday.]]>
2/14/2020 4:21:38 PM
<![CDATA[29 int’l deals inked in EGYPS 2020]]>
The Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and affiliated companies inked the deals during the three-day show, reflecting great potential and promising opportunities of the Egyptian petroleum sector as well as confidence of major international companies in Egypt’s economy.

Eight deals were signed with US giants Bechtel and Chevron Corporations and British Petroleum (BP) company.

Some other deals were inked with Schlumberger international, Italy’s Landi Renzo and Saipem companies, Shell Egypt, Canada’s Methanex Corporation, Germany’s Siempelkamp and Europe's Neptune Energy company.

Other cooperation deals were signed with Chile, Somalia, Equatorial Guinea and the US Trade and Development Agency.

Among the key agreements signed is the Egyptian Petrochemicals Holding Company’s deal with the US Bechtel Corporation to implement a refining and petrochemical complex in the Suez Canal Economic Zone at an investment cost worth about 6.7 billion dollars.

The ministry also signed a deal to cooperate with Neptune Energy Company in exploring for oil and natural gas in the Gulf of Suez with $35 million investments. The deal included a grant valued at $11 million to dig three wells.

The Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation also signed a cooperation agreement with British Petroleum (BP) Company on fueling ships.

As part of the activities held during the EGYPS 2020, two deals were signed between Egypt’s Petrojet and Italy’s Saipem company for implementing projects in Libya and offering advanced training programs for Egyptian cadres.

A contract was signed with Germany’s Siempelkamp to establish a project for producing medium-density fiberboard (MDF) panels at investments that are worth about 210 million euros.

A consortium of Egyptian companies including the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), the Egyptian International Gas Technology (Gastec), and the Natural Gas Vehicles Company (CAR GAS) signed two deals with the Italian Landi Renzo company for locally assembling of the natural gas supply stations and the components needed for converting vehicles to run on natural gas in Egypt.

The event also witnessed the signing of deals connected with the expansion of GASCO’s Western Desert Gas Complex in Alexandria, compressed natural gas transportation services, marine seismic and geophysical surveys and subsurface imaging services as well as vocational training, environmental protection and digital transformation in the oil and gas industry.

On Tuesday, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi opened the EGYPS 2020 at the Egypt International Exhibition Center (EIEC) in Cairo's 5th Settlement district.

EGYPS is the largest oil and gas conference and exhibition across Egypt, North Africa and the Mediterranean. It has attracted over 270 local and international industrial experts.

Held under the theme of "North Africa and the Mediterranean: Delivering The Needs of Tomorrow," the event saw the participation of 1,600 people from 14 countries, alongside 15 international petroleum companies and more than 450 exhibitors.]]>
2/14/2020 2:49:50 PM
<![CDATA[Marseilia’s Success Story]]>Sherif Heliw, Chairman of Marseilia Group, looks ahead to a year of stability and growth in the real estate market thanks to customized financing initiatives for young homebuyers.

CAIRO - 13 February 2020: As foreseen by the end of 2019, 2020 kicked off to relative stability in the real estate market, leaning toward an expected boom during the first quarter of the year. This has been due to the great demand on the current projects being delivered across Egypt and the projects expected to be delivered during the remaining quarters of 2020 East and West of Cairo, in the North Coast (New Alamein and Ras El Hekkma) and the New Administrative Capital (NAC).

Real estate developments have taken a new turn to welcome a new era as we focus on real estate products and how we introduce them. At Marseilia, our expertise of more than 20 years in the real estate market has enabled us to dedicate more efforts to the geographical spread of our growing urban footprint in untapped areas. We have been able to introduce the concept of the compound in Alexandria that only contained lifeless residential buildings that lack services, security, privacy and an identity since 2011. We have also spread west to Matrouh, where we have established our remarkable Alam El Roum Project, the first integrated resort with independent services, which is set to turn Marsa Matrouh into an integrated community.

Also, we were the first real estate developer that contributed to change the North Coast and placing it on the global tourism map; we were the first to develop a project on the tribal side of the North Coast that extends along 280 kilometers without any tourism investments, rolling out our Marseilia Resort 1 which was followed by several others.

And with a keen vision for more than 10 years, we have taken the initiative to expand in the heart of the new city of El Alamein and in the middle of the largest touristic movement in the North Coast: Marseilia Land El Alamein at 107 km, Alexandria Matrouh Road.

Development over the past years has been mainly focused on the high-end luxury market leaving a huge opportunity to service the middle-income market. Marseilia’s focus is on the middle-income housing segment, which is a promising market with a gap in affordable housing estimated at 2.5 million housing units.

There are many projects now being offered to clients with different plans and services tailored to suit each and every need and preference. This can be for the benefit of the client, but still it leaves many confused about their perfect fit. At Marseilia, we have managed to study the market first, and get insightful idea about the market’s needs as well as the clients’, enabling us to offer the right products at the right payment plans.


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Sherif Heliw, Chairman of Marseilia Group

However, the real estate market still has unexperienced real estate companies that continue to provide payment facilities and unsolicited sales offers, especially as marketing offers become more attractive to customers at a faster pace, which creates deferred revenues that might inevitably lead to a crisis in the real estate market by the end of 2020. Such payment plans are due to the lack of support and real estate financing for units under construction. This has led the developers to go the extra mile to support the state’s role in real estate financing, by offering long payment periods and discounts for clients seeking shorter payment plans. Therefore, we call for more initiatives that enable more mechanisms for the application of real estate finance and finance leasing. While real estate financing is dedicated for the residential sector, the financial leasing has doubled to LE 40 billion, with 70 percent of real estate financing channeled to administrative and commercial use units and projects, hence they are of great support for the real estate market.

Real estate finance draws its importance from the fact that it benefits both buyers and developers. Speaking to the media in December, Suzan Hamdy, Head of Financial Markets and Investment in Misr Bank, announced that almost 37 percent of the Egyptian population are young people of marriage age, which requires establishing more residential projects and hence real estate finance stands out as a powerful tool to support the market. Furthermore, it is beneficial for the developers themselves, as it provides them with the liquidity necessary for their projects’ development and completion.

The Central Bank’s initiative aims to provide total financing of up to LE 50 billion over 20 years for housing units that do not exceed an area of 150 square meters. Each unit price ceiling is LE 2.25 million, with a 10 percent decreasing interest rate. The real estate financing initiative is commendable, but to achieve more benefits, it must be more flexible to serve a broader customer segment by finding a mechanism to also include projects that are still in progress.

According to the current expansions of Marseilia Group, we’re developing projects spread all over Egypt and specifically in Alexandria (Hayat Marseilia), El-Ain El-Sokhna (Marseilia Bluebay Asia), the North Coast (Marseilia Beach 4 and Cascadia) and the New Administrative capital (Golden Yard). It is worth noting that Marseilia Group is always striving for development that is in line with the government’s strategy and vision for expansion and urban development to develop and strengthen the community with integrated real estate projects for a more comfortable and luxurious life. The group is in the process of building a land portfolio of about 2,500,000 square meters with many expansion projects and strategic partnerships such as the Nasr City and Miami Alexandria Beach Projects.



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2/13/2020 6:55:04 PM
<![CDATA[EGX cancels minimum quantities of ETF Market Makers ]]>
The amendment on article 3 of EGX’s chairman decision No. 133 for 2014 comes to delete a phrase in section 5 that stipulates that the amount of trading shall not be less than 1,000 share per order, according to EGX's statement.

This proposal was adopted by the Egyptian Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA).

“This decision comes as one of EGX’s efforts to provide diversified investment products that meet the needs of all investors, especially small investors, through long-term investments in EGX,” it added.

According to Investopedia, a market maker is an individual market participant or member firm of an exchange that also buys and sells securities for its own account, and at prices it displays in its exchange's trading system, with the primary goal of profiting on the bid-ask spread, which is the amount by which the ask price exceeds the bid price of a market asset.

On another note, EGX ended Thursday’s session in green, adding around LE 474.51 million to market capitalization, amid foreign purchases.
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2/13/2020 5:05:58 PM
<![CDATA[Shuaa Securities expects unchanged rates during February]]>
However, the report expected a 200-basis point cut before the end of 2020.

The report clarified that the current underlying monthly price acceleration will be on the CBE’s radar screen when deciding on interest rates on February 20, noting that the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) easing resumption may take other forms.

“We think easing could show up in other forms, similar to the CBE’s decision to raise the installment-to- income ceiling for consumer loans. We think the CBE has other ammunition, one of which is a possible cut in the required reserve ratio (RRR),” it noted.

As per the inflation rates, Shuaa reiterated its view that annual inflation readings in Egypt will range between 6-8 percent at normal times, expecting that pattern to prevail in most of the readings of the current fiscal year (FY2019/20).

“This is assuming no major surprises in terms of supply shocks for fruits and vegetables in particular.”

Egypt's statistics body announced earlier that the annual consumer price inflation recorded 6.8 percent in January 2020, compared to 12.2 percent in January 2019. On a monthly basis, inflation increased 0.8 percent in January, recording 105.2 points.

The report noted that January’s monthly inflation is the first positive monthly inflation reading since October 2019 and the second in five months, saying that causes are clearly visible in light of the upping witnessed in the food and non- alcoholic beverages group.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during January's meeting.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation were kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates downed to 12.75 percent.
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2/13/2020 5:04:00 PM
<![CDATA[Petroleum minister in talks over Exxon Mobil Co's activities in Egypt]]>
The Petroleum Ministry signed two deals with Exxon Mobil Corp for oil and gas exploration in the Mediterranean.

The talks come on the sidelines of Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) which kicked off on Tuesday under the title of "North Africa and the Mediterranean: Delivering the Energy Needs of Tomorrow".

Exxon Mobil company's decision to work in Egypt among the other global petroleum companies testifies to Egypt's success in providing an investment-magnet atmosphere in the petroleum sector, Molla said.

Bagley, on his part, lauded the Egyptian political leadership's continued support of the petroleum sector, saying this support gives a strong boost to exploration activities in Egypt.

More than 270 regional and international experts are taking part in the EGYPS 2020 conference sessions in addition to a number of Arab and African petroleum ministers as well as heads of regional and international companies operating in the petroleum domain]]>
2/13/2020 4:39:51 PM
<![CDATA[24 int'l agreements signed by Oil Ministry during EGYPS 2020]]>
This comes as part of the three-day Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020).

Eight deals were signed with US giants Bechtel and Chevron Corporations and British Petroleum (BP) company. Some other deals were inked with Schlumberger international, Italy’s Landi Renzo and Saipem companies, Shell Egypt, Canada’s Methanex Corporation, Germany’s Siempelkamp and Europe's Neptune Energy company.

Other cooperation deals were signed with Chile, Somalia, Equatorial Guinea and the US Trade and Development Agency.

Among the key agreements signed is the Egyptian Petrochemicals Holding Company’s deal with the US Bechtel Corporation to implement a refining and petrochemical complex in the Suez Canal Economic Zone at an investment cost worth about 6.7 billion dollars.

The ministry also signed a deal to cooperate with Neptune Energy Company in exploring for oil and natural gas in the Gulf of Suez with $35 million investments. The deal included a grant valued at $11 million to dig three wells.

The Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation also signed a cooperation agreement with British Petroleum (BP) Company on fueling ships.

As part of the activities held during the EGYPS 2020, two deals were signed between Egypt’s Petrojet and Italy’s Saipem company for implementing projects in Libya and offering advanced training programs for Egyptian cadres.

A contract was signed with Germany’s Siempelkamp to establish a project for producing medium-density fiberboard (MDF) panels at investments that are worth about 210 million euros.

A consortium of Egyptian companies including the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), the Egyptian International Gas Technology (Gastec), and the Natural Gas Vehicles Company (CAR GAS) signed two deals with the Italian Landi Renzo company for locally assembling of the natural gas supply stations and the components needed for converting vehicles to run on natural gas in Egypt. ]]>
2/13/2020 4:34:07 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian govt keen on boosting cooperation with S. Korea]]>CAIRO, Feb 13 (MENA) - Minister of International Cooperation Rania el Mashaat asserted on Thursday the keenness of the Egyptian government to deepen cooperation and exchange expertise with South Korea in addition to establishing new developmental projects.

This came during Mashaat's meeting with South Korean Ambassador to Egypt Yoon Yeocheol.

Yoon asserted that his country is looking forward to increasing developmental and economic cooperation with Egypt to achieve new developmental success.

He pointed out that the South Korean business community is keen on expanding activities in Egypt.

Both sides discussed boosting developmental cooperation between Egypt and South Korean within the framework of comprehensive partnership between both countries.

The current cooperation portfolio between Egypt and South Korea stands at 458 million dollars invested in projects of developing the railway signal system of (Nag Hamadi-Luxor) and the project of supplying and manufacturing 32 train locomotives to operate the the 3rd and 4th phases of the 3rd line of the subway with the worth of 243 million euros.

Both sides tackled cooperation with the Export-Import Bank of Korea (Korea Eximbank).

They also asserted the importance of encouraging the private sector in both countries to enter in developmental projects with development partners within the framework of achieving integration between them. ]]>
2/13/2020 4:29:32 PM
<![CDATA[Cooperation in oil sector between Egypt, US probed]]>
The meeting, which was held on the sidelines of Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) tackled cooperation between the two countries especially in the fields of developing the oil sector and infrastructure.

Molla praised the US side's support for Egyptian oil sector and cooperation to promote a successful partnership.

Hardly, for his part, said that his agency is ready to provide technical needs and training to support Egypt's oil sector and infrastructure, in a way that serves the national project for turning Egypt into a regional hub for gas and oil trade. ]]>
2/13/2020 4:28:35 PM
<![CDATA[Electricity subsidies in 2019/20 budget reach LE 4B]]>
The ministry clarified in a statement Thursday that this amount will be settled with the Ministry of Electricity during the last quarter of the current fiscal year in light of the actual consumption of the beneficiaries of the categories that are eligible for support during the fiscal year.

It added that the government implemented a set of comprehensive social measures for the current fiscal year at a cost that exceeds LE 65 billion, which included increasing the minimum comprehensive wage for workers in the state, pensions, numbers of beneficiaries of the “Takaful and Karama” programs, and conducting the largest promotions process in the administrative apparatus to increase employee incomes , and increase their purchasing power.

The Finance Ministry affirmed that the first half of the current fiscal year witnessed an increase in spending on health by 20 percent, on education by 14 percent, on subsidies for food commodities by 3.3 percent, and on the health insurance program by 29.3 percent.

Additionally, an amount of LE 80 billion of insurance and pension funds was paid, reflecting the state's interest in human and social development, along with economic development, in a manner that contributes to reducing the burdens on citizens.
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2/13/2020 4:03:52 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt establishes project to produce MDF from rice straw]]>
In addition to Petrojet, which is the general contractor of the project, WOTECH signed another agreement with the German Siempelkamp Company -the technology supplier of the project.

The signing took place during the third day of the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020).

The new project includes a factory for the production of medium-density fibreboard(MDF) by rice straw with a production capacity of 205,000 square meters annually according to the latest European specifications with the usage of Siempelkamp’stechnology in manufacturing.

The project thus provides a high-quality local product that is used and needed by many industries and areas such as furniture, building materials and decoration.

The project will be established with a full Egyptian capital from the oil sector, and the shareholders include the Egyptian Petrochemicals Holding Company, the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation, SIDPEC and Petrojet.

Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek el-Molla explained that the project, whose cost is estimated at €210 million, is also one of the effective solutions implemented by the Ministry of Petroleum to support the state's efforts to transform rice straw from an environmental challenge into an opportunity for economic exploitation and an added value.

“The project is one of the most important projects that the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources aims to implement within its plan to expand the petrochemical industry, which aims to establish new projects that contribute to providing raw materials and major production inputs for many industries on the local market,” Molla added.

In October, The Ministry of Petroleum announced the establishment of the first Egyptian company to convert rice straw into medium-density wood panels. The company will be located in Beheira governorate at a cost of €210 million.
]]>
2/13/2020 4:00:56 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends week in green]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 inched up 0.10 percent, or 14.29 points, to close at 13,859.45 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 0.14 percent, or 2.74 points, to end at 1,900.14 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 hiked 0.72 percent, or 9.11 points, to close at 1,266.53 points and the broader index EGX 100 increased 0.27 percent, or 3.68 points to 1,384.09 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 474.51 million, recording LE 700.65 billion, compared to LE 700.18 billion in Wednesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 157.98 million shares, traded through 18,729 transactions, with a turnover of LE 629.98 million.

Foreign investors were net buyers at LE 77.82 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net sellers at LE 41.91 million, and LE 35.91 million, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 35.85 million, and LE 11.76 million, respectively, while foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 3.14 million.

Egyptian and Arab organizations sold at LE 77.75 million, and LE 37.68 million, respectively, while foreign organizations bought at LE 80.96 million.

El Kahera Housing, United Housing & Development, and Gharbia Islamic Housing Development were top gainers of the session 9.34 percent, 8.07 percent and 7.99 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Misr Beni Suef Cement, National Housing for Professional Syndicates, and Memphis Pharmaceuticals were top losers of the session by 8.28 percent, 7.11 percent, and 4.61 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Wednesday’s session in red, as: EGX 30 declined 1.17 percent, EGX 50 dropped 1.27 percent, EGX 70 lessened 0.94 percent, and EGX 100 decreased 0.79 percent.
]]>
2/13/2020 3:57:54 PM
<![CDATA[PAS buys 4 aircraft worth $67mn in 2020: chairman]]>
The Italian defense and security company will hand over the helicopters in March and June, Hussein said, adding that another helicopter was received by PAS earlier this year along with a $22-million worth fixed-wing aircraft.

The latest purchases take the total investments of the air services company in new aircraft since the start 2020 to $67 million, the chairman added in statements to MENA on the fringe of Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS) 2020.

The PAS is the sole operator of charter flights for Egypt’s oil and gas companies, the chairman said, noting that the fleet of the company comprises 36 helicopters and eight fixed-wing aircraft.

As part of plans to boost its infrastructure, the PAS company has set up two hangars at Port Said International Airport and Alexandria's Borg El Arab International Airport, with a total cost of EGP 300 million, Hussein said.

The net profits of the Egyptian aviation company hit $55 million in 2019, according to its chairman who foresees 15 and 10 percent increase in the revenues and profits, respectively, during 2020 after expanding the activities of the firm. ]]>
2/13/2020 2:48:08 PM
<![CDATA[PM affirms importance of boosting coop. with EBRD in seawater desalination projects]]>
During a meeting with EBRD Vice President Alain Pilloux, in the presence of International Cooperation Minister Rania el Mashaat, the premier hailed the current cooperation with the bank.

Madbouli highlighted the cooperation with the bank in sanitation projects, saying that the directives of President Abdel Fattah El Sisi prioritizes extending sanitation services to deprived areas.

Pilloux hailed the performance of Egypt's macroeconomic indicators along with the monetary and financial stability achieved by the country's economy as a great achievement, said Cabinet Spokesman Nader Saad.

Egypt is the largest recipient of the EBRD investments with a dollar 1.3 billion portfolio that encompasses privates sector as well as SMEs projects, Pilloux added.

The EBRD official praised recent cooperation with Mashaat that is envisaged to have a positive impact on the future cooperation between Egypt and the bank.]]>
2/13/2020 2:42:02 PM
<![CDATA[US dollar price stable at Egypt's major banks]]>
The Egyptian pound continues to rise against the US dollar, recording its highest value in three years today.

At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr the dollar price remained stable, registering EGP 15.68 for buying and EGP 15.78 for selling.

The dollar rate stood at EGP 15.66 for buying and EGP 15.76 for selling at the Arab African International Bank.

At the Commercial International Bank the price recorded EGP 15.66 for buying and EGP 15.76 for selling, while the price of the US dollar at the Suez Canal Bank remained stable to register EGP 15.66 for buying and EGP 15.76 for selling. ]]>
2/13/2020 2:24:50 PM
<![CDATA[Anti-monopoly body probes legality of Telecom Egypt’s bid for acquisition of Vodafone]]>
The anti-monopoly body said it had received a formal request from Vodafone Egypt to investigate the legality of such move.

On January 29, the international communication giant Vodafone Group announced that it has signed a preliminary deal with Saudi Telecom Company (STC) for a potential sale of its 55% stake in Vodafone Egypt to STC for 2.39 billion dollars.

Telecom Egypt, which holds another 45% stake in Vodafone Egypt, said it hired an investment bank to study the available investment potentials in the light of the Vodafone Group and STC deal.

Telecom Egypt, earlier, had agreed with Vodafone Egypt to use the right of preemption in case the latter offered its stake for sale.]]>
2/13/2020 12:12:42 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 20.5B in T-bills Thursday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 10 billion with a 182-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 364-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are to 12.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
2/13/2020 11:56:47 AM
<![CDATA[2 deals for assembling gas supply stations in Egypt signed]]>
The move was made as part of the second-day activities of the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020).

The deals come in cooperation with a consortium of Egyptian companies including the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), the Egyptian International Gas Technology (Gastec), and the Natural Gas Vehicles Company (CAR GAS), as well as the Italian Landi Renzo company.

According to the deals, Egypt is expected to benefit from the Italian technologies and expertise in order to convert the vehicles to run on natural gas and establish gas supply stations in Egypt.]]>
2/12/2020 7:23:09 PM
<![CDATA[EGX lists Banque du Caire LE3B- capital increase ]]>
EGX clarified in a statement that the capital increased to LE 5.25 billion, up from LE 2.25 billion. It explained that the increase was paid in cash through the subscription of the main investor (Bank Misr) excluding the pre-emptive rights of the bank’s existing shareholders.

“These new shares shall be added to EGX database starting Feb. 17 trading session,” it stated.

Earlier this month, Chairman of Banque Misr Mohamed el-Etreby said that his bank seeks to offer a stake of up to 45 percent of Banque du Caire on EGX during the first half of 2020.
]]>
2/12/2020 7:19:57 PM
<![CDATA[Italy's Edison starts exploratory drilling for gas in Egypt]]>
Energean is in the process of taking over Edison’s Egyptian assets in a deal reached last year.

“We’re drilling right now in North Thekah, a deep water exploration ... it started a couple weeks ago,” Energean CEO Mathios Rigas told reporters on the sidelines of an energy conference in Cairo.

North Thekah lies close to Egypt’s giant Zohr field, Cyprus’s Aphrodite and Israel’s Tamar and Leviathan fields.

Italian giant Eni’s Zohr field, with an estimated 30 trillion cubic feet of gas, is the largest ever discovered in the Mediterranean. It started production in late 2017.

Drilling would continue for 40-60 days, he said, depending on its success. “So the next 4-6 weeks we should have results.”

Energean, which is listed on both the London and Tel Aviv stock exchanges, has operations in the offshore Israel, Greece and the Adriatic, while Edison has assets in Italy, Algeria, Croatia, the British and Norwegian North Sea as well as Greece.]]>
2/12/2020 6:15:19 PM
<![CDATA[Cairo, Austrian OMV energy group probe investment opportunities]]>
The meeting was held on the sidelines of the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) that kicked off on Tuesday.

Molla welcomed the Austrian company’s orientation and interest in returning to investment in Egypt, stressing that all means of success and sustainability would be provided in this regard.

The minister added that the investment climate in Egypt’s petroleum industry has achieved tangible progress, pointing out to the measures taken to facilitate investment and remove obstacles facing international companies seeking to inject investments in the country.

Meanwhile, the Austrian company officials said they look forward to returning to work in Egypt, expressing hope that Cairo would be their new key to success in the Middle East region.

EGYPS is the largest oil and gas conference and exhibition across Egypt, North Africa and the Mediterranean. It has attracted over 270 local and international industrial experts.

Held under the theme of "North Africa And the Mediterranean: Delivering The Needs of Tomorrow," the event sees the participation of 1,600 people from 14 countries, alongside 15 international petroleum companies and more than 450 exhibitors.

The event is scheduled to last till Thursday. ]]>
2/12/2020 6:09:45 PM
<![CDATA[Petroleum Ministry, USTDA sign cooperation agreement]]>
The agreement, signed as part of -proceedings on the second day of the Egypt Petroleum Show 'EGYPS 2020' here today, targets wider participation by the private sector in the petroleum field and higher awareness of economic opportunities of common interest.

USTDA regional director Carl Criss, who signed the agreement with Petroleum Ministry Undersecretary Ossama Mubarez, said the agency aims to continue to provide funding for developing human resources, training programs, feasibility studies and consultations and exchanged trade missions as well as workshops and anything related to boosting projects and reaching best practices in the use of energy and other natural resources.]]>
2/12/2020 6:04:17 PM
<![CDATA[EGPC inks deal with US oil Corp Chevron on technical cooperation]]>
The move was made as part of the second-day activities of the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020).

The minister witnessed the inking of another agreement between Alexandria Mineral Oils Company (AMOC) and Chevron Corporation on cooperation in the trade and manufacture of petroleum products.

On Tuesday, President Sisi opened the EGYPS 2020 at the Egypt International Exhibition Center (EIEC) in Cairo's 5th Settlement district.

EGYPS is the largest oil and gas conference and exhibition across Egypt, North Africa and the Mediterranean. It has attracted over 270 local and international industrial experts.

Held under the theme of "North Africa And the Mediterranean: Delivering The Needs of Tomorrow," the event sees the participation of 1,600 people from 14 countries, alongside 15 international petroleum companies and more than 450 exhibitors.

The event is scheduled to last till Thursday.]]>
2/12/2020 5:51:13 PM
<![CDATA[Housing Ministry, ACWA Power sign MoU]]>
The memorandum is to be presented to the Ministry of Housing and the Egyptian Electricity Holding Company.

The company has been chosen as being one of the pioneering and specialized ones in implementing and developing sea water desalination and power plants operated by renewable energy sources.]]>
2/12/2020 5:45:51 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Wednesday in red, market cap. loses LE6.2B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 declined 1.17 percent, or 164.16 points, to close at 13,845.16 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 1.27 percent, or 24.44 points, to end at 1,897.4 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 lessened 0.94 percent, or 11.97 points, to close at 1,257.42 points and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.79 percent, or 10.95 points to 1,380.41 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 6.2 billion, recording LE 700.18 billion, compared to LE 706.38 billion in Tuesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 99.21 million shares, traded through 17,658 transactions, with a turnover of LE 427.17 million.

Egyptian investors were net buyers at LE 26.71 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 15.45 million, and LE 11.25 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 31.75 million, LE 5.51 million, and LE 1.75 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 5.04 million, LE 20.96 million, and LE 13 million, respectively.

Zahraa Maadi Investment & Development, Raya Holding for Financial Investments, and Modern Company for water proofing (Bitumode) were top gainers of the session 10.13 percent, 6.17 percent and 5.56 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Egypt for Poultry, Sidi Kerir Petrochemicals, and Wadi Kom Ombo Land Reclamation were top losers of the session by 5.87 percent, 5.31 percent, and 5.31 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Tuesday’s session in semi-collective rise, as: EGX 30 rose 0.21 percent, EGX 50 hiked 0.25 percent, EGX 70 climbed 0.10 percent, while EGX 100 decreased 0.17 percent.
]]>
2/12/2020 4:47:00 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet approves amending money laundering fighting law]]>
The approval came within the framework of the State's efforts for fighting terrorism in all its forms and drying up its sources.

The draft law identified funds and assets such as oil or other natural sources along with national and foreign currency and securities along with bank cheques and other forms of property.

According to the draft law, anybody charged with money laundering will be sentenced to a prison term that is not more than seven years and a fine equal to the seized funds.
]]>
2/12/2020 4:21:49 PM
<![CDATA[Capital Economics expects CBE to cut interest rates by 50bps]]>
“We have penciled in a 50bp cut in the overnight deposit rate, to 11.75 percent, at next week’s meeting and expect it to be cut further to 10.00% by year-end,” it anticipated in a recent report.

It attributed the expectation to that the rate of inflation is still within the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) target which is a range of 9 percent, plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Egypt statistics body announced earlier that the annual consumer price inflation recorded 6.8 percent in January 2020, compared to 12.2 percent in January 2019. On a monthly basis, inflation increased 0.8 percent in January, recording 105.2 points.

The rise in food inflation pushed up headline inflation by around 0.3 percent-pts but appears to have been offset by weaker inflation in the other major price categories, it commented.

According to the report, January’s rise in inflation, which is the third in a row, means that next week’s MPC meeting will be another close call. Policymakers decided to pause their easing cycle in January, probably as they wanted to await more details on just how far inflation would rise following its jump between November and December.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during January's meeting.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation were kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates downed to 12.75 percent.
]]>
2/12/2020 4:00:17 PM
<![CDATA[Deutsche Bank expects Egypt’s economy to continue improvement]]>
The German-based bank also anticipated the headline inflation rate to continue its downtrend to reach single digit during 2020. It clarified that the decline in exchange rate of the Egyptian pound against the dollar and the global drop of oil prices, along with government interference to control prices of food products, will help to curb the inflation rate.

“Recent moderate inflation rates came as a result of the stability of food products prices,” the bank explained in a report.

The report also saw private consumption rates to be recovered gradually.

Egypt’s statistics body announced previously that the annual consumer price inflation recorded 6.8 percent in January 2020, compared to 12.2 percent in January 2019. The announced rates remain within the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) target range of 9 percent, plus or minus 3 percentage points.

According to Deutsche Bank, the improvement in new exports will continue as Egypt’s dependence on fuel imports will decrease due to its local production. “In addition, non-oil exports will witness a rise during the coming period along with the increase in production of gold, electronics and pharmaceutical preparations.”

The General Organization for Export and Import Control (GOEIC) revealed earlier Egypt's non-oil exports recorded $25.49 billion during 2019, compared to $25.14 billion during 2018

The report attributed the increase in production to the increased competitiveness of Egyptian production since the liberalization of the Egyptian pound in 2016.

It also stated that the state’s mega projects, which support the infrastructure, and foreign direct investment (FDI) flows will help in developing oil and gas wells, building the New capital and developing the Suez Canal axis.

Deutsche Bank expected the Egyptian pound to continue its rise against the dollar to reach levels of 1.5 by the end of the first half of 2020 and levels of 15 by the end of the year.

It also reviewed additional structural improvement in the current account and balance of payment, clarifying that the petroleum trade balance improved as a result of the decline in imports volume and achieving self-sufficiency of natural gas.

Egypt achieved self-sufficiency of gas after receiving the last shipment of liquefied gas at the end of September 2018.

The report also stated that the improved security conditions and investments in infrastructure contribute to increasing tourism inflows and rising Suez Canal revenues.

“Paying delayed dues to foreign companies will attract more FDI especially to the energy sector,” the bank expected.

Earlier, Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli ordered the disbursement of 10 percent of the full value of arrears to exporters, in addition to the full payment of delayed dues of small-sized companies if their dues do not exceed LE 5 million.

Moreover, earlier announcements revealed that arrears settlement deals were reached with 67 companies as the government agreed to pay the companies LE 6 billion over five installments in return for carrying out extra projects or expanding their existing projects.
]]>
2/12/2020 3:56:31 PM
<![CDATA[US dollar price remains stable during Tuesday's transactions]]>
At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr the dollar price recorded LE 15.68 for buying and LE 15.78 for selling.

The rate at the Arab African International Bank was LE 15.66 for buying and LE 15.76 for selling.

At the Commercial International Bank the price stood at LE 15.66 for buying and LE 15.76 for selling, while the price of the US dollar at the Suez Canal Bank dropped to register LE 15.66 for buying and LE 15.76 for selling

The dollar rate at the National Bank of Greece registered LE 15.68 for buying and LE 15.78 for selling.]]>
2/12/2020 3:34:36 PM
<![CDATA[Oil min. discusses Apache plans to increase production in Western Desert]]>
This came on the sidelines of Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) held in Cairo on February 11-13 with the participation of key actors in the local and international oil and gas industry.

Molla said that the petroleum sector is implementing a program to push up Egyptian output rates of crude oil, asserting the importance of promoting the productive performance of the national companies Khaleda and Qaroun.

There are great potentials for making new discoveries in the Western Desert, he said.

Meanwhile, the senior Apache officials asserted commitment to maintain investments in Egypt and raise the efficiency of their operations to serve the ambitious plans to increase production. ]]>
2/12/2020 3:24:53 PM
<![CDATA[Oil minister discusses cooperation with Italian, French firms]]>
The meeting was held on the sidelines of EGYPS 2020 conference in Cairo.

The two sides discussed a project for producing propylene and poly propylene along with a project for hydrocracking and gasoline production in Suez.

The Italian delegation expressed keenness on investment in Egypt and participating in current mega projects in the country.

Molla also discussed on the sidelines of the conference with the French Exness company Hydrocracking projects in Assiut and another oil refining project in the Red Sea. ]]>
2/12/2020 3:22:11 PM
<![CDATA[Artificial Intelligence in the Spotlight]]>
Protiviti argues in a report that artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) are poised to help companies make dramatic shifts in performance, shareholder value and business development within the next two years.

“AI opens the door to analyse massive amounts of data and deliver critical insights that organisations across a wide variety of industries can use to improve processes, drive profitability, and increase their competitive advantage,” it stated.

The research concluded that companies leading the charge with advanced AI are finding that it is a real game changer, while companies that are still lagging behind will soon experience a major disadvantages.

Investopedia defines Artificial intelligence (AI) as the simulation of human intelligence in machines programmed to think like humans and mimic their actions; moreover, it is certainly game-changing technology. The term may also be applied to any machine exhibiting traits associated with a human mind, such as learning and problem solving. The ideal characteristic of artificial intelligence is its ability to rationalize and take actions that have the best chance of achieving a specific goal.

Artificial intelligence is based on the principle that human intelligence can be defined in a way that a machine can easily mimic and utilize to execute tasks, be they simple or complex.

One of the most famous results of AI is the Sophia robot which visited Egypt in 2019. It is a social humanoid robot developed by the Hong Kong-based Hanson Robotics. It made its first public appearance at South by Southwest Festival in mid-March 2016 in Austin, Texas. Since then, Sophia has participated in many high-profile interviews and been exposed to extensive global media. In 2017, Sophia became the first robot to receive citizenship of a country and the first non-human to be given a United Nations title. According to the manufacturer, David Hanson, Sophia uses artificial intelligence, visual data processing and facial recognition.

Picture1


Artificial Intelligence in Egypt

With all of the evolutions and benefits of AI, Egypt started its own forward-looking steps towards AI with the target that AI composes 7.7 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) in 2030.

Egypt ranked 111 out of 194 countries in the latest Government Artificial Intelligence Readiness 2019 report (pdf) published by Oxford Insights, which ranks countries based on their ability to harness AI to deliver better public services, looking at existing infrastructure, skills, and governance.

Earlier in 2019, Minister of Information and Communication Technology Amr Talaat announced that his ministry is working to set a strategy for artificial intelligence (AI), “We are very late, but late is better than never. Other countries have already looked forward in this route and we are due.”

“Our AI strategy will stand on two main axes, which are: learning, an artificial intelligence academy which is specialized in capacity learning, innovation and new thinking in artificial intelligence. The second pillar is more on the practical side and applying the artificial intelligence for governance or for business enterprises driven by data science and analyzing the data. The artificial strategy will be applied through three main work streams including data, education, infrastructure and ecosystem.”

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“We have to make sure that the private sector has access to existing data and the capability of leveraging these existing data,” he said.

As a result of this strategy, Egypt inaugurated the first ever artificial intelligence (AI) faculty in Kafr El Sheikh University. The class of 2019/2020 is its first as it accepts students who had math as concentration in high school. The AI faculty offers a bachelor’s degree in industrial sciences, and the duration of the study is four years.
Kafr El Sheikh University President Maged al-Kamary said that the new faculty was established in collaboration with the UAE’S Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University (HBMSU) to produce skilled labor in the smart systems sector.

Kamary clarified that the university seeks to introduce modern specializations such as nanotechnology, AI, internet of things (IoT) and human development. That is in addition to adopting new teaching methods that are interactive and rely on digital technology. Egypt aims for AI to compose 7.7 percent of its GDP by 2030, the Kafr El Sheikh University president clarified.

Kafr El Sheikh University encompasses 22 faculties, and was founded in 2006. HBMSU is the first e-University in the United Arab Emirates, and was inaugurated in February 2009, by the President of the University and the Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The institution follows a blended learning methodology, where different delivery techniques are combined to deliver a particular course, including face-to-face classrooms, online classrooms, and self-paced learning. The university is based on the “Lifelong Learning” model that provides all of its professional programs through certification routes to progress on to a career path in various sectors.

On the same note, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Khalid Abdel-Ghaffar stated earlier that the government plan includes establishing new AI colleges and eight computer and information faculties, in addition to investing in sending Egyptian students to study AI at institutions around the world.

Moreover, the Egyptian Cabinet approved in November a draft resolution on establishing a national council for artificial intelligence.

The national artificial intelligence council will be chaired by the communications and information technology minister, grouping a number of ministers and heads of several concerned bodies.

The new national body will be responsible for outlining the national strategy for artificial intelligence and overseeing its implementation in a way that copes with international developments in this field.

The council will be authorized to cooperate with the related regional and international bodies as well as to select the best artificial intelligence applications that could help offer safe, sustainable and smart services.

During the meeting, the Cabinet approved authorizing the ICT minister to contract and sign agreements with Microsoft, ESRI, VMware and Teradata on the behalf of the government to be self-funded by the ministry during the years 2019/2020, 2020/2021, 2021/2022 and 2022/2023.

Early Steps

Despite these efforts, “It is still very early days for AI in Egypt, and the country has a long way to go before it can emerge as one of the AI innovators in the region,” says Saurabh Verma, business head of ICT & Digital Transformation at global consultancy Frost & Sullivan.

Executive director at professional services firm Grovelands, Chris Hafner, tells the press that while the current state of AI development and expertise in Egypt is at best nascent, there is room for much opportunity.

“There is tremendous opportunity to fill a huge void in AI – to cross the language chasm between English and Arabic. Much of what we see is language limited,” Hafner states.

Moreover, founder and CEO of fonYou Fernando Nunez-Mendoza said in press statements that the Egyptian market is very open to AI initiatives. “Our customers, mobile operators, are keen to explore the evolution of the technology with us by actually deploying it. And when they see what AI can do in the context of their business, there’s a lot of excitement about its potential,” he noted.

FonYou is working with a mobile operator in Egypt to automate and deliver personalized sales opportunities with their customers. “The offer is personalized to the customer, based on their purchase history and preferred communication channels,” he said.
In Egypt, like everywhere else, the shortage of AI experts and AI-literate managers will be the real limiting factor for the widespread adoption of AI, Nunez-Mendoza said. This is the reason FonYou is delivering an AI-as-a-Service platforms for customers, meant to accelerate the impact of the emerging technology.

On the other side, Hafner believes that the greatest risk for Egypt is success in the vision of training up Egyptians in AI – if they succeed, they risk a ‘brain- drain’, with the great talent they have invested in leaving Egypt for Dubai, Singapore, London, or San Francisco. He also believes that Egypt needs a primary education plan to feed these higher-education aspirations.

Co-founder and Managing Director of intelligent microfinance enabler Microsafe, Sherif El-Diwany told Business Today Egypt that cadres don’t feel appreciated in their own countries, and that’s often the cause of the brain drain.

Though redirecting the compass towards AI and by having different departments at the university level teaching AI, in addition to the political will of enhancing opportunities in the field, Egypt can achieve the goal of improving its AI field.
]]>
2/12/2020 1:14:30 PM
<![CDATA[Asian markets rise as coronavirus concerns ease]]>
The virus, officially named COVID-19 on Tuesday, has spooked markets around the world, having killed more than 1,100 people and infected tens of thousands since it emerged in central China at the end of last year.

Tokyo rose 0.5 percent, Hong Kong put on 0.7 percent, Sydney gained 0.6 percent and Singapore climbed 0.7 percent.

Shanghai, Wellington and Taipei were also up.

The largely positive morning following fresh record closes by the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq in New York on Tuesday.

Traders reacted positively to cautious comments from the US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on the coronavirus -- which has spread to more than two dozen countries and has been declared a global health emergency.

The Fed boss told Congress members on Tuesday that the central bank was closely monitoring the virus and that its impact could spill over to the world economy, but the assessment was not as gloomy as many had expected.

China, the world's second-largest economy, is looking to recover momentum after authorities extended the Lunar New Year break in a bid to stop the spread of the virus.

But millions of people remain in lockdown in many cities, where transport has also been severely restricted -- disrupting supply chains for key industries, including smartphones and cars.

There are concerns about how that will impact not only China's overall economic growth, but also the bottom lines of many multinational firms.

The production lines of major auto makers such as South Korea's Hyundai have already been disturbed, and there is fear that airlines and the hospitality and tourism sectors will also take a hit.

Many countries have imposed travel bans and quarantine requirements, and major carriers have suspended or dramatically cut back on flights to and from mainland China.

Aviation consultancy Ascend by Cirium said this week there was a reduction in flights from and within mainland China by roughly 25 percent, and predicted the impact on the industry could be worse than during the SARS outbreak of 2002-03.

A number of companies expected to be hurt by the coronavirus are scheduled to release their results this week, including Chinese e-commerce titan Alibaba and Japanese auto maker Nissan.

After tumbling on fears of decreased demand from China, the world's largest importer and consumer of oil, crude prices continued their recovery.

Both main contracts were up on Tuesday, with Brent Crude rising 1.8 percent and West Texas Intermediate gaining 1.3 percent.

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2/12/2020 7:36:21 AM
<![CDATA[Egypt signs $6.7B agreement with US Bechtel to implement refining complex]]>
According to the ministry, this agreement aims to execute a refining and petrochemical complex in the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone).

The agreement was signed by Head of the ECHEM, Saad Helal, and CEO of Bechtel Group, Brendan Bechtel, in the presence of Minister of Petroleum Tarek el-Molla, Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt Tarek Amer, and American Ambassador to Cairo Jonathan Cohen.

The agreement stipulates that ECHEM will start preparing a detailed feasibility study in cooperation with an international consultant, within the framework of the state's efforts to encourage establishing giant projects in Egypt.

"Bechtel Group will provide the necessary funding from banks and international financial institutions," the statement pointed out. It clarified that this project is expected to increase the productivity of petroleum and petrochemical products to cover the local market needs and to export these products.

In the same vein, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi met with the CEO of Bechtel Group, where Sisi expressed appreciation for the activity of the international company in Egypt.

He also stressed Egypt's keenness to benefit from the company's experiences not only in the oil and gas sector, but also in the field of water treatment and desalination and in the transport and construction sector in light of the major development projects taking place across Egypt.

]]>
2/11/2020 7:07:33 PM
<![CDATA[Construction of 1st dry port in Egypt to start in Feb. ]]>
The facility, executed in the public-private partnership system, will be established in 6th of October City to be a distribution point of goods coming from seaports, particularly those of Alexandria and Dekheila, to Greater Cairo and surrounding governorates.

The first phase of the project will span over 100 feddans, while the total surface area of the port is 400 feddans. The port will receive goods through a 60-kilometer cargo railway line that will stretch from the seaports and connects with Imbaba/Manashy/Qabari line, which will become a double-track railway. The goods will be distributed by trucks.

The first phase’s capacity is 720,000 containers and its initial cost is $176 million. The port will house branches of the Customs Authority, the General Organization for Import and Export Control (GOEIC), maritime lines agencies, shipping companies, and others.

Contracts were signed with two Egyptian companies and a German one to accomplish the dry port later in January.
]]>
2/11/2020 4:57:09 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt climbs 6 spots in Agility Emerging Markets Index 2020]]>
According to the index, despite a brief social unrest in 2019, Egypt’s economy showed surprising gains in key areas and moved up six sports to #20 in the overall index.

“Egypt actually gained six spots in the 2020 Index and showed improvement in the domestic and international logistics opportunities and business fundamentals indices,” CEO and President of Agility Global Integrated Logistics Essa al-Saleh stated in the report.

Agility


The report pointed out that Egypt has made rapid progress because of economic growth. The government successfully implemented a first wave of macroeconomic and structural reforms that addressed many entrenched issues and helped to stabilize the economy, spur growth and lay the groundwork for robust private sector participation in the economy.

“Smaller markets can make progress up the rankings if they display solid fundamentals, either economic or in terms of openness to trade (such as Egypt),” CEO Transport Intelligence (TI) John Manners-Bell said.

In domestic logistic opportunities, Egypt and Thailand both leapt six spots to 13th and 14th respectively. Egypt and Nigeria have made significant progress because of economic growth, infrastructure upgrades and improved domestic demand.

“In Egypt, whose rankings in each of the three sub-Indices saw rise, GDP growth is expected to quicken to 5.5 percent in 2019. Strong performance from the energy, retail and construction sectors are leading the growth, with underlying reforms that followed a $12 billion IMF loan in 2016, helping to improve private sector cash flows and stabilize fuel costs. Forecast growth in Egypt’s contract logistics and domestic express markets are relatively low, highlighting the potential for further gains in the coming years,” according to the index.

The index revealed that Egypt has engineered one of the most remarkable turns of economic fortune in recent memory. It jumped six places to the 20th place in the 2020 Agility Emerging Markets Logistics Index, improving in all categories but most notably in business conditions, where it leaped up 10 spots to the 17th place.

“Egyptian GDP is forecast to grow 6 percent in 2020. Egypt has $96 billion in mega-projects and underway infrastructure work and another $240 billion in planning or pre-planning execution. Expansion of the Suez Canal, the Greater Cairo Monorail, the New Cairo development and construction of satellite cities near Cairo are among the showcase projects,” it said.

The index stated that much of the current work involves power projects and road construction associated with mega-projects.


agility 2


The index also referred to progress occurred in Egypt since the implementation of the economic reform program in 2016.

“The austerity moves hurt Egyptian consumers and workers but won the confidence of the International Monetary Fund. Since then, structural reforms and an improved business environment have revived consumption and private-sector investment," it added.

Agility Emerging Markets Logistics Index is an annual snapshot of industry sentiment and a ranking of the world's 50 leading emerging markets by size, business conditions, infrastructure and transport connections
]]>
2/11/2020 4:38:35 PM
<![CDATA[Gov’t is keen on supporting German investments in Egypt: PM]]>
This statement came during Madbouli’s meeting with Germany's Wintershall Dea Chairman of the Board and CEO Mario Mehren in the presence of Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek el-Molla and the German ambassador in Cairo.

For his part, Mehren pointed out that his company considers Egypt as one of its most important partners worldwide, praising the efforts exerted by the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources in easing its operations.

He referred to the agreement signed Monday between the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) and Wintershall Dea for oil exploration in eastern Damanhour block, which is valued at $ 43 million, while digging operations for eight wells is estimated at $11 million.

The East Damanhour block is located at western Wintershall Dea’s Disouq development area in the Nile Delta. During a first exploration phase of three years, starting in 2020, Wintershall Dea is planning to drill several exploration wells.

"We are excited to get back into exploration in Egypt. Wintershall Dea has a 45-year history in Egypt. Alongside recent investments in our operated projects at Disouq and in the Gulf of Suez, our exploration plans are a further sign of our commitment to the country.”

On Monday, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek el-Molla signed a new agreement to search for and produce oil and natural gas in eastern Damanhur area in the Nile Delta with minimum investment of $43 million and $11 million grants to drill eight wells.

The new agreement was signed with the Egyptian Holding Company for Natural Gas "EGAS" and the German company Wintershall Dea, the ministry clarified in a statement.
Molla said that this agreement is the first for the German company in Egypt after the merge between Wintershall and Dea Company.

He stressed that continuing to sign petroleum agreements with international companies achieves vital goals for the Egyptian economy, including increasing the investments pumped into the market and contributing to reaching new discoveries that enhance production and reserves of oil and gas.

Wintershall Dea, through its predecessor Dea, started operations in Egypt in 1974. Egypt is a core area for the company. It produces gas at Disouq in the onshore Nile Delta, gas and oil in the Gulf of Suez; and gas and condensate from the offshore West Nile Delta project, operated by BP. In recent years Wintershall Dea has invested significantly in its operated projects in Egypt.

Comprehensive work programs of the company at Disouq and in the Gulf of Suez have led to a significant improvement of production, as well as maintaining asset integrity in the mature Gulf of Suez sites.

Egypt signs $43M oil exploration deal with EGAS, Wintershall Dea

CAIRO - 11 February 2020: Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek el-Molla signed a new agreement to search for and produce oil and natural gas in eastern Damanhur area in the Nile Delta with minimum investment of $43 million and $11 million grants to drill eight wells.




MENA contributed to this story
]]>
2/11/2020 4:34:25 PM
<![CDATA[Sisi hopes BP to increase investments in Egypt]]>
Presidential spokesman Bassam Rady said Sisi expressed hope that the multinational company would increase its operations in Egypt, praising its investments in the Egyptian market since it started work in it more than 50 years ago.

He said the company contributed greatly to oil and gas exploration in the country and that Egypt seeks to increase discoveries of oil and gas, adding the British company also helped Egypt to become a regional gas hub in the east Mediterranean.

President Sisi said that Egypt gives priority to the private sector's participation in the energy sector, pointing out to the importance of its successful partnership with BP in training and honing the skills of cadres and its support to educational initiatives and financing of scholarships for Egyptian graduates at major British universities.

For his part, Looney said he was happy to meet the president and and asserted keenness to visit Egypt in his first overseas tour after assuming office.

He said that Egypt was and will remain a strategic partner for British Petroleum, hailing the achievements made in Egypt in the fields and oil and gas discoveries.]]>
2/11/2020 4:30:47 PM
<![CDATA[EGX witnesses semi-collective rise during mid-week session]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 rose 0.21 percent, or 29.96 points, to close at 14,009.32 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 0.25 percent, or 4.74 points, to end at 1,921.84 points, and the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 climbed 0.10 percent, or 1.25 points, to close at 1,269.39 points.

On the other hand, the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.17 percent, or 2.33 points to 1,391.36 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 128.27 million, recording LE 706.38 billion, compared to LE 706.51 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 105.26 million shares, traded through 19,891 transactions, with a turnover of LE 532.43 million.

Egyptian investors were net buyers at LE 56.48 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 35.17 million, and LE 21.31 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 52 million, LE 5.69 million, and LE 965,741, respectively.

Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 40.86 million, and LE 22.27 million, respectively, while Egyptian organizations bought at LE 4.47 million.

Zahraa Maadi Investment & Development, Modern Company for water proofing (Bitumode), and El Nasr Clothes & Textiles (Kabo) were top gainers of the session 9.84 percent, 7.89 percent and 7.65 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Gharbia Islamic Housing Development, Delta Construction & Rebuilding, and The Egyptian Company for Construction Development-Lift Slab were top losers of the session by 7.04 percent, 4.17 percent, and 3.54 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Monday’s session in green, as: EGX 30 declined 0.91 percent, EGX 50 dropped 1.11 percent, EGX 70 dipped 0.75 percent, and EGX 100 decreased 0.82 percent.
]]>
2/11/2020 4:26:37 PM
<![CDATA[Sisi prioritizes development of Upper Egypt governorates: min.]]>
The program is partially funded by the World Bank (WB) with a sum of $500 million alongside a $457 million contribution by the government.

The minister made these remarks during a meeting with a WB delegation under Regional Director for the WB Group's Sustainable Development Department for the Middle East and North Africa (MNA) region Ayat Soliman, on the fringe of his current visit to the UAE capital of Abu Dhabi, according to a press release by the Local Development Ministry.

Minister Shaarawy is leading Egypt's delegation to the World Urban Forum in Abu Dhabi, which take place on February 8-13.

The program has achieved remarkable progress throughout the past period as regards the rate of projects' implementation, the minister said, noting that the development projects intend to support infrastructure services, economic development, and creating permanent job opportunities for Qena and Sohag residents.

Meanwhile, the WB delegation expressed appreciation and gratitude for Shaarawy's key participation in the urban forum.

The delegation, also, hailed achievements realized by the local development program in Upper Egypt following a mid-term assessment it carried out during its last visit to Cairo.]]>
2/11/2020 4:02:19 PM
<![CDATA[Investments in petroleum sector rise to LE 1T: Molla]]>
Molla clarified during his speech at Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) that foreign investment hit $35 million during the last 4 years.

He also reviewed the Petroleum Ministry’s efforts to support the Egyptian economy, stating that the sector was able to achieve 27 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) in 2018, besides recording a surplus in the trade balance for the first time for a long period.

Moreover, the sector was able to regain the trust and confidence of investors and reduce foreign partners’ dues, according to the minister.

The minister added that the sector helped in increasing investment and the entry of new investors to the market, in addition to the growth of gas production until achieving self-sufficiency.

“Egypt also succeeded in recording large numbers in the gas sector through reaching 1.9 million barrels of gas equivalent in August 2019,” the minister stated, adding that it achieved an unprecedented record for home gas delivery, reaching 1.25 million housing units annually, to achieve social justice, meet the citizens’ needs easily, and rationalize support.

He further referred to turning Egypt into a regional center for oil and gas trading, and resuming exports to Jordan.

Earlier on Tuesday, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi opened Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) under the theme of "North Africa and the Mediterranean: Delivering the Needs of Tomorrow." The event witnesses the participation of more than 270 local and international industrial experts along with 1,600 participants.

About 14 countries participate in the event alongside 15 international petroleum companies and more than 450 exhibitors.

]]>
2/11/2020 3:57:18 PM
<![CDATA[Dollar rates down at Egypt's major banks]]>
At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr, the dollar rate declined by one piaster, recording EGP 15.68 for buying and EGP 15.78 for selling.

The dollar exchange rate at the Suez Canal Bank declined by one piaster to register EGP 15.68 for buying and EGP 15.78 for selling.

At the Arab African International Bank, the dollar rate decreased one piaster, recording EGP 15.66 for buying and EGP 15.76 for selling.

At the Commercial International Bank,the dollar exchange rate recorded EGP 15.66 for buying and EGP 15.76 for selling.

At the National Bank of Greece, the dollar rate recorded EGP 15.68 for buying and EGP 15.77 for selling.]]>
2/11/2020 3:09:55 PM
<![CDATA[Planning minister discusses joint cooperation with Saudi investor]]>
In a statement, she said that her ministry is keen on boosting cooperation with all development partners.

She added that her ministry is also seeking to push up mechanisms of partnership with the private sector and civil society along with local and international development partners.

She confirmed that the Egyptian economic reform program is successful, asserting that new laws and measures adopted by the government are aimed at encouraging investment.

The Saudi investor meanwhile expressed confidence that cooperation between the two sides will be successful.]]>
2/11/2020 3:00:48 PM
<![CDATA[Economic reforms boosted trust in Egyptian market: Kuwaiti banker]]>
The NBK-Egypt’s outstanding financial performance over the years is a strong testament to NBK Group’s insightful vision and great trust in the Egyptian market’s rapid growth and huge potentials, she added in a statement issued by the bank.

Al-Bahar asserted that Egypt is considered a greatly promising market where NBK strives to expand its activities.

She confirmed that NBK is currently striving to expand its market share in Egypt as it seeks to strengthen its growth and product integration as part of its diversification strategy as it continues to increase the diversity of its income across geographies and segments, adding that NBK-Egypt provides almost one third of the profits attributed to NBK Group’s international branches.

Earlier in the day, the NBK group reported that NBK-Egypt achieved 2.16 billion in net profits by the end of 2019 up 8.31 percent compared to EGP 2.002 billion in 2018.

According to the report, NBK-Egypt's customer loans and facilities to customers stood at EGP 31.55 billion up by 5.40 percent from last year, with deposits amounting to EGP 51.57 billion.

The NBK-Egypt has a wide network of 52 branches spread over premium locations in various Egyptian governorates and cities and regions, including Cairo, Giza, Alexandria, Delta, Sinai, Red Sea and Upper Egypt, in addition to the industrial zones in the 6th of October and the 10th of Ramadan cities.]]>
2/11/2020 2:59:34 PM
<![CDATA[Transport minister reviews steps to establish logistics zone in Damietta]]>
This zone should be the biggest in the Middle East and North Africa region.

A consortium of the two companies submitted a technical and financial offer based on the outcome of a study to build the logistics zone, which would be the second in the Delta city of Damietta.

The offer included the anticipated volume of investment and stages of implementing the project. It also focused on expected revenues and the value added.

Part of the project is to establish an integrated multimodal transport system and connecting it to logistics centers and industrial zones, Wazir said.

He added that the project would help achieve economic development in Damietta and neighboring areas, noting this would also hone the competitiveness of Egyptian ports.

It is hoped to turn Damietta into an essential harbor in the East Mediterranean region, thus opening new markets for Egyptian exports to tap, Wazir further said.

The project will also contribute to luring more foreign investments to the country, the minister added.]]>
2/11/2020 2:57:33 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt ranks 2nd in capability of facing economic shocks: Min.]]>
Ma’it added that the country came in the fifth place globally in terms of the economic growth, with a growth rate of 5.6 percent. It also came in the second place as the highest primary surplus of GDP by 2 percent, and Ecuador ranked first.

According to the minister, Egypt’s growth rate hit 5.6 percent during the first quarter of 2019/2020 and the unemployment rate declined to 7.8 percent in the third quarter of 2019. He also added that the monthly inflation rate dropped to 7 percent in December 2019, compared to 12 percent in December 2018.

“The net foreign reserves surged to $45.4 billion in December 2019,” he stated, adding that it achieved a total surplus in the balance of payments amounting to about $200 million during the first quarter of the fiscal year 2019/2020.

This came during the issuing of the semi-annual report on the financial performance of the ministry during the period July - December 2019/2020.

Vice Minister of Finance for Fiscal Policies and Institutional Reform Ahmed Kojak said that the report is an evaluation of the financial performance and a statement for each of the revenues and expenses for the first half of the fiscal year 2019/2020 after six months from the actual implementation of the budget.]]>
2/11/2020 1:56:26 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt signs $43M oil exploration deal with EGAS, Wintershall Dea]]>
The new agreement was signed with the Egyptian Holding Company for Natural Gases "EGAS" and the German company Wintershall Dea, the ministry clarified in a statement.
Molla said that this agreement is the first for the German company in Egypt after the merge between Wintershall and Dea company.

He stressed that continuing to sign petroleum agreements with international companies achieve vital goals for the Egyptian economy, including increasing the investments pumped into the market and contributing to reaching new discoveries that enhance production and reserves of oil and gas.

“With the signing of this agreement, the number of petroleum agreements concluded by the Ministry of Petroleum with investors and partners during the past 4 years amounts to 61 agreements with a minimum investment of approximately $6 billion to dig 230 wells,” Molla stated.

He said that the keenness of international oil companies to pump more investments and expand their activities in Egypt is a sign of their confidence in the investment climate in Egypt in general and in the oil sector in particular.]]>
2/11/2020 1:49:35 PM
<![CDATA[Sisi inaugurates Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) ]]>
More than 270 local and international industrial experts take part in the event along with 1,600 participants.

About 14 countries participate in the event alongside 15 international petroleum companies and more than 450 exhibitors.

Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli and Petroleum Minister Tareq el Mulla attended the event as well as a number of ministers and statesmen.

Sisi had a photo-opportunity with Madbouli and Mulla as well as the heads of international energy companies before the inauguration.

EGYPS 2020 started with screening a documentary about the great leap realized in the petroleum sector.

The film noted that the new economic vision adopted by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi depends on pinpointing the available potentials to ensure fruitful future.

Efforts are underway to develop 11,000 new projects, according to the film, referring to the new laws regulating the natural gas market and energy reform mechanism.

Meanwhile, Christopher Hudson, President of the Energy Division at DMG events, said that the conference would have never taken place without the support of President Sisi.

He noted that EGYPS has become a main platform for the energy sector in Africa and eastern Mediterranean.

He added that it is an honor that president inaugurated the event.

He added that the energy sector in Egypt realized its sustainable goals, noting that 2020 is a pivotal year for the energy and natural gas industries worldwide. ]]>
2/11/2020 12:01:29 PM
<![CDATA[EIB finances expansion of Alexandria West WWTP]]>
The financing will contribute to improving sanitation services for people in Alexandria, the bank said in a statement obtained by MENA on Monday.

The project involves increasing the capacity of the Alexandria West WWTP to match needs up to the year 2050 and upgrade the level of treatment at the WWTP from primary to secondary to improve the quality of effluent from the plant and contribute to the depollution of Lake Maryout as well as the Mediterranean Sea thus contributing also to the objectives of the Clean Oceans Initiative.

Flavia Palanza, EIB Director of Operations for Eastern and Southern Neighbourhood commented on the signature, “We are pleased to sign a new financing agreement to support such vital sector in Egypt. The Alexandria West WWP will have an important impact on the lives of people living in Egypt’s second largest city. As the largest international financier to the water sector worldwide, we are proud to provide both financing as well as needed expertise to implement projects.”

Ambassador of the European Union (EU) to Egypt Ivan Surkoš noted that the water sector is indeed high in the agenda of EU partnership with Egypt; this sector has been one of the main pillars of EU cooperation over the past 15 years.

"We are looking at how water is the key to socio-economic development, not just from the environmental perspective, but also it contributes to green growth, particularly through greater resource efficiency," Surkoš said.

"The EU EUR 20 Million grant contribution to the Alexandria Waste Water Treatment Plant forms part of our efforts in that direction," he added.

On a regional scale, this project will support the depollution of Lake Maryout and the Mediterranean Sea and potentially provide an additional source of water and thus improve the economic situation in the area. Also, this project will improve the health and environmental conditions of people living in the Governorate of Alexandria.

This will contribute towards an efficient and sustainable water resources management in Egypt as well as to the Egyptian climate action efforts. The project will contribute to the environmental sound disposal/utilization of effluent and sludge and energetically optimized and environmental sound sludge treatment.

In addition, the project should limit energy consumption by generating energy from the biogas during the treatment of the sludge and thus reduce the emission of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.

Meanwhile, the EIB and the Ministry of International Cooperation have signed a cooperation agreement to provide up to EUR 1.5 million of grant financing for a feasibility study including an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment for the Tanta – El Mansoura – Damietta Rail project which will improve railways safety, availability and reliability of a vital rail corridor through the Nile Delta.

This technical assistant grant is funded from the Economic Resilience initiative (ERI).

The subsequent EIB financing facilitated by this grant will be used for the upgrading of the 118 km Tanta – El Mansoura – Damietta railway line.

The scope of the investment will be defined during the implementation of the Feasibility Study. The upgrade includes the doubling of the section El Mansoura-Damietta (65 km), the re-signaling of the whole line and investments in the railway stations, and potentially a freight yard and a freight link to Damietta port.

Palanza said “with this new loan, the Egyptian government intends to push ahead with the upgrading and expansion of its railway infrastructure. As the European Union bank, we believe that a well-functioning railway transport network can make a vital contribution to reducing the number of cars on the roads and in this way lower pollution and mitigate climate change”.

The project lies on an important railway corridor connecting Cairo to one of the major Egyptian Mediterranean ports, Damietta, and contributes to the improvement of the Egyptian railway network.

It will contribute to the development of economic infrastructure, in particular transport. The development of key transport infrastructure is a prerequisite for social and economic development and a priority for the EU strategy in the country.]]>
2/10/2020 6:29:27 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s annual core inflation reaches to 2.4% in December: CBE]]>
Core inflation discounts or strips out certain categories that are considered more volatile.

CBE said in a statement on its website Tuesday that the core inflation recorded a monthly rate of 0.2 percent in December 2019, compared to -0.1 percent in November 2019, and 0 percent in December 2018.

The Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) announced earlier that Egypt’s annual consumer price inflation recorded 7.1 percent in December 2019, compared to 3.6 percent in November 2019.

Monthly headline urban CPI inflation recorded -0.2 percent in December 2019, compared to -0.3 percent in the previous month and to -3.4 percent in the same month of previous year, according to CAPMAS.

Inflation has surged in Egypt since the flotation of the Egyptian pound in November 2016, reaching a high record level in July 2018 due to energy subsidy cuts, and gradually easing since July 2019.

Egypt targets an inflation rate of 10.5 percent in fiscal year of 2019/2020 and was targeting 13 percent in 2018/2019 budget.
]]>
2/10/2020 5:16:31 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet reveals state's plans to expand logistic zones, franchises]]>
According to an infograph published by the cabinet media center, the expansion plan underscores the keenness of the state on providing high-quality commodities and food stuffs for citizens at low prices, in order to control markets across the country.

The plan targets setting up as many as 60 central and regional logistic zones nationwide by the year 2030, encompassing eight central zones and 52 regional ones, the infrograph showed.

The wholesale and retail trade sectors accounted for 13.5 percent of the 2018 gross domestic product (GDP), compared with 12.9 percent in 2013 and 2014.

Also, the wholesale and retail investments increased by 283.1 percent to reach EGP 31.8 billion in 2018-2019, compared with EGP 8.3 billion in 2013-2014.

The state seeks to take the number of franchise outlets from 669 to 1,895 nationwide by the year 2030, the infograph added]]>
2/10/2020 4:14:29 PM
<![CDATA[CBE, Govt in talks with real estate developers on mortgage finance initiative]]>
The minister said he listened to suggestions by the real estate developers as regards the initiative.

Negm said the initiative is ready to be applied and necessary instructions were sent to banks across Egypt.

Only ready-to-move-in units will be included in the initiative to avoid any risk, he added. ]]>
2/10/2020 4:09:37 PM
<![CDATA[EGX trades in red zone during Monday]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 declined 0.91 percent, or 128.88 points, to close at 13,979.36 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 1.11 percent, or 21.47 points, to end at 1,917.1 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dipped 0.75 percent, or 9.55 points, to close at 1,268.14 points, and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.82 percent, or 11.51 points to 1,393.69 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 6 billion, recording LE 706.51 billion, compared to LE 712.51 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 111.55 million shares, traded through 18,199 transactions, with a turnover of LE 546.75 million.

Arab investors were net sellers at LE 19.32 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net buyers at LE 9.38 million, and LE 9.94 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 358,937, and LE 1.1 million, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net sellers at LE 9.69 million.

Egyptian and foreign organizations bought at LE 19.07 million, and LE 8.8 million, respectively, while Arab organizations sold at LE 19.68 million.

Gharbia Islamic Housing Development, Delta for Printing & Packaging, and Memphis Pharmaceuticals were top gainers of the session 9.95 percent, 9.56 percent and 8.08 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Ismailia National Food Industries, Cairo Educational Services , and Egypt Aluminum were top losers of the session by 9.19 percent, 8.08 percent, and 7.19 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Sunday’s session in green, as: EGX 30 rose 0.02 percent, EGX 50 hiked 0.26 percent, EGX 70 rose 0.25 percent, and EGX100 increased 0.31 percent.
]]>
2/10/2020 4:02:32 PM
<![CDATA[Grace period for investors to pay back extended: CBE deputy governor]]>
Nagm made the statement in a hearing session held by the Industry Committee at the House of Representatives on the initiative launched by CBE to finance the private industrial sector and alleviate the crisis of stumbling factories.

Those businesses are exempted from interest rates that they have not paid yet and 50 percent of the amount due excluding the portion that had been paid back by investors. The payback can also be in the form of cash or in kind.

The deputy governor pointed out that the execution of all court sentences against stumbling factories are being suspended and that if any of those has been subject to confiscation, would get the collateral returned once an agreement is reached with banks to reschedule debts.

“Those who are not part of the initiative can still negotiate with banks and reschedule their loans. Nevertheless, they will not enjoy the 50 percent discount on the remaining due amount...The repayment agreement between investors and the banks are submitted to the central bank for review and approval if the conditions apply. As such, all judicial measures against stumbling factories are stopped,” Nagm stated.

The deputy governor revealed that 101 factories applied to become part of the initiative as they got loans worth LE18.3 billion. There are 45 mega factories that borrowed LE36.9 billion but did not join the initiative as their debts stand at more than LE10 million.

Eighty-six factories were just facing trouble paying back interests, which were either written off or rescheduled. Ninety-three others got their due amounts worth LE10.6 billion annulled while 89 factories rescheduled their debts.
]]>
2/10/2020 3:52:10 PM
<![CDATA[CBE issues LE 7B in T-bonds Monday]]>
The T-bonds were offered in two installments, with the first valued at LE 3.75 billion with a five-year term and the second worth LE 3.25 billion with a 10-year term.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates were declined to 12.75 percent from 13.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
2/10/2020 3:47:08 PM
<![CDATA[EAPD, probes with IDB cooperation projects in Africa]]>
A statement issued by the Foreign Ministry on Monday said the meeting aimed at promoting tripartite cooperation frameworks to serve development purposes in Africa and Egypt's interest in contributing to building African cadres' capabilities as well as the keenness on supporting South-South cooperation projects.

Maghraby welcomed cooperation with the IDB to increase development rates. The tripartite cooperation program between Egyptian embassies abroad, EAPD and IDB includes cooperation in the fields of health and women empowerment as well as training of cadres from more tan 40 African countries. ]]>
2/10/2020 3:44:35 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to build LE 15B phosphorous fertilizers complex in April]]>
The complex aims to achieve an annual production of 500,000 tons of phosphoric acid, New Valley Governor Mohamed Al-Zamlout said. The project will be established in cooperation between the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources.

The complex, which will be established in the 440-square-kilometer governorate is set to become the fourth worldwide to provide such production of phosphoric acid.

The project will provide job opportunities for people of the New Valley, the governor said, adding that graduates in the governorate have been trained to work in the new complex.

phos2

phos3

In December last year, Petroleum Minister Tarek el said that a phosphoric acid production complex in Abu Tartour, New Valley, aims at attracting more investments in the mining field upon directives of President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Middle East News Agency reported.

The minister made the remarks during the signing of a contract between Misr Phosphate Company and a Chinese consortium to establish the complex in the presence of Zamlout and the Chinese ambassador in Cairo.

The $1-billion project is expected to produce a total of one million tons of phosphoric acid a year, the minister said.

He added that the project will be established on an area of 560,000 square meters and will have a storage capacity of 3 million square meters.


Parts of the reporting were taken from MENA]]>
2/10/2020 3:43:32 PM
<![CDATA[Planning minister, UN coordinator confer on SDG funding]]>
Funding remains a challenge in the face of efforts to achieve sustainable development, Saeid said.

Cairo is keen on attracting more foreign investments to help overcome this challenge, she noted.

Saeid stressed the need for financial foundations to unify efforts and work in line with a plan of action.

Indeed, the UN acts to facilitate efforts exerted to develop an integrated national funding system and outline strategies that heed sustainable development goals, the minister further said.

Dictus, for his part, said the UN's Sustainable Development Goals Fund (SDG Fund) will support regional offices to help develop financing strategies and suitable plans to achieve those goals]]>
2/10/2020 3:41:29 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s annual inflation hits 6.8% in January: CAPMAS]]>
Inflation remains within the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) target range of 9 percent, plus or minus 3 percentage points.

On a monthly basis, inflation increased 0.8 percent in January, recording 105.2 points, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) said.

CAPMAS attributed the increase in inflation to the hike in prices of some commodities during the month, as meat and poultry prices rose by about 5.3 percent, vegetables by 5 percent, of mineral and carbonated water and natural juices by 0.6 percent, the health care by 0.5 percent, and restaurant and hotel by 0.3 percent.

It also referred to the decrease in the prices of the fruits by 1.8 percent and other food products by 0.2 percent.

At the urban level, the annual inflation rate for January 2020 rose to 7.2 percent, up from 7.1 percent in December.

On Saturday, Cabinet's media center revealed Egypt's average inflation rate recorded 9.2 percent in 2019 compared to 14.4 percent in 2018.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expected Egypt’s inflation to reach 14 percent in 2019 and 7 percent in 2023.

Inflation surged in Egypt since the flotation of the Egyptian pound in November 2016, reaching a high record level in July due to energy subsidy cuts, and gradually easing since July.
]]>
2/10/2020 2:35:55 PM
<![CDATA[UAE-based CPI financial hails Egypt’s economy]]>
“The critical macroeconomic reforms which were introduced to unlock billions in support grants successfully corrected the country’s sizeable external and domestic imbalances,” it stated.

In an article titled “the revival of Egypt”, the UAE-based publication said that now Egypt is being hailed by investors as one of the region’s fastest-growing economies, and is favored by international investors who seek high yields in an increasingly uncertain global environment.

It reported the International Monetary Fund (IMF), saying that Egypt’s economic reform program implemented a significant policy adjustment that was anchored by the liberalization of the foreign exchange market and fiscal consolidation to ensure public debt sustainability.

“The government’s fiscal reform measures were critical in stabilizing the economy—growth has accelerated, and current account and fiscal deficits have narrowed. Similarly, Egypt’s foreign currency reserves have risen while public debt, inflation and unemployment have significantly declined,” it added.

Moreover, it said that the critical macroeconomic reforms which were introduced to unlock billions in IMF funds successfully corrected the country’s large external and domestic imbalances. Cairo emerged from a three-year IMF program in July 2019, which provided a $12 billion loan as the country endorsed sweeping and widely unpopular economic measures.

Egypt embarked on a bold economic reform program that included the introduction of taxes, such as the value-added tax (VAT), and cutting energy subsidies, with the aim of trimming the budget deficit.

The country floated its currency in November 2016 before it clinched a $12 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The IMF Executive Board approved in November 2016 a three-year extended fund facility (EFT) loan to Egypt worth $12 billion to support its economic reform program.

Egypt’s fiscal discipline caught the attention of the three main rating agencies—Fitch Ratings, Moody’s and S&P—who could not help but upgrade the country’s sovereign ratings as well as their outlooks, citing the country’s strong economic growth prospects following fiscal reforms, it reported.

According to CPI, the success of the government’s structural reforms enabled the modernization of the economy, which includes steps to support exports and reduce non-tariff barriers. Egypt also managed to streamline and enhance the industrial land allocation process as well as support SMEs and strengthen public procurement.

Besides tackling Egypt’s economic reforms, as well as the attraction and feedback of the international agencies, the article reviewed Egypt’s Sovereign Fund, and the government initial public offering.

Here you can find the

full report


]]>
2/9/2020 7:45:20 PM
<![CDATA[Dollar prices down at Egypt's major banks]]>
At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr, the dollar rate declined by two piasters, recording LE 15.71 for buying and LE 15.81 for selling.

At the Arab African International Bank and Suez Canal Bank, the dollar rate decreased two piasters recording LE 15.70 for buying and LE 15.80 for selling.

At the Commercial International Bank, the dollar rate went down by two piasters to record LE 15.69 for buying and LE 15.79 for selling.

At the National Bank of Greece, the dollar rate backed by three piasters to record LE 15.71 for buying and LE 15.81 for selling.]]>
2/9/2020 7:10:25 PM
<![CDATA[PM follows up implementation of 1.5M feddan project]]>
Madbouli's statements came during a meeting Sunday to follow up measures adopted by the Egyptian Countryside Development Company as part of a project to cultivate 1.5 million feddans nation-wide.

The meeting was attended by Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait, Minister of Housing, Utilities and Urban Communities Assem el Gazzar, Minister of Transport Kamel el Wazir and Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation Sayed el Qasir.

CEO of the Egyptian Countryside Development Company Ater Hannoura, who also attended the meeting, briefed the prime minister on the development of the project, saying 799 companies have been established with a combined capital worth 1.6 billion pounds including 699 companies by small farmers and youth as part of the mega national project.

He said bids have been offered to mobile phone companies in fiscal year 2019-2020 to provide communication services in the new farmlands, lauding the government for its intensified efforts to extend utility and public services and offer facilities to encourage the establishment of new residential communities. ]]>
2/9/2020 7:07:50 PM
<![CDATA[Banking coop. with Africa intensified during Sisi’s chairmanship of AU: CBE]]>
The CBE, in line with the directive of President Sisi, led Egypt's economic convergence and unity with African nations, a CBE source told MENA, citing the establishment of an Egyptian company with a capital of $600 million to guarantee credit for exports to Africa.

Several banking training programs were also provided for different central and commercial banks in cooperation with the CBE in various fields, such as managing the monetary policies, currency reserves, exchange rates and fighting money laundering, the source said. ]]>
2/9/2020 7:06:19 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt is an important energy hub for Africa, Mediterranean, Middle East: US]]>
This came during the US announcement of participation in the Egypt Petroleum Show, EGYPS 2020.

The embassy stated in a press release that U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Jonathan Cohen, Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources at the U.S. Department of State Frank Fannon, Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy Steven Winberg, and Acting Director of the U.S. Trade and Development Agency Thomas Hardy will represent the U.S. at EGYPS 2020.

“The presence of high-level officials from multiple U.S. agencies at EGYPS 2020 demonstrates the growing commercial partnership between our countries. The U.S. Departments of State and Energy, and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency are determined to continue building strong bridges with Egypt, including its private sector, to help Egypt realize its ambition to be a regional leader in energy production and distribution,” Cohen said.

“Over 20 U.S. companies are participating in EGYPS 2020 as exhibitors, and representatives from a number of U.S. companies are speaking on panels throughout the conference. We are especially pleased that the U.S. private sector will be represented not just by the big companies we all know, but also by many small and medium sized ones that have quality American products and services to offer to buyers in Egypt and elsewhere,” he noted.

According to the statement, the U.S. Foreign Commercial Service will be providing information and business counseling services from its booth in Hall 3.

The embassy clarified that American companies and attendees can learn more about doing business in Egypt, Egyptian participants can find help sourcing U.S. products and services for application in the energy sector, and the Commercial Service can help both sides identify potential business partners.
EGYPS 2020 will take place on Feb. 11-13 at Egypt International Exhibition Center, under the title “North Africa and the Mediterranean: Delivering the Energy Needs of Tomorrow."


]]>
2/9/2020 7:03:55 PM
<![CDATA[Discerning Public-Private Partnership ]]>
power plant


What to know about PPP

The PPP concept dates back to the 1960s when the United States implemented such solution for urban renewal projects. At present, more than 85 countries have resorted to PPP to accomplish infrastructure. PPP projects are categorized into nine types: 1- BOO (Build, Own, Operate), where the contractor constructs, owns for a specific duration, operates, and maintains a facility. 2- BOOT (Build, Own, Operate, Transfer), where the contractor carries out the same missions but the facility’s ownership goes to the government after a specified operating duration. 3- BOT (Build, Operate, Transfer), where the contractor never owns the facility. 4- BBO (Buy, Build, Operate) where the government sells the facility to a contractor who improves and operates it for profit. 5- BTO (Build, Transfer, Operate), where the government acquires the ownership of the facility once it is built by the contractor who later assumes operations. 6- BLT (Build, Lease, Transfer), where the contractor builds a facility and leases it for a while from the government before the latter gets it back. 7- ROT (Rehabilitate, Own, Transfer), where the contractor renovates an existing facility, owns it for specific time, and later transfers it to the government. 8- Operations, Maintenance, and Management (OMM) agreement where the contractor operates, maintains and manages an existing facility owned by the government. 9- Concession, where the contractor just constructs the facility and collects the expenses by directly charging the user and/or receiving a grant from the government. The operating duration is usually 10 to 30 years.

oil refinery

Proper Basis for PPP

Professor of Economics, Investment and International Finance Rashad Abdo, Chairman of the Egyptian Forum for Economic Studies, tells Business Today Egypt that PPP can be applied in all sectors. “For instance, if we want to build 300 schools that cost $300 million, we can invite tenders on the local and global scales for the private sector to construct and equip the buildings, and get financing from funding institutions. The loan and interests can be paid back over 30 years, which would be $10 million a year. Pension funds would be interested as they would get a fixed annual income. The World Bank can conduct the studies needed for PPP projects, designating the specifications and amount needed. The studies can be conducted by the World Bank and submitted to funding institutions. This can be a way to develop hospitals, education, and transportation,” Abdo explains.

school


The professor underlines that the success factors for such partnership are comprehensive studies, rational demands from the government, the ability to pay, and guarantees to pay off. Whether to hold PPPs in the manufacturing or agricultural sectors or not, Abdo says “everything is subject to studies. For instance, the New Suez Canal was funded by investment certificates with 12 percent interest rate. It was a success because the revenues covered the amount repaid. It is about the ability to pay back. An agricultural project would yield a nine-percent profit. Would it be possible to fund it through investment certificates with a 12-percent interest rate? It is about feasibility and evaluation of the investment project.”

Gains of PPP

Economic Expert Hany Tawfik tells Business Today Egypt “I am against that the public sector pumps investments as its role is to build infrastructure, and not to crowd out the private sector.” Speaking of PPP benefits, Tawfik explains that “the role of the state should not be confined to participation, but to also include the elimination of obstacles embodied in corruption and crippling administrative procedures. An advantage of PPP [to investors] is that such impediments would be absent. As an investor, you examine opportunities offered by the government and you pick projects that are properly valued, have corporate governance, transparency, and good representation.”

The economic experts suggests that infrastructure projects, public schools and hospitals are established in the BOT system. In case of the last two, the private sector can rent the buildings to the government. Tawfik views that prospective IPOs of state-owned companies are also a kind of PPP that would push forward the role of private investors in the economy. “For the large public companies we inherited, we should evaluate and restructure them and open up for the private sector to invest in them either by bidding or stock market,” the expert asserts.

“The positive effects of public-sector companies’ IPOs are generating income to the state, reviving the stock market, and pointing out to the state the many flaws that should be remedied in the stock market. Examples [of flaws] are the tax on transactions and tax on dividends,” Tawfik highlights, suggesting incentives to the companies listed on the stock market.

Hurdles Facing Public Enterprise IPOs

stocks

Board Member of the Egyptian Exchange Ihab Said stated in a conference on rehabilitating public-sector companies that the value of exchange dropped from more than LE2 billion to LE400 million. One of the reasons is the lack of liquidity because of high interest rates and real estate purchases. The outcome of the drop is that companies willing to list themselves have refrained from doing so as they are worried about the drop in share value. “Only the government is brave enough to take that step,” Said pointed out, adding that a delay in IPOs occurred due to the bad performance of the market, which has room for IPOs, if the evaluation is right.

CEO of Acumen Holding Rana Adawy suggests that the best solution for corruption in public sector companies is joining the stock market. “If you look at non-listed public companies, you will find a huge amount of corruption embodied in high expenditure on compensations and wages,” Adawy highlighted.

Managing Director of Azimut Egypt Asset Management Ahmed Abou El-Saad said some of the public companies did well in the stock market while others did not because of a backlash in the free market conditions as the administrations of such companies they did not make information available. “Some pulled out from the stock market for the board to not sit with small investors and explain the situation,” Saad stated.

Saad pointed out that the percentage of foreigners in the Egyptian Exchange is low because they do not know enough about the listed companies, and whether they are successful. The stock market expert suggests to start IPOs with big names like Banque du Cairo, the Arab African International Bank, and the National Bank of Egypt (NBE). Later on, others can be marketed to foreign investors, Saad proposes, saying “it is easier to offer listed companies when it comes to administrative procedures but that should not be the priority.”

Public-Private Partnership Bill in Egypt

The Cabinet drafted amendments to the “Regulation of Private Sector Participation in Infrastructure Projects, Public Services and Utilities Bill” promulgated in 2010. The draft was submitted to the parliament in December 2019, and states that administrative entities are allowed to enter into contracts with “the project’s company” to carry out specific tasks. Those include financing, designing, constructing, operating/leasing, and maintaining the project; financing, developing, operating/leasing, and maintaining the project; financing, rehabilitating, operating/leasing, and maintaining the project; and any of the aforementioned tasks whether independently or together as long as such tasks include financing and maintenance.

The duration of the partnership contract shall not be less than five years and no more than 30 years starting the issuance date of the “approval certificate” by the administrative entity endorsing the quality level of work, products, or services provided. The value of the contract shall not be less than LE100 million, and a license is required if the duration of the contract is more than 15 years.

Projects to be accomplished in the PPP system must be offered in auctions or tenders. Exceptions can be made after the approval of the Supreme Committee for Partnership Affairs and the endorsement of the Central Unit for Partnership upon the request of the administrative entity.

Limited auctions and tenders are allowed if the project requires financial and technical capacities available with only a small number of investors. Direct contracting is also possible, if some conditions apply. Those include the necessity to accomplish a certain project immediately as mandated by national interest, the outstanding performance of a contractor in former PPP projects, and if the private investor puts forward a proposal that is creative and fulfilling of the national interest, coupled with all technical and financial studies needed.

hospital


If an investor puts in a bid having a low value compared to the specifications that must be met, they have to present guarantees and explanations to the committee, which still preserves the right to discard the bid. A petition committee shall be formed presided by the Ministry of Finance to receive investors’ complaints with regard to any pre-contracting procedures. The committee will be headed by the minister of finance and have as members deputies of the State’s Council chairman, head of the Central Unit for Partnership, and an expert working for the state to be selected by the minister.]]>
2/9/2020 5:03:53 PM
<![CDATA[EGX continues its uptrend for 3rd session in row]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 inched up 0.02 percent, or 2.38 points, to close at 14,108.24 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 0.26 percent, or 5.08 points, to end at 1,938.57 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 jumped 0.25 percent, or 3.24 points, to close at 1,277.69 points, and the broader index EGX 100 increased 0.31 percent, or 4.3 points to 1,405.2 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 116.3 million, recording LE 712.51 billion, compared to LE 712.62 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 110.83 million shares, traded through 18,319 transactions, with a turnover of LE 466.22 million.

Arab investors were net sellers at LE 15.75 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net buyers at LE 1 million, and LE 14.74 million, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 16.27 million, and LE 1.7 million, respectively, while foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 1.03 million.

Egyptian and Arab organizations sold at LE 15.27 million, and LE 17.47 million, respectively, while foreign organizations bought at LE 15.76 million.

Gharbia Islamic Housing Development, Rowad Tourism (Al Rowad), and Misr Fretilizers Production Company – Mopco were top gainers of the session 9.90 percent, 5.56 percent and 4.26 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Ismailia National Food Industries, General Company for Land Reclamation, Development & Reconstruction, and Sabaa International Company for Pharmaceutical and Chemical were top losers of the session by 8.83 percent, 4.78 percent, and 4.68 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Thursday’s session in green, as: EGX 30 rose 0.85 percent, EGX 50 hiked 0.69 percent, EGX 70 rose 0.51 percent, EGX100 increased 0.72 percent.
]]>
2/9/2020 4:59:08 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 14.5B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 4 billion with a 91-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 266-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are to 12.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
2/9/2020 2:56:28 PM
<![CDATA[Banking coop. with Africa intensified during Sisi’s chairmanship of AU: CBE]]>
The CBE, in line with the directive of President Sisi, led Egypt's economic convergence and unity with African nations, a CBE source told MENA, citing the establishment of an Egyptian company with a capital of $600 million to guarantee credit for exports to Africa.

Several banking training programs were also provided for different central and commercial banks in cooperation with the CBE in various fields, such as managing the monetary policies, currency reserves, exchange rates and fighting money laundering, the source said.]]>
2/9/2020 12:36:12 PM
<![CDATA[Ministry reveals electricity theft through prepaid meters]]>
Spokesperson of the Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy Ayman Hamza told Egypt Today that total losses compose 15 percent of the electricity distributed and are worth LE2 billion.

The spokesperson stated that the Egyptian Electricity Holding Co. has set mechanisms to eliminate theft whether by users of traditional meters or users of prepaid meters.

Hamza added that the nine distribution companies operating across the country will launch intensive inspection campaigns pointing out that the holding company studies increasing the penalty for both the domestic and commercial segments.

He added that the users subject to inspection will be selected randomly; however, the prepaid meters of those who did not charge the card for three months will have their meters checked for violations.

A source at the ministry revealed that a smart meter will be installed in central distribution boards across the country in order to detect the locations of theft. The source added that a number of violators have been identified as they did not charge the card for months while their consumption did not decline. Inspection proved that the meters were manipulated. That is why the ministry considers assigning Shuaa company, which is in charge of getting traditional meters readings, inspection over prepaid ones.
]]>
2/8/2020 3:16:32 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, EIB sign 5-point agreement coop.]]>
The cooperation will also involve supporting how to cope with the climate changes and alleviate their consequences along with promoting health and education domains.

The agreement has been reached following International Cooperation Minister Rania el Mashat's meeting with the visiting mission of the EIB under Flavia Palanza, the EIB Director for Eastern and Southern Neighbourhood.

Palanza said that the banker is willing to fund Egypt's public and private sectors, in cooperation with the European Union and global funding institutions.

A number of projects, which have been launched during the previous years, will be finalized in 2020, said Palanza.

The EIB is our strategic partner, Mashaat said, adding that cooperation with the bank started in 1979 leading to long-term partnership in carrying out various projects to support the country's social and economic development.

Mashaat and Palanza, in the joint statement, asserted the continuation of bilateral and multilateral cooperation with development partners, governments, world's economic policies makers, public sector and civil society towards the realization of the national development agenda 2030.]]>
2/8/2020 1:40:48 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet: Inflation rate hits 9.2 pct in 2019]]>
In an info-graphic posted on its website Saturday, the center said the recent drop in the inflation rate came as a result of the continued improvement of Egypt's economy.

The inflation rate hit 0.2 percent in December 2019 compared to 0.3 percent in November, the center added.]]>
2/8/2020 1:36:02 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt looks forward to developing economic relations with Jordan]]>
Mashat voiced the Egyptian government's keenness to develop relations with Jordan in various economic cooperation fields within the framework of the strategic ties binding between the two countries.

Both ministers discussed preparations for holding the preparatory meetings for the Joint Egyptian-Jordanian Higher Committee set to convene in Cairo in the first half of 2020 under the chairmanship of Mashat and Hamoury.

For his part, the Jordanian minister stressed his country's keenness on cooperating with Egypt to render the joint committee meetings a success in a way that deepens partnership between both countries in various fields.

The two ministries tackled preparations for a visit set to be paid by delegations from Egypt's International Cooperation Ministry and Jordan's Trade Ministry to Iraq to boost trilateral cooperation in various fields.]]>
2/8/2020 12:19:42 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet denies reports on privatizing cotton companies]]>
In a statement, the cabinet media center said it contacted the Ministry of Public Business Sector which denied the news.

The ministry said that a comprehensive plan has been launched to upgrade the cotton gins and improve their capacities, adding that the state attaches importance to the quality of cotton crop via adopting the latest technological tools to cope up with the global developments in this industry.

This comes as part of the state's keenness on developing the cotton, spinning and weaving sector and restructuring companies specialized in this sector. ]]>
2/7/2020 2:47:09 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian, Jordanian discuss boosting bilateral trade cooperation]]>
During the meeting, held on the sidelines of the ordinary ministerial session of the Arab League’s socio-economic council that kicked off Thursday, Gamea praised the strong bilateral political and historical ties, noting the keenness of the two countries’ leaderships and governments on pushing economic cooperation even further and removing obstacles hindering trade movement in light of joint agreements topped by the Agreement on Facilitating and Developing Inter-Arab Trade and Aghadir Agreement.

She highlighted the support given by her ministry to small industrial ventures and plans to expand in setting up specialized industrial complexes, underlining the importance of cooperation between the private sectors in both countries to establish industrial partnerships and make the best use of available investment opportunities.

Talks also took up the successful Egyptian experiment in promoting small-and medium-sized enterprises and economically empowering youth and women.

For his part, the Jordanian minister asserted the need to give a stronger impetus to bilateral cooperation in the fields of trade, industry and investment.]]>
2/7/2020 12:46:20 PM
<![CDATA[CBE: Foreign currency reserves up by $37M in January]]>
In December, the country's foreign reserves registered $45.419 billion, the CBE added.]]>
2/6/2020 7:16:39 PM
<![CDATA[Presidential decree approving MoU on Single Support Framework for EU support to Egypt]]>
This Single Support Framework defines the areas of focus for EU assistance. It is based on the EU-Egypt Partnership Priorities for the years 2017-2020 and, in defining the priorities, takes into account the Egypt's Economic Reform Programme, being also aligned with Egypt's "Sustainable Development Strategy – Vision 2030".

The three sectors of intervention identified in the SSF are: Sector 1: Economic modernisation, energy sustainability and environment (indicative 40% of total budget); Sector 2: Social development and social protection (indicative 40% of total budget); and Sector 3: Governance, enhancing stability and modern democratic state (indicative 10% of total budget). In addition, there are complementary support for capacity development and civil society (indicative 10% of total budget).

The proposed indicative allocation for EU bilateral assistance to Egypt under the European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI), for 2017-2020 is between EUR 432 and EUR 528 million.]]>
2/6/2020 5:35:40 PM
<![CDATA[EGX flags in green for 2 session row, benchmark exceeds 14K levels]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 rose 0.85 percent, or 118.7 points, to close at 14,105.86 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 0.69 percent, or 13.29 points, to end at 1,933.49 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 rose 0.51 percent, or 6.51 points, to close at 1,274.45 points, and the broader index EGX 100 increased 0.72 percent, or 10 points to 1,400.9 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 5.3 billion, recording LE 712.62 billion, compared to LE 707.32 billion in Wednesday's session.

The trading volume reached 172.18 million shares, traded through 24,787 transactions, with a turnover of LE 818.73 million.

Foreign investors were net buyers at LE 66.31 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 55.83 million, and LE 10.48 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 26.07 million, and LE 2.35 million, respectively, while Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 9.59 million.

Egyptian and Arab organizations sold at LE 29.75 million, and LE 20.07 million, respectively, while foreign individuals bought at LE 68.66 million.

October Pharma, Memphis Pharmaceuticals, and Sarwa Capital Holding were top gainers of the session 10 percent, 9.68 percent and 9.66 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Cleopatra Hospital Company, Egyptian Transport (EGYTRANS), and Egypt for Poultry were top losers of the session by 5.21 percent, 2.90 percent, and 2.25 percent, respectively.


]]>
2/6/2020 5:33:58 PM
<![CDATA[ITFC allocates $1.1B in funding for Egypt in 2020 ]]>
Gamea added in a statement Thursday that $700 million of the funding will go to the energy sector, while $400 million will be for the internal trade.

This came during the minister’s meeting with CEO of IFTC Hani Sonbol, and his accompanying delegation, to review the bank’s current and future projects and programs in the Egyptian market, in addition to the foundation’s work program for 2020.

She pointed out that it is possible to cooperate with the foundation within the framework of trade development programs in order to enhance trade exchange between Egypt and various international markets.

The minister added that other cooperation programs of the foundation in Egypt come in the areas of supporting exporters and importers, and developing value chains in the cotton sector in cooperation with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization "UNIDO" which aims to develop the system of cultivating and manufacturing cotton in Egypt.

“It also has 'Women in Arab Trade' program which will be launched in Egypt this year with the aim of empowering Egyptian women,” she referred.

In December, Egypt signed a $1.1 billion agreement with ITFC to finance importing petroleum products and commodities for 2020.
]]>
2/6/2020 5:30:17 PM
<![CDATA[Cooperation portfolio bet. Egypt, Switzerland reaches €48M]]>
Mashat clarified that the cooperation comes in the fields of communications, urban planning, drinking water, sanitation, textile, health and environment.

“The existing development partnership between both countries has recorded 700 million Swiss francs (€653.29 million) since the beginning of development cooperation between them, which contributed to the implementation of 200 projects,” she added.

The minister aspired for more cooperation between both countries within the framework of the new cooperation strategy during the period from 2021-2021 according to the new priorities of the Egyptian Government and the sustainable goals of the United Nations.

Mashat stated earlier that the economic cooperation between Egypt and Switzerland hit 86 million Swiss francs during 2017-2020, adding that Switzerland has contributed to the provision of grants to Egypt by around 700 million Swiss francs since the beginning of the development cooperation between both countries, which helped in implementing 200 projects.

During this month, Egypt and Switzerland signed three memorandums of understating (MoU) to strengthen bilateral investments, improve higher education, and develop the structure of the public business sector.

Swiss Minister of Economic Affairs, Education and Scientific Research, Guy Parmelin, accompanied by a large Swiss delegation composed of members of Parliament, government officials and numerous business leaders, visited Egypt on an economic mission to Cairo from February 2-5.
]]>
2/6/2020 5:27:55 PM
<![CDATA[Gov't keen on boosting cooperation with different regional, int'l financial institutions: min.]]>
The government is working on benefiting from all the financing programs of the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) especially in the fields of developing small- and medium-scale enterprises and carrying out industrial, energy and agricultural projects and trade promotion programs, she said.

This came during an extended meeting of Gamae with ITFC Chief Executive Officer Hani Salem Sonbol and his accompanying delegation where they reviewed the current and future projects of the Islamic Development Bank in the Egyptian market in addition to the ITFC business program in 2020.

Gamae pointed out to the importance of making the maximum benefit from the funding programs allocated by the ITFC to Egypt that are worth 1.1 billion dollars and serve the sectors of energy and internal trade.

There are other programs of the ITFC in Egypt in the fields of supporting exporters and importers and developing the value chains in the cotton sector, she said.

She asserted the importance of providing long-range funding programs from the ITFC to the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Agency (MSME).

Meanwhile, Sonbol asserted the keenness of the ITFC on expanding developmental cooperation programs and funding programs with the Egyptian government in the coming period.

He also pointed out to the importance of activating joint work between the Arab and African countries to boost economic cooperation between the countries of the south to fully benefit from the huge natural resources available in Africa.]]>
2/6/2020 4:48:03 PM
<![CDATA[Political leadership interested in executing health insurance system: Min.]]>
In this regard, he touched on President Abdel Fattah El Sisi's directives to make best use of international experience in the application of the health insurance system.

Maait made the remarks during his meeting on Thursday with a World Bank delegation led by Amr el Shalakany, a World Bank healthcare expert and Director of the World Bank office in Egypt Marina Weiss.

During the meeting, attended by International Cooperation Minister Rania el Mashat, the finance minister asserted that the government is keen on boosting cooperation with the World Bank and other global institutions in different development fields, notably the sectors of health and education.

Maait told the World Bank delegation that Port Said governorate was the first to implement the health insurance system, which will be applicable to all governorates by 2033.

On her part, the international cooperation minister said that the government seeks to strengthen fruitful cooperation with development partners in various areas, lauding the technical support offered by the World Bank to the country's health care system.]]>
2/6/2020 4:43:47 PM
<![CDATA[NI Capital leading financial services holding company - report]]>
Established in 2015 as a privately managed subsidiary of the national investment bank, NI Capital functions as an independent financial services firm, capitalizing on the extensive expertise and unique insights of its teams to create value across all sectors of the Egyptian economy, according to a report compiled by the Planning Ministry.

CEO of the company Mohamed Metwali said NI Capital is now expanding its activities in the domains of subscriptions and management of investment assets to contribute to achieving a financial inclusion program that will allow citizens, local and foreign institutions to invest in the bourse.

The NI Capital manages the portfolios of the National Investment Charity Fund for Education, Egypt Company for Entrepreneurship and Ayadi Company for Investment and Development. ]]>
2/6/2020 4:42:01 PM
<![CDATA[TE mulls all options as regards its Vodafone Egypt stake]]>
The move comes following Saudi Telecom Company (STC) bid to acquire the 55-percent stake of Vodafone Group (VOD.L) in Vodafone Egypt.

While opening a new office of Telecom Egypt in Mansoura, a city in the Delta region, about 120 km northeast of Cairo, the minister said TE is a government-owned company, assuring all company staffers that the company is not for sale.

On Wednesday, the company said it addressed the Financial Regulatory Authority to see whether the STC acquisition bid runs in line with the statute of the capital money market law 95/1992 as regards acquisition and purchase bids.

Saudi Telecom Company, the kingdom’s biggest telecom operator, has struck a preliminary deal to buy Vodafone Group’s 55% stake in Vodafone Egypt for $2.4 billion as it seeks growth in the Arab world’s most populous nation.

With 44 million subscribers and a 40% market share, Vodafone Egypt is the country’s biggest mobile operator. ]]>
2/6/2020 2:47:57 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 20.5B in T-bills Thursday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 10 billion with a 182-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 357-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged by 1 percent or 100 basis points during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates were declined to 12.75 percent from 13.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
2/6/2020 2:03:49 PM
<![CDATA[EGX gains EGP 5.7bn, all indexes up]]>
Meanwhile, selling operations prevailed in transactions of Arab and Egyptian investors.

The market capital gained about EGP 5.7 billion, closing at EGP 707.3 billion, after transactions totaled about EGP 5 billion.

The EGX 30 benchmark index jumped 0.52 percent, closing at 13,987.16 points.

The broader EGX 70 index of the leading small and mid-cap enterprises (SMEs) rose 0.34 percent, registering 1,267.94 points.

The all-embracing EGX 100 index was also up 0.8 percent, recording 1,390.9 points.]]>
2/5/2020 10:08:23 PM
<![CDATA[Trade exchange bet. Egypt, Singapore reaches $1B]]>
Goh also revealed during his visit to the Egyptian Minister of Local Development Mahmoud Shaarawy that Singaporean investments in Egypt reached $500 million. He clarified that trade between the two countries focuses on consumer and agricultural products.

The ambassador noted that Egypt has been one of the first countries to recognize Singapore’s independence.

The two sides also discussed the possibility of cooperating with Singaporean experts on the disposal of solid waste and untreated effluent.

Shaarawy said that the bilateral relations between the two countries have witnessed continuous development in recent years, pointing out that Egypt believes that Singapore is a distinctive model for the economic and social development sought by various developing countries.

The minister emphasized Egypt's keenness to take advantage of Singapore's experience in the fields it excels at, namely the management of ports, water desalination, optimal utilization of rain water and solid waste, digital transformation, urban development and industrial zone management, in addition to education and vocational training.

]]>
2/5/2020 2:34:01 PM
<![CDATA[Telecom Egypt reveals updates on its stake in Vodafone Egypt]]>
“The company’s main goal is to ensure that its shareholders gain the maximum benefit out of the opportunities currently presented. Telecom Egypt shall announce any results it reaches in this regard in due course,” it clarified in a filing to the Egyptian Exchange (EGX).
It announced that the company is in the process of appointing an investment bank(s) to study such options and their consequences, in light of the existing shareholders’ agreement and all related Egyptian laws and regulations.
According to the filing, Telecom Egypt has contacted the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA), as per the recommendation of its legal advisor, to determine whether this potential transaction would be subject to the provisions of Chapter Twelve of the Executive Regulations of the Egyptian Capital Market Law No. 95 / 1992 regarding tender offers.
By the end of January, Vodafone Group announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to sell its potential 55 percent stake in Vodafone Egypt to Saudi Telecom Company (STC) for $2.392 billion (LE 37 billion).
CEO of Vodafone Egypt Alexander Froman commented that Vodafone Group will focus on the European market during the coming period, especially with regard to the deployment of the fifth generation mobile networks.

Commenting on the deal, Telecom Egypt said that it is closely following the aforementioned potential transaction to consider all of its possible investment options and opportunities.

Telecom Egypt owns 45 percent of Vodafone Egypt shares.

Telecom Egypt operates within the telecommunication services sector focusing on integrated telecommunication services. It has 17 subsidiaries operating across British Islands, Western Europe, Northern Africa and Middle East.

Established in 1998, Vodafone operates within the telecommunication services sector focusing on wireless telecommunication services. It has two subsidiaries operating across Egypt, working on internet software & services.


]]>
2/5/2020 1:50:46 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s PMI lessens to 46 in January]]>
Haque added that this decline matches dips witnessed in Saudi Arabia and the UAE, likely affected by the uncertainty seen throughout the month which will weigh on Egypt’s key tourism,

The Saudi PMI declined to 54.9 in January from 56.9 in December, and the Emirati PMI dropped to 49.3 as new orders and employment declined on average compared to December.

“Output was particularly weak, with nearly a quarter of respondents reporting weaker activity compared with December, but the outlook for the coming months is no more positive, given the slowdown we saw in new orders,” he said.

New export orders declined at the fastest pace since October 2016, just prior to the start of the IMF programme, when a weaker EGP was widely expected, which supported the bank’s view that the external developments were partly to blame for the decline in the PMI, according to Haque.“This slowdown will be a challenge for Egypt’s economy in 2020,” he stated.

Haque noted that the non-oil private sector has lagged in terms of its growth recovery, but recent communiqués from the Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee have indicated that the private sector is seeing some green shoots of recovery. “Should this be materially derailed then Egypt’s growth may undershoot our expectations,” he noted.
]]>
2/5/2020 1:48:11 PM
<![CDATA[UN appoints Mahmoud Mohieldin as special envoy on financing 2030 Agenda]]>
As the special envoy, Mohieldin will focus on global, regional and national issues related to public finance and will support the implementation of the Secretary-General’s Strategy for Financing the 2030 Agenda across the United Nations system, in close collaboration with international financial institutions and the private sector.

He will ensure that there is collective action by United Nations agencies, development partners and the private sector to work with member countries in scaling up finance for 2030 Agenda in the Decade of Action to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals, and address barriers and challenges that constrain public finance for sustainable development, according to a UN statement.

“The Special Envoy will work closely with the Special Envoy for Climate Action and Climate Finance, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, and other relevant United Nations agencies and departments,” the statement added.

Mohieldin is an economist. He was the former Minister of Investment of Egypt from 2004-2010, and most recently, served as the World Bank Group Senior Vice President for the 2030 Development Agenda, United Nations Relations and Partnerships. His professional experience extends into the academic arena as a Professor of Economics at Cairo University and as a Visiting Professor at several renowned Universities.

Mohieldin holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Warwick, United Kingdom; a Master’s in Economics and Social Policy Analysis from the University of York, United Kingdom; a Diploma of Development Economics from the University of Warwick; and a B.Sc. in Economics from Cairo University. He also participated in high-level certification programmes at Wharton Business School of the University of Pennsylvania and Georgetown University.
]]>
2/5/2020 1:46:13 PM
<![CDATA[Bloomberg: Economic reforms in Egypt boosted banking sector]]>
The nation’s central bank is no longer issuing licenses, making an acquisition the only way of gaining a foothold in the Middle East’s fastest growing economy, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Reforms undertaken by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi since his election in 2014 helped revive economic growth that had stalled in the wake of the 2011 uprising, it said. Soaring interest rates after the devaluation of the currency prompted an inflow of money into the local debt market, with heavy buying by banks in Treasury bills and bonds sending their profitability to record highs, it also said.

Egyptian banks “have been generating all-time high profits every year on the back of the high interest-rate environment and the high yield on government securities,” said Monsef Morsy, the head of financial analysis at CI Capital in Cairo.

“We have a very high conviction about banks sustaining the level of profitability for the coming two years.”

Still, there is reason to be cautious even though the outlook for the banking industry over the next 12 to 18 months is stable, Moody’s Investors Services said in a note dated Jan. 22. In large part, that caution is linked to four interest rate cuts by the central bank last year that have lowered borrowing rates and spurred consumer lending. ]]>
2/5/2020 1:30:21 PM
<![CDATA[FEDCOC plays important role in boosting trade, industry: Min.]]>
There is a close cooperation between the government and the business community to put a comprehensive vision to address challenges facing investors, Gamae said during a meeting with the federation members.

Providing an appropriate legislative infrastructure to improve the business environment is on the top of the government's priorities, she added.

She said her ministry is examining a number of laws and decisions related to industrial and trade sectors to see whether they meet the requirements of the current stage or not.

She added that the federation plays an important role in boosting small and medium-sized enterprises, merging informal economy into the formal one and luring more national and foreign investments to help increase trade and open new markets for Egyptian products.

The minister listened to requests of many members of the federation that revolved around allocating plots of lands to set up permanent or temporary exhibition centers for products in different governorates.

The minister promised to coordinate with the Local Development Ministry and governors to provide needed lands.

The law of small and medium-sized enterprises, which is now being debated by the parliament, includes many privileges to encourage owners of small projects to join the formal economy, the minister said.

Head of the federation Ibrahim el Arabi said the federation is one of the main development arms of the ministry and it is playing an important role in serving the national economy.

He said the federation includes 4.3 million projects that contribute 86 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provide 81 percent of Egypt's job opportunities.]]>
2/5/2020 1:08:18 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to sell a 45% stake of Banque du Caire in the first half of 2020]]>
The bank also is open to sell part of the stake to a foreign investor during the initial public offering (IPO), added Eletreby during an event late on Monday.

A deal to sell Banque du Caire was cancelled in 2008 and an IPO has been postponed repeatedly over the past three years. Its chairman and CEO Tarek Fayed said in August that the bank expects to sell minority stake by early 2020.

“We want to sell a stake of up to 45 percent ... the selling will be inside Egypt, there will be no global depository receipts (GDR),” said Eletreby.

A roadshow was taking place in the United States to sell Banque du Caire shares, he added.

“It is possible that a foreign investor gets a stake... The roadshow will decide,” he said.
]]>
2/5/2020 12:46:31 PM
<![CDATA[Oil min. asserts need to intensify crude oil exploration to increase production]]>
During a meeting held by the minister to follow up the current production rates and review plans and programs of action aimed at increasing crude oil production, the minister directed heads of companies to follow up the implementation of programs at production sites, a statement released by the ministry said..

He also called for floating "out of the box" ideas to reach a better production and make the best use of available potentials to reach distinguished results in crude oil production in Egypt, added the statement.]]>
2/4/2020 5:26:25 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt established as African tech hub in 2019: Disrupt Africa’s report]]>
88 Egyptian tech startups secured investment over the course of the year, more than any other African country, and accounting for 28.3 per cent of the overall total.

"This represented growth of 159 per cent on the 34 startups that secured investment in 2018."

These startups secured almost US$90 million in funding, a higher figure than South Africa and one bettered by only Kenya and Nigeria. This accounted for 17.4 per cent of Africa’s overall total funds raised, and was up 45.5 per cent on 2018. Africa’s “big three” is now a “big four”.

For now, though, growth has been impressive, and if Egypt can keep this up then we have a very powerful tech hub on our hands in North Africa.

The year 2019 was a record-breaking one for African tech startups, with 311 companies securing US$491.6 million worth of investment.

And whereas in many previous years the data would have shown the vast majority of the funding went to companies in just three markets, namely South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya, 2019 was a little different.

Tarek Assaad, managing partner of Algebra Ventures, a Cairo-based VC firm which has backed 16 companies over the last couple of years said Egypt is generally becoming a more attractive investment destination because of the improving macroeconomic picture and attractive fundamentals like large population and underserved consumer base.

“In fintech, the central bank is taking unprecedented steps to work with tech startups which has encouraged many entrepreneurs to tackle that space.”

Additionally, the success of companies such transport startup Swvl, which has expanded to Kenya, and fintech company Fawry, which became the first venture-backed Egyptian company to go public earlier this year, is giving investors more confidence that Egyptian startups can deliver on the market potential of the country.

Ahmed Ashoor, chairman of Adzily, believes Egypt is a “very promising market” with high growth in population and the number of SMEs.

“This paves the way for us to expand as fast as we can, which makes our economy an interesting one to invest in specifically now,” he said. ]]>
2/4/2020 5:20:07 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, Mitsubishi discuss joint cooperation in auto industry]]>
He noted that his organization is working for expanding cooperation and partnership with major international companies for increasing investments in Egypt.

The talks took up means of enhancing cooperation in the field of auto manufacturing and environment-friendly means of transport.

He underlined the necessity of pumping new investments in the car industry in Egypt and honing the skills of workers in this sector.

Meanwhile, Mitsubishi chairman Takehiko Kakiuchi praised the Egyptian government's incentives to businessmen working in Egypt.

He expressed hope for more cooperation in the field of technology settlement in Egypt. ]]>
2/4/2020 5:14:10 PM
<![CDATA[Kojak: Egypt keen on benefiting from int'l expertise in boosting investments]]>
During a meeting on Tuesday with a delegation from the European Investment Bank under Director of Operations in Neighboring Countries Flavia Palanza, Kojak said Egypt is also working on reducing its debts and budget deficit.

He added that Egypt realized a primary budget surplus of 2 percent and managed to lessen its ratio of debt to gross domestic product to 90 percent within two years, 18 percent down.

The debt ratio is expected to further drop to 83 percent by June 2020, he said.

He added that the government is keen on diversifying financial resources and tools.

He noted that Egypt became the second country in the Middle East and Africa to issue 40-year bonds at two billion dollars and this reflects investors' confidence in the country's economic performance.

He added that Egypt plans to issue green bonds by the end of the current fiscal year.

For her part, EIB Director of Operations in Neighboring Countries Flavia Palanza hailed the successful Egyptian experience in carrying out economic reforms that positively affected the social and economic conditions of people's lives.

She pledged to offer all needed support for Egypt. ]]>
2/4/2020 4:27:58 PM
<![CDATA[EGX shows mixed performance Tuesday]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 rose 0.26 percent, or 36.72 points, to close at 13,915.05 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 0.19 percent, or 3.67 points, to end at 1,916.13 points.

On the other hand, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 declined 0.14 percent, or 1.79 points, to close at 1,263.7 points, and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.27 percent, or 3.72 points to 1,383.57 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 2.4 billion, recording LE 701.65 billion, compared to LE 704.08 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 133.8 million shares, traded through 18,562 transactions, with a turnover of LE 631.83 million.

Egyptian investors were net buyers at LE 23.97 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 8.58 million, and LE 15.38 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 27.03 million, and LE 1.03 million, respectively, while Arab individuals were net sellers at LE 11.04 million.

Egyptian and foreign organizations sold at LE 3.06 million, and LE 16.4 million, respectively, while Arab individuals bought at LE 2.46 million.

Ismailia National Food Industries, Ismailia Misr Poultry and Raya Contact Center were top gainers of the session 9.95 percent, 6.07 percent and 6.01 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Gulf Canadian Real Estate Investment Co., Sabaa International Company for Pharmaceutical and Chemical, and Marsa Marsa Alam For Tourism Development were top losers of the session by 7.98 percent, 7.97 percent, and 7.05 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Monday’s session in red, as: EGX 30 dropped 0.08 percent, EGX 50 dipped 0.46 percent, EGX 70 declined 0.30 percent, and EGX 100 decreased 0.16 percent.
]]>
2/4/2020 3:56:12 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, Switzerland sign 3 MoUs to enhance investment ]]>
This came during the Egyptian-Swiss Investment Forum organized by the General Authority for Investment and Free Zones in cooperation with the Swiss Embassy in Cairo.

“Swiss investments in Egypt increased with the implementation of the economic reform program,” CEO of General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI), Mohamed Abdel Wahab, said in a statement.

Abdel Wahab pointed out that more than 60 Swiss companies are currently operating in Egypt with total investments of $1.8 billion,

There is a great scope for cooperation between the two countries to increase the volume of investments and transfer Swiss expertise and technology to Egypt, according to the CEO of GAFI.

He stressed that Egypt has succeeded in implementing the first stage of the economic reform program, and paved the way and laid the foundations for the launch of the second stage.

For his part, Swiss Minister of Economic Affairs, Education and Scientific Research, Guy Parmelin, explained that the volume of bilateral trade between the two countries amounted to about $1.3 billion in 2019, according to Swiss statistics, “which means that Egypt is the largest market for Swiss exports in the African continent.”

Parmelin, accompanied by a large Swiss delegation composed of Members of Parliament, government officials and numerous business leaders, is currently visiting Egypt on an economic mission to Cairo from February 2-5.

At the end of the forum, Abdel Wahab signed an MoU with Head of the Swiss International Corporation Simon Weiss Fideli to cooperate in the field of enhancing bilateral investments, promoting investment and supporting small and medium companies.

Moreover, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Holding Company for Cotton, Spinning and Weaving, Ahmed Mustafa, signed a cooperation agreement with President of Ritter International, Norbert Klapper, as part of the program to develop the textile sector.

In addition, Chairman of Badr University in Cairo (BUC) Hassan el-Kalla signed a declaration of intent with President of Business and Hotel Management School in Lucerne, Heinrich Meister, to present a 3-year BA program in Hotel and Tourism Management and a one-year professional diploma from the Swiss University in BUC, in addition to providing training programs to develop the tourism sector in Egypt.

Minister of International Cooperation Rania al-Mashat stated earlier that economic cooperation between Egypt and Switzerland hit 86 million Swiss francs during 2017-2020.

Mashat added that Switzerland has contributed to the provision of grants to Egypt by around 700 million Swiss francs since the beginning of the development cooperation between both countries, which helped in implementing 200 projects.


]]>
2/4/2020 3:15:33 PM
<![CDATA[Trade exchange bet. Egypt, Sudan reaches $648 in 9 months]]>
The Egyptian Commercial Representative office in Khartoum said that Egypt’s exports to Sudan hiked 15 percent during January-September period of 2019, to hit $328 million.

It pointed to the success of the efforts made in starting negotiations to conclude export contracts between a number of Sudanese and Egyptian companies participating in the 37th session of the Khartoum International Fair during the period from 20-27 January 2020.

The fair witnessed a participation of an Egyptian delegation of companies from the chemicals, detergents, medicines, electrical appliances, cables and cigarette sectors in the presence of 600 companies from 25 Arab and foreign countries in various fields.

From 2010 to 2016, trade exchange between both countries amounted to $3.86 billion, marking its highest value in 2010 at $629 million, and its lowest in 2012 at $473 million.

During these seven year, trade balance came in Egypt’s favor by $3.18 billion, hitting its highest value in 2010 at $545 million, and its lowest in 2014 at $280 million.

The main Egyptian exports to Sudan are food commodities, including meat and sesame; plastic and chemical products. Cotton is the most important item among Egypt’s imports from the Sudanese market.
]]>
2/4/2020 12:59:58 PM
<![CDATA[CIB records profits of LE11.8B in 2019]]>
According to CIB filing to the Egyptian Exchange (EGX), the bank’s revenues increased to LE 23 billion in 2019, marking an increase of 13 percent on a year-on-year (YoY) basis.

As per the fourth quarter of 2019, the profits jumped 27 percent YoY, recording LE 3.26 billion, through achieving revenues of LE 6.15 billion.

“The fourth quarter of 2019 has been a distinctively good quarter for CIB with regards to lending activity, with both local and foreign currency loans growing by 6 percent and 9 percent over the quarter, respectively, bringing entire-year loan growth to 20 percent” in local currency and 11 percent in foreign currency and foreshadowing an upcoming period of impressive lending uplift in line with Management aspirations and focused efforts to keep tabs on growing the Bank’s core business,” CIB commented in a press release.

"Adding on, Management has been proactive in foreseeing interest rate movements, tactically furnishing the Bank’s treasury portfolio in a way that would smoothly accommodate market dynamics, while retaining sufficient flexibility to capture worthy trading opportunities amidst interest rate descents,” it added.

During the first half of 2019, the bank’s consolidated net income hit LE 5.36 billion, with a 21 percent increase compared to the same half of 2018.

In the first quarter of the same year, the bank recorded profits of LE 2.64 billion, compared to LE 2.02 billion during the same quarter of 2018.

The Commercial International Bank - Egypt (CIB) is a public company, listed on the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) since February 1995.

Founded in 1975, CIB operates within the banks sector, focusing on diversified banks. It has 24 subsidiaries operating across Egypt and the United Kingdom.
]]>
2/4/2020 12:44:13 PM
<![CDATA[AfDB expects Egyptian growth rate to up to 5.8% in 2020, 6% in 2021]]>
In a report on African economic outlook 2020, the bank attributed this rise to the economic reform measures adopted by Egypt since 2016.

The report hailed the social protection measures adopted by Egypt as well as ensuring that subsidized energy products reach only those who deserve along with steps to improve the business climate.

The report - which included 54 countries - said the tourism, construction, gas and oil sectors led the march of development, referring to declining consumption.

The report added that exports and investments flourished.

Under a wide-scale plan to boost the Egyptian economy, added value tax was imposed in addition to gradual decline of energy subsidies. This has led to shaving off financial deficit from 12.5 percent of Gross Domestic Product in 2016 to 8.7 percent in 2019.

Initial reports registered surplus over the past two years and debt growth was contained.

Inflation rates dropped to 8.7 percent on annual basis in July 2019, the lowest in four years.

The unemployment rate also receded to 8.1 percent in the first quarter of 2019, the lowest in 20 years.]]>
2/4/2020 11:40:29 AM
<![CDATA[EGX stays in red zone for 2nd consecutive session]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 dropped 0.08 percent, or 10.56 points, to close at 13,878.33 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 0.46 percent, or 8.75 points, to end at 1,912.46 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 declined 0.30 percent, or 3.87 points, to close at 1,265.49 points, and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.16 percent, or 2.28 points to 1,383.57 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 2.02 billion, recording LE 704.08 billion, compared to LE 706.10 billion in Sunday's session.

The trading volume reached 89.81 million shares, traded through 16,218 transactions, with a turnover of LE 470.57 million.

Arab investors were net sellers at LE 28.88 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net buyers at LE 4.09 million, and LE 24.79 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 23.52 million, LE 30.98 million, and LE 9.12 million, respectively.

Egyptian , Arab and foreign organizations bought at LE 27.61 million, LE 2.1 million and LE 33.9 million, respectively.

Ismailia National Food Industries, Egyptian Gulf Bank and Saudi Egyptian Investment & Finance were top gainers of the session 10 percent, 9.38 percent and 9.16 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Delta Construction & Rebuilding, the Arab Ceramic CO.- Ceramica Remas , and Sabaa International Company for Pharmaceutical and Chemical were top losers of the session by 8.53 percent, 7.71 percent, and 6.56 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Thursday’s session in green, as: EGX 30 dropped 0.22 percent, EGX 50 dipped 0.76 percent, EGX 70 declined 0.64 percent, and EGX 100 decreased 0.66 percent.
]]>
2/3/2020 3:30:41 PM
<![CDATA[US dollar remains stable during Monday transactions]]>
At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr the dollar price recorded LE 15.75 for buying and LE 15.85 for selling.

The rate at the Arab African International Bank was LE 15.74 for buying and LE 15.84 for selling.

At the Commercial International Bank the price stood at LE 15.74 for buying and LE 15.84 for selling.

The dollar rate at the National Bank of Greece registered LE15.74 for buying and LE 15.84 for selling.

According to the National Bank of Egypt, the Saudi Riyal stood at LE 4.18 for buying and 4.22 for selling while the UAE Dirham recorded LE 4.28 for buying and 4.31 for selling. ]]>
2/3/2020 3:09:11 PM
<![CDATA[CBE issues LE 7B in T-bonds Monday]]>
The T-bonds were offered in two installments, with the first valued at LE 3.75 billion with a three-year term and the second worth LE 3.25 billion with a seven-year term.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates were declined to 12.75 percent from 13.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
]]>
2/3/2020 2:24:25 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s non-petroleum exports record to $25.49B in 2019]]>
As per December, non-petroleum exports reached $2.126 billion, according to GOEIC Chairman Ismail Gaber.

Gaber said that Egypt's food exports increased to $283 million in December, compared to $251 million during the same month in 2018.

He added that exports of construction materials witnessed a rise during December 2019, reaching $492 million, up from $473 million in the same month of the previous year.

As per non-petroleum imports, Gaber stated that they declined in December 2019 by 18 percent, registering $5.292 billion, compared to $6.473 billion during the same period the prior year.

"The downturn in imports was reported in 12 sectors, topped by leather and agricultural products which dropped by 28 and 24 percent respectively," he added.
He added that medical and furniture imports also dipped by 22 and 21 percent respectively.

GOEIC said earlier that Egypt’s non-petroleum exports registered $13.037 billion in the first half of 2019.
]]>
2/3/2020 2:21:19 PM
<![CDATA[Finance, Trade ministries ink 31 agreements to settle exporters' arrears]]>
The move comes in implementation of the government's initiative to settle within five years arrears of companies seeking to expand or increase their investments in the markets.

Under the initiative, those companies will be obliged to pump new investments in the markets and set up new production lines, according to a statement by the Trade and Industry Ministry.

Trade and Industry Minister Nevin Gamae said the fund paid 291 million pounds to 12 exporting companies under the initiative.

She added that the exports councils will be re-formed to increase exports and open new foreign markets to Egyptian exports.

She added that the exports program will be periodically examined to meet the demands of both exporters and the government alike.]]>
2/3/2020 2:06:28 PM
<![CDATA[Trade exchange between Egypt, Morocco hits $681M]]>
The minister's remarks were made during her meeting with Moroccan Ambassador in Cairo Ahmed al Tazy as they reviewed means of bolstering economic cooperation between the two countries in the coming phase.

During the meeting, Gamaa asserted the importance of activating joint action in order to achieve industrial integration and increase exports to European, Arab and African markets.

She also underlined the importance of bilateral cooperation under Aghadir Agreement which has helped in upgrading the industrial products in the four signatory countries with the aim of exporting to the European market.

The minister also pressed the need for exchanging expertise in the economic field especially the exchange of advanced technologies and training programs.

In 2004, Cairo signed Agadir Agreement which is a free trade agreement involving four Arab countries: Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia. The agreement which came into force in 2007 has helped enhance trade exchange between its member states.

The Moroccan ambassador, for his part, asserted his country's keenness on beefing up economic ties with Egypt in view of the deeply-rooted historical and political relations binding the two countries.

He also called for the promotion of economic relations and encouraging partnerships between the two sides' private sectors so as to provide promising investment opportunities in the Egyptian and Moroccan markets.]]>
2/3/2020 2:03:54 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's exports of jewelry, precious stones exceeds $2B in 2019]]>
In its monthly report released on Sunday, the Export Council for Building Materials (ECBM) said the UAE topped the list of importing countries by $1.378 billion in 2019.

It underlined that Egypt's exports to Canada upped by 180 percent to register $629 million in 2019, against 225 million dollars in the previous year.

Egypt's exports of jewelry and precious stones to Lebanon receded by 98 percent in 2019 to register nearly 1 million, compared to 68 million dollars in 2018, the report said.]]>
2/3/2020 2:02:09 PM
<![CDATA[Swiss official in Cairo to discuss economic cooperation]]>
This is the first visit by Parmelin to Egypt, a statement by the Swiss embassy here said Sunday, noting that it aims to discover investment and trade opportunities in Egypt.

During his visit, Parmelin is scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli, Trade Minister Nevine Gamae and International Cooperation Minister Rania el Mashat.

He will also attend a forum on Swiss-Egyptian investments organized by the General Authority for Investments and Free Zones (GAFI).

Parmelin will also visit Swiss companies operating in Egypt.

More than 60 Swiss firms are operative in Egypt, with whom the volume of trade exchange amounted to $1.3 billion in 2019, the embassy noted. ]]>
2/2/2020 5:24:15 PM
<![CDATA[MSMEDA, EU sign €27M grant deal on irregular migration]]>
Trade Minister Niven Gamea, in a statement issued on Sunday, said that the agreement underscores MSMEDA keenness on fighting illegal immigration, providing alternatives to youths by training them and honing their skills and creating job opportunities.

The agreement will be effective across 11 governorates that most suffer from illegal immigration, including Beheira, Sharqiya, Minya and Luxor.]]>
2/2/2020 5:19:28 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Sunday's session in red, market cap. loses LE2B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 dropped 0.22 percent, or 29.95 points, to close at 13,888.89 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 0.76 percent, or 14.67 points, to end at 1,921.21 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 declined 0.64 percent, or 8.12 points, to close at 1,269.36 points, and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.66 percent, or 9.26 points to 1,385.85 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 2.04 billion, recording LE 706.10 billion, compared to LE 708.14 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 214.47 million shares, traded through 21,224 transactions, with a turnover of LE 793.91 million.

Foreign investors were net buyers at LE 106.67 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net sellers at LE 43.35 million, and LE 63.31 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 35.21 million, LE 22.99 million and LE 390,657, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab organizations sold at LE 8.13 million, and LE 40.32 million, respectively, while foreign organizations bought at LE 107.06 million.

Telecom Egypt, Ismailia National Food Industries, and El Arabia for Land Reclamation were top gainers of the session 12.24 percent, 9.96 percent and 9.92 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Ismailia Misr Poultry, Arab Valves Company, and National Housing for Professional Syndicates were top losers of the session by 7.12 percent, 6.62 percent, and 4.89 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Thursday’s session in green, as: EGX 30 hiked 1.13 percent, EGX 50 jumped 1.59 percent, EGX 70 rose 0.76 percent, and EGX 100 increased 0.76 percent.

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2/2/2020 5:12:45 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt sovereign fund, NSPO to seal cooperation deal Monday]]>
The deal is meant to restructure a number of NSPO companies to be able to pump investments into them and maximize the value of their assets, said Planning Minister Hala Saeid, who also heads the fund.

This should be done in cooperation with NSPO and the private sector, she added.

Saeid praised the role played by Egypt's sovereign fund to attract investments in line with a sustainable development strategy and Egypt's vision for 2030.]]>
2/2/2020 2:19:19 PM
<![CDATA[Learn about Egypt's steps to make electric cars available ]]>
Egypt Today reviews the stages of manufacturing electric cars in 10 points:

1. The Ministry of Public Business Sector agreed with the Chinese Dongfeng Company to manufacture an electric ride car at El-Nasr Company.
2. The contracts will be signed once all financial and technical details have been agreed upon between the two parties.
3. The Chinese company’s delegation visited El-Nasr Company, and in return, Minister of Public Business Sector Hisham Tawfik visited China.
4. A good study is being prepared on electric charging, and the suitable places for building charging stations before the launch of electric cars.
5. The Ministry of Electricity will establish 1,000 fast charging stations annually with a capacity of 50 kilowatts for a period of at least 3 years.
6. The need of taxi vehicles for slow charging stations will be considered, with a package of incentives for the production of electric cars.
7. Incentives will be offered, including the launch of a program to replace taxis with 11,000 electric taxis.
8. Among these incentives is the obligation of government agencies to replace 5 percent of the fleet of cars annually (7,000 cars).
9. The government will provide investors with subsidies for the first 100,000 locally manufactured electric car worth LE 50,000 per car.
10. 25,000 electric ride cars will be produced annually.

]]>
2/2/2020 2:13:13 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 14.5B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 4 billion with a 91-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 273-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are to 12.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
]]>
2/2/2020 11:16:53 AM
<![CDATA[Let us keep our aid cash, EU's poorer nations tell bloc leaders]]>
The European Union provides aid known as cohesion funds to member states in the south and east to help them invest in development and catch up with richer peers to the north and west.

But various proposals by the so-called "frugal" countries, including paymaster Germany in September, seek to reduce the size of the cohesion funds and attach conditions which would predetermine areas where investments should go.

According to European Parliament website, the European Commission proposed an allocation of 41.3 billion euros ($45.82 billion) to cohesion funds for the 2021-2027 programming period, down from 63.4 billion euros set aside in 2014-2020.

The proposals to cut the funds made blood boil among the poorer EU nations, creating an impasse as the next long-term budget is being prepared.

Leaders of affected nations gathered for the Friends of Cohesion summit in the Portuguese city of Beja on Saturday and in a joint declaration said funding for 2021-2027 "should maintain the level" of the previous budget.

"At a time the union becomes more fragile (after Brexit), our message should be in favour of a cohesive Europe," Portugal's Prime Minister Antonio Costa told reporters after the declaration was signed by 15 countries, including once-bailed out Greece.

Britain accounted for around 15% of the EU's economy and was the bloc's biggest military spender.

In the declaration, the nations said "any cuts in investment capacity of cohesion regions would be unacceptable" and that, at this late stage of the long-term budget negotiations, "no technical elements with major negative impact should be introduced".

Any changes would "unnecessarily" delay an agreement, they added.

The summit took place days after President of the European Council Charles Michel called a special meeting with EU leaders on Feb. 20 to discuss the budget. Michel will meet several prime ministers over the next week.

"I am fully aware that these negotiations are among the most difficult ones we have to face," he wrote in a letter sent to leaders on Jan. 25.

The current EU budget amounts to 1% of the bloc's combined Gross National Income (GNI). The European Commission has proposed a seven-year budget of about 1.1 trillion euros that would be about 1.11% of the EU's combined GNI.

Scared of having to dig too deep to fill the budget gap caused by Brexit, Germany proposed a 1% cap.

On Saturday, Austria's chancellor Sebastian Kurz threatened to veto the next EU budget if the proposal for countries to increase their contribution to 1.11% of GNI is not amended.

In an interview with Austrian broadcaster ORF, Kurz said: "If this proposal is tabled in this way, there will be no approval from us here, and I don't think from the other EU net contributors either."]]>
2/2/2020 6:58:15 AM
<![CDATA[Disintermediation between Applicability and Delusion]]>
Assessing Disintermediation

Associate Professor of Marketing and BP Endowed Chair at the School of Business of the American University in Cairo (AUC),Hamed Shamma, tells Business Today Egypt that disintermediation is an old concept favoring direct linkage between the producer and consumer; hence intermediary elimination. Although disintermediation is often perceived positively, the professor has a different point of view, explaining that “connection economy” is important. Intermediaries help producers expand their presence in the market, Shamma said, setting smart examples like Amazon and other economy-sharing intermediation platforms like Uber and AIRBnB.

For disintermediation in the business-to-business sector, Shamma explains that producers typically want very specific goods in large quantities, so it makes more sense to deal with manufacturers directly in that case. Naturally, the layers of intermediaries are less in that sector compared to business-to-consumer.

wholesale

Speaking of disintermediation in B2C, the professor says the concept can be applied in any industry. The producer normally sells online and/or through its own stores. The pros are “direct dealing with the consumer and full control on what you do.” The cons are embodied in higher costs caused by lower levels of efficiency, which incur a rise in prices. Although disintermediation can be more efficient in terms of transportation costs, it may not be necessarily convenient to the consumer. The professor clarifies that delivery is important and that disintermediation can undermine the ability of both the consumer and producer to reach various locations. Since many consumers in Egypt complain about customer service, producers may contemplate disintermediation to have better control over the service.

Nevertheless, professor Shamma does not perceive disintermediation as the solution.

What makes a good retailer is the services it provides to the consumer. Those consist of self-service, technology-based guidance, personalized services, convenient locations, assortment, and delivery. A retailer must be eager to enhance the customer experience, and adapt to consumer behavior changes, such as offering online shopping, Shamma says. He points out that online retail increases the level of competition, and that a competent online retailer would offer a good after-sale service satisfying the shopping experience.

Intermediation in Egypt

Member of Localization Committee at the Federation of Engineering Bahgat el-Dahesh tells Business Today Egypt that a producer expects four functions from the intermediary, the retailer in that case. The first is display. The more the retailer is paid, the more the product is given a better display. Dahesh clarifies that some companies set up their own stalls in their preferred fashion, a common practice in hypermarkets.

The second function is communicating information on the product with consumers. The producer must educate the retailer on the product or even send a delegate to the store to assume that mission. The third is diffusion. The producer shall not only sell through a single retailer, but should make the product available in many chains. The last function is that the retailer does not sell at a price that is lower than that at which it got the products from the producer. Dahesh explains that such act is detrimental to the value of the product and can be mistaken for attempts to get a bigger market share in illicit ways. A retailer may do that because of the need for money in a short time.

Dahesh reveals that the problems faced by producers in Egypt when dealing with intermediaries are mainly payment delays, and small places to display the product. As a result, more investment has been required to properly showcase the product. Cost-wise, Dahesh classifies retailing options starting from the less expensive individual retailers, hypermarkets, to having one’s chain stores. The decision to select either option is pertinent to the size of sales.

Dahesh favors that a producer has its own outlets so long the revenue covers the rent, salaries, and overhead costs. “It depends on financial means. It is hard to open 10 branches at a time. Many refrain from chain stores because of overhead costs,” Dahesh says, asserting that the selection of locations is very important. The alternative to the chain option has become renting a place in key accounts like hypermarkets, where a big number of consumers is present, Dahesh clarifies, adding that if the producer does not require a specific place, they can still let such accounts put the product anywhere.

white goods

“Online sales increased a lot because of retailers like Jumia, Souq, and Amazon. Twenty percent of sales now occur online because youths constitute a big portion of customers. It is less expensive to shop online as each retailer displays the lowest possible price in the market as long as the product is in stock,” Dahesh explains.

Dahesh highlights that big companies typically have a website where they can put offers like Black Friday deals. The most important thing when creating and managing a website for one’s company is “good display,” he stresses. In that way, producers do not have to pay merchants or salespeople. Online retailers are still a good choice as they get paid for the ad but the amount is much less than that paid to the merchant, particularly big names.

How to Go Online

Chairman of Comtricks and Adjunct Faculty Member at the School of Management at the American University in Cairo (AUC) Maher Asham tells Business Today Egypt that the market is “not ready” for going totally online despite the benefits, which are low cost, wide reach, and convenience.

online store

Asham recommends that producers have an online presence whether directly or indirectly through online retailers. “Mega stores in the United States shut down because of online stores bringing traffic and getting a big chunk of the profit margin,” Comtricks chairman says.

Asham suggests that the key to success online is “differentiation” by offering quality service, convenience, specialty, and adopting the right marketing tools. The expert adds that it is better for a producer to have their own online store in order to maintain a high profit margin, which is around 20 percent, without sharing it with a retailer.

Business-to-Business Disintermediation

A study titled “Disintermediation in Business-to-Business Service Channels: Mechanisms and Challenges” suggests that disintermediation can be defined as “an organization’s adoption of various mechanisms for handling intermediaries aimed at securing links with end customers.” The 2013 study identifies six mechanisms that can be adopted by business-to-business firms in the context of their service channels. Those are strategic partnering, mergers and acquisitions, organic growth, communication and training, incentives, and ICT.

Strategic partnership means a closer collaboration with the intermediary. Mergers and acquisitions are about taking direct control over the intermediary. Organic growth occurs when internal resources and skills are deployed to develop an in-house alternative to the external intermediary. The communication and training mechanism is the direct exchange of information with the customer. The intermediary can be motivated to act appropriately by using different sets of incentives and bonuses. Information and Communications Technology is the resort of online solutions to disintermediation.

The Future of Disintermediation

A 2012 study titled “Online Disintermediation: The Elephant Is Still in the Room” finds that although parts of the value chain have been disintermediated through the web, “a parallel trend of re-intermediation arose” as rapidly. The study identifies the re-intermediators as “the online efficient shopping comparison tools.” Producers may be less likely to be affected by re-intermediation compared to the offline intermediaries.

Online shopping on the scale of Amazon and the like give rise to intermediation; simultaneously, smaller B2C startups are still continuing to emerge on app marketplaces, a sort of disintermediation.

Such observation gives a hint about the different changes intermediation and disintermediation go through in light of various variables as it is still unpredictable what will happen in the post-re-intermediation phase.
]]>
2/1/2020 6:01:50 PM
<![CDATA[Mabdouli praises economic relations with Deutsche Bundesbank’s member]]>
Madbouli’s remarks came during his meeting with a member of Central bank of the Federal Republic of Germany (Deutsche Bundesbank), Borkahad Baltes in the presence of Deputy Central Bank and the German Ambassador to Egypt.

Madbouli also expressed Egypt’s appreciation for the advanced cooperation between Central Bank of Egypt and Deutsche Bundesbank especially that it contributed in the first and second programs for the reform and development of the Central Bank in the period from 2004 to 2012.

At the end of the meeting, Madbouli affirmed that the Egyptian government is looking forward to strengthening cooperation with the German side in several fields such as technical education and vocational training because they are among the priorities of the education development agenda in Egypt.

For his side, Baltes expressed his happiness by visiting Egypt, indicated that he chose Egypt as the first country to visit after assuming office.

He also congratulated the Egyptian government and the Central Bank on the distinguished reform program to develop the banking sector.]]>
2/1/2020 2:41:37 PM
<![CDATA[Mashaat, S. Korean banking delegation probe boosting coop.]]>
Minister Mashaat affirmed keenness of the government on enhancing cooperation with South Korea within the framework of exchanging know-how and carrying out development projects, according to a statement issued by the International Cooperation Ministry on Saturday.

Eximbank Executive Director Hwan Joon Yang, meanwhile, showed eagerness of his bank to offer support to Egypt, exchange know-how and boost partnership in development projects.

The cooperation portfolio between Egypt and South Korea is estimated at dollars 458 million.]]>
2/1/2020 12:23:59 PM
<![CDATA[2M pre-paid meters to be installed in 2020: Electricity Ministry]]>
Hamza added that there are 8,800,000 prepaid electric meters at the ministry, and that the plan aims to increase the number of installed meters per annum by more than 2 million.

He explained that citizens, or subscribers who want to change their traditional meters, can apply for the pre-paid meters.

The spokesperson highlighted that demand for those meters is rising because the ministry introduced easier ways to charge the prepaid cards. The most recent of which is a mobile app. Previously, cards could be recharged at electricity distribution companies existing all over the country or through Fawry services for bill payments.

Prepaid meters were first introduced in 2014. They were installed for 3.75 million consumers by North Cairo Electricity Distribution Company by 2017.

Prepaid meters also serve in detecting informal businesses as they cut electricity when consumption exceeds the adequate capacity of 80-Ampere-devices installed in households. Electricity is permanently cut if this occurs for three times in a row until the company fixes the problem.

Those meters also cut electricity when attempts to forcefully open the device take place.
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1/31/2020 1:41:05 PM
<![CDATA[Markets welcome WHO virus declaration]]>
After saying last week they needed more information, the WHO invoked the rarely used designation that experts hope will lead to better international co-ordination to combat a disease that has already killed 200 people, and sickened thousands more.

But the Geneva-based body stopped short of recommending trade and travel restrictions that could have had a bruising effect on China -- a key growth engine for the world economy.

"This is not a vote of no confidence in China," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesushe said, praising Beijing for its swift action to tackle the outbreak.

China has locked down a swathe of its centre, effectively quarantining millions of people in their cities and halting travel around the country.

"We must all act together now to limit further spread... We can only stop it together," said Tedros, who travelled to China this week and met with President Xi Jinping.

Foreign airlines -- including British Airways -- have begun cancelling or curtailing flights to and from China, and a number of governments are recommending citizens do not visit the country.

But Tedros said there was "no reason" for any of the international travel or trade restrictions announced in recent days.

Investors applauded the WHO's move, plunging back into markets that have lost altitude over recent days as the 2019-nCoV crisis has worsened.

"Sure the WHO raised the alert, but they didn't ring the apocalypse bell so it could be time for risk-takers to come out of hibernation," said Stephen Innes, chief market strategist at AxiCorp.

The WHO move "eased some mushrooming fears by suggesting the number of outbreaks is relatively small", he said.

Tokyo led the way on Asian equity markets, with the Nikkei 225 up 1.3 percent by the break, Hong Kong rose 0.3 percent, while Seoul and Sydney added 0.4 percent.

The reversal on major indexes had begun in New York, where the WHO's announcement sent Wall Street green after a session largely in the red.

Oil was up, partially correcting a days-long drop, with March contracts for major benchmarks WTI and Brent adding around 1.0 percent.

"While it's virtually impossible to quantify the full extent of the demand destruction from the virus outbreak, if there was one asset class more oversold than others, it had to be oil given the bigger-than-life global supply overhang," said Innes.

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1/31/2020 6:37:05 AM
<![CDATA[Foreign direct investment in Egypt reaches $8.5B in 2019]]>
Saeed added, in a statement, that the latest investment trends reports issued by the United Nations Trade and Development Organization (UNCTAD) ensure that Egypt maintains its position as the largest recipient of foreign direct investment in Africa.

She added that the report praised the efforts of the state in implementing the economic reforms package that had borne fruit in increasing investor confidence, and new foreign direct investments remained concentrated in the gas and oil sector, along with significant investments in telecommunications, real estate and tourism sectors.

The World Investment Report 2019 included that foreign investment in Egypt was leaning towards the oil and gas industry, as Egypt's important discoveries of gas reserves abroad attracted investments from multinational companies. It also added that Egypt became a net source of gas in January 2019.

The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) revealed earlier that Saudi Arabia’s direct investment in Egypt dropped 43.3 percent during the first quarter (Q1) of fiscal year 2019/2020, recording $69.3 million, compared to $122.4 million during the same period of the prior year.




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1/30/2020 6:18:29 PM
<![CDATA[Huawei named one of top 10 most valuable brands by Brand Finance ]]>
“Clearly the next big opportunity for the telecoms industry, the 5G space is inviting fierce competition, with Huawei expanding into markets traditionally covered by Western providers. Despite sparking controversy, the Chinese giant is making clear headway, and with a brand value of US$65.1 billion, now counts among the world’s top 10 most valuable brands for the first time,” writes Brand Finance in the report.

WhatsApp Image 2020-01-30 at 6.05.35 PM


Huawei’s brand value growth can be attributed to its commitment to innovation to continually improve product competitiveness and consumer experience.

In 2019, Huawei predicted that it would ship 240 million units of smartphones and retain its position as the world’s second largest smartphone manufacturer. The company shipped more than 44 million units of its HUAWEI Mate Series and HUAWEI P Series flagship devices, recording a 50 percent increase year-on-year. Winning critical and popular acclaim for their technological breakthroughs, Huawei’s 5G smartphones recorded 6.9 million unit shipments as of December 2019.

Last year, Huawei also built out its all-scenario experience by introducing a range of new products spanning multiple categories, including tablets, PCs, wearables and IoT devices in the HiLink ecosystem, all of which exhibited a certain degree of growth.

Looking at the future, Huawei remains committed to the all-scenario strategy. Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei Consumer Business Group, said: “The all-scenario strategy will remain the primary focus of Huawei for the next five to 10 years. We are steadfast in our commitment to creating an integrated ecosystem, in which tablets, PCs, VR devices, wearables, smart displays, smart speakers, cars and IoT devices are all connected to smartphones to deliver a truly seamless user experience.”

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1/30/2020 6:17:16 PM
<![CDATA[Vodafone Egypt CEO reveals reasons for selling company's stake in Egypt]]>
“But the company will remain on its investment in Vodafone International Services in Egypt, which it recently acquired,” Froman added.

Froman affirmed during a press conference regarding the deal, the details of which were announced earlier, that STC's acquisition of Vodafone’s share proves that the Egyptian market is promising and has great investment opportunities, and revealed advantages that the customer will obtain, especially with international roaming services.

On Tuesday'snight, Vodafone Group announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to sell its potential 55 percent stake in Vodafone Egypt to Saudi Telecom Company (STC) for $2.392 billion (LE 37 billion).

Things to know about Egypt's newcomer "STC"

CAIRO - 29 January 2020: Vodafone Group announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to sell its potential 55 percent stake in Vodafone Egypt to Saudi Telecom Company (STC) for $2.392 billion (LE 37 billion).






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1/30/2020 5:44:13 PM
<![CDATA[Deal between Vodafone Group, STC not final without NTRA approval]]>
The NTRA preserves the right to take all measures needed to protect Egypt's national security and users and to maintain competition, the authority said in a statement following the inking of a memorandum of understanding between Vodafone Group and STC to sell 55 percent of Vodafone Egypt to the Saudi firm.

The agreement won't be final unless the NTRA gives it the okay, it said.]]>
1/30/2020 4:45:46 PM
<![CDATA[Finance Ministry auctions T-bills worth LE 20.5B]]>
In an online statement, the ministry said it sold 182-day T-bonds worth LE 10 billion, with an average yield of 14.549 percent.

The ministry also sold 364-day T-bonds valued at LE 10.5 billion, with an average yield of 14.28 percent.]]>
1/30/2020 4:32:30 PM
<![CDATA[Mashat: Economic partnership with US "strategic"]]>
During a meeting with US Ambassador in Cairo Jonathan Cohen, the minister described economic partnership with the US as strategic, a matter that contributes to achieving the goals of sustainable development.

The minister discussed with the US diplomat the new strategy of economic cooperation between the two countries during the coming period, in line with the priorities of the Egyptian government's program which was approved by parliament and referred to Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli.

The US ambassador described Egypt as an important partner for his country in the region, expressing keenness on strengthening economic partnership with Egypt as an ally to Washington.

He praised the role of women in Egypt, pointing out to the appointment of eight female ministers in the current government.

For her part, head of the USAID Mission Director in Egypt Cherry Carlin said her agency is looking forward to strengthening economic partnership with Egypt.

She said the total funds USAID extended to Egypt since the start of her agency's activities reached 30 billion dollars covering the fields of education, health, drinking water, sanitary drainage, trade, small and medium enterprises, tourism, antiquities and agriculture.

The two sides agreed to deepen cooperation through the Egyptian-American Businessmen Fund which invests $300 million in many projects in Egypt and discussed cooperation through Trump’s Africa Strategy for prosperity, security, and stability. ]]>
1/30/2020 4:27:06 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Thursday in green for 2nd session in row]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 hiked 1.13 percent, or 156 points, to close at 13,918.84 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 jumped 1.59 percent, or 30.32 points, to end at 1,935.88 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 rose 0.76 percent, or 10.48 points, to close at 1,277.48 points, and the broader index EGX 100 increased 0.76 percent, or 10.48 points to 1,395.11 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 8.25 billion, recording LE 708.14 billion, compared to LE 699.89 billion in Wednesday's session.

The trading volume reached 232.82 million shares, traded through 27,675 transactions, with a turnover of LE 804.94 million.

Egyptian investors were net buyers at LE 27.93 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 5.06 million, and LE 22.87 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 13.09 million and LE 1.22 million, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net buyers at LE 21.3 million.

Egyptian and Arab organizations bought at LE 6.63 million, and LE 8.03 million, respectively, while foreign organizations sold at LE 21.65 million.

Telecom Egypt, Ismailia National Food Industries, and Raya Holding For Financial Investments were top gainers of the session 9.98 percent, 9.92 percent and 8.33 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, El Obour Real Estate Investment, Edita Food Industries S.A.E, and El-Nile Co. for Pharmaceuticals and Chemical Industries were top losers of the session by 4.50 percent, 3.45 percent, and 3.28 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Wednesday's session in green, as: EGX30 hiked 1.04 percent, EGX 50 jumped 1.86 percent, EGX 70 rose 1.38 percent, and EGX 100 increased 1.53 percent.]]>
1/30/2020 4:23:06 PM
<![CDATA[Dollar price stable at Egypt's major banks]]>
At the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr the dollar rate remained stable, recording EGP 15.75 for buying and EGP 15.85 for selling.

The dollar rate remained stable at the Arab African International Bank, registering EGP 15.74 for buying and EGP 15.84 for selling.

At the Commercial International Bank the dollar price stood at EGP 15.74 for buying and EGP 15.84 for selling.

The dollar rate at the National Bank of Greece registered EGP 15.74 for buying and EGP 15.84 for selling.]]>
1/30/2020 3:19:30 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's trade deficit records $2.97 in November]]>
In its monthly bulletin on foreign trade data, CAPMAS said exports dropped 0.8 percent to reach $2.37 billion in November 2019, compared to $2.39 billion during the same month of 2018.

The bulletin attributed the decrease of exports to the decline in the exports of crude oil by 28.9 percent, ready-made clothes by 3.8 percent, fertilizers by 32.8 percent, and carpets and rugs by 10.4 percent.

Meanwhile, exports of some other commodities witnessed a hike in November such as petroleum products, which increased by 74.8 percent, various pastries and food preparations by 20.3 percent, fresh fruits by 19.5 percent, and medicines and pharmaceutical preparations by 41.7 percent.

On the other side, the bulletin showed a decline of 16.1 percent in the imports to hit $5.34 billion in November of the current year, compared to $6.36 billion in November 2018.

CAPMAS ascribed this decrease to the drop in imports of petroleum products by 20.8 percent, raw materials of iron or steel by 45.2 percent, cars by 27.9 percent, medicines and pharmaceutical preparations by 12.7 percent.

On the other hand, imports of other commodities showed a rise such as crude oil by 56.1 percent, wheat by 5 percent, soybeans 148 percent, and corn 43.8 percent.

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1/30/2020 12:23:48 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 20.5B in T-bills Thursday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 10 billion with a 182-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 364-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged by 1 percent or 100 basis points during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates were declined to 12.75 percent from 13.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
]]>
1/30/2020 12:04:45 PM
<![CDATA[Bee’ah wins largest waste management contract in Middle East for Egypt’s Administrative Capital ]]>
Bee’ah, the six-time winner of the Waste Management Company of the Year in the Middle East, is the latest in a long line of UAE success stories to expand internationally and take its advanced practices beyond borders. With a vision of pioneering a sustainable quality of life in the MENA region, Bee’ah’s impressive win can be directly attributed to its proven track record of diverse achievements and innovations in the UAE.

After an impressive submission in a hotly contested bid by all major players in the waste management industry, Bee’ah will now provide its innovative solutions to the 71,400-hectare new capital that will house an anticipated population of 6.5 million and 21 residential areas. To achieve an 80 percent waste diversion rate in the city, Bee’ah devised an integrated approach to environmental management for the new capital by bringing the best of sustainable practices in waste management and technologies to enable a circular economy for Egypt and reduce dependency on landfills.
As a natural extension of Cairo, located forty-five kilometres east of the capital, the new city will house government departments, ministries and foreign embassies, and is expected to strengthen and diversify the country’s economic potential.

On the accomplishment, HE Salim bin Mohamed Al Owais, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Bee’ah, said: “This significant achievement for Bee’ah is a testament of its rapid evolution in the past 12 years and a forward-thinking innovative spirit that drives Bee’ah towards excellence. We are delighted to be awarded the largest waste management contract in the Middle East, and are keen to take our ambitions global. As sustainability imperatives become top on the agenda for governments, businesses and communities, Bee’ah will continue to drive our vision of to be a pioneer of sustainable quality of life in the Middle East and beyond.”

Driving the UAE’s green agenda, Bee’ah has achieved a 76 percent waste diversion rate for the Emirate of Sharjah – the highest in the Middle East – and this is projected to reach 100 percent in 2021 upon completion of the Middle East’s first waste-to-energy plant in Sharjah. Bee’ah’s Waste Management division caters to millions of residents through municipal services, and multiple commercial establishments which include the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa, Dubai World Trade Centre. Bee’ah will also soon commence operations in the world’s busiest airport, Dubai Airport.

Through leveraging global best practices and disruptive innovations, the sustainability pioneer utilises an eco-friendly fleet of vehicles for city cleaning and waste collection.

Building an infrastructure for a circular economy and sound environmental practices, Bee’ah’s state-of-the-art Waste Management Complex processes three million tonnes of waste annually, by recycling, recovering and regenerating materials for reuse. Within the Waste Management Complex, Bee’ah hosts the Material Recovery Facility, which has an annual capacity over 500,000 tonnes and is one of the top producer of recycled materials from solid waste in the Middle East; the Industrial Waste Water Treatment Plant which can treat 300m³ of contaminated water daily; a cryogenic Tyre Recycling Facility that recycles old tyres into useful rubber products; the Construction and Demolition Waste Recycling Facility with a recovery rate of 95 percent and the Car and Metal Shredding and Recycling Facility which has the world’s most powerful shredding machines capable of processing a vehicle in 60 seconds.

On Bee’ah’s rapid ascent towards becoming the Middle East’s leader in the environmental services sector, HE Khalid Al Huraimel, Group CEO of Bee’ah, said: “Bee’ah aims to make a sustainable quality of life a reality in the Middle East and beyond, through a twin-pillared strategy of digitalisation and sustainability across our operations. We have proven ourselves in the UAE, achieving milestones such as building the country’s first waste-to-energy plant, exploring new ventures that champion sustainable mobility solutions and digital transformation to positively impact the lives of millions.”

On winning the contract for Egypt’s new capital, HE Al Huraimel said: “We are delighted to be working on such an ambitious and forward-thinking project. This new project marks the next phase of Bee’ah’s expansion as a global player across the field, from waste management and renewable energy to sustainable transportation and green buildings. Together with the Administrative Capital for Urban Development, we are certain that we will help make the new capital a smart and green city of the future.”

In Addition, Khalid al-Husseini, the spokesperson from the Administrative Capital for Urban Development, said: “We are glad to have a proven and innovative waste management partner, such as Bee’ah, to support our goals to make the new Administrative Capital a green city, with state-of-the-art waste management processes that leverage smart technologies. Waste management is critical to city-planning for the enhancement of Egypt’s economic potential and quality of life for Egyptian citizens. We look forward to working closely with Bee’ah to achieve our sustainability target for a 80 percent waste diversion rates.”

The development of Egypt’s new Administrative Capital is part of a broader objective to double the country’s urban space from 7 to 14 percent, through road projects and 14 new cities by 2052. The move comes as forecasts show that the population could grow from the current 100 million to 160 million by 2050, thus the need for new urban centres.

As part of a waste management strategy for the new city, the Administrative Capital has developed a Green City mandate, through Bee’ah’s integrated waste management systems. Bee’ah will also encourage community participation in residential recycling through awareness programmes. Under the Smart City objectives, Bee’ah will launch a mobile application for residents to access information and avail waste-related services. To meet the Administrative Capital’s Happy City objectives, Bee’ah will strive for customer satisfaction by continuously improving services, providing 24/7 customer service support and launch behavioural reward programs that encourage recycling.

To boost efficiencies, Bee’ah also developed the region’s first fully-integrated, digital waste management solution, WastePro+, which will be used for this project to monitor waste from collection right through to recycling and treatment facilities.

Beyond environmental management, Bee’ah’s vision is captured in its new Headquarters, set to be a benchmark for the smartest and greenest building of the future. Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects for LEED Platinum certification and as net zero energy building, the Headquarters’ will be the region’s first artificial intelligence-integrated smart office technology incorporated by Johnsons Control and Microsoft.

To share best practices through consultancy, Bee’ah’s expertise is leveraged by its Consultancy, Research and Innovation division, which offers advisory and research services to help clients make informed decisions regarding environmental and ecological impact. To drive lasting and generational change, Bee’ah seeks to educate youths on the importance of protecting our planet through the Bee’ah School of Environment has a trove of useful online resources for teachers and students alike and hosts national recycling competitions that encourage community participation.

Bee’ah has set its ambitions high by launching joint ventures that meet both the region’s demand for sustainable solutions and digitalisation. Together with Crescent Enterprises, Bee’ah launched ION, the region’s first sustainable transportation company, in 2018 to offer zero-emissions mobility solutions like electric vehicle ride-hailing offerings and autonomous shuttles for cities, business districts and municipalities, among others. Meanwhile, Bee’ah’s digital arm, EVOTEQ, is currently managing one of the largest municipality digital transformation projects.]]>
1/29/2020 10:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Trade exchange bet. Egypt, Agadir countries hits $1.9B in 2019]]>
Gamea added in a statement Wednesday that the Egyptian exports to the countries of the agreement amounted to $1.5 billion in 2019, compared to $1.4 billion in 2018.

She emphasized the importance of enhancing joint cooperation between the countries of the agreement in the field of developing small and medium enterprises and benefiting from the pioneering Egyptian experience in this field, noting that Egypt has the appropriate work environment, laws, supportive legislation and political support for this type of projects.

The minister also referred to the significance of increasing the rates of intra-regional trade among the member countries to advance the large commercial and industrial potentials of these countries.

In 2004, Egypt signed the Agadir Agreement which is a free trade agreement between four Arab countries: Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia. The agreement, which came into force in 2007, helped enhance the trade exchange between the four countries.





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1/29/2020 6:07:04 PM
<![CDATA[Remittances from Egyptian expats jump to $2.3B in October]]>
CBE clarified in a statement that the remittances of Egyptian expats during the first four months of fiscal year 2019/2020 (from July to October 2019) recorded about $ 9 billion, up from $ 8 billion registered during the same period of 2018, marking an increase of 13.4 percent.

Earlier, CBE announced that the remittances from Egyptian expatriates hiked 13.6 percent during the first quarter of 2019/2020, reaching $6.7 billion, compared to $5.9 billion in the same quarter of the prior fiscal year.

CBE announced in Nov. that the remittances of Egyptian expats increased by $277.1 million or 5.5 percent in July and August of 2019, reaching $4.4 billion, up from $4.2 billion during the same months of 2018.

In 2018, remittances from Egyptian expatriates hiked 3.1 percent or $778.2 million, reaching $25.5 billion, compared to $24.7 billion in 2017.

Remittances are one of Egypt’s main foreign currency sources, which have been on the rise since Egypt floated its local currency in November 2016.

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1/29/2020 5:45:19 PM
<![CDATA[CI Capital to offer 2 companies on EGX]]>
Hazem Badran said in statements on the sidelines of a press conference that it is planned to complete the offering of Taleem Company, the owner of Al-Nahda University, in the fourth quarter of 2020 or the first quarter of 2021.

“We will float a company in the food security sector worth more than LE 1 billion,” Badran stated, refusing to go into more details.

Badran said earlier that the volume of assets managed by CI Capital reached LE 9.2 billion in 2019, compared to more than LE 7 billion in 2018.

Badran expected that the Egyptian Stock Exchange will witness an activity with the completion of the offering of Alexandria Container and Cargo Handling Co, and Abo Qir Fertilizers, due to the size of the two companies and the opportunities provided for investors and investment funds to enter the market.

CI Capital is an investment bank in Egypt with market-leading investment banking, securities brokerage, asset management and research franchises.

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1/29/2020 4:41:59 PM
<![CDATA[EGX bounces to green zone after Vodafone-STC deal]]>
On Tuesday's night, Vodafone Group announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to sell its potential 55 percent stake in Vodafone Egypt to Saudi Telecom Company (STC) for $2.392 billion (LE 37 billion).

The benchmark EGX 30 hiked 1.04 percent, or 142.26 points, to close at 13,762.84 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 jumped 1.86 percent, or 34.88 points, to end at 1,905.56 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 rose 1.38 percent, or 7.27 points, to close at 534 points, and the broader index EGX 100 increased 1.53 percent, or 20.82 points to 1,384.63 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 8.36 billion, recording LE 699.88 billion, compared to LE 691.53 billion in Tuesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 142.34 million shares, traded through 22,005 transactions, with a turnover of LE 624.62 million.

Foreign investors were net sellers at LE 82.45 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 39.78 million, and LE 42.66 million, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 21.41 million and LE 20.22 million, respectively, while foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 2.22 million.

Egyptian and Arab organizations bought at LE 18.36 million, and LE 21.96 million, respectively, while foreign organizations sold at LE 80.23 million.

Ismailia Misr Poultry, Telecom Egypt, and Ismailia National Food Industries were top gainers of the session 11.02 percent, 10 percent and 9.90 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, EL Ezz Aldekhela Steel - Alexandria, Egyptian Transport (EGYTRANS), and GlaxoSmithKline were top losers of the session by 4.06 percent, 3.76 percent, and 2.15 percent, respectively.

EGX ended Tuesday’s session in red, as: EGX30 inched down 0.14 percent, EGX 50 dipped 0.44 percent, EGX 70 dropped 0.83 percent, and EGX 100 decreased 0.66 percent.



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1/29/2020 4:40:30 PM
<![CDATA[CI Capital manages LE 9.2B assets in Egypt during 2019]]>
Badran expected in a press conference that the Egyptian Stock Exchange will witness an activity with the completion of the offerings of Alexandria Container and Cargo Handling Co., and Abo Qir Fertilizers due to the size of the two companies and the opportunities provided for investors and investment funds to enter the market.

In November, Minister of Public Business Sector Hesham Tawfik said that three governmental companies are ready to offer shares in EGX, namely Heliopolis, Alexandria Containers, and Abo Qir Fertilizers.

On a different note, Badran added that the company's financial services portfolio in 2019 amounted to LE 10 billion, compared to LE 7.8 billion in 2018.

CI Capital Holding recorded consolidated profits of LE 235.24 million during the first half of 2019, compared to LE 169.67 million including minority rights during the same half of 2018, marking an increase of 38.64 percent.

CI Capital is an investment bank in Egypt with market-leading investment banking, securities brokerage, asset management and research franchises.



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1/29/2020 4:08:19 PM
<![CDATA[Saudi Arabia’s direct investment in Egypt records $69.3M in Q1 of 2019/20]]>
CBE clarified in a recent report that foreign direct investment from Saudi Arabia in Egypt decreased by 33.4 percent in the first quarter of 2019/2020 compared to the fourth quarter of 2018/2019, where the foreign direct investment of Saudi Arabia recorded $104 million.

Saudi Arabia’s direct investments in Egypt represent 8.4 percent of the total Arab countries' investments in the first quarter of the current fiscal year, amounting to $824.3 million, compared to $799.2 million in the same quarter of the previous fiscal year, marking an increase of 3.1 percent.

Net foreign direct investment from Saudi Arabia to Egypt reached $ 478.1 million during the 2018-2019 fiscal year, according to the Central Bank of Egypt's data.

The fiscal year in Egypt begins in early July of each year until the end of June of the following year.





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1/29/2020 3:50:55 PM
<![CDATA[Things to know about Egypt’s newcomer “STC”]]>
Here are the most prominent pieces of information about the newcomer to the Egyptian market, STC:

- Saudi Telecom Company "STC" is the same as Telecom Egypt, as it is the national company in providing telecommunications services in Saudi Arabia.

- Founded by Cabinet Resolution No. 171 of September 9, 2002, and Royal Decree No. M / 35 of April 21, 1998, as a Saudi joint stock company, in accordance with Cabinet Resolution No. 213 of April 20, 1998, which approved the company's articles of association.

- STC's ownership structure is divided between 70 percent owned by the Public Investment Fund, 16.23 percent free shares, 7 percent for the General Organization for Social Insurance, and 6.77 percent for the Public Pension Agency.

- Competitors of Saudi Telecom Company "STC" in Saudi Arabia, are Etihad Communications Company "Mobily", the Saudi Mobile Telecommunications Company "Zain", and Etihad Jawara Company for Communications and Information Technology “Lebara Mobile”, and the Union Mobile Company “Virgin Mobile”.

- In May 2019, Saudi Telecom launched the first live sites for the fifth generation network after completing its experiments, for the first time in the Middle East and North Africa.

- Saudi Telecom Company expanded abroad by acquiring 25 percent of the Axis Group in Malaysia, which operates in the telecommunications field with a value of $ 3.04 billion, which in turn operates a number of mobile phone networks in Malaysia, Indonesia and India. Moreover, It also obtained 26 percent of the third mobile phone license in Kuwait, with a value of $ 924.6 million.

- STC acquired 35% of the shareholders ’shares in UAE-based Oger Telecom, in the beginning of 2008, in a deal valued at $ 2.85 billion.

- STC acquires various proportions in a number of local and regional institutions and companies, including Arabsat Corporation for Satellite Communications and working in the field of satellite broadcasting, the Arab Sea Cable Company linking the two banks of the Red Sea (Saudi Arabia - Sudan). The company acquired 100 percent of the provider AllNet internet services, in addition to the Saudi commercial company.

- STC held an 8.8 percent direct stake in Careem but it sold it with the acquisition by Uber of Karim Company for approximately $ 3.1 billion, so that the share of Saudi Telecom Company from this acquisition reached $ 274 million.

- The capital of Saudi Telecom Company STC is about SAR 20 billion, and its market value is about SAR 186.4 billion.

- During 2019, STC achieved revenues of SAR 54.4 billion, marking a growth rate of 4.64 percent. Its net profit reached SAR 10.755 billion.

- According to the Brand Finance Index, Saudi Telecom Company owns the most expensive brands in the Middle East for 2019 with a value of SAR 26.6 billion riyals ($7.1 billion), and is ranked among the top 50 digital companies in the world in the year, and the first in the Middle East.

Saudi STC to buy 55% of Vodafone's share in Egypt

CAIRO - 29 January 2020: Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli met Tuesday with the CEO of Vodafone group, Nicholas Read, along with MCIT Amr Tala'at. The CEO Nicholas Read said that he met the Egyptian premier to officially inform the Egyptian government that Vodafone group has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Saudi giant tech STC, adding that the latter will probably buy 55 percent of International Vodafone's share in Vodafone Egypt.




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1/29/2020 1:00:35 PM
<![CDATA[Saudi STC to buy 55% of Vodafone’s share in Egypt]]>
The CEO Nicholas Read said that he met the Egyptian premier to officially inform the Egyptian government that Vodafone group has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Saudi giant tech STC, adding that the latter will probably buy 55 percent of International Vodafone’s share in Vodafone Egypt.

Read praised the distinguished cooperation between Egypt and International Vodafone through 22 years, mentioning the great support received by the company from the Egyptian government that Egypt became one of the most valuable regions for the company’s investment.

Read pointed out that the call was taken as part of the company’s strategy to focus all of its investments in one sector, this explains the company’s pull out of several major markets. Read added that International Vodafone will remain in Egypt through several other services.

In the same context, Egyptian MCIT, Amr Tala’at, said that the service will not be affected by the possible sale, adding that Egypt is a promising major market for several communication investments. He said that the Egyptian ministry of communication will continue its cooperation with International Vodafone in several projects.

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1/29/2020 2:22:30 AM
<![CDATA[PM reviews Fitch report about Egyptian energy market]]>
The report by the global leader in credit ratings included expectations for the mining and energy sector in Egypt in the near future and some speculations for the coming eight years in light of the current situation in the country.

Assistant Prime Minister Usama Gohar said that recent developments in Egypt contributed to improving the outlook of Fitch reports about the Egyptian market.

He noted that exports of liquefied natural gas increased by 450 percent in the first five months of 2019 compared to the previous year.

Also international companies such as Eni, DEA, BP and Petronas along with Mobil, Exxon and Shell were allowed to explore for gas in Egypt, he pointed out, adding that other international companies were also allowed to explore for oil in the country.]]>
1/28/2020 5:13:34 PM
<![CDATA[U.S.-Egyptian bilateral trade reaches $8.2B:Cohen]]>
Cohen noted that U.S. goods exports to Egypt recorded $5.2 billion, marking an increase of 30 percent over the past two years, adding that U.S. imports from Egypt hit $3 billion, up by 76 percent in two years.

“U.S. food and agricultural exports to Egypt grew 145 percent from 2017 to 2018,” he noted.

According to Cohen, Egypt is the fourth-largest export market for U.S. goods and services in the Middle East, and the largest market for U.S. goods and services exports on the African continent.

“Equally important, Egyptian agricultural exports to the U.S. reached a record-high two-years in row, in 2018 and 2019,” he stated.

This came during the American Chamber of Commerce meeting in Cairo Tuesday, on "the strategic partnership between the United States and Egypt: opportunities for commercial participation" in the presence of the US ambassador to Cairo, Jonathan Cohen.

For his part, Head of American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt (AmCham) Sherif Kamel said Tuesday that the free trade agreement would support relations between the two countries and allow products to reach the African continent in light of the existence of agreements between Egypt and the countries of the continent in various fields.

He pointed out that one of the most important advantages of Egypt is its important strategic location on the global level, which leads to the consolidation of economic relations.

US Ambassador: I will work tirelessly to expand business opportunities with Egypt

CAIRO - 28 January 2020: U.S. Ambassador to Cairo Jonathan R. Cohen made remarks on his plans to promote U.S.-Egyptian strategic partnership, giving highlights of his previous diplomatic and commercial engagement, and advocacy for U.S. companies. The comments were during his meeting at the American Chamber of Commerce Tuesday.



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1/28/2020 5:11:48 PM
<![CDATA[FRA: Egyptian economy reaping fruits of reforms despite regional, int'l challenges]]>
Thanks to the Egyptians' will, the economy is back on the right track and has realized a growth rate of 5.6 percent, the highest in the region, he said during a press conference on Tuesday on the launch of the FRA's annual report.

Omran said economic reforms contributed to realizing an initial budget surplus of 2 percent, noting that the net hard currency reserve hit a record of more than $45 billion by the end of 2019.

Omran said the value of securities issued at primary market stood at over LE 220 billion.

Investments of insurance funds registered at LE 75 billion in 2019 against LE 67 billion in 2018, he said.

He added that the authority has also worked on developing legislations of the financial sector in addition to issuing the first guide for non-banking financial activities and establishing a center for settling disputes of non-banking financial sector.

FRA has also established a sustainable development department and issued the first sustainability report by an Egyptian institution.]]>
1/28/2020 4:23:15 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends mid-week session in red]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 inched down 0.14 percent, or 19.11 points, to close at 13,620.58 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 0.44 percent, or 8.36 points, to end at 1,870.68 points.

Moreover, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dropped 0.83 percent, or 4.4 points, to close at 526.73 points, and the broader index EGX 100 decreased 0.66 percent, or 9.02 points to 1,363.81 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 1.12 billion, recording LE 691.53 billion, compared to LE 692.65 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 119.27 million shares, traded through 16,955 transactions, with a turnover of LE 119.27 million.

Arab investors were net sellers at LE 12.9 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net buyers at LE 11.09 million, and LE 1.8 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 13.64 million and LE 402,238, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net buyers at LE 3.24 million.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign organizations bought at LE 7.85 million, and LE 741,325, and LE 2.21 million, respectively.

Ismailia National Food Industries, Modern Company for water proofing (Bitumode), and Telecom Egypt were top gainers of the session 9.92 percent, 8.22 percent and 6.14 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Paint & Chemicals Industries (Pachin), MM Group for Industry and International Trade, and National Housing for Professional Syndicates were top losers of the session by 8.35 percent, 5.77 percent, and 5.08 percent, respectively.

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1/28/2020 3:52:15 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian pound to hit LE17/$ by end of 2020: Capital Economics]]>
It also anticipated that the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) to resume its easing cycle and lower interest rates by 225bp, to 10 percent by end-2020. The report said that this reduction would in turn reduce the attractiveness of the carry trade.

Moreover, the report clarified that the Egyptian pound has further strengthened at the start of this year but it is now making exports uncompetitive and, with the support of the likely fading high real interest rates, the currency will probably give up some of its gains over the rest of this year and next.

In January, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to keep the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) overnight deposit rate, overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively. The discount rate was also kept unchanged at 12.75 percent.

“The pound was one of the best performing currencies in the emerging world last year, appreciating by more than 11 percent against the dollar. It has continued to strengthen at the start of this year, rising by 1.5 percent to 15.8/$,” the report stated, adding that the currency is now close to its strongest level since the devaluation in 2016.

According to the report, the rally in the pound comes on the back of a significant improvement in Egypt’s balance of payments position. “The 50 percent drop in the pound versus the dollar in 2016 boosted Egypt’s external competitiveness, supporting exports and encouraging firms and households to shift their consumption away from imports to domestically-produced goods.”

The report also referred to Egypt’s gas production, saying that Egypt has benefited from a boom in gas production, and energy exports have more than doubled since 2016. Egypt was probably a net gas exporter for the first time in six years in 2019.

“The overall result is that the current account deficit has narrowed from a peak of 6.6 percent of GDP in Q4 2016 to around 2.5 percent of GDP in Q3 last year,” it said.

It added that the devaluation and higher real interest rates have supported a pick-up in foreign capital inflows. Despite a sharp drop in inflation over the past few years, the central bank has taken a cautious approach with monetary easing.

“This has left real interest rates among the highest in the emerging world,” it commented.

“But we think that the large gains in the pound are probably now behind us. After all, the currency is starting to look overvalued. Indeed, Egypt’s real effective exchange rate – that is, the trade-weighted exchange rate adjusted for inflation differentials with trading partners – has risen by more than 60 percent from its trough and is now approaching its levels before the 2016 devaluation,” it said.

“Admittedly, the rise in gas exports means that Egypt can now sustain a higher real exchange rate than before. But the recent deterioration in competitiveness has weighed on Egypt’s non-hydrocarbon exports, which have effectively stagnated since mid-2018,” the report stated, clarifying that this is a classic symptom of the so-called Dutch Disease.

It explained that struggling non-hydrocarbon exports mean that any further increase in gas output is unlikely to translate into an additional improvement in the current account.

Capital Economics thought that support for the pound from tight monetary conditions will also fade, adding that inflation will unlikely to breach the mid-point of the CBE’s target range of 9±3 percent on a sustained basis.

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1/28/2020 3:21:43 PM
<![CDATA[Molla seals 2 new exploration deals]]>
The two companies will explore for oil and natural gas in the Mediterranean, a statement by the Petroleum Ministry said Tuesday.

An additional $17 million dollars will be allotted as grants for digging seven wells, the statement added.

The first deal includes digging four wells in northeastern Ameriya area at a minimum cost of $220 million, plus a grant of $10 million.

Three more wells should be dug in north Maraia region at a minimum cost of $112 million , plus a grant of $7 million. ]]>
1/28/2020 11:46:52 AM
<![CDATA[Obour land commences production in 3 lines]]>
Sherif added that the new production lines produce more packs per hour, 3 times faster than the old production lines, which will accordingly reduce industrial expenses and the running costs of operating the new lines.

According to Sherif, the new production lines will reduce energy consumption, water consumption and will be more environmentally friendly.

“Our commitment to excellence and aspirations to offer the highest-possible quality of products, which are both affordable and safe, remains our key prime focus and our relentless driver for our expansionary attitude,” he stated.

He believed that to preserve the company’s position as the market leader in the white cheese market and to enhance it even further, the company must always develop its existing products and to create new innovative products.

“Obour Land’s strategy aims to acquire a decent market share based on consumer preferences rather than discounted prices therefore the company does not engage in price wars or offers big discounts as a way to penetrate new markets,” he referred during commenting on the company’s financial profits of 2019.

He clarified that the management believes that this strategy maybe slower but it will lead to having a more stable and long-term market share that will be loyal to the brand similar to the company’s white cheese success story and by using the same applied sales policies.

“Moreover, the company’s management has established a short-term plan to boost Milk and Juice sales in 2020.”

The company recorded consolidated profits of LE 295.29 million during 2019, compared to LE 238 million in 2018, marking an increase of 24 percent.

During the first half of 2019, Obour Land for Food Industries recorded a 10.4 percent increase in its consolidated profits, recording LE 127.26 million, compared to LE 115.18 million during the same half of 2019.

Obour Land operates in the food, beverage and tobacco sector with a focus on canned food and meat.

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1/28/2020 11:35:44 AM
<![CDATA[Obour Land records profits of LE295.3M in 2019]]>
The Company noted a spate filing to the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) that its net sales in 2019 jumped 8 percent, recording LE recorded EGP 2.587 billion; out of which LE 2.456 billion generated from white cheese sales and LE 125.7 million from the Juice & Milk segment.

As per gross profit, it hit LE 562.5 million during 2019, posting a y-o-y growth of 5%, translating into a gross profit margin of 21.7 percent, compared to 22.4 percent in FY18.
“The company managed to keep the gross profit margin of the full year in its targeted levels as planned by the management,” it noted.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) recorded an 11 percent y-o-y increase, to reach LE 412.8 million in 2019, yielding an EBITDA margin of 16 percent marking a 50bps increase compared to 2018.

“I am delighted to share with you our results for the full year of 2019 ended December 31, 2019, as Obour Land has proved resilient in a tough market due to lower consumption rates and new players entering the market. The Company succeeded to overcome these tough conditions as we achieved growth in revenues and sales volumes while maintaining margins in its targeted levels, “Vice Chairman of Obour Land Ashraf Hamed Sherif said.

“This is driven by continuing our strategic focus on sustainable growth, providing top quality products and managing the costs efficiently,” he added.

During the first half of 2019, Obour Land for Food Industries recorded a 10.4 percent increase in its consolidated profits, recording LE 127.26 million, compared to LE 115.18 million during the same half of 2019.

Obour Land operates in the food, beverage and tobacco sector with a focus on canned food and meat.
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1/28/2020 11:24:20 AM
<![CDATA[HUAWEI Nova 5T, Pro-cameras in your pocket]]>
Over the past two years, the HUAWEI nova series has been the new star that shines the brightest, furnishing cutting-edge Huawei capabilities, including flagship-level Kirin chips, GPU Turbo technology, powerful battery life, and riveting features through a stylish, youthful filter.

Now, with the launch of the newest Nova 5T, a true hero product on its own, photography fans are racing to pick up the newest piece of art from Huawei. Here is your complete guide for Huawei Nov, a true selfie star.

To be a true selfie superstar, Huawei made sure to equip its newest Nova 5T with all necessary technology, revolutionizing once again the selfie concept. Huawei’s Nova comes with a front camera embedded beneath the screen, with a 32 MP, f/2.0 aperture, which supports fixed focal length, enabling all users to take the perfect selfie they aspire for.

Not only this, but the Nova 5T doesn’t leave its photography skills on its rear camera, with four rear cameras featuring a 48 MP (f/1.8 aperture AF) + 16 M (f/2.2 aperture FF) + 2 M (f/2.4 aperture FF) + 2 M (f/2.4 aperture FF), which all support autofocus (phase focus, contrast focus) capturing all moments of life with the highest resolution.

Images are rich with colour without appearing over-processed or unnatural. In good light the Nova 5T picks up a nice amount of detail, and even in low light Huawei’s AI manages to produce some really nice images that sacrifice a little bit of the detail and dynamic range but are still very good.

The Huawei Nova 5T is a superb smartphone camera for the price. Huawei’s AI and computational photography lead the market. Huawei is filtering this flagship technology down into more affordable options.

Backed by the depth of Huawei’s superb AI functionality, the Nova 5T is the preferable choice for the best smartphone camera for photographers on a budget.]]>
1/27/2020 4:12:17 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to discuss electricity linkage with Congo]]>
Shaker added in a statement Sunday that the joint cooperation between the two sides in the field of electricity and renewable energy, in addition to increasing the volume of joint projects implemented by Egyptian companies working in the field of electricity will be discussed.

This came during Shaker’s visit to Congo on Sunday, heading a high-level delegation that includes a number of leaders of the electricity sector, a number of Egyptian officials and private sector companies working in the field of electricity.

Shaker added that ways to facilitate Egyptian participation in the Inga Dam project will also be discussed. He confirmed the Egyptian side’s keenness to have a role in implementing the project through the Egyptian private sector companies and with the support of the Egyptian Government through the two countries' political declaration, which came during the visit of Congolese prime minister and Congo’s energy minister to Egypt in 2016.

Shaker affirmed that the Egyptian Government supports the Democratic Republic of Congo in all fields, including the electricity field, and that all the potentials of the Egyptian electricity sector are available to serve the electricity sector on its land.

Such a visit asserts President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi and the Egyptian political leadership's keenness to strengthen cooperation with African countries and enhance the Egyptian presence there. It also aims to activate the Egyptian Government's policy in the electricity and renewable energy sector to support and enhance cooperation with African countries to achieve benefit for all parties and benefit from the huge hydroelectric potential of the continent.


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1/27/2020 1:54:32 PM
<![CDATA[Rameda expects to hit operating profits of LE255M in 2019]]>
Ramida added in a statement to the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) Sunday that during the last quarter of 2019, the adjusted operating profits before tax, interest, depreciation and amortization decreased 2 percent to reach about LE 96 million.

It pointed out that the company's revenues increased by 11 percent on an annual basis to record LE 890 million during 2019, noting that in the last quarter of the year, the company's revenues amounted to about LE 271 million with an annual growth rate of 16.3 percent.

“With the upgrades and expansion works undertaken between January-November 2019 now complete, and with the resumption of uninterrupted production, management expects a stronger growth and profitability momentum heading into 2020,” it stated, adding that Rameda’s facilities are now fully-operational with a 60 percent increase in production capacity, including the group’s new lyophilized lines.

“This will pave the way for streamlined production, new product launches, and increased opportunities in toll manufacturing segment, all of which will lead to higher revenues and lower costs through improved economies of scale,” it clarified.

Listing of Tenth of Ramadan for Pharmaceutical Industries and Diagnostic Reagents (Rameda) in EGX took place in December.

“Trading commenced on Rameda (RMDA.CA) with a celebration of company number 215 on EGX’s main market platform in the presence of Rameda’s management, EGX’s Chairman Mohamed Farid Saleh and EGX management,” EGX said in a statement then.

EGX added public and private offering covered 376,60 million shares representing 48.99 percent of the company’s total shares with a price of LE 4.66/share and with a total value of LE 1,754,983,960; LE 1.6 billion for private placement and LE87.7 million for public placement.

“The IPO resulted in allocating 18.83 million shares representing 5 percent of the total shares offered, while the private placement allocated 357,77 million shares representing 95 percent,” it clarified, adding that the private placement was oversubscribed by 1.2 times and the IPO by 36 times.


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1/27/2020 1:52:08 PM
<![CDATA[EGX in eyes of Mohamed Farid ]]>
In a seminar held at the headquarters of Business Today Egypt in Cairo, Farid started with a presentation on the stock exchange management efforts to develop the market in coordination with all parties. He also displayed videos of success stories of companies recently listed on the stock market, including Fawry Banking and Edita for Food Industries, and how they benefited from the stock market as positive models to motivate family-owned companies to register on the stock exchange.

Government IPO and listing of Armed Forces Companies

The initial public offering (IPO) of state companies on the stock exchange has various advantages, including expanding the ownership base and distributing economic growth among a larger number of individuals, Egyptian Exchange Chairman Mohamed Farid said.

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“Companies’ incomes reflect on economic growth,” Farid stated, expressing that individuals can benefit from companies’ growth when they are offered on the stock exchange.

“Offering state-owned companies is one of the most important steps countries take to revitalize the stock market,” Farid stated, pointing to the Eastern European model, where markets have shifted from directed economies to a free economies by stimulating the money market through offering many companies on the stock exchange.

Farid highlighted Egypt’s experience in offering government companies on the stock exchange, both in the early 1990s with the reactivation of the stock exchange, and the issuance of Law 95 of 1992, which resulted in the revitalization of the stock market, and later the second wave of government offerings in 2004 and 2005.

He also referred to the latest model, the offering of Saudi Aramco, the largest oil producer in the world and a state-owned company, to stimulate trading on the Saudi Stock Exchange. “The idea of registration and offering state companies is a very important matter; it is very much needed and will yield good returns for investors in general,”Farid stressed.

Furthermore, Farid explained that offering Armed Forces’ companies on the EGX conveys a message of state transparency and strength, as well as the openness of the Egyptian economy and its ability to participate with all parties.

The EGX chairman said that offering on the stock exchange is related to governance; the state’s goal to list its companies on the stock market means that it is ready to commit to regulations on transparency, governance and audit committees, as well as to announce its financial statements and disclose ordinary and extraordinary matters. “This is a good message,” he asserts.

In December, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi announced that Armed Forces’ companies will be offered on the EGX. On the companies’ readiness, Farid said that it is up to the IPO’s promoter and the investment banks that deal in securities.

“Generally, the market’s boom period is related to the offering of government companies, and therefore we are talking about a complete idea, as the offering results in stimulating and attracting new investor categories, and enhancing the stock market’s attractiveness,” Farid said.

Farid stressed the EGX’s readiness to accommo- date new offerings, whether from Armed Forces’ companies or companies listed in the government offerings program, reviewing numerous measures taken by the stock market during the supply side. This includes developing and improving the content of disclosure of listed companies and raising awareness concerning the importance of the stock market as a platform to finance companies’ expansions.

“The measures also include promoting the registration of new companies on the EGX, reducing delay rates in registering capital adjustments for restricted companies, as well as adjusting executive procedures to allow repeated stock splitting,” he adds.


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The Stock Exchange also reportedly took measures to develop the trading environment through new trading mechanisms and financial products to diversify options for investors, in addition to developing trading control mechanisms, increasing market efficiency,and managing the risks associated with member bodies.

“Finally, the demand side has been developed to increase communication rates with all local and international institutions, shedding light on the field’s most prominent financial market efforts in particular, and the overall economy in general, through the promotion of internal and external communication and financial inclusion. This is in addition to signing agreements with various inter- national federations,” Farid concluded.

According to Farid, the Stock Exchange also worked on developing a mechanism to link back offices and the stock exchange system for initial offerings by activating the Financial Information Exchange protocol known as the Financial Initial Market.

“This mechanism allows the ability to link to back offices to verify the client’s financial adequacy, the speed of implementation of work orders, as well as the ability to list and follow-up orders directly from the client through the brokerage firm’s website for online trading,” Farid clarifies. He adds that it also allows direct listing of orders and reduces errors by diminishing human intervention at all stages, providing connectivity with other parties through brokerage companies such as investment funds and global trading networks, the speed of arrival of orders and the statement of their status to the issu- ing bodies (client - company - fund).


Sporting clubs on the EGX

Answering question related to attracting sports clubs to be floated on the bourse, Farid notes that the Sports Law has been amended to allow clubs to be offered on the stock exchange, which is wel- comed, especially since there are many clubs in England, Germany and France that are established as a company and are listed on stock markets.

“Currently, there are [sporting] clubs in Egypt that are founded in the form of companies, and ready to be offered, and we are working on 2 or 3 companies to be floated, which are Misr Lel Makkasa Sporting Club, Wadi Degla and Football Club Masr (FC Masr),” he states.

Egypt’s economic reform program

On another note, Farid said that investing in the financial market is linked to macroeconomic performance, because any investor who wants to invest in a financial market in a particular country monitors the performance of macroeconomics at first. More recently, the results of Egypt’s economic reform program reflected on the stock exchange, such as net foreign purchases on the stock market, which amounted to LE 20 billion after the start of the pro- gram in November 2016 compared to LE 2 billion in the same period before the program began.
Moreover, market capital increased by 60%. “New proposals will not take place without macro- economic reforms,” he states.

The EGX chairman clarifies that a foreign investor in the stock market is a long-term investor, as he enters to buy shares of companies and invests in them for a year, two years or more, due to his confidence in managing the overall economy and the reflection of this economy’s performance on companies.

Interest rates, trading volumes, and the Aramco IPO on Tadawul

Regarding interest rates, there is an inverse rela- tionship between interest rates and levels of invest- ment and consumption, Farid says. When inflation rates increased significantly, it was necessary to raise interest rates; whereas after inflation rates fell to a single digit, interest rates began to decline, pro- spectively yielding an uptick in an investment activity in general, be it direct investment to set up factories or establish companies or at the level of the capital market, he explains.

Because of the low supply of companies listed on the Egyptian Stock Exchange, where we witnessed throughout the year various companies exiting as a result of the rules of registration or acquisition or the presence of outstanding problems with them, this reduced the investor supply for investment, Farid states.

Regarding how could Saudi Aramco’s IPO affect trading on the EGX, Farid said that there is no direct and immediate impact of Aramco’s offering on the Egyptian Stock Exchange.

“Aramco’s offering is the largest in the world, with a value of $25 billion, but it will have an indirect impact on the companies’ weights in global financial market indicators such as the Morgan Stanley Index. This is not limited to Egyptian companies, but to all companies around the world,” he contends.

Stamp Taxation and the Client Relationship Management (CRM) unit

As for the stamp tax and its effect on the bourse’s performance, Farid said that there is a committee including the market’s parties and the Ministry of Finance, to discuss the impact of the stamp tax on the stock exchange, and to devise and fully elaborate this tax. The aim is to achieve two goals: the state’s right to collect taxes to increase its resources, in return creating a balance on the stock exchange, awaiting this committee’s results.

Client Relationship Management (CRM) unit

On another note, the EGX Chairman revealed that the bourse seeks to promote listing new companies, saying that the Stock Exchange established a department for promotion in July 2018 as part of the Egyptian Stock Exchange’s plan to increase market depth and increase the base of listed companies. In turn, this has a positive impact on the number of investors, and gives a positive image of Egyptian Stock Exchange’s performance.

“The offering of Fawry on the bourse came as a result of effective communication of the Client Relationship Management (CRM) unit, which provided all aspects of support to the company in each of the registration and offering steps,” he refers.

In Farid’s view, the mechanism of the CRM’s work is to follow up on targeted companies to list their shares on the stock exchange is through collecting data on companies that carry out transfers of ownership in over the counter (OTC) markets, companies registered in the Central Custody Company of Misr for Central Clearing, Depository and Registry (MCDR), and companies registered at the General Investment Authority. This results in identifying the targeted companies and working to address them and promote the listing of their shares, whether in the main market or the market for small and medium-sized companies, keeping all aforementioned data in the CRM system.

He announced that the CRM contacted 235 com- panies, where 67 revealed their desire to list their shares on EGX but are considering the timing of this step, 81 companies showed no interest, 24 companies are mulling the step, and 14 companies have already begun studying the enrollment and offering process.

Efforts to develop the market

“Since assuming management of the Egyptian Stock Exchange in August 2017, we have worked on developing 3 axes. First, there’s the supply side, through developing and improving the content of disclosure of listed companies and raising awareness of the importance of the stock market as a platform to finance companies’ expansion through developing disclosure rates and content, and promoting listing new companies on the Egyptian Stock Exchange,” he said.

“Secondly, the development of the trading environment through new trading mechanisms and financial products to diversify options for investors, developing trading control mechanisms to increase market efficiency, and manage risks associated with member entities. As a result of the development, the total cash dividends of companies listed on the stock exchange reached LE 23.5 billion in 2019,” he added.

As for the third axis, Farid referred to developing the demand side to increase communication rates with all local and international institutions to shed light on the most prominent efforts in financial markets in particular and the overall economy in general through the promotion of internal and external communication and financial inclusion. This is in addition to signing memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with various international federations.

“The Egyptian Stock Exchange is one of the longest exchanges in the world in stopping stocks,” the EGX Chairman stated.

He clarified that the EGX was indeed one of the longest stock exchanges in the world to suspend shares, and after one month since assuming responsibility, the board began issuing a decision to reduce shares’ suspension to 15 minutes instead of 30 minutes.

“Two months later, we issued another decision on the basis for calculating the pauses and price limits based on cash dividends in order to prevent the security from being stopped due to the price of the security falling at a value higher than the value of the pauses limits. This is due to the fact that the price decline is a product of natural dividends and not a result of negative news,” he notes.

Introduction of new trading mechanisms

“We have put the introduction of new trading mechanisms and financial products at the top of the stock exchange priorities, and indeed, we issued the first decision regarding allowing trading on the index fund documents through the mechanism of purchasing securities by margin to increase trading rates and diversify investment channels in front of all investors,” Farid says.

Moreover, criteria was modified, allowing the practice of specialized activities in accordance with the approval of the General Authority for Financial Supervision of the decision of the Board of Directors of the Egyptian Stock Exchange, in aims of increasing the number of securities permitted to deal with the system of specialized activities to enhance liquidity and diversify investment options.

Since the beginning of 2019, the EGX has re- leased the rules of the market maker’s work on securities listed to include the market maker’s registration of one or more shares and the criteria for choosing shares that the market maker is allowed to trade on. The market maker’s obligations include quantities of offers, orders and price differences, which are determined according to the liquidity categories, share activity rates and determinants that may temporarily exempt the market maker from fulfilling all or some of its obligations, he states.

Decree No. (39) of 2019 was issued regarding amending membership rules on the EGX to comply with the rules of the market maker’s work on listed securities’, and resolution No. (487) was issued to amend Resolution No. (3) for the year 2019 regarding the rules of the market maker’s work on securities listed on EGX to organize the mechanism of the practice of borrowing securities for the purpose of selling. This allows the implementation of large scale operations without their being bound by the controls related to offers and requests.

According to Farid, “The stock market concluded the year by activating the short-selling securities borrowing mechanism, as well as updating the trading directory by adding the rules for that mechanism; activating these mechanisms is related to their experimentation first and then it will be spread.”

The bidding unit and stock exchange management

“The Stock Exchange issued a decision in September 2018 regarding amending the bidding unit on shares to be ‘one in a thousand’ of the Egyptian pound or from the foreign currency in which the security is registered. This is for securities that have a market value of less than LE 2 or from any another currency, with the aim of keeping up with global best practices and providing greater flexibility in trading on low-priced stocks,” he said.

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Regarding the number of newly registered on EGX, Farid stated that the number of newly registered investors on the Egyptian Stock Exchange is more than 30 thousand codes, distributed between 29,284 thousand codes for people and 1,710 entities. This is up from 22,515 thousand codes for people and 1,685 entities in 2018, and about 20,802 natural people and 1,499 legal persons in 2017.

The Egyptian Stock Exchange launched a new interactive website displaying the development of indicators and the latest market news, and added a section for the new website under the name infographics to display the development of the stock market’s performance, in an effort to display data and information in a more attractive way, Farid says. The bourse also launched an electronic map to dis- play the sites of brokerage companies on its website clarifying the sites of brokerage companies. “This step aims to support the stock exchange management efforts in improving the quality of services and information provided to investors and various parties to the capital market,” he tells Business Today Egypt.

The Egyptian Stock Exchange in 2020

Farid hopes to achieve two goals in the new year, the first of which is the restructuring of the SME market, in cooperation with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). During the first quarter, works will aim to design a structural reform program to develop this market, and then the EGX will consult with the Financial Supervision Authority to discuss the possibilities of implementation.

The creation of the financial derivatives market, futures and options will be made available to Egyptian and foreign investors, because achieving this requires the establishment of a settlement company for this type of security in cooperation with the Misr for Central Clearing, Depository and Registry (MCDR), and training workers in the brokerage companies, Farid also tells Business Today Egypt.


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1/27/2020 10:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Sunday on mixed performance]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 inched down 0.05 percent, or 6.64 points, to close at 13,721.45 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dipped 0.16 percent, or 0.84 points, to close at 533.17 points.

On the other side, the equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 0.16 percent, or 3.05 points, to end at 1,897.69 points, and the broader index EGX 100 increased 0.09 percent, or 1.3 points to 1,381.74 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 273.91 million, recording LE 696.98 billion, compared to LE 697.26 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 88.25 million shares, traded through 13,040 transactions, with a turnover of LE 275.71 million.

Arab investors were net buyers at LE 14.77 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 1.15 million, and LE 13.62 million, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 3.93 million and LE 4.42 million, respectively, while foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 339,306.

Egyptian and foreign organizations sold at LE 5.08, and LE 13.28 million, respectively, while foreign organizations bought at LE 13.28 million.

Ismailia National Food Industries, October Pharma, and Glaxo Smith Kline were top gainers of the session 10 percent, 8.33 percent and 7.82 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Alexandria Flour Mills, Alexandria Spinning & Weaving (SPINALEX), and Egypt for Poultry were top losers of the session by 7.61 percent, 6.53 percent, and 3.78 percent, respectively.

On Thursday, EGX ended the session on mixed note, as EGX 30 dipped 0.17 percent, while EGX 50 increased 0.52 percent, EGX70 hiked 0.41 percent, and EGX 100 inched up 0.24 percent.

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1/26/2020 5:20:40 PM
<![CDATA[Automotive prices decline in beginning of 2020]]>
Abul Majd indicated that the prices of some types decreased by 3 percent.

“The prices of some of the brands that entered the Egyptian-Turkish agreement regarding exemptions on cars manufactured in Turkey dropped by 6 percent compared to the prices before the agreement,” he referred.

Regarding sales of cars in the Egyptian market, he affirmed that January and February have always witnessed a decline in sales in general and regression occurs during these months.

The head of Car Dealers Association explained that this regression leads to the need for companies and exhibitions to compete and provide offers to the consumer to increase sales during that period.

Abul Majd advised those wishing to buy cars to take advantage of that period, as there are offers and inducements to seize, and it is possible that they end with the return of car sales again, and therefore prices can rise.

He pointed out that car prices are affected by three main determinants: First, the agreements signed between countries regarding customs reduction or exemption; second, the exchange rate against the dollar; and third, the competitive prices offered by companies.

“So, the decline in car prices in Egypt came after several agreements were signed with the European Union and Turkey and also the decline in the price of the dollar to less than LE 16, compared to 18-19 pounds last year,” he referred.

following the decline in the prices of Turkish and European cars, companies that were not included in these agreements seek to reduce their prices in order to be able to compete in the market, according to Abul Majd.




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1/26/2020 5:20:17 PM
<![CDATA[Petroleum Ministry, Eni open 1st integrated filling, charging station in Port Said]]>
The new station, which is first of its kind in Egypt, is established with a joint Egyptian-Italian investment, represented in Gastec company of the Petroleum Ministry and Italy's Eni.

The station is the first investment of its kind for the Italian company in Egypt in the domain of building filling stations, bearing its brand for the first time.

Mulla said establishing integrated stations comes within a framework of the ministry's strategy to improve services offered to the citizens.

Such projects come in the implementation of the political leadership's directives to expand in setting up gas and charging stations, the minister noted.

Eni's participation in establishing these kinds of stations here for the first time proves the diversity and strength of the investment opportunities in the petroleum and gas domains, a matter which encourages the large companies to boost their investments in the Egyptian market, he pointed out.

The minister, accompanied by Port Said Governor Adel el Ghadban, got acquainted with the LE 30-million station's capabilities.]]>
1/26/2020 5:17:27 PM
<![CDATA[Finance minister approves LE 28B in urgent allocations to several state bodies]]>
The allocations include LE 24.9 billion to the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) for the ration cards and bread subsidies, LE 1 billion to the National Media Authority to meet its commitments towards its employees and LE 366.6 million to the General Authority for Health Insurance to provide financial support to students and women breadwinners.

The allocations also cover the financial needs of the Supreme Council of Culture, the Holding Company for Cotton Spinning and Weaving, the Holding Company for Water and Waste Water and the Railway Authority. ]]>
1/26/2020 4:27:02 PM
<![CDATA[Finance minister: Tax system to be automated by end of 2020]]>
During the house general session on Sunday in the presence of minister of Finance Mohamed Ma'it, the speaker said some employees at the Tax Authority are not well trained, a matter that leads to tax evasion.

For his part, minister Ma'it said all tax measures will be automated by the end of 2020 as part of efforts to modernize the authority sectors with the aim of increasing tax revenues and preventing tax evasion.]]>
1/26/2020 3:47:32 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 14.5B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 4 billion with a 91-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 266-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanged during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are kept at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are to 12.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.


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1/26/2020 10:45:31 AM
<![CDATA[Mashaat, UN officials probe cooperation towards women empowerment]]>
During the meeting, that was held on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Mashaat highlighted efforts of the government to promote the effective role of women in development in line with the strategy of empowering Egyptian women till 2030, which was launched by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi in 2017.

Minister Mashat also met with World Food Program (WFP) Executive Director David Beasley and discussed prospects of strengthening partnership within the framework of Egypt's Vision 2030, regarding food security, supporting small farmers and backing the national school feeding program.

Beasley, meanwhile, said the UN program will continue supporting efforts of the Egyptian government towards attaining the sustainable developments goals.

During another meeting with head of the International Fund For Agricultural Development (IFAD) Gilbert Houngbo, the minister reviewed ways of boosting cooperation in light of the current operations between the bank and Egypt that are worth 1.1 billion dollars, including 14 projects that benefited over seven million rural residents.

The IFAD projects carried out in Egypt are coping with the objectives of the UN sustainable development as well as the fund's visions that focus on the realization of rural development, said Houngbo.]]>
1/25/2020 2:11:49 PM
<![CDATA[EBRD president stresses interest in investment in Egypt]]>
It will continue to support the Egyptian government's ambitious economic reform program particularly in the the programs of infrastructure, renewable energy, transport and electricity.

During a meeting with Minister of International Cooperation Dr Rania el Mashat on the fringe of the Davos Economic Forum, they discussed projects currently being implemented by the bank in Egypt as well as future ones.

The bank's investments in Egypt amount to euros 5.3 billion in 99 projects in the fields of transport, electricity, renewable energy, housing and sanitation.

The government seeks to promote cooperation and partnership with the bank in various fields and increase funding offered to the private sector to create more development, she added.]]>
1/25/2020 12:52:58 PM
<![CDATA[Investments bet. Egypt, UAE may reach $ 15B]]>
He stressed, during the opening of the "Trade and Investment Opportunities between Egypt and the Emirates" conference, that Egypt is at the forefront of Arab countries and agencies that attract Emirati investments, according to the Emirates News Agency WAM.

He stated that the UAE is currently the largest investor in Egypt with a total investment exceeding AED 26.5 billion ($ 7.2 billion), considering that the Egyptian-UAE relations in all fields, especially economic, commercial and investment fields, witness a golden stage.

"Egypt currently has all the strengths that attract investors, as it has a strong economy that is growing at the fastest and highest global rate of up to 6 percent," he noted.

Jarwan pointed out that the Egyptian Government has proven in recent years great keenness in attracting investment, explaining that the Emirates Council for Overseas Investors places Egypt at the forefront of Arab destinations that attract Emirati investments, followed by the Kingdom of Morocco and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

He showed the great successes achieved by Emirati companies investing in Egypt, such as: Emaar, Etisalat, Majid Al Futtaim and Dubai International Ports, contributed to motivating many other companies to go to Egypt, the most recent of which was Dragon Oil.
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1/24/2020 2:26:51 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's denies importing amounts of natural gas]]>
The Cabinet media center said it contacted the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources which denied the reports, affirming that Egypt has achieved self-sufficiency of natural gas since October, 2018.

Egypt has become a natural gas exporter in the final quarter of 2018, the ministry underscored. ]]>
1/24/2020 2:03:59 PM
<![CDATA[Economic cooperation bet. Egypt, Switzerland hits 86M Swiss francs in 3 yrs]]>
Mashat added Thursday that Switzerland has contributed to the provision of grants to Egypt by around 700 million Swiss francs since the beginning of the development cooperation between both countries, which helped in implementing 200 projects.

This came during Mashat's meeting with Head of Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation Manuel Sager, where they discussed mutual cooperation and coordination according to the United Nations' priorities.

She stressed that the strategy should fit with the priorities of the Egyptian Government and development sustainability.

For his part, Sager referred to Switzerland's support to Egypt to achieve sustainable development goals.


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1/23/2020 4:31:09 PM
<![CDATA[EGX shows mixed Performance Thursday]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 dipped 0.17 percent, or 24.02 points, to close at 13,728.09 points.

On the other side, the equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 0.52 percent, or 9.84 points, to end at 1,894.64 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 climbed 0.41 percent, or 2.2 points, to close at 534.01 points, and the broader index EGX 100 increased 0.24 percent, or 3.33 points to 1,383.04 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 1.49 billion, recording LE 697.26 billion, compared to LE 695.57 billion in Wednesday's session.

The trading volume reached 131.76 million shares, traded through 16,027 transactions, with a turnover of LE 467.65 million.

Arab investors were net sellers at LE 24.5 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net buyers at LE 14.52 million, and LE 9.98 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 15.45 million and LE 278,505, respectively, while Arab individuals were net sellers at LE 802,086.

Egyptian and Arab organizations sold at LE 933,534, and LE 9.7 million, respectively, while foreign organizations bought at LE 9.74 million.

Ismailia National Food Industries, Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co., and Egyptians Housing Development & Reconstruction were top gainers of the session 9.89 percent, 9.29 percent and 8.11 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Egypt for Poultry, Glaxo Smith Kline, and Mansourah Poultry were top losers of the session by 7.81 percent, 5.47 percent, and 4.06 percent, respectively.

On Wednesday, EGX ended the session in green, as EGX 30 rose 0.82 percent, EGX 50 increased 0.83 percent, EGX70 hiked 0.78 percent, and EGX 100 inched up 0.82 percent.
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1/23/2020 3:32:58 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, IsDB probe boosting cooperation]]>
The cooperation between Egypt and the bank, which falls within the framework of a three-billion-dollar strategics partnership deal effective till 2021, aims to promote Egypt's economic growth, create job opportunities, support infrastructure projects and fund the private sector.

During a meeting with Hajjar on the sidelines of Davos forum, minister el Mashaat asserted Egypt's keenness on enhancing cooperation with its partners of international funding institutions, including the IsDB, in empowering the youth and women, providing funding for the private sector, along with supporting the entrepreneurship and innovation.

Meanwhile, Mulla expressed eagerness to continue fruitful cooperation between Egypt and the IsDB, especially with regard to Islamic international institutions that provide trade financing .

IsDB president Hajjar, for his part, asserted the keenness of his bank on backing Egypt's efforts towards achieving economic growth, pointing out to Egypt's pioneering status at the bank in its capacity as a founding member.

Egypt is one of the top five countries that benefit form the programs of the bank, Hajjar said, hailing economic and legislative progress realized by the country.

The meeting tackled the potentials of supporting government's efforts towards upholding partnership between the private and public sectors in light of Egypt's portfolio at the IsdB that is estimated at dollars 12.8 billion. ]]>
1/23/2020 3:03:22 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's economy one of region's fastest growing: min.]]>
Egypt has achieved a progress in the 2019 Global Competitiveness Index compared to the previous year at eight main pivots, the minister said, noting that Egypt's rank jumped to the 93rd.

According to the competitiveness report, which was issued by the World Economic Forum, Egypt's economy realized an improvement in 53 sub indexes, along with seven others newly-added indices to the 2019 report regarding the performance of institutions.

As for the infrastructure pivot, the Egyptian economy leaped four spots and was ranked the world's 53rd, the minister added.]]>
1/23/2020 2:50:33 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt banking system outlook is stable on robust growth, high liquidity: Moody's]]>
"The economy is growing robustly – we project real GDP growth of 5.8% in 2020 – supported by declining interest rates," said Constantinos Kypreos, Senior Vice President at Moody's. "And banks retain good access to stable, deposit-based funding and are very liquid, especially in local currency."

Moody's expects banks' profitability to improve, bolstered by strong balance-sheet growth – with a projected acceleration in credit growth by 12%-15%, supported by declining interest rates and government funding initiatives for the industrial, tourism and mortgage sectors – and by a recovery in net interest margins as high-yielding certificates of deposits offered by state-owned banks mature.]]>
1/23/2020 2:45:08 PM
<![CDATA[CBE to issue LE 20.5B in T-bills Thursday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 10 billion with a 182-day term and the second is worth LE 10.5 billion with a 357-day term.

T-bills are issued every Sunday and Thursday.

For the current fiscal year, the budget deficit is estimated to record LE 445.1 billion, or 7.2 percent, planned by the ministry to be financed through treasury bills and bonds and through international and Arab loans.

The Monetary Policy Committee of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) kept the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation unchanded by 1 percent or 100 basis points during Thursday's meeting, Jan. 16.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are at 12.25 percent, 13.25 percent, and 12.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates were declined to 12.75 percent from 13.75 percent.

A number of economists said the appeal of foreigners to Egyptian debt instruments would continue even after interest rates were cut.

Experts predict that interest rates on debt instruments will continue to fall due to falling interest rates, especially as they recorded a decline in their latest offer.

The Ministry of Finance aims to reduce the government debt to GDP ratio to 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
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1/23/2020 2:27:22 PM
<![CDATA[Int'l cooperation min. reviews joint cooperation with Davos Forum, Citi Bank, Uber]]>
Mashat hailed the role of the board of directors of the future of the Middle East and North Africa division at the forum which brings together representatives of the governmental and private sectors along with international economic experts from the region.

She highlighted that the panel works to improve the economic situation and beef up inclusive growth in the Middle East and Africa countries.

Afterwards, Mashat met with Matthew Stephenson, Policy and Community Lead for International Trade and Investment at the WEF to tackle means of boosting cooperation between both sides through encouraging partnerships between international financing institutions and the private sector.

Stephenson hailed the economic and structural reforms carried out by the Egyptian government which he said helped improve the business climate.

Mashat pointed out to her ministry's vision which backs Egypt's multilateral partnerships with the aim of achieving the country's national agenda 2030.

Separately, Mashat reviewed cooperation with Vice Chairman Corporate and Investment Banking at Citi Bank Jay Collins and beefing up the funding that the bank offers to the private sector.

She also met with two vice presidents of Uber's ride-hailing business Justin Kintz and Pierre-Dimitri.

They discussed ways of expanding the company's activities in Egypt to cover the neediest areas.

The Uber officials said that Egypt is the company's largest market in Africa. ]]>
1/22/2020 5:13:32 PM
<![CDATA[Mashat: Gov't keen on greater participation of private sector in development]]>
This came during her participation in a session on the future strategy in the Middle East on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting (Davos 2020) that kicked off on Tuesday in Switzerland in the presence of a number of heads of state, ministers, decision-makers, and representatives of global companies and international organizations.

Speaking at the session, Mashat said that the International Cooperation Ministry is working on promoting partnership between the public and private sectors in implementing development projects, citing the Benban Solar Park in Aswan, which is a photovoltaic power station, with a total capacity of 1650 MWp.

The session also discusses means of taking advantage of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to achieve economic development and overcome major regional challenges and crises, in addition to the future economic opportunities in the Middle East region,

Celebrating its 50th anniversary, the Davos meetings address rising inequality, trade tensions, technological disruptions, climate change, and geopolitical uncertainty that all threaten to weigh on already-fragile economic growth at the start of the new decade.

Mashat is scheduled to take part in several sessions on the future of gender equality, the technological infrastructure, and economic integration in the Middle East and North Africa region.

The minister is set to meet with members of international finance institutions and Egypt's development partners to review the government's program's priorities in the coming period to achieve Egypt Vision 2030 goals in line with UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).]]>
1/22/2020 5:11:01 PM
<![CDATA[AOI signs MoUs with Romanian companies]]>
This came during a meeting held here between AOI Chairman Abdel Moneim el Tarras and General Manager of Romania's state-owned defense company (ROMARM) Gabriel Tutu.

The meeting was also attended by Executive Manager of Romania's PATROMIL Viorel Manole along with officials from other Romanian companies including Titan Machinery Group.

The AOI chief highlighting President Abdel Fattah El Sisi's directives to exchange expertise with Romania and benefit from its distinguished capabilities in the field of manufacturing.

The AOI chief reviewed the organization's vision on consolidating local manufacturing through cooperating with the Romanian companies and identifying cooperation mechanisms in the field of manufacturing to serve various industrial domains.

For his part, Tutu asserted ROMARM's keenness to open up new prospects for cooperation with Egypt, hailing the manufacturing and technical capabilities of the AOI.

Meanwhile, the PATROMIL executive manage said the Romanian companies are eager to go into more partnership with the AOI in the fields of manufacturing equipment, radiation sensors and chemicals. ]]>
1/22/2020 5:06:33 PM