<![CDATA[rss-Business & Economics]]> All Rights Reserved for The Cairo post <![CDATA[Business & Economics]]>]]> 100 29 <![CDATA[Cabinet denies increasing value-added tax in new general budget]]>
In a statement on Friday, the center said in contacted the Finance Ministry which dismissed the news and described them as baseless.

The ministry urged various media outlets and social media users to verify their reports before publishing them and contact the ministries concerned. ]]>
5/15/2020 12:37:12 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet denies drop in Egypt's agricultural exports]]>CAIRO - 15 May 2020: The cabinet media center denied news circulated recently that the Egyptian agricultural exports have dropped by 25 percent due to the coronavirus crisis.

In a statement on Friday, the center said it contacted the Trade and Industry Ministry which dismissed as groundless the reports.

The ministry pointed out that Egypt's agricultural exports have hit 821 million dollars during the first quarter of 2020, against 812 million dollars registered during the same period the year before.

Highlighting an increasing international demand on the Egyptian agricultural products despite the global outbreak of COVID-19, the ministry said that Egypt has exported about 2.23 million tons of fruit and vegetables in the first quarter of 2020.

Egypt tops world countries in orange exports with exports hitting about 1.2 million tons, it added.

Separately, the Egyptian non-petroleum exports increased during the first quarter of 2020 by 2%, hitting 6.728 billion dollars, compared with 6.580 billion dollars recorded during the same period in 2019.

Meanwhile, imports went down by 24%, recording 13.814 billion dollars, against 18.233 billion dollars during in the past year]]>
5/15/2020 12:34:55 PM
<![CDATA[CBE deputy governor: New IMF loan not to add burdens to people]]>
During a phone call with media personality Ahmed Moussa on Sada El Balad TV Channel, he said the economic reform program which Egypt put into effect in 2016 managed to create a strong economy capable of containing crises.

He said the Egyptian people bore a lot of burdens after adopting tough measures to realize economic growth.

He said Egypt has overcome many hardships after largely achieving economic and financial reforms.

The CBE injected more than LE 0.5 trillion to secure needed financial liquidity for the market and support productive state sectors, such as the industrial, agricultural, real estate and tourism sectors, he said, noting that this has helped in easing the repercussions of the coronavirus crisis.

Egypt's economic indicators were very good until mid March and if it had not been for the coronavirus crisis, it would have witnessed a remarkable economic growth, he noted.

Abul Naga said that the CBE did not record a sharp drop in remittances of Egyptians abroad despite the pandemic crisis.

He added that there is a growing demand on Egyptian agricultural products.

He noted that the exchange rate was stable, adding that part of the monetary reserve went to securing liquidity.

The tourism sector used to pump over dlrs 12.5 billion into the state treasury annually, he said, pointing out that the tourism and aviation sectors started to accrue losses due to the coronavirus crisis and this has prompted the CBE to launch an EGP 50 billion initiative to support them.

He added that about 700 financially-strapped companies resumed work with the support of initiatives which the CBE spearheaded over the past period.

The 2.8-billion-dollar emergency financial package provided by the IMF to the Egyptian government attests to the achievements realized under the economic reform program which led to high growth rates and job creation, he said.

The Egyptian economy was feted by a number of credit rating institutions and this reflects the Egyptian economy's capability to overcome the current crisis, he also said.

He added that the IMF's confidence in Egypt was manifested in offering the loan without conditions.

He added that Egypt is negotiating with the IMF to get a new loan at about $5 - 6 billion.

He noted that the Egyptian health system was doing well in confronting the pandemic, but this loan will offer needed support for the health sector and the social security nets.

Efforts will be stepped up in the coming period to create an investment-encouraging climate to generate jobs for youths, he pointed out.

The CBE will also work harder to realize financial inclusion and promote e-payment mechanisms, he said.]]>
5/14/2020 5:58:18 PM
<![CDATA[Sisi directs govt to prioritize electricity projects in N.Sinai]]>
Sisi also directed to implement the unified meter readings to achieve the merit of collection in favor of the financial efficiency of the Ministry of Electricity.

This came during the President's meeting with the Prime Minister and the Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy.

Spokesman for the Presidency of Egypt, Bassam Rady, said that the meeting dealt with following up the strategic projects of the Ministry of Electricity at the level of the Republic.

Rady stated that during the meeting, Sisi was also briefed on the developments of electrical infrastructure in the new administrative capital, the executive position to extend power lines and ultra-high voltage cable cables.
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5/14/2020 5:48:15 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's unemployment rate record 7.7% in Q1 2020: CAPMAS]]>
Comparing to the first quarter of 2019, the unemployment rate decreased 0.4 percent.

In April, the unemployment rate increased to 9.2 percent due to COVID-19 pandemic as the government took precautionary measures to confront virus including closing schools, the suspension of air traffic and the closure of shops.

The number of unemployed people recorded 2.236 million, (1,076 million males, 1,160 million females), representing 7.7 percent of the total workforce, with a decrease of 93,000 unemployed from the fourth quarter of 2019, and a decrease of 31,000 unemployed from the corresponding quarter of the previous year.

Earlier, Planning Minister Hala el-Saeed stated that Egypt's unemployment rate to dip to 8.5 percent by end of 2020/2021 in case COVID-19 crisis ended during FY 2019/2020.

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.

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.

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5/14/2020 5:39:07 PM
<![CDATA[Planning min. hails Moody’s decision to keep Egypt's rating at B2]]>
In a statement released on Thursday, Saeed added that Egypt's track record in implementing economic and financial reforms, and strengthening the confidence in the national economy have greatly contributed to keeping the country's credit rating by Moody’s at B2.

The minister went on to say that keeping Egypt's credit rating by Moody’s, Standard & Poor's and Fitch Ratings comes as a result of the availability of sufficient liquidity and the country's ability to settle its debt on due dates, regardless of the negative impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

She asserted that maintaining Egypt's sovereign rating by international rating agencies is an extremely important move, especially in light of the current global financial and economic disruptions over the outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic.]]>
5/14/2020 5:05:49 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank keeps interest rates unchanged during May]]>
The discount rate was also kept unchanged at 9.75 percent, according to MPC’s decision.

MPC attributed the decision to the inflation rate which rose due to Ramadan season, and the stabilization of real gross domestic product.

MPC clarified that annual headline urban inflation increased to 5.9 percent in April 2020 from 5.1 percent in March 2020 due to a combination of unfavorable base effect stemming from muted price increases in April 2019 as well as higher prices increases in April 2020 which is broadly attributed to the impact of the outbreak of COVID-19 as well as a stronger seasonal factor due to Ramadan.

“Annual headline inflation in April 2020 was driven by higher annual food contribution, mainly core food items, which more than offset lower annual contribution of non-food items. Accordingly, annual core inflation increased to 2.5 percent in April 2020 from 1.9 percent in March 2020,” it stated.

It added that real GDP growth continued to stabilize around 5.6 percent in 2019 Q4, with the recovery in public domestic demand offsetting the moderation in private domestic demand, and the pickup in consumption offsetting the slowdown in investments. “Meanwhile, leading indicators showed broad improvement on average in January and February 2020, before reflecting a slowdown in economic activity in March and April 2020. Nevertheless, the diversity of the economy provides some cushion given the resilience of some sectors.”

MPC referred to the global manner, saying that economic activity and employment have deteriorated significantly, which weighed on the outlook with risks mainly tilted to the downside. This was also reflected in the weakness of international oil prices, despite production cuts by major producers.

As an exceptional decision, the MPC decided, on Mar. 16, to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 3 percent or 300 basis points.

This decision comes as a part of actions and measure took by CBE to curb the effect of the virus outbreak; extending the loan maturities for the major companies 6 months without any fines.

According to the statement, the MPC closely monitors all economic developments and will not hesitate to utilize all available tools to support the recovery of economic activity, within its price stability mandate.
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5/14/2020 4:54:07 PM
<![CDATA[EGX stays in red zone for 2nd session in row, market cap. loses LE3.8B]]>
The benchmark EGX30 dipped 1.05 percent, or 109.07 points, to close at 10,287.21 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 1.23 percent, or 18.7 points, to end at 1,498.28 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 decreased 0.13 percent, or 1.48 points, to close at 1,112.18 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 0.58 percent, or 10.68 points to 1,819.16 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 3.8 billion, recording LE 544.88 billion, compared to LE 548.69 billion in Wednesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 223.97 million shares, traded through 25,089 transactions, with a turnover of LE 856.49 million.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 106.47 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 7.49 million, and LE 98.97 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 60.1 million, LE 4.13 million and LE 1.22 million, respectively.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 46.36 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 11.63 million, and LE 100.19 million, respectively.

South Cairo & Giza Mills & Bakeries, Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co, and Emerald Real Estate Investment were top gainers of the session at 9.91 percent, 9.90 percent and 9.81 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Alexandria Spinning & Weaving (SPINALEX), Sinai Cement, and Raya Contact Center were top losers of the session by 9.56 percent, 9.38 percent, and 8 percent, respectively.

On Wednesday, EGX ended the session in red, as: EGX30 dipped 1.81 percent, EGX 50 dropped 2.13 percent, EGX 70 decreased 2.18 percent, and EGX 100 lessened 2.11 percent.
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5/14/2020 4:03:20 PM
<![CDATA[Finance min.: Egypt seeks to maintain safe economic course under coronavirus crisis]]>
In a press release on Thursday, Ma'it said the state is building on the gains of the economic reform program so that it would remain on the same track which was feted by international institutions.

The economic reform program has also reinforced the national economy in the face of challenges and crises, he said.

Egypt exerted strenuous efforts over the past years to realize economic stability and it was able to positively deal with the pandemic's economic fallout.

The government took proactive measures to manage the crisis through securing a finance package standing at 2 percent of the gross domestic product in order to support the economy, curb the spread of the coronavirus and mitigate its impact.

The government sought to achieve a balance between protecting people's lives and maintaining the march of production.

He added that the $2.7-billion emergency financial assistance provided by the International Monetary Fund will help the government secure urgent needs of some sectors, especially the health sector, as well as promoting social protection programs and supporting segments most affected by the coronavirus crisis.

The IMF's approval to Egypt request for this emergency assistance reflects its confidence in Egypt's ability to positively handle the crisis and maintain what was achieved by the economic reform program.

Maait noted that the state is proceeding with its reform measures.

He noted that the government spent over the past two and half months about LE 40 billion out of the LE 100 billion which was allocated for funding the state plan for confronting the repercussions of the coronavirus.

About LE 6.2 billion went to back the health sector to be able to secure urgent medical supplies.

He added that about LE 14 billion went to securing needed amounts of wheat and supply commodities.

He noted that governmental investments increased by LE 10 billion, thus contributing to help workers maintain their jobs.

He added that the government backed some affected economic sectors by about LE 15 billion through tax facilities and additional funding. ]]>
5/14/2020 3:37:17 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's growth to slow sharply in 2020 to 0.5% due to COVID-19: EBRD]]>
EBRD forecasted in a report Wednesday that Egypt’s growth will rebound to 5.2 percent in 2021.

the EBRD Regional Economic Prospects report noted that Egypt’s economy will slow sharply in 2020 due to the impact of coronavirus, noting that the Egyptian economy will avoid a recession.

The report revealed that the deceleration led by the Covid-19 pandemic reflects a slowdown in the tourism sector, disruptions in global value chains and a slowdown in demand from trading partners and in foreign direct investment.

“However, large public construction projects and the boom in the telecommunications sector have so far been factors supporting growth,” it added.

It referred that yhe main risks to the outlook arise from the need for a tougher lockdown if the spread of Covid-19 accelerates and from the negative outlook in Egypt’s main trading partners.

As yet, the number of COVID-19 cases in Egypt reached 10,413 patients and 556 deaths, according to the ministry’s official data. Meanwhile, the number of those who recovered from the virus registered 2,980 people.

As per the EBRD southern and eastern Mediterranean region, the report expected the negative impact of the coronavirus to be seen in the tourism sector, a decline in domestic demand due to containment measures, a fall in demand from the main trading partners and a slowdown in foreign direct investment.

On average, the economies of the region are expected to shrink by 0.8 per cent in 2020 before rebounding with growth of 4.8 per cent in 2021, according to the report.

Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia are expected to contract this year. Lebanon, which had already fallen into recession in 2018 and 2019, is likely to see an especially sharp fall of 11 per cent in 2020.

Economies across the EBRD regions may contract on average by 3.5 percent this year, with a rebound of 4.8 percent possible in 2021, the report said, warning that the projections are subject to “unprecedented uncertainty”.

The report assumed a modest impact of the crisis on the long‐term trajectory of economic output, with growth resuming towards the end of the third quarter, but potentially significant longer-term economic, political and social effects.

“If social distancing remains in place for much longer than anticipated, the recession may be much deeper, with the 2019 levels of output per capita not attained again for years to come,” the report said.

Across the EBRD regions, containment measures have affected domestic demand and supply. External shocks include a sharp drop in commodity prices, weighing on commodity exporters, disruption to global value chains, a collapse in tourism and a drop-in remittances.

The EBRD invests in emerging economies from central and eastern Europe through to Central Asia and the Middle East and North Africa.
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5/14/2020 3:06:23 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 21B 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 11 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
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5/14/2020 2:48:43 PM
<![CDATA[How Egypt’s new unified electricity reading system works]]>
In the below lines, et provides details on the standardized reading program:

1- The program eliminates the false meters’ readings that rely on recording the average consumption and not the actual reading.

2- The program compels employees at the department to go out to the citizens and record the actual reading by taking pictures of the meters.

3- The program is designed so that the reading device will not work unless projected in front of the meter.

4- The first reading is recorded by taking pictures of the meter, so any manipulation will be detected. The program aims to guarantee the right of both the state in receiving its dues, and the citizen in only paying for his actual consumption.

5- The program will send the picture of the meter to both the Electricity Distribution Company and to Shuaa Company in a bid to eliminate any attempt to manipulate the bill.

6- The program saves the pictures of the readings for three months so that consumers can retain the pictures in case they want to complain about their billings. After this period, the pictures are removed automatically from the system.

False readings are expected to disappear by the end of 2020 due to the new system. The devices will be distributed among readers of Shuaa company in charge of meters readings in Egypt.
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5/14/2020 1:32:27 PM
<![CDATA[AL discusses repercussions of coronavirus on GAFTA]]>
The workshop is held in cooperation with the Arab Monetary Fund, UN Development Program (UNDP), UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA).

In statements on Thursday, Head of the department Bahgat Abul Nasr said that the workshop gave an opportunity to Arab officials concerned with trade to stand on the latest data and expectations on the impact of coronavirus on the Arab and international economies.

Participants in the workshop had profound discussions on the impact of coronavirus on global and Arab trade in different types of commodities and services, he said.

Initial ESCWA estimates indicate that the Arab region could lose 42 billion dollars of gross domestic product and 1.7 million workers could lose their jobs due to the pandemic.

An AL report shed light on several measures taken by Arab nations to cushion the impact of the crisis on their economies]]>
5/14/2020 1:31:47 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt negotiates on another financial package from IMF]]>
Abul-Naga pointed out in an interview with "Al-Arabiya" to the $ 2.8 billion rapid financing package for Egypt from the International Monetary Fund, emphasizing Egypt's ability to knock on the gates of financing institutions to boost these reserves in case future needs arise.

On Monday, the International Monetary Fund said its executive board approved $2.77 billion in emergency financing to help Egypt grapple with the new coronavirus pandemic that has brought tourism to a standstill and triggered major capital flight.

He said that there are talks with the International Monetary Fund on a second package of financial support.

On the $6 billion financing package expected from the IMF, Abul-Naja said that negotiations haven’t ended yet, and the amount is close to that and is subject to some negotiations, and will depend on the final form of the program targeted from this financing.

Abul-Naga explained that the first part of the financing package that Egypt agreed upon with the IMF is the fast financing instrument with a value of $ 2.8 billion, while the second package is the credit preparedness program that is being agreed upon at the present time.

He added that Egypt's economy is large and diversified, and depends in part on external financing, stressing that Egypt has the ability to obtain the necessary financing to fill any future gaps that may arise.

He pointed to the historical level of Egypt's foreign exchange reserves that had reached more than $45 billion, which exceeds its needs.

The deputy governor of CBE stressed that the central bank has strengthened the position of the foreign reserve to face crises, and therefore we had in the last stage an insatiableness to ensure the value of the reserve at very safe levels that exceeded the international safety standards recommended by the IMF or other relevant institutions.

He stressed that the Monetary Policy Committee in the central bank will hold tomorrow its periodic meeting that takes place every 6 weeks to consider all the developments of the monetary policy and takes into account all the analyses conducted by the central bank teams, in order to determine the general direction of the monetary policy.

Abul-Naga pointed out that Egypt moved proactively on March 16 by cutting interest rates by 300 basis points to contain the expected urgent repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic crisis.

Asked about interest rates in Egypt, Abu Al-Naga said, "The decision remains in the hands of the Monetary Policy Committee that will be held tomorrow, and we are very satisfied with the current levels. The central bank has the ability to curb inflation, where one of the main goals of the central bank is to reach an inflation rate of 9 percent in the last quarter of 2020, with a margin of 3 percent up or down."

He stressed that the slight increases in inflation or core inflation were not worrisome to the Central Bank of Egypt, and they came in line with the expectations, because the crisis was expected to reflect a rise in food commodities, which constitute 33 percent of the total consumer basket in Egypt.

In November 2016, the Executive Board of the IMF approved a $12 billion loan as a financial assistance to Egypt to support the Egyptian economic reform program.

Upon the board's approval in November, Egypt embarked on a bold economic reform program that included floating its currency, losing around 50% of its value, as part of the economic reform program which imposed taxes, including the value-added tax (VAT), and cut energy subsidies, all with the aim of trimming the budget deficit.
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5/14/2020 11:12:58 AM
<![CDATA[Finance Minister reviews amendments of income tax law]]>
Minister Mohamed Ma’it said that after the issuance of a law amending some provisions of the income tax, the new tax system for salaries and wages will be implemented from the beginning of July 2020.

He said that it applies to the income derived from commercial and industrial activity, the income of non-commercial professions, or the income from real estate wealth starting from the tax period that ends after the date of the law’s entry into force.

The minister stressed that in light of the new amendments the income tax on individuals will be progressive, fair, and achieve tax savings for the lower, middle and upper middle classes. Also, it addresses the distortions of the current system based on tax deduction.

Ma'it added that it includes increasing the tax exemption limit by 60 percent, as the basic exemption limit for each financier has been raised from LE 8,000 to LE 15,000, in addition to increasing the personal exemption limit for salaries from LE 7,000 to LE 9,000, and therefore the annual income for those with salaries up to LE 24,000 are tax free.

“According to these amendments, a new social segment has been created for low income citizens, whose annual net income ranges from LE 15,000 to 30,000, other than the limit for personal exemption, so that the tax on them is 2.5 percent. From more than LE 30,000 to LE 45,000, the tax will be 10 percent instead of 15 percent, and from more than LE 45,000 to LE 60,000, the tax will be 15 percent instead of 20 percent."

"Taxes on the income range, exceeding LE 60,000 to LE 200,000 will be 20 percent instead of 22.5 percent, and taxes on th range exceeding LE200,000 to LE 400,000 will be 22.5 percent, and a new segment at a price of 25 percent for people with higher incomes will be created."
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5/14/2020 11:09:40 AM
<![CDATA[Ora Developers Signs Agreements with Orascom Construction, Banque Misr to Build, Finance ZED Sheikh Zayed]]>
“After finishing the master plan and architectural design developed by "WATG" International, we decided to maintain the same level of international standards and quality by collaborating with Orascom Construction. We are committed to the delivery schedule of the project as we have started the construction work last August, just 4 months after the launch. We managed to commence with drilling and deep foundations and we will ensure that construction continues with the same pace, as we are committed to the delivery dates we promised the customers with,” said Engineer Naguib Sawiris, Ora International CEO and Chairman of Ora Developers.

Osama Bishai, CEO of Orascom Construction, commented, “We are pleased to collaborate with ORA Developers on their new flagship project. We have been pioneers in constructing distinguished commercial projects in Egypt and look forward to building on our longstanding track record in this sector.”

Ora Developers’ CEO, Haitham Abdel Azeem, added, “Since the beginning of this project, we sought collaboration with leading contractors and designers to ensure an exclusive experience for our customers with the signature of Ora. We are proud of maintaining the pace of construction of the project and we look forward to finalizing the project as planned within 35 months, to start the delivery of the first phase by 2023.”

The multi-purpose project consists of six phases with over 4,500 fully finished residential units and an administrative commercial complex. The first stage awarded to Orascom Construction includes around 600 housing units. The scope also includes the construction of a three-story garage, a two-level mall and four 17-story apartment towers.

Ora Developers aims to continuously develop sustainable neighborhoods and support the Egyptian market with new concepts, and innovative projects that intertwine beauty, luxury and practicality with affordable prices most vividly reflected in ZED Sheikh Zayed and ZED New Cairo.]]>
5/13/2020 10:56:43 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt establishes new company with 2 affiliated factories for producing tires]]>
Terras said, in a statement on Wednesday, that it was agreed to establish a new company subject to the law of the Arab Organization for Industrialization in partnership between the authority and the Holding Company for Chemical Industries to produce all types of tires for vehicles.

Terras added that two factories will be affiliated to the company, the first in the economic zone of the Suez Canal in Ain Sukhna to produce saloon tires, light transport, bus and car tires; and the second factory in Al-Amiriya in Alexandria to produce tires for agricultural tractors and heavy engineering equipment.

He pointed out that this comes within the framework of implementing the directives of President Abdel Fatah el-Sisi to deepen local industrialization and increase the competitiveness of the Egyptian industry in accordance with international quality standards. These projects will provide many job opportunities for young engineers, technicians as well as training on the latest technologies of the fourth industrial revolution.

Terras emphasized that the latest scientific, chemical and technological solutions are used in establishing the factories, taking advantage of the available capabilities and without placing burdens on the state budget, stressing to meet all local needs as a first stage and then opening new export markets for Arab and African countries.

For his part, Minister of Public Business Sector Hisham Tawfik said that the agreement comes in light of a common vision between the Ministry of Business Sector and the Arab Industrialization Authority to unify efforts and achieve integration in the tire industry and revive and deepen this industry locally according to international quality standards.

He stressed that signing the agreement is a step on the right path to promote such local investments and provide national products to global markets, as part of the ministry's efforts to restructure the Transportation and Engineering Company of the Chemical Holding Company and establish a new factory for it in the Amiriya area of Alexandria to produce tires for agricultural tractors and heavy engineering equipment to meet the needs of the local market. And export abroad.

For her part, Minister of Trade and Industry Nevein Gamea explained that this agreement comes within the framework of the state's strategy to deepen local industrialization, replace imports and increase the added value of the Egyptian product in the local and international markets.


The minister highlighted the importance of exploiting the global crisis of coronavirus outbreak in the manufacture of Egyptian imports locally, especially in light of its diminishing foreign markets and the availability of expertise and capabilities to manufacture it in Egypt.

She noted the possibility of expanding the scope of cooperation between the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Public Business Sector, the Arab Organization for Industrialization and the Economic Zone of the Suez Canal to develop the Egyptian industrial base to cover all the local needs of consumer goods and production inputs.
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5/13/2020 5:50:40 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Wednesday in red, market cap. loses LE9B]]>
The benchmark EGX30 dipped 1.81 percent, or 192.08 points, to close at 10,396.28 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 2.13 percent, or 33.06 points, to end at 1,516.98 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 decreased 2.18 percent, or 24.8 points, to close at 1,113.66 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 2.11 percent, or 39.42 points to 1,829.84 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 9.01 billion, recording LE 548.69 billion, compared to LE 557.78 billion in Tuesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 632.61 million shares, traded through 29,308 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.85 billion.

Arab investors were buyers at LE 779.35 million, while Egyptian and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 754.96 million, and LE 24.39 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 17.1 million, and LE 770,091, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net buyers at LE 66.55 million.

Arab organizations bought at LE 796.45 million, while Egyptian and foreign organizations sold at LE 821.51 million, and LE 23.62 million, respectively.

Northern Upper Egypt Development & Agricultural Production, Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co, and Emerald Real Estate Investment were top gainers of the session at 9.80 percent, 9.46 percent and 8.97 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Misr Hotels, Sinai Cement, and Alexandria Spinning & Weaving (SPINALEX) were top losers of the session by 9.95 percent, 9.79 percent, and 9.70 percent, respectively.

On Tuesday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX30 rose 2.84 percent, EGX 50 hiked 3.37 percent, EGX 70 increased 3.08 percent, and EGX 100 jumped 3.34 percent.
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5/13/2020 2:59:09 PM
<![CDATA[Gemini Enterprises Africa launches initiative to support start-ups during COVID-19 ]]>
The company noted that the initiative will help founders tackle their most pressing on-ground operational issues and challenges while unlocking business opportunities that will allow them to build a more sustainable future.

Gemini Enterprises Africa (GEA), is an investment driven vehicle founded by Naguib Sawiris to connect Gemini Holding and Orascom Investment Holding (OIH) with the entrepreneurship, tech, and startup business ecosystem.

“The Gemini Uplift Initiative will be launched online throughout and after the Holy month of Ramadan in coordination with 45+ local, regional, and international partners providing support through the following three tracks - namely Money, Matchmaking, and Mentorship - in collaboration with the leading stakeholders in the entrepreneurship ecosystem,” it clarified.

“I am very excited about kicking off the Gemini Uplift Initiative. We believe in the importance of our responsibility to act now. Together with our partners, we are sure that we can uplift our entrepreneurs and startups to stand strong and sustain their businesses during these hard times. We will not let the Coronavirus beat us,” Executive Chairman of Orascom Investment Holding, Naguib Sawiris, stated.

“This initiative emerged from our belief in the significance of our role to bolster the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Our aim is to lead the startups towards operational continuity and economic sustainability during these hard times. My gratitude and sincere thanks to all the partners that generously offer their utmost contribution. Together we can do it," Executive Chairman & CEO at Gemini Enterprises Africa, Adly Thoma, said.

According to the company, the Money track provides co-investment opportunities and connections to future potential investors for pre-series A applicants in addition to acceleration programs with options to receive equity free funding. Partners for the Money track include: World Food Programme (WFP) - MINT by EGbank - Nahdet El Mahrousa - Alex Angels - Catalyst Partners - MAIN - MED Angels - Foundation Ventures - Egypt Ventures.

Moreover, the Matchmaking track provides two-way business matchmaking opportunities in which entrepreneurs with running operations are able to get in touch with real businesses needs through the right market exposure, in addition to acquiring business leads and access to their customers’ data. By doing so, large companies can extend their business operations to startups in order to implement new projects within the market in the least amount of time. Partners for the Matchmaking track include: Cairo ICT - UNTIL - UNDP - Orascom Investment - RiseUp - Techne Summit Dubrovnik - WPDI - Kamelizer - Founders Institute Cairo - Consulting Pad - Hub Africa - Gemini Holding.

As per mentorship, it provides all applicants with the opportunity for one-on-one financial, legal, HR, and media mentorship. Partners for the Matchmaking track include: The American University in Cairo (AUC) - Beltone - KPMG Hazem Hassan - MIT EF Pan Arab - Injaz Egypt - Falak - Flat6Labs - Fekretak Sherketak - Cairo Angels - SeedStars - Kidzania - HIM Angels - El-Shawarby Firm - Pyramids 138 - CultArk - Entrepreneurs' Organization - Alpha Group - Marshall Goldsmith.

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5/13/2020 1:58:04 PM
<![CDATA[MSMEDA funds micro enterprises with LE 620M via Banque Du Caire]]>
This comes as part of the keenness of the state to fund these projects for their effective role in limiting unemployment and improving the living conditions of the citizens. The step also aims at keeping these projects ongoing during the coronavirus outbreak which has negative impact on the Egyptian economy.

The first contract is for an initiative to fund micro enterprises with LE 500 million to be funded through an agreement with the World Bank for youth and women projects, while the second contract is for supporting women in the poorest governorates with LE 120 million funded by the French Development Agency (AFD), Gamea' said.

Both projects aim at financing current and new micro enterprises via Banque Du Caire branches all over the governorates to help these projects develop and provide more job opportunities, she said.

These projects come within the framework of implementing the directives of President Abdel El Sisi to present all aspects of support to the projects of the youth and women, Gamea' added.

Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli recommended to present quick finance to help the sector of micro projects and focus on women and youth, said Gamea'.

Meanwhile, Fayed asserted the importance of these agreements as they have an effective role in funding micro enterprises in light of the current coronavirus pandemic and its negative impact on the owners of projects and the irregular workers. ]]>
5/13/2020 1:36:48 PM
<![CDATA[European shares slide as virus fears persist, banks drop]]>
The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 1.1 percent by 0710 GMT, with banks proving a drag after a slew of negative updates.

Shares in Germany’s Commerzbank slid 3.2 percent and Dutch bank ABN Amro dropped 5.3 percent after swinging to a loss in the first quarter as the COVID-19 pandemic drove up loan loss provisions.

Deutsche Bank dropped 4.4 percent on news that top managers will waive one month of fixed pay in an effort to cut costs.

Investors also witnessed the biggest deal involving a European buyer collapse due to the market dislocation caused by the pandemic.

Shares in Exor, the holding firm of Italy’s Agnelli family, fell 4.3 percent as French insurer Covea walked away from its planned $9 billion purchase of PartnerRe, the Bermuda-based reinsurer owned by Exor. ]]>
5/13/2020 1:21:52 PM
<![CDATA[Public business sector ministry, Cairo commerce chamber sign agreement on digitization]]>
The protocol was signed by digitization consultant at the Public Business Sector Ministry Mohamed Masoud and member of the Board of Directors of the Chamber of Commerce Karim Ghonaim in the presence of Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce (FECC) Chairman Ibrahim el Araby, the ministry said in a statement.

The public business sector minister said that the agreement comes in light of the leading digitization experiment adopted by his ministry as well as its experience in dealing with the international companies in this regard.

Meanwhile, Masoud said that the ministry has negotiated with specialized international companies and selected the best of them as part of an initiative launched in cooperation with the Cairo Chamber of Commerce to provide start-ups with Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software at a nominal monthly subscription starting from LE 999.

This technology will be provided by Microsoft Corporation and with the support of “ Viber Egypt,” he added.

All companies that will subscribe in the digitization program will also benefit from the first electronic catalog for Egyptian products project for free, he said.

The door will open for all companies to subscribe in the services within weeks after launching the digitization initiative which will target half a million companies as part of its first phase, he added. ]]>
5/13/2020 1:10:14 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt receives $2.7 billion from IMF]]>
Speaking to MENA, the official said the loan, which will be paid back over a period of five years, comes as part of the the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) program.

The official added that Egypt is negotiating with the IMF to get the second package of the financial assistance within the framework of the Stand-By Agreement (SBA), which will be mulled by the IMF's Executive Board in June.

Egypt will get the second package in two or three patches throughout the year, and its repayment would take a longer period than that of the RFI.

On Monday, the IMF's Executive Board approved Egypt’s request for an emergency financial assistance of $ 2.772 billion, (100 percent of quota) under the Rapid Financing Instrument to meet the urgent balance of payments needs stemming from th e outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Purchase under the RFI entails exceptional access due to outstanding credit under the previous extended arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility, according to IMF.

Egypt achieved a remarkable turnaround prior to the COVID-19 shock, carrying out a successful economic reform program supported by the IMF’s Extended Fund Facility (EFF) to correct large external and domestic imbalances, it said in a press release.

The pandemic and global shock pose an immediate and severe economic disruption that could negatively impact Egypt’s hard-won macroeconomic stability if not addressed, it added. ]]>
5/13/2020 1:02:27 PM
<![CDATA[Coronavirus directly, indirectly affects 200 million jobs worldwide- EJB]]>
The shocks suffered by the world requires good collaboration and synergy as well as finding appropriate solutions to complete work process and use technology that can accommodate digital transformation, Lo’ay Zuheir said.

Zuheir made the remarks Tuesday during a symposium organized by the EJB via the video conferencing application Zoom.

The official lauded the government for its increased efforts to boost investments in the sector of communications and information technology and accelerate the pace of digital transformation amid the coronavirus crisis.

The symposium was attended by big companies in the fields of industry and technology. ]]>
5/12/2020 5:46:03 PM
<![CDATA[ELSEWEDY ELECTRIC signs LE 119.8M agreement with EETC]]>
The company clarified that the agreement is for Suez Gulf area S4 500KV overhead transmission lines with a total length of 20 km.

“The EPC contract will be implemented over a 6-month period,” it added.

It clarified that ELSEWEDY ELECTRIC for Trading & Distribution is a pioneer company in the execution of high voltage transmission lines for more than 1000 km with both (220 KV & 500 KV) and substations (220 KV & 500 KV) within Egypt and Africa.

Elsewedy Electric operates within the capital goods sector focusing on electrical components and equipment. It has subsidiaries operating across Northern Africa, Eastern Africa, Middle East and Southern Europe.
]]>
5/12/2020 5:31:37 PM
<![CDATA[EGX enters green zone Tuesday, market cap. gains LE 10.8B]]>
Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") affirmed Monday the long-term foreign and local currency issuer ratings of the Government of Egypt at B2. The outlook remains stable.

Moody's also affirmed Egypt's foreign currency senior unsecured ratings at B2, and its foreign currency senior unsecured MTN program rating at (P)B2.

Moody's keeps Egypt's rating at B2 with stable outlook

CAIRO - 12 May 2020: Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") affirmed Monday the long-term foreign and local currency issuer ratings of the Government of Egypt at B2, and kept the outlook stable. Moody's also affirmed Egypt's foreign currency senior unsecured ratings at B2, and its foreign currency senior unsecured MTN program rating at (P)B2.




The benchmark EGX30 rose 2.84 percent, or 292.03 points, to close at 10,588.36 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 hiked 3.37 percent, or 50.54 points, to end at 1,550.04 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 increased 3.08 percent, or 33.98 points, to close at 1,138.46 points, and the broader index EGX 100 jumped 3.34 percent, or 60.38 points to 1,869.26 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 10.8 billion, recording LE 557.78 billion, compared to LE 546.95 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 256.85 million shares, traded through 29,840 transactions, with a turnover of LE 997.66 million.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 103.33 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 16.07 million, and LE 87.25 million, respectively.

Egyptian and Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 7.97 million, and LE 4.7 million, respectively, while foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 2.18 million.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 95.36 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 20.81 million, and LE 85.1 million, respectively.

Northern Upper Egypt Development & Agricultural Production, Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co, and El Arabia Engineering Industries were top gainers of the session at 9.98 percent, 9.67 percent and 9.30 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile Sinai Cement, Misr Hotels, and Alexandria Spinning & Weaving (SPINALEX) were top losers of the session by 9.79 percent, 9.78 percent, and 9.60 percent, respectively.

On Monday, EGX ended the session in semi-collective regression, as: EGX30 rose 0.38 percent, while EGX 50 dropped 0.81 percent, EGX 70 declined 2 percent, and EGX 100 lessened 1.51 percent.

]]>
5/12/2020 3:55:19 PM
<![CDATA[Emerging economies burn through $240B in reserves: Bank of America]]>
The drain was likely to continue albeit at a slower pace, Bank of America added in a note citing reserves data for 31 states.

The bank said that China, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Brazil and Turkey had all seen the biggest total drop in reserves, US News reported.

"The drain of [EM] reserves is likely to continue, though more slowly, during what looks to be a disappointing recovery in global and EM growth," David Hauner at BofA wrote in the note.

"After an initial bounce in activity after the opening of lockdowns, several factors are likely to restrain the recovery: high debt, corporate defaults, inefficient labour markets, de-globalisation and China-US tensions."

The bank said that it was remarkable how little some other emerging market countries, including Russia, had spent of their reserves in percentage terms.

Instead, it added, they had built up credibility by allowing their currencies to adjust without much intervention, and had instead focused on cutting interest rates and in many cases buying government bonds.

Russia's central bank governor Elvira Nabiullina said on Friday the bank will consider cutting its key rate by 100 basis points in June, opening the door for a bigger cut than the market had expected. ]]>
5/12/2020 2:58:02 PM
<![CDATA[Min.: Parliamentary committee approves in principle amendments to Law 203/1991]]>
In a statement on Monday, Tawfik said the amendments set new regulations for forming boards of holding companies and their affiliates.

Under the amendments, the authorities entitled to the general assemblies will be reinforced, especially with regard to performance assessment, incentivizing workers, applying good governance rules and promoting disclosure and transparency.

Tawfik said huge investments were being pumped into public sector affiliated companies, including firms of textiles, medicine, trade, transport, tourism and hotels.

He added that the law was not amended since 1991 despite many changes at the economic level that necessitate developing the regulations governing state-owned companies.]]>
5/12/2020 2:56:07 PM
<![CDATA[Public Business Sector Ministry, FECC, FEI ink protocol on developing 1st e catalog for Egyptian products]]>
The protocol was signed by Public Business Sector Minister Hesham Tawfik, FECC President Ibrahim Al Araby, and FEI Chairman Mohamed el Sewedy.

In this regard, Tawfiq said the agreement is a practical embodiment of the active partnership between the government and the private sector in line with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi's directives to promote the economy.

The protocol will open new markets for the Egyptian factories and companies in the African countries, as the catalog will be a promotion tool for the Egyptian products, Tawfiq noted.

The agreement integrates with the ministry's efforts to offer a package of services for exporters through its companies like the Holding Company for Maritime and Land Transport and the Insurance Holding Company, Tawfiq pointed out.

The minister hailed the fruitful cooperation among the ministry, FECC, and FEI, urging the members of the two federations to register the data of their companies and products on the catalog. ]]>
5/12/2020 2:52:20 PM
<![CDATA[Exports of Egyptian furniture amount to $58M in Q1 2020]]>
Saudi Arabia topped the list of countries importing Egyptian furniture in the first quarter of 2020 with imports estimated at $15 million, the UAE came second with $8-million imported Egyptian furniture and Oman came in the third position with imports worth $6 million. ]]>
5/12/2020 2:49:46 PM
<![CDATA[Moody's rating reflects int'l institutions confidence in Egypt's economy: Min.]]>
Ma’it clarified that this confidence is due to the economic, monetary and financial reforms adopted by the political leadership and supported by the Egyptian people during the past years, which allowed a degree of solidity and flexibility for the Egyptian economy enabling it to deal with challenges and internal and external shocks.

“Moody's report indicates the corporation’s confidence in the ability of Egyptian officials to manage economic conditions and deal with local and external crises and shocks in an efficient and serious manner,” the minister stated.

He clarified that Moody's experts praised the marked improvement in governance and follow-up systems for economic performance in Egypt and the improvement of the business climate, and the availability of a large and reassuring local financing base, and a reassuring balance of foreign exchange reserves that allows to cover the financing needs of the country, and reduces the consequences of any capital fluctuations in the light the current state of "uncertainty" in the global financial markets.

“Despite the high cost of financing for all emerging countries at the present time, Moody 's indicated that the financial and monetary reforms that have been successfully implemented in recent years contributed to providing room for maneuver and the ability to deal with the risks of high financing costs due to the strength of the Egyptian banking system,” he said, adding that there is sufficient liquidity to meet the governmental financing needs and all the needs of other economic sectors.


For his part, Vice Minister of Finance Ahmed Kojak said that Moody’s expected in its report Egypt to continue the efforts of financial control during the coming period, but at slower rates than previous targets, as it saw that the current crisis will not disrupt the process of reducing the debt ratio of the GDP, but the downward path of the debt-to-GDP ratio may become more gradual due to the additional costs associated with the preventive economic measures package that have been taken and cost approximately 2 percent of GDP.

He pointed out that Moody's expected that the total deficit would reach 7.9 percent of the GDP for the current fiscal year and 8.5 percent of the GDP for the next fiscal year, while also anticipating the ability of the Egyptian finance to continue achieving initial surpluses, even if they are less than the previously targeted percentages. It also referred to the Egyptian government’s ability to complete the process of economic and structural reform in the coming years.

“Although the report issued by Moody's on the performance of the Egyptian economy expects some decline in local growth rates in the short term temporarily “to less than 3 percent during the next fiscal year”, with pressure on public financial indicators, debt and balance of payments performance, the report confirms at the same time the ability to contain the consequences of the crisis and deal with it,” he said.

He pointed out that the experts of "Moody's" expected the return of improvement and the positive path of public finance and indebtedness indicators again starting from the fiscal year 2021/2022.

Finance Ministry reviewed in a statement that Moody’s report touched positively on the government's efforts to achieve initial surpluses and create a large balance of foreign currency cash reserves that are sufficient to meet external capital flows

It noted that the Egyptian government has many alternatives to finance its external and financial needs through markets International bonds and international institutions such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the African Development Bank and other international and regional financial institutions.

The statement added that the report indicates that the criteria governing the credit rating of Egypt are in a good position that makes the state able to deal with economic shocks, and therefore the continued pursuit of effective "public debt" management ensures the continuation of the downward public debt path, the continued improvement of labor market indicators, and the increase in non-oil exports, and increasing the competitiveness of the Egyptian economy, all of which may help and accelerate the improvement of Egypt's credit rating in the coming years.

Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") affirmed Monday the long-term foreign and local currency issuer ratings of the Government of Egypt at B2. The outlook remains stable.

Moody's also affirmed Egypt's foreign currency senior unsecured ratings at B2, and its foreign currency senior unsecured MTN program rating at (P)B2.

Moody's keeps Egypt's rating at B2 with stable outlook

CAIRO - 12 May 2020: Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") affirmed Monday the long-term foreign and local currency issuer ratings of the Government of Egypt at B2, and kept the outlook stable. Moody's also affirmed Egypt's foreign currency senior unsecured ratings at B2, and its foreign currency senior unsecured MTN program rating at (P)B2.



]]>
5/12/2020 2:46:33 PM
<![CDATA[Moody's keeps Egypt's rating at B2 with stable outlook]]>
Moody's also affirmed Egypt's foreign currency senior unsecured ratings at B2, and its foreign currency senior unsecured MTN program rating at (P)B2.

“The affirmation of the B2 rating and stable outlook reflect Egypt's ongoing credit strengths and challenges that Moody's does not expect to change materially relative to similarly-rated sovereigns through the global shock posed by the coronavirus pandemic. While the coronavirus shock exposes Egypt's credit vulnerabilities, improvements in governance and policy effectiveness in recent years shore up the sovereign's credit profile resilience to the current shock,” it clarified.

It explained that the rapid and widening spread of the coronavirus outbreak, deteriorating global economic outlook, falling oil prices, and asset price declines are creating a severe and extensive credit shock across many sectors, regions and markets. “The combined credit effects of these developments are unprecedented. For Egypt, the shock propagates through pressure on external financing requirements, diminished tourism receipts and remittances and slower growth.”

According to corporation, Egypt's government's large funding requirements and weak debt affordability driven by a high interest bill expose it to a sharp tightening in financing conditions triggered by the coronavirus.

“However, at this stage, Moody's assesses that a track record of economic and fiscal reform implementation and demonstrated capacity to manage significant shocks reduce the likelihood of global financial market disruption severely affecting Egypt. In particular, a broad domestic funding base and robust foreign exchange reserves in excess of maturing liabilities provide buffers against significant capital outflows from emerging markets in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic,” it stated.

Overall, Moody's expects the economic and financial shock to delay, but not derail the gradual decline in the government's debt burden, while its liquidity and external positions will likely remain broadly unchanged.

Egypt's country ceilings remain unchanged with the foreign-currency bond ceiling at B1, the foreign-currency deposit ceiling at B3, and the local-currency bond and deposit ceilings at Ba1. The short-term country ceilings for foreign-currency bonds and deposits remain unchanged at Not Prime (NP).

]]>
5/12/2020 2:10:09 PM
<![CDATA[IMF statement on Egypt's emergency financial assistance approval ]]>
Here is transcript of IMF full statement

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved Egypt’s request for emergency financial assistance of SDR 2,037.1 million (US$ 2.772 billion, 100 percent of quota) under the Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) to meet the urgent balance of payments needs stemming from the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Purchase under the RFI entails exceptional access due to outstanding credit under the previous extended arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility.

Egypt achieved a remarkable turnaround prior to the COVID-19 shock, carrying out a successful economic reform program supported by the IMF’s Extended Fund Facility (EFF) to correct large external and domestic imbalances. The pandemic and global shock pose an immediate and severe economic disruption that could negatively impact Egypt’s hard-won macroeconomic stability if not addressed. The authorities have launched a comprehensive package to contain the economic impact of the COVID-19 shock. The RFI will help alleviate some of the most pressing financing needs, including for spending on health, social protection, and supporting the most impacted sectors and vulnerable groups.

The IMF remains closely engaged with the Egyptian government and the Central Bank of Egypt and stands ready to provide policy advice and further support, as needed.

Following the Executive Board discussion, Mr. Geoffrey Okamoto, First Deputy Managing Director and acting Chair, made the following statement:

“The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically disrupted people’s lives, livelihoods, and economic conditions in Egypt. The global shock has resulted in a tourism standstill, significant capital flight, and a slowdown in remittances, resulting in an urgent balance of payments need.

“The Government of Egypt has responded to the crisis with a comprehensive package aimed at tackling the health emergency and supporting economic activity. The authorities acted swiftly to allocate resources to the health sector, provide targeted support to the most severely impacted sectors, and expand social safety net programs to protect the most vulnerable. Similarly, the Central Bank of Egypt adopted a broad set of measures, including lowering the policy rate and postponing repayments of existing credit facilities.

“Emergency support under the Rapid Financing Instrument will help limit the decline in international reserves and provide financing to the budget for targeted and temporary spending, aimed at containing and mitigating the economic impact of the pandemic. The authorities are committed to full transparency and accountability on crisis-related spending including through publishing information on procurement plans and awarded contracts, as well as ex-post audits of such spending

“Additional expeditious support from multilateral and bilateral creditors will be needed to close the remaining balance of payments gap, ease the adjustment burden, and preserve Egypt’s hard-won macroeconomic stability.

“As the crisis abates, measures to lower the debt level would need to resume along with continued implementation of structural reforms to increase the role of the private sector to achieve higher and inclusive private sector-led growth and job creation, unlocking Egypt’s growth potential and entrenching resilience.”]]>
5/11/2020 9:53:02 PM
<![CDATA[IMF approves $2.77B in emergency pandemic aid for Egypt]]>
The IMF said it remained closely engaged with the Egyptian government and the Central Bank of Egypt, and stood ready to provide further support as needed.

IMF First Deputy Managing Director Geoffrey Okamoto said Egypt would need "additional expeditious support" from multilateral and bilateral creditors to close its remaining balance of payments gap, ease the adjustment burden, and preserve Egypt’s hard-won macroeconomic stability.

Egypt's Health Ministry reported 346 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Monday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 9,746, including 533 deaths.

The outbreak has led to the shutdown of Egypt's tourism sector, a key source of foreign revenue, and threatens income from the Suez Canal and remittances from Egyptian workers based abroad. Egypt's foreign reserves have fallen to $37 billion from more than $45.5 billion at the end of February.

The government has taken steps to contain the outbreak, including introduction of a night curfew and the closure of cafes and mosques, but has stopped short of imposing a full lockdown as it seeks to keep the economy going.

The IMF said Egypt had carried out a successful economic program before the outbreak of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus, achieving a "remarkable turnaround" in its large external and domestic imbalances.

The new funds would help Egyptian authorities continue spending on health, social protection, and supporting the most impacted sectors and vulnerable groups, while limiting the decline in international reserves, Okamoto said.

He said Egyptian authorities were committed to full transparency and accountability on crisis-related spending, and had agreed to publish information on procurement plans and awarded contracts, and carry out audits of such spending.

As the crisis abated, it would be important for Egypt to resume measures to lower its debt level and continue implementation of structural reforms, he said.]]>
5/11/2020 8:56:43 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt launches new initiative to support tourism sector in paying workers’ salaries ]]>
Ma’it clarified that the initiative will contribute to enabling tourism and hotel establishments, including medium and small companies, to fulfill their obligations to cover the salaries and wages of workers, and meet the basic needs of employment.

The minister said that under the initiative, the Ministry of Finance will issue LE 3 billion for the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) as a guarantee, in favor of national banks to lend to tourism and hotel establishments at an interest rate of 5 percent annually, over a period of 3 years with a general grace period from May 1 to the end of next April without any guarantees.

According to the minister, the loan is repaid in monthly installments to distribute the burden over 2 years, to cover the salaries of employees in tourism and hotel establishments, and the basic operating needs which does not exceed 15 percent of the value of the loan granted to the facility.

He explained that companies or tourism and hotel facilities will provide the lending banks with statements of employee names and their bank accounts so that salaries are transferred directly from the bank to the employee.

The minister added that is a committee from the Ministry of Finance, the CBE, the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities and the lending banks is formed to follow up on the implementation of this initiative in support of the tourism sector.

He pointed out that, in implementation of the presidential directives to support the economic sectors affected by the crisis of COVID-19, the real estate tax on hotel and tourism establishments has been dropped for a period of 6 months, and the payment of all dues on tourism and hotel establishments is postponed for a period of 3 months without fines or delay benefits.
]]>
5/11/2020 8:04:14 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt disburses LE 368.5M for irregular workers Monday]]>
Saffan said in a statement Monday, that about LE 368.5 million will be disbursed for those who failed to exchange the irregular workers grant in the previous stage from today until 14 of this month, indicating that the total number of beneficiaries will reach 2.037 million.

Earlier, President Sisi approved the disbursement of a grant of LE 500 for a total of 1,500 for 3 months, as a support from the Egyptian state for irregular workers affected by the repercussions of new corona virus, through 4000 postal outlets nationwide and 600 schools in some governorates.

He emphasized that the total amount of the grant from the first payment in full amounted to LE 1.018 billion, after checking their data from nearly 4 million workers who applied through the electronic system of the Ministry of Manpower during the last period.

The state has allocated LE100 billion to face the repercussions of the pandemic, including boosting the social safety network, and healthcare services.

Egypt spent LE 40 billion out of LE 100 billion allocated to counter the negative repercussions of coronavirus pandemic, according to Minister of Finance Mohamed Ma’it.

Ma’it clarified during a cabinet meeting, Thursday, that it included the provision of about LE 5.1 billion in additional allocations for the Ministry of Health, and LE 5 billion for the Ministry of Supply to provide additional needs of food supplies and wheat.

He added that it also included allocating LE 10 billion to pay the dues of contractors and suppliers to help them pay their obligations and workers ’salaries.

Finance Minister also referred to the allocation of about LE 10 billion to sectors affected by the coronavirus, most notably tourism and aviation.
]]>
5/11/2020 6:00:58 PM
<![CDATA[Minister: Enterprise law amendments to stop public sector losses]]>
During a meeting of the parliament Economic Affairs Committee, under the chairmanship of Ahmed Samir, the minister said suggested amendments are meant to promote an-overall scheme to face up to the ailing economic situation besetting the sector.

The public enterprise sector is in dire need for ramping out all its capabilities to compete with the private sector, noted the minister.]]>
5/11/2020 5:26:44 PM
<![CDATA[QNB AlAHLI gets $100M senior loan from EBRD to support enterprises]]>
EBRD clarified that this comes within a program in response to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic in Egypt.

“This is the first investment to be delivered in the country under the EBRD’s coronavirus Solidarity Package, which was set up to meet the immediate short-term financing needs of existing clients,” it noted.

According to EBRD, it is extending a $100 million senior loan to QNB ALAHLI for on-lending to firms, with a special focus on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that are experiencing a decrease in their activities, turnover and/or profitability. “Small businesses form an important segment of the Egyptian economy and supporting them in these challenging times remains a priority for the EBRD.”

“In addition, the Bank is increasing an existing uncommitted trade finance limit for QNB ALAHLI by $100 million under the EBRD’s Trade Facilitation Programme to reach $250 million, to help meet the increased demand for import and export transactions,” it added.

EBRD Managing Director for the southern and eastern Mediterranean region Heike Harmgart commented: “We are very proud to roll out our swift support to the Egyptian economy by partnering with QNB ALAHLI. This financial package is key for the resilience of local Egyptian businesses – it will provide much-needed funding to SMEs, large enterprises and trade companies in this global crisis.”

“The latest transactions further show that the top priority of both the EBRD and QNB ALAHLI is to support clients through these challenging times, which is in-line with the Central Bank of Egypt directions to support SMEs projects. It also demonstrates the trust and confidence that we have built over the years, enabling us to continue our cooperation and deliver business even in the current crisis,” Chairman and Managing Director of QNB ALAHLI Mohamed El-Dib said.

EBRD noted that QNB ALAHLI is one of itslargest clients in the financial sector in Egypt, clarifying that the bank has been a longstanding partner of the EBRD since 2015, when a first SME loan and a trade finance facility were signed.

The EBRD expects to dedicate the entirety of its activities to combating the economic impact of COVID-19 crisis and stands ready to provide support worth €21 billion over the period 2020-21.

Earlier in May, QNB Al Ahli (QNBAA) applied for a solidarity loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development worth up to $100 million as part of the EBRD’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Qatar National Bank Alahly (QNBA) recorded consolidated profits of LE 1.86 billion during the first quarter of 2020, compared to LE 2.02 billion including minority rights, during the same period of 2019, marking a decrease of 7.5 percent.

QNB Alahli operates within the banking sector. It has subsidiaries operating across Egypt.

Egypt is a founding member of the EBRD. Since the start of its operations there in 2012, the Bank has invested over €6 billion in 115 projects in the country.

QNB Al Ahli applies for up to $100M solidarity loan from EBRD

CAIRO - 4 May 2020: QNB Al Ahli (QNBAA) applied for a solidarity loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development worth up to $100 million as part of the EBRD's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to EBRD. The loan that is scheduled for approval on May 6 is under the EBRD's Resilience Framework ("RF").



]]>
5/11/2020 5:19:43 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Monday in semi-collective regression, market cap. loses LE 2.6B]]>
The benchmark EGX30 rose 0.38 percent, or 38.58 points, to close at 10,296.33 points.

On the other hand, the equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 0.81 percent, or 12.21 points, to end at 1,499.5 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 declined 2 percent, or 22.52 points, to close at 1,104.48 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 1.51 percent, or 27.66 points to 1,808.88 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 2.6 billion, recording LE 546.95 billion, compared to LE 549.57 billion in Sunday’s session.

The trading volume reached 300.62 million shares, traded through 32,334 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.52 billion.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 172.6 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 75.74 million, and LE 96.86 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 905,882, and LE 239,262, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net sellers at LE 23.5 million.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 196.11 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 76.65 million, and LE 97.1 million, respectively.

Eastern Company, Egyptian Financial Group-Hermes Holding Company, and Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co. were top gainers of the session at 6.81 percent, 5.70 percent and 5.67 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Ismailia National Food Industries, North Cairo Mills, and Misr Beni Suef Cement were top losers of the session by 15.07 percent, 9.92 percent, and 9.91 percent, respectively.

On Sunday, EGX ended the session in red, as: EGX30 rose 0.80 percent, while EGX 50 dropped 0.82 percent, EGX 70 declined 2.38 percent, or 27.42 points, and EGX 100 lessened 1.83 percent.
]]>
5/11/2020 4:50:06 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian banks federation obliges clients to wear face shields or masks amid coronavirus crisis]]>
The decision shall take effect as of next Sunday, May 17, the federation said in a statement Monday a copy of which was obtained by MENA.

The statement urged all banks to press ahead with all other anti-coronavirus preventive measures inside their branches.

The federation also called on all citizens visiting banks to abide by these measures to help banks carry out their duties regularly.

Egypt registered 436 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 9,400.]]>
5/11/2020 3:39:43 PM
<![CDATA[Planning minister: LE 4 trillion to carry out developmental projects]]>
In a report issued by the ministry Monday, the minister said out of the 25,000 projects more than 16,000 ventures were finalized in various sectors at a total cost of LE 2.2 trillion between July 2014 -December 2019 .

The report titled "Seven years of construction" detailed developmental ventures being established across the country for the period covering July 2014- June 2021.

The Government attaches high priority to investing in developmental sectors at all levels, with the aim of achieving tangible progress, providing job openings for youth and lowering the rate of unemployment, according to the report.

The report cited over-all development projects in Upper Egypt, as well as ventures established in the fields of oil and gas, electricity, renewable energy, transportation, agriculture and irrigation, with a view to upping economic growth rate . ]]>
5/11/2020 3:30:44 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank 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) decided Monday to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are cut to reach 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
5/11/2020 3:20:42 PM
<![CDATA[Share of renewable energy in total power generated in Egypt to remain the same in 2020]]>
Chairman of New and Renewable Energy Mohamed al-Khayat told Egypt Today that the amount expected to be generated of such type of energy by the end of 2020 is 6,000 megawatts.

The breakdown is 1,465 megawatts of solar energy generated in Aswan's Benban Solar Station, 580 megawatts of wind energy generated in Hurghada's Gabal al-Zeit Wind Farm, 250 megawatts of wind energy generated in other wind farms, and 3,000 megawatts of hydropower.

The total amount of renewable energy generated on grid until present is 5,800 megawatts. It is planned that the share of renewable energy in the total amount of energy generated becomes 20 percent in 2022 and 42 percent in 2035.

In 2019, the amount of renewable energy generated rose by 2,000 megawatts to record 6,000 megawatts composing 11 percent of the 55,000 megawatts generated in Egypt annually.

With a total of 300 wind turbines at a total cost of LE 12 billion ($670.64 million), the overall capacity of the three phases of Gabal al-Zeit Wind Farm is 580 megawatts. The first completed phase contains 120 turbines with a capacity of 240 megawatts, while the second and third projects will have 110 turbines with a capacity of 220 megawatts and 60 turbines with a capacity of 120 megawatts, respectively. The project was launched in 2015.

Benban solar station includes 32 plants, and is considered the largest solar power project in the world and was funded by the World Bank with a total value of $653 million.

The total value of the project is $2 billion for a total power generation of up to 1600 megawatts. The project is carried out with the participation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and a large number of major international companies.
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5/11/2020 2:55:00 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's core inflation rise to 2.5% in April: CBE]]>
Core inflation discounts or strips out certain categories that are considered more volatile.

CBE said in a statement on its website Sunday that the core inflation recorded a monthly rate of 1 percent in April 2020, compared to 0.4 percent in April 2019, and 0.4 percent in March 2020.

The Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) announced that Egypt’s annual consumer price inflation hiked to 5.9 percent in April 2020, compared to 12.5 percent in April 2019.

The sustainable development plan for 2020/2021 expected the inflation rate to increase to 9.8 percent if the crisis continued until December 2020.

Inflation remains within the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) target range of 9 percent, plus or minus 3 percentage points, despite the precautionary measures taken aiming to curb the spread of coronavirus that are expected to raise the rate of inflation.
]]>
5/10/2020 5:42:36 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to add Marsa Alam on national electrical grid for 1st time ]]>
The ministry added that with the start of the trial run of the pipeline, it will be the first time that Marsa Alam is connected to the national electrical grid.

It stressed that work is now in full swing to complete the work of conducting electrical current through the national network for the southeastern coast region of the Red Sea starting from AlKosair and ending with Berenice region passing by Marsa Alam.

"This requires the establishment of a 220-kV dual-circuit antenna line, with a length of 295 km and investments amounting to LE 970 million. This is in addition to installing four mobile units with a voltage of 220/22 kV, with two units being located in Marsa Alam and Berenice sites, with a capacity of (60) MFA for each unit. The total cost of these units reached LE 180 million,” the ministry clarified.

According to the statement, the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company succeeded in implementing the line in record time (6 months) in accordance with the timetable prepared for the project in cooperation with major specialized companies in this field.

"The implementation of this project did not hinder the current difficult circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic, as the implementation of the project was monitored weekly with the knowledge of Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy,” it added.

For his part, Minister of Electricity Mohamed Shaker Mohamed Shaker stressed the importance of linking these areas with the unified electrical network for the urban, touristic and social development of these promising areas, and to reduce the current cost of delivering electric energy to these areas currently being fed by diesel generating units and high-cost gas units.

Shaker explained that the average annual cost of operation, and maintenance for these units for the current loads in Al-Kosair and Marsa Alam area (excluding the tourist villages that depend on their diesel units) is about LE 270 million annually.
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5/10/2020 5:28:08 PM
<![CDATA[Finance Ministry auctions T-bills worth LE 19B]]>
In an online statement, the ministry said it sold 91-day T-bills worth LE 8.5 billion, with an average yield of 12.542 percent, adding it accepted bids at rates between 12.001 percent and 12.995 percent.

The ministry also sold 266-day T-bills valued at LE 10.5 billion, with an average yield of 12.593 percent, noting that it accepted bids at rates between 12.4 percent and 12.609 percent. ]]>
5/10/2020 5:23:37 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s decisions to face COVID-19 effective, decisive: Ayman Al-Gamil]]>
Al-Gamil added that the decisions also take into account the social dimension of the various groups, especially those with limited income and irregular employment, in addition to supporting the productive sectors that are very important to the Egyptian economy, whether at the industrial, agricultural or foreign trade level and offset the decline in investments.

“The government, under the direction of President Sisi, is working to contain the effects of the emerging virus "Covid 19" on all levels ably,” he said, clarifying that on the health level, there are step-by-step emergency plans, isolation hospitals, and places to receive new patients if the numbers of injuries increase.

He added that the same is for new treatments and following up on the latest scientific research in this field.

“On the economic level, the government tended to move in parallel tracks, including obtaining fast financing without burdens from the IMF to meet the shortage of basic financing resources and at the same time a gradual opening in production sectors taking into account the basic controls and standards for virus prevention,” he referred.

He also pointed out to supporting export sectors with positive decisions, the latest of which was the Cabinet’s approval to allocate an additional LE 100 million to EgyptAir for air freight, while extending the umbrella of supporting the air freight program for fresh agricultural crops, to include the Arab Gulf countries, through the resources available to the Export Development Fund, in conjunction with the start of agricultural crops export season.

Al-Gamil noted that the government's decision to increase wages and pensions by LE 100 billion in the new budget confirms that the state is keen on the Egyptian public not to bear any burdens during the coronavirus crisis, and at the same time facing the decline and stagnation in the global economy that certainly affects the Egyptian economy with a package of effective decisions and programs. “These programs work to provide new job opportunities and an increase in foreign investment as the global economy recovers.”

The businessman explained that the Egyptian economy is able to recover from its current crisis once the movement returns to the transportation and tourism sectors in the world, and with the regularity of business and the adoption of the concept of coexistence with the coronavirus instead of facing it with complete closure and isolation as was prevalent in the past three months.

He considered that the great interest of the Egyptian state in its citizens stuck abroad and work to bring them back to their homeland as soon as possible, a testament to the strength of the Egyptian state and its ability to contain all its children at home and abroad. “It also reflects the extent of coordination and harmony between the different ministries and agencies that work together to serve the Egyptian citizen anywhere in the world.”
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5/10/2020 5:18:13 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Sunday in semi-collective regression]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 rose 0.80 percent, or 81.02 points, to close at 10,257.75 points.

On the other hand, the equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 0.82 percent, or 12.56 points, to end at 1,511.71 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 declined 2.38 percent, or 27.42 points, to close at 1,127 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 1.83 percent, or 34.19 points to 1,836.54 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 790 million, recording LE 549.57 billion, compared to LE 550.36 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 536.46 million shares, traded through 26,462 transactions, with a turnover of LE 536.46 million.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 38.21 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 14.9764 million, and LE 23.44 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 36.16 million, and LE 8.15 million, respectively, while Arab individuals were net sellers at LE 2.85 million.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 2.05 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 11.91 million, and LE 31.59 million, respectively.

Canal Shipping Agencies, General Silos & Storage, and B Investments Holding were top gainers of the session at 10 percent, 9.92 percent and 6.87 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Misr Oils & Soap, Osool ESB Securities Brokerage, and Arab Polvara Spinning & Weaving were top losers of the session by 10 percent, 9.98 percent, and 9.89 percent, respectively.

On Thursday, EGX ended the session in red, as: EGX 30 dipped 1.14 percent, EGX 50 dropped 2.89 percent, EGX 70 declined 3.69 percent, and EGX 100 lessened 2.98 percent.
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5/10/2020 4:05:00 PM
<![CDATA[CBE donates $7 million to back State's anti-coronavirus efforts]]>
This came in a letter sent to Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli by CIB chairman Hisham Ezzel Arab.

The donation will boost the Health Ministry's coronavirus tests and secure basic needs of the families that were harmed by the outbreak of the virus.

Some of the funds will go to the National Fund for Emergency and Disasters.

The bank also donated 250,000 dollars to back the Africa COVID-19 Response Fund.

The bank chairman hailed efforts and measures taken by the country to curb the outbreak of the pandemic, calling on African countries to join hands in face of this joint enemy.

Madbouli lauded the bank's positive contribution which was not limited to boosting national needs but extended to include the African continent as well. ]]>
5/10/2020 3:44:23 PM
<![CDATA[CBE weighs expanding industry stimulus package to contractor sector: governor]]>
The initiative intends to support industry and agricultural manufacturing by securing loans at a declining 8-percent interest rate.

The proposal, which will be reviewed by CBE board during its upcoming meeting, aims to expand the number of sectors benefiting from the initiative by adding the contractor sector that was as well affected by the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, the governor said in statements to MENA.

The contractor sector is a key driver of the Egyptian economy and should be supported, Amer said.

In December, the CBE launched a 100 billion pound initiative to support local industry to boost private sector growth in the next phase.

Under the plan, factories with sales of under 1 billion pounds would be able to secure loans at a reduced interest rate of 10%.

Three months later, the CBE cut down the interest rate to eight percent after expanding the initiative to the agricultural and production firms. ]]>
5/10/2020 3:36:42 PM
<![CDATA[FRA reduces services charges on trading operations]]>
Chairman of the authority Mohamed Omran said services charges on trading in listed bonds will be reduced to be 5 per 100,000 with a maximum limit of 250 pounds.

The move makes Egypt the least-cost market in terms of services charges on trading operations if compared to other money markets, he added.

Oman said the move reflects the authority's keenness on developing capital market and luring more investments. ]]>
5/10/2020 3:30:24 PM
<![CDATA[High-yield savings certificates of NBE, Banque Misr post LE 121B in gains]]>
Mohamed el Atrebi, Board Chairman of Banque Misr, told MENA that the bank sold certificates worth 39 billion pounds since the new certificates were issued.

They were also sold electronically as part of the preventive measures taken by the State to limit crowds to ban the spread of coronavirus, he added.

Yehia Abul Fotouh, Vice President of the NBE, said the bank sold 82-billion-pound worth certificates since they were issued.

The certificates were sold online or through the mobile banking application and the call center 19623, he added.

The two banks issued these certificates as part of measures to ease the economic repercussions of coronavirus outbreak.]]>
5/10/2020 3:25:24 PM
<![CDATA[Banque du Caire chairman issues statement on closure of downtown branch after 2 coronavirus infections]]>
Medical tests were conducted on the other staffers of the branch to make sure they are free from the virus and a full sterilization process was carried out in the branch for three days, Fayed said in a statement late on Saturday.

The move comes in the framework of the bank’s keenness on the safety and health of all bank employees and customers.

Since the start of coronavirus outbreak in Egypt, the bank took a number of precautionary measures, including disinfecting all branches, providing gloves at the ATMs, exercising social distance among staffers and clients, activating E-Learning mechanism and organizing meetings through conference calls.

He urged bank clients to go to the nearest downtown branch until Talaat Harb branch is re-opened. ]]>
5/10/2020 3:17:45 PM
<![CDATA[LE 56B worth of tax liens to be removed as part of new initiative: CBE official]]>
Speaking to MENA, the source said the initiative covers around 126 thousand defaulting taxpayers, including individuals, companies, and facilities.

CBE will notify banks to inform their clients, with foreclosed assets, about the initiative, which would remove all the fines and interests accrued on demurrage charges if they adhere to the condition of one percent payment. ]]>
5/10/2020 3:14:06 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's fuel subsidy bill drops 65% in 9 months through March: official]]>
Egypt spent LE 60.1 billion on fuel subsidies in the same period a year earlier. Over the past three years, Egypt has phased out subsidies on most fuel products as part of an IMF-backed economic reform programme. ($1 = 15.6900 Egyptian pounds)]]>
5/10/2020 3:08:54 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s annual inflation records 5.9% in April, rises 1.6% monthly]]>
In March 2020, Egypt's annual inflation reached 4.6 percent.

On a monthly basis, inflation recorded 107.5 points in April 2020, marking an increase of 1.6 percent compared to March 2020, the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) said.

CAPMAS attributed the rise in inflation to the increase in prices of some commodities during the month, as fruits by 13.9 percent, vegetables by 9.5 percent, fish and seafood by 9.1 percent, meat and poultry by 5.5 percent, dairy, cheese and eggs by 0.4 percent, ready-made clothes by 0.5 percent, and outpatient services by 0.9 percent.

It also referred to the decrease in the expenses on private transport by 2.9 percent.

At the urban level, the annual inflation rate for April 2020 rose to 5.9 percent, up from 5.1 percent in March.

The sustainable development plan for 2020/2021 expected the inflation rate to increase to 9.8 percent if the crisis continued until December 2020.

Inflation remains within the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) target range of 9 percent, plus or minus 3 percentage points, despite the precautionary measures taken aiming to curb the spread of coronavirus that are expected to raise the rate of inflation.
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5/10/2020 3:04:45 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 19B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 8.5 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
5/10/2020 2:36:44 PM
<![CDATA[Jordan imports fish from Egypt due to shortage in Aqaba]]>
Due to the limited areas of fishing in the territorial water that was imposed by the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority, fish importing companies were forced to import it from Egypt, Oman, and Turkey by up to about 90 percent, the agency added.

To curb the outbreak of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the Jordanian authorities imposed a curfew nationwide on April 30 and led to the suspension of works in many fields. However, fishing was allowed for a number of fishermen on April 17, according to a decision issued by the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority.



One day after the end of the complete curfew on April 12, chairman of the authority Naif Ahmed Bekheet said that 120 fishermen will be given fishing permits.

On February 8, 2019, Egyptian Deputy Minister of Agriculture Mona Mehrez announced Egyptian companies were allowed to export fresh fish and seafood to Jordan via Al-Aqaba port.

Former Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation Ezz El Din Abu Steit announced in May 2019 that Egypt's production of fish has increased to 1.8 million tons annually to be ranked first in Africa and eighth in the world in the fish farming sector, Egytian state-owned news agency MENA reported.

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5/10/2020 12:53:00 AM
<![CDATA[Contracts of electricity linkage between Egypt, Saudi Arabia to be signed in May: source]]>
The source added that execution works will begin immediately in June, and that the Saudi side will determine the pathway of the linkage line as the project will be part of the planned cross-border city, Neom, located in the Tabuk Province of northwestern Saudi Arabia.

The electricity linkage project consists of three phases. The first- which is in Egypt - includes two AC-DC transmission plants having a capacity of 500 kilovolts at Badr City, and the control room of the linkage between the overhead power lines and the marine cables at Nabq city.

The costs recovery duration is eight years. The ROI - when only exchanging electricity - is 13 percent, and 20 percent, when both generating and exchanging electricity. The linkage will enable Saudi Arabia of exporting surplus to Egypt in winter.

Spokesperson of the ministry Ayman Hamza announced in April that a delegation from the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Co. headed to Saudi Arabia to hold intensive meetings to finalize the contracts drafts.

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5/9/2020 12:56:51 PM
<![CDATA[IMF says economic outlook worsened since forecast in April]]>
Developing nations' external financing needs probably will be far above the $2.5 trillion that the IMF has previously projected, chief economist Gita Gopinath said in a webcast Thursday hosted by the Council on Foreign Relations. The fund will need all of its $1 trillion in current lending resources and isn’t being shy about telling countries how much support is needed, Gopinath said.

"We know this crisis isn’t going away anytime soon," Gopinath said. "Things can get worse. The health crisis has not been solved."

The IMF said in the World Economic Outlook report on April 14 that global gross domestic product will decline 3 percent this year. That baseline scenario assumed that the pandemic fades in the second half of this year and that containment measures can be gradually wound down, a scenario that looks less likely now, Gopinath said.

The IMF's April outlook also sketched out three alternative scenarios in which the virus lasted longer than expected, returned in 2021 or both. A lengthier pandemic would wipe 3 percent off GDP this year compared to the baseline, while protraction plus a resumption next year would mean 8 percent less output than projected in 2021, the Fund said.

On the same webcast, Kenneth Rogoff, a professor at Harvard University professor and one of Gopinath's predecessors at the IMF, said that some countries will face a solvency crisis and will need debt writedowns rather than just postponement of payments.]]>
5/8/2020 2:52:56 PM
<![CDATA[Trade exchange between Egypt, China hits $13.2bn in 2019]]>
In its recent data released on Friday, the Chinese Ministry of Commerce said that China's exports to Egypt have hit 12.2 billion dollars, with a 1.8 percent rise on an annual basis.

Meanwhile, the Chinese imports from Egypt recorded one billion dollar, the ministry added.]]>
5/8/2020 1:37:09 PM
<![CDATA[Planning, emigration ministers hold open discussions with businessmen abroad]]>
The meeting aimed at following up on the outcome of "Egypt can.. through investment and development" conference which was held in October, the Planning Ministry said in a statement on Friday.

Saeed reviewed the indices of the Egyptian economy before the coronavirus crisis, pointing out that the economic growth rate hit 5.6% and the unemployment rate dropped to less than 8% and other financial and monetary positive indicators.

The Egyptian economy is now expected to achieve a growth rate of 3.5 percent by the end of fiscal year 2020/2021 if the pandemic ends by the end of the current fiscal year 2019/2020, she said, noting that impact of the crisis will extend to the first quarter or half of the fiscal year 2020/2021.

She underlined that if the virus lasts till December 2020, the targeted growth rate will decrease to 2 percent.

There are two scenarios to recover from the coronavirus crisis, by containing the virus by the end of June 2020 or December 2020, she said.

The World Bank said that Egypt’s economy is achieving the best performance in the Middle East and North Africa region and the International Monetary Fund said that Egypt is the only country in the region to maintain its economic growth, she added.

The emigration minister reviewed the state’s efforts to bring back the Egyptians stranded abroad and talked with the businessmen about means of their contribution to the recovery of the Egyptian economy.]]>
5/8/2020 1:25:33 PM
<![CDATA[CBE: Deposits in banks hit LE 4.306T in Feb.]]>
According to the report, a copy of which MENA obtained Thursday, government deposits went up by 18.3 billion to register LE 620.6 billion in February, compared to LE 602.3 billion the previous month.

Government deposits in local currency stood at about LE 546.4 billion, while they recorded LE 74.1 billion in foreign currency.

Non-government deposits surged to LE 3.685 trillion in February, against LE 3.643 trillion the previous month, the report added.

The total value of non-government deposits in local currency amounted to LE 3.051 trillion by the end of February, up from LE 2.996 trillion by the end of January.

Of that total, the public business sector deposits amounted to LE 62.9 billion, while deposits of the private sector and the family sector registered LE 413.5 billion and LE 2.562 trillion respectively. ]]>
5/7/2020 5:12:43 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet approves amendments to stamp tax law, income tax law]]>
The bill provides for a delay in paying tax on capital gains received by natural and legal persons. This postponement will not be applied to capital dividends received by natural and legal persons from selling government bonds.

The draft law states that the non-resident seller and the resident buyer shall pay a stamp tax at 1.25 per thousand from the total sale value.

It stipulates that the resident seller and the resident buyer shall pay a stamp tax at 1.25 per thousand from the total sale value.

The bill gives tax preference to securities listed in the Egyptian Stock Exchange unlike the unlisted securities.]]>
5/7/2020 5:07:10 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s foreign reserves record $37.04B by end of April]]>
Since March, CBE has announced using foreign reserves money to cover the Egyptian market's needs of foreign exchange, the drop in foreign investments and international portfolios.

Despite the decline in figures, the current average of foreign reserves covers about 8 months of Egypt's commodity imports, which is higher than the global average of about three months of commodity imports.

Foreign currencies in Egypt’s foreign reserves include the U.S. dollar, euro, Australian dollar, Japanese yen and Chinese yuan.

The main function of the foreign exchange reserve, including its gold and various international currencies, is to provide commodities, repay the installments on interest rates of external debt, and to cope with economic crises.

In April, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced that the Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program.

This package is to enhance the state’s capabilities to face the new COVID-19 virus crisis, in a proactive step based on the successful implementation of the economic reform program; to maintain the continuing gains and positive results achieved by the Egyptian economy, in light of the exceptional circumstances experienced by all countries of the world and developments in global conditions.
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.


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5/7/2020 5:00:04 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt increases wages, pensions by LE 100B in 20/21: Prime Minister ]]>
Madbouli added at a press conference at the headquarters of the Cabinet that the state was keen to alleviate the burden off the Egyptian citizen during the coronavirus crisis.

“Every year we need nearly 800 jobs for young people,” he stated. “We all, as citizens, must be aware that delayed production will affect us,” he added.

Madbouli chaired the weekly meeting of the Cabinet on Thursday, May 7, via video conference, where a number of important work files affecting the lives of citizens were discussed, and the latest local and global developments related to the emerging crisis of the coronavirus were reviewed.

The prime minister pointed out the efforts made by the state, to return the stranded Egyptians abroad, praising the continuous coordination between the ministries and the relevant authorities in this regard.

He explained that the past two days only witnessed the return of more than 1,100 Egyptian citizens from Kuwait, and that requires many arrangements, including providing sanitary isolation places, as well as providing medical teams, transportation, and the necessary equipment.
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5/7/2020 4:36:38 PM
<![CDATA[Finance Minister reviews how COVID-19 affects Egypt's economy ]]>
“The government was targeting an economic growth rate close to 6 percent, and we now estimate it by 4.2 percent, with a decrease of 1.8 percent or LE 175 billion,” he stated Thursday.

Meanwhile, Ma’it expected that the volume of Egypt’s public debt will increase by the end of the current fiscal year, due to the increase in the volume of spending in exchange for declining revenues, as a result of the negative repercussions of coronavirus's results.

According to Ma’it, the volume of the public debt of the state was expected to hit about LE 5.72 trillion, but that it would increase by about LE 44 billion, equivalent to 3 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP).

He added that Egypt's revenues were affected during the current period due to the repercussions of the Corona virus, as there was a decrease in budget revenues by about LE 75 billion, including LE 65 billion lost in the tax proceeds.

Ma’it pointed out that the government raised the target deficit rate for the current fiscal year from 7.2 percent to 7.9 percent.

During the press conference, Egypt’s Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouli on Thursday said the preventive measures taken to face the coronavirus crisis during the first half of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan will continue for the rest of the month.

Among these measures is a night curfew from 9:00 pm to 6:00 am, and opening commercial centers over the whole week until 5:00 pm.

Madbouli said the budget for the new fiscal year will include an article allocating LE 100 billion ($6.35 billion) to raise wages and pensions, affirming that the state has been keen to not place extra burden on citizens during the coronavirus crisis.
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5/7/2020 4:32:11 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt spends LE 40B of LE100B package allocated to confront COVID-19]]>CAIRO – 7 May 2020: Egypt spent LE 40 billion out of LE 100 billion allocated to counter the negative repercussions of coronavirus pandemic, according to Minister of Finance Mohamed Ma’it.

Ma’it clarified during a cabinet meeting, Thursday, that it included the provision of about LE 5.1 billion in additional allocations for the Ministry of Health, and LE 5 billion for the Ministry of Supply to provide additional needs of food supplies and wheat.

He added that it also included allocating LE 10 billion to pay the dues of contractors and suppliers to help them pay their obligations and workers ’salaries.

Finance Minister also referred to the allocation of about LE 10 billion to sectors affected by the coronavirus, most notably tourism and aviation.

He pointed out that the coronavirus crisis is severe for the whole world, and speeding up dealing with the crisis will benefit the Egyptian economy.

The Finance Minister said that the corona virus crisis affected the Egyptian economic situation during the past two and a half months.

“The government was targeting an economic growth rate close to 6 percent, and we now estimate it by 4.2 percent, with a decrease of 1.8 percent or LE 175 billion,” he stated.

Meanwhile, Ma’it expected that the volume of Egypt’s public debt will increase by the end of the current fiscal year, due to the increase in the volume of spending in exchange for declining revenues, as a result of the negative repercussions of coronavirus's results.

According to Ma’it, the volume of the public debt of the state was expected to hit about LE 5.72 trillion, but that it would increase by about LE 44 billion, equivalent to 3 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP).

He added that Egypt's revenues were affected during the current period due to the repercussions of the Corona virus, as there was a decrease in budget revenues by about LE 75 billion, including LE 65 billion lost in the tax proceeds.

Ma’it pointed out that the government raised the target deficit rate for the current fiscal year from 7.2 percent to 7.9 percent.

During the press conference, Egypt’s Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouli on Thursday said the preventive measures taken to face the coronavirus crisis during the first half of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan will continue for the rest of the month.

Among these measures is a night curfew from 9:00 pm to 6:00 am, and opening commercial centers over the whole week until 5:00 pm.

Madbouli said the budget for the new fiscal year will include an article allocating LE 100 billion ($6.35 billion) to raise wages and pensions, affirming that the state has been keen to not place extra burden on citizens during the coronavirus crisis.
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5/7/2020 4:28:21 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's planning min. attends signing of MoU to build human capacities]]>
The foundation will give the NMI a grant of EGP 4 million to support the implementation of the activities of a training program on developing leadership skills of civil servants.

Saeed said in a statement released by her ministry on Thursday that inking the memo reflects the importance of cooperation between the governmental and private institutions for the aim of supporting sustainable human development.

The cooperation between the NMI and the SFSD comes within the framework of propagating and boosting the principles of management governance and wise leadership to achieve sustainable development according to Egypt Vision 2030. ]]>
5/7/2020 4:06:12 PM
<![CDATA[EGX enters red zone Thursday, market cap. loses LE9.9B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 dipped 1.14 percent, or 117.22 points, to close at 10,176.73 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dropped 2.89 percent, or 45.35 points, to end at 1,524.27 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 declined 3.69 percent, or 44.25 points, to close at 1,154.42 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 2.98 percent, or 33.36 points to 1,084.95 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 9.9 billion, recording LE 550.36 billion, compared to LE 560.3 billion in Wednesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 344.44 million shares, traded through 37,386 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1 billion.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 29.48 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 11.94 million, and LE 17.54 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 11.17 million, LE 8.81 million and LE 4.67 million, respectively.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 40.65 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 3.13 million, and LE 12.87 million, respectively.

Dice Sport & Casual Wear, General Silos & Storage, and Ismailia National Food Industries were top gainers of the session at 10.95 percent, 9.99 percent and 5.79 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Osool ESB Securities Brokerage, El Ahram Co. for Printing and Packing, and Alexandria Spinning & Weaving (SPINALEX) were top losers of the session by 9.95 percent, 9.62 percent, and 9.50 percent, respectively.

On Wednesday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX 30 hiked 1.04 percent, EGX 50 rose 1.46 percent, EGX 70 jumped 1.98 percent, and EGX 100 climbed 1.02 percent.
]]>
5/7/2020 2:50:31 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
5/7/2020 2:09:31 PM
<![CDATA[Banque Misr receives "Deal of the Year 2020 - Africa": Financial Times]]>
This is considered the second time for Banque Misr to receive an award from the same institution for its role as mandated lead arranger and underwriter for Sarwa Capital's 27th securitization bond issue at value of LE 2.03 billion.

Sarwa Capital is the largest securitization and structured finance provider in Egypt. The LE 2.8 billion issuance pool of receivables for Sarwa's issue of asset-backed securities (ABS), backed by auto loans; thus, Sarwa's bond issue is considered the largest issuance ever to be executed in Egypt despite all challenges related to the hike at the local interest rate that faced the Egyptian market.

This securitization bond issue was achieved in the light of fruitful cooperation between Banque Misr and Sarwa Capital, the largest securitization provider in Egypt.

Banque Misr is expected to cooperate with Sarwa Capital for executing more securitization bond issues, in the light of launching new products in the Egyptian market, including Sukuk and short-term bonds.

It is worth mentioning that Sarwa Capital arranged this securitized bond issuance in cooperation with Banque Misr, Arab African International Bank, Ahli United Bank, Commercial International Bank as mandated lead arrangers and underwriters.

Sarwa Capital was the financial adviser and lead arranger and AAIB was book runner for the bond issue.]]>
5/7/2020 1:59:23 PM
<![CDATA[IMF to mull Egypt's request for loan in May 11 meeting]]>
In April, Egypt's Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouli asked the IMF for financial support to help the country deal with the new coronavirus outbreak.

Madbouli is seeking a Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) loan as well as the emergency financing under the RFI.

Egypt is potentially eligible for as much as $2.78 billion under the RFI on the back of the success of its economic reform program and about $4 billion per year under the SBA, according to analysts and information on the IMF website.

The two programs are designed for countries facing urgent or potential balance of payments problems.]]>
5/7/2020 1:52:23 PM
<![CDATA[NBE leads banking consortium to provide €30m loan to Midor]]>
The move comes in line with the participating banks’ strategies aiming at providing energy projects with needed funding, either by local or foreign currency, to boost national economy, NBE’s chairman Hisham Okasha said in a statement.

The step, he said, reflects NBE's pioneering role in boosting national projects that contribute to the economic development of the country, he said.

The NBE and Credit Agricole Egypt will each contribute €12 million to the loan, while Faisal Islamic Bank of Egypt and Suez Canal Bank will each provide a funding of €3 million, NBE’s vice chairman Yehia Aboul Fotouh noted.

The nine-year loan will be repaid over seven years to start from the third year of signing the loan.

The loan will be used to finance part of the investment cost for expanding an electricity plant owned by Midor through providing a 50-megawatt gas turbine.]]>
5/7/2020 1:50:43 PM
<![CDATA[Economic reforms prepared Egypt for coronavirus crisis, minister says]]>
“We entered this crisis with fiscal buffers as well as foreign reserve buffers, which helped weather the first shock,” Rania al Mashat told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble this week.

“If it weren’t for those comprehensive reforms on the tax side, on the budget, on foreign exchange and so forth, the situation would have been ... even more difficult,” she added.

The minister said Cairo will continue to make changes amid the virus outbreak.

“We’re really pushing forward with many of the structural reforms that we wanted to do anyway. But it’s coming in a very expedited fashion related to social safety nets, widening those to people who are vulnerable. Also, to financial inclusion, there has been a focus on the unorganized and informal labor,” she said.

Egypt was on a reform program with the International Monetary Fund from 2016 to 2019.

CNBC said Egypt is one of only two countries in the Middle East and North African region that the IMF expects the economy to grow in 2020, though at a modest rate of 2 percent, compared to last year’s 5.6 percent.]]>
5/7/2020 1:46:41 PM
<![CDATA[PM issues package of decisions to activate bourse]]>
In a statement on Thursday, Mohammed Omran, Chairman of the Financial Regulatory Authority, said the premier's decisions would expedite the issuance of an executive decision on reducing services charges on trading operations.

Omran noted that the premier's decisions called for a 20 percent reduction in clearing and settlement operations to be 10 per 100,000 instead of 12.5 per 100,000.

Under the premier's decisions, the fees of investor protection fund (IPF) were reduced by 50 percent to be 5 per 100,000 instead of 1 per ten thousand. Also, services charges on trading in listed bonds will be reduced by 50 percent. ]]>
5/7/2020 1:43:40 PM
<![CDATA[Gazette publishes premier's decisions on activating bourse]]>
Under the premier's decisions, the fees of investor protection fund (IPF) were reduced by 50 percent to be 5 per 100,000 instead of 1 per ten thousand. Also, services charges on trading in listed bonds will be reduced by 50 percent. ]]>
5/7/2020 1:40:55 PM
<![CDATA[Proposed investment budget for coming fiscal year upped to LE 230 ]]>
During a meeting with representatives of the real estate development and contracting sector, he said the measure is meant to implement various development and service projects.

He added that the budget of the New Urban Communities Authority will also be increased in the coming fiscal year, therefore contracting and real estate companies have a great opportunity in the future.

The prime minister stressed keenness on supporting the real estate development sector, especially in the current stage.

Minister of Housing Assem el Gazzar said the president and the prime minister issued directives to increase projects, particularly infrastructure ventures.

He added that all financial dues of the contracting companies would be paid and new projects would be launched.]]>
5/7/2020 11:44:52 AM
<![CDATA[Egyptian presidency approves customs cooperation deal with Bahrain]]>
The agreement was signed in Manama in November 2018.

Egypt to sign customs agreements with US, European Union, Belarus

CAIRO - 19 August 2019: Ministry of Finance announced Monday signing a number of agreements related to mutual assistance in customs matters with countries including the United States, Belarus, and European Union.



This comes within the framework of the firm relations between Egypt and almost all the Arab countries including Bahrain.

In November last year, Bahrain's Foreign Minister Sheikh Khaled bin Ahmed bin Mohamed Al Khalifa underlined keenness of Egypt and Bahrain on enhancing bilateral relations in the different fields.

He also underscored the importance of maintaining coordination regarding regional and international issues of mutual concern.

Also in November, Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa hailed his country's strong relations with Egypt and affirmed Bahrain's keenness to continue developing and enhancing bilateral cooperation in various fields, in a way that meets the common interests of the peoples of the two sisterly countries, presidential spokesman Bassam Radi said.

MENA contributed to the reporting]]>
5/7/2020 11:40:30 AM
<![CDATA[COVID-19 rearrange priorities of Egypt's sovereign fund]]>
Soliman CNBC Arabia that investing in infrastructure is one of the most important fields in which the fund’s assets are invested, and a large part of those assets is aimed at investing in tourism, education and health.

He pointed out that the targeted investments also include the areas of food processing, in addition to the fourth area in which a portfolio is built for investment, which is financial technology and banking services.

Regarding the fund's assets, he indicated that the fund is currently targeting LE 60 billion, and seeks rapid development to reach LE 1 trillion within years.

Soliman stressed that the fund is looking to expand in the field of logistics, including food processing.

Earlier Wednesday, Egypt Sovereign Fund and Investment Management Company, Concord International Investments, based in New York, announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that includes entities' cooperation to establish a joint company to manage a fund specializing in the healthcare sector.

The target fund volume is $300 million, as a preliminary stage and aims to maximize the value of assets in the long run by taking advantage of direct investment opportunities in Egypt, according to the statement.

The statement indicated that the fund will act as a catalyst to attract large foreign direct investment, as well as create joint investment opportunities in other huge projects.

Through the new fund, Egypt’s sovereign fund aims to create a diverse health care platform that benefits from the growing population in Egypt who need different health care services. It also seeks to create global export-oriented health care entities covering various health activities, in addition to maximizing the value of promising companies in this. The sector, unexploited assets and support for new specializations, taking advantage of Egypt's unique position and the relatively low costs of production and health services in Egypt for export to Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Egypt recorded, Tuesday 388 new coronavirus cases and 16 deaths, which raises the total infected patients of COVID-19 to 7201 and the total deaths to 452 according to Health Minister’s daily briefing.

Health Ministry Spokesman Khaled Megahed added that 98 patients, were discharged from the hospital after being confirmed that they are completely recovered from the viruses, this also raises the number of recovered cases to 1730 out of 2224 who had been retested for the virus and had received negative results.
]]>
5/6/2020 4:47:56 PM
<![CDATA[Orascom Investment turns into loss during 2019]]>
The company’s indicators showed that the operating profits hit LE 1.16 billion during the 2019 period, compared to a loss of LE 1.32 billion during the compared period of 2018.

As per standalone results, Orascom turned into loss by LE 253.33 million in 2019, compared to profits of LE 58.79 million during 2018.

During the first nine months of 2019, Orascom Investment Holding Company turned into loss by LE 92.4 million, from profits of LE 1.07 billion including minority rights during the same period of 2018.

The company recorded a consolidated loss during the first half of 2019 at LE 153.4 million, compared to loss of LE 141.2 million during the same half of 2018.

OIH’s current capital is worth LE 2.2 billion, distributed over 5.24 billion shares. Orascom Investment Holding works in the fields of GSM, media, cables and mobile communications in Egypt, North Korea and Lebanon.
]]>
5/6/2020 4:20:46 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s PMI falls to 29.7 in April]]>
According to IHS Markit, the Egypt PMI fell dramatically in April, with activity, new business and exports declining at record rates amid measures to ease the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis. Business output was severely limited, leading firms to enact large cost- cutting strategies including weaker input spending and job reductions. As a result, input costs rose at the softest pace ever seen in the survey.

"The Egypt PMI sunk to an historic low of 29.7 in April, as the country faced the first full month of measures restricting activity and movement in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Economist at IHS Markit David Owen said Tuesday.

Owen noted that businesses lucky enough to remain open scaled back activity on a massive scale, as many highlighted sharp falls in domestic sales and foreign demand. Firms forced to close unsurprisingly recorded an even steeper decline in output.

"Employment levels dropped again in April, although the rate of decline was much softer than for activity. An extended period of weaker output may lead to larger job reductions in the future,” he added, pointing that business expectations remain strong though, in fact improving since March, which may suggest firms will look to retain workforces for when the economy reopens. The outlook may darken though should the crisis worsen and measures are extended.

]]>
5/6/2020 3:59:55 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Wednesday in green, Market Capitalization adds LE 4.2B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 hiked 1.04 percent, or 105.64 points, to close at 10,293.95 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 1.46 percent, or 22.56 points, to end at 1,569.62 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 jumped 1.98 percent, or 23.3 points, to close at 1,198.67 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 1.02 percent, or 11.24 points to 1,118.31 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 4.2 billion, recording LE 560.3 billion, compared to LE 556.06 billion in Tuesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 280.92 million shares, traded through 25,769 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.06 billion.

Foreign investors were buyers at LE 136.04 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net sellers at LE 128.77 million, and LE 7.27 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 325.64 million, LE 3.58 million and LE 624,908, respectively.

Arab organizations sold at LE 3.68 million, while Egyptian and foreign organizations bought at LE 196.87 million, and LE 136.67 million, respectively.

Golden Coast Company, El Ahli Investment and Development, and National Real Estate Bank for Development were top gainers of the session at 14.39 percent, 10.74 percent and 9.87 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Raya Holding for Financial Investments, Lecico Egypt, and Faisal Islamic Bank of Egypt - In EGP were top losers of the session by 2.53 percent, 2.43 percent, and 2.34 percent, respectively.

On Tuesday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX 30 hiked 1.05 percent, EGX 50 rose 1.36 percent, EGX 70 jumped 2.20 percent, and EGX 100 climbed 1.67 percent.
]]>
5/6/2020 3:40:29 PM
<![CDATA[Finance, trade ministers ink 41 settlement agreements for exports' arrears]]>
This comes after presidential directions to support the economic and exports sectors to increase the production abilities in light of the coronavirus to contribute to providing financial liquidity for these companies.

Maait asserted that the presidential directives are clear to support the exports, saying that the exporters will pay 30 percent of their arrears by the end of this fiscal year with a minimum limit of LE 5 million.

Maait said that these agreements come within the framework of the continuous efforts of the government to support the economic sector and curb the effect of COVID 19 on the national economy.

This will contribute to boosting the competitiveness of the Egyptian products internationally and opening new international horizons for them, he said.

Meanwhile, Gamea' said that these agreements come as part of the government's efforts to support the exports' sector during the current stage. ]]>
5/6/2020 2:59:26 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's trade deficit records $1.95 in February]]>
In its monthly bulletin on foreign trade data, CAPMAS said exports rose 3.3 percent to reach $2.69 billion in February 2020, compared to $2.61 billion during the same month of 2019.

The bulletin attributed the increase of exports to the hike in the exports of various pastries and food preparations at 11.4 percent, fresh fruits by 65.3 percent, pharmaceutical and pharmaceutical preparations 32.4 percent, frozen or chilled vegetables at 25.6 percent.

Meanwhile, exports of some other commodities witnessed a decrease in February such as petroleum products increased by 23 percent, ready-made clothes by 6.6 percent, fertilizers by 20 percent, crude oil by 55.1 percent.

On the other side, the bulletin showed a decline of 29.9 percent in the imports to hit $4.64 billion in February of the current year, compared to $6.62 billion in February 2019.

CAPMAS ascribed this decrease to the drop in imports of raw materials of iron or steel at 28.6 percent, wheat at 25.2 percent, petroleum products at 68.1 percent, plastics in primary forms at 36.2 percent.

On the other hand, imports of other commodities showed a rise such as crude oil increased by 135.2 percent, passenger cars by 23.3 percent, corn by 10.5 percent, refined oils by 38.6 percent.
]]>
5/6/2020 2:47:40 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s SWF, Concord International to launch $300m healthcare fund]]>
The MoU includes the establishment of a joint venture to launch and manage a healthcare-focused fund with an initial target value of $300 million, according to a statement released by SWF on Wednesday.

The fund, which will invest primarily in Egypt, the Middle East, and Africa, aims to create a diversified healthcare platform and cater to the diverse needs of the growing population of the North African nation.

Minister of Planning and Board Chairman of the SWF Hala el Saeed said that investing in health care is a priority to the Egyptian government during the current global crisis of coronavirus.

Caring for the health of the Egyptians is a main part of Egypt Vision 2030 for sustainable development, Saeed said.

Focusing on the health sector is related to the government work program in light of applying an integrated health system capable of improving health indicators and achieving comprehensive health coverage to all citizens, she added.

She said that establishing a specialized fund for health care reflects the role of SWF in attracting investments to the state and increasing the participation of the private sector in the Egyptian economy.

Meanwhile, SWF Chief Executive Ayman Suleiman said that the role of Egypt's SWF is very important to attract investments to the assets especially in light of the increased need to invest in improving health care services. ]]>
5/6/2020 1:51:00 PM
<![CDATA[FEI: Hotline for reporting suspected coronavirus cases at factories]]>
In a statement released on Tuesday, the FEI announced the activation of this new hotline (15530), noting that all industrial chambers were notified of the move.

This comes as part of the FEI's continued efforts to enable industrial institutions to work normally at this current stage and in coincidence with the state's measures to deal with the negative economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, the statement added. ]]>
5/6/2020 1:39:43 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt launches initiative to encourage private sector to maintain employment ]]>
The Minister of Planning, Hala Al-Saeed, said in a statement, Tuesday, that the initiative is a popular initiative to face the economic effects of coronavirus, noting that the campaign is continuous and open to all businessmen and corporate leaders.

She emphasized that the initiative seeks to preserve the fruits of the economic reform program that the country started in 2016, and was reflected in the increase in sustainable growth rates for more than three years now, as well as low unemployment rates and high growth indicators in the first half of the year to their highest levels.

She explained that, thanks to the positive fruits of this program, the Egyptian government was able to implement various economic, social and health measures to address the challenge of the spread of the Corona pandemic; then this initiative came to intensify societal efforts to support the most affected groups, with the participation of civil society institutions, opinion and thought, and private sector companies.

The Minister noted that, in light of the crisis of the spread of coronavirus, the Egyptian state adopted a package of economic and social measures consistent with the national sustainable development agenda, "Egypt's Vision 2030", as well as with the UN goals for sustainable development. In solidarity with these measures, the initiative was launched in partnership with civil society.

She emphasized that the initiative will work to face the impact on the first, second, third, eighth and seventeenth goals of the sustainable development goals, which is consistent with Egypt's 2030 vision, especially in the areas of supporting economic development, combating poverty and hunger, and supporting partnerships and social responsibility in light of the gains of the era of digital transformation.

Among the businessmen participating in the initiative are: Ahmed Heikal, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Citadel Capital Consulting, Ahmed Abu Hashima, Managing Director of the Egyptian Steel Group, and Ahmed Al-Suwaidi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of El-Suwaidi Electric Company.
]]>
5/5/2020 6:25:26 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt expects 19/20 budget deficit to increase to 7.8-7.9% due to COVID-19]]>
Ma’it added that the budget project for the coming fiscal year 2020/2021 was expected to achieve an initial surplus of 2 percent, but that after the occurrence of the corona virus crisis, this surplus is expected to drop to only 0.6 percent.

He pointed out that the expectations were also indicating that the draft budget would achieve a total deficit of 6.2 percent, but that the total deficit rate is expected to rise to about 7.8 percent if the crisis continues until December 31, 2020.

The budget deficit in the 2018/2019 fiscal year was 8.2 percent.

The Finance Minister said that there was a government plan to reduce the total deficit to less than 5 percent by 2021/2022, as the total deficit was planned to reach 4.6 percent by that year.

As of Tuesday, Egypt recorded 388 new coronavirus cases and 16 deaths, which raises the total infected patients of COVID-19 to 7201 and the total deaths to 452 according to Health Minister’s daily briefing.

Health Ministry Spokesman Khaled Megahed added that 98 patients, were discharged from the hospital after being confirmed that they are completely recovered from the viruses, this also raises the number of recovered cases to 1730 out of 2224 who had been retested for the virus and had received negative results.

Egypt's budget in COVID-19's era

CAIRO - 21 April 2020: Coping with the global and economic circumstances taking place as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19) and the precautionary measures taken to curb it, Egypt's cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli, approved, on March 26, the draft budget and the sustainable development plan for the new fiscal year 2020/2021.



]]>
5/5/2020 5:41:02 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's revenues, growth rate to be affected by COVID-19 pandemic]]>
Ma’it added during the meeting of the House’s Plan and Budget Committee that the budget for the new fiscal year began to be prepared in September of 2019, until January of the new year, clarifying that during that period, things were proceeding in a positive and ambitious manner, but the emergence of the coronavirus crisis changed all the targets in this budget.

Ma’it explained that the coronavirus pandemic imposed two new options on the Finance Ministry, either to make fundamental amendments to the state’s general budget, which would have clashed with the constitutional deadline for submission to the House of Representatives, or to work with the budget that was put in place until all matters related to the Corona virus pandemic were clarified.

The Minister affirmed, at the same time, keenness to achieve the strategic target as a primary surplus to reduce the debt.

He indicated that there are "inevitable" spending items in the public budget such as: wages, pensions, catering, "takaful and karama" and other expenses that must be met.

Ma’it emphasized that the budget aims to achieve balance by reducing costs without affecting the citizen, saying: "We follow and use all possible tools despite the negative influence in the search for rationalization of spending without affecting the citizens and without violating the state's obligations."

He pointed out that work is being done at the same time to work on increasing revenues, and that the State Resources Development Law approved by the House of Representatives comes within the framework of increasing revenues, stressing that the Egyptian economy is able to coexist despite being affected by the current crisis.

Egypt's budget in COVID-19's era

CAIRO - 21 April 2020: Coping with the global and economic circumstances taking place as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19) and the precautionary measures taken to curb it, Egypt's cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli, approved, on March 26, the draft budget and the sustainable development plan for the new fiscal year 2020/2021.



]]>
5/5/2020 5:24:58 PM
<![CDATA[EGX enters green zone Tuesday, market cap. gains LE 4.8B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 hiked 1.05 percent, or 106.35 points, to close at 10,188.31 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 1.36 percent, or 20.69 points, to end at 1,547.06 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 jumped 2.20 percent, or 25.26 points, to close at 1,175.37 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 1.67 percent, or 18.14 points to 1,107.07 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 4.8 billion, recording LE 556.06 billion, compared to LE 551.21 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 247.76 million shares, traded through 27,493 transactions, with a turnover of LE 688.55 million.

Egyptian investors were sellers at LE 28.35 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net buyers at LE 4. 65 million, and LE 23.69 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 14.667 million, and LE 2.65 million, respectively, while Arab individuals were net sellers at LE 1.4 million.

Egyptian organizations sold at LE 43 million, while Arab and foreign organizations bought at LE 6.09 million, and LE 21.04 million, respectively.

Memphis Pharmaceuticals, Glaxo Smith Kline, and National Real Estate Bank for Development were top gainers of the session at 9.93 percent, 9.70 percent and 9.43 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Dice Sport & Casual Wear, Misr Hotels, and Misr National Steel – Ataqa were top losers of the session by 6.77 percent, 6.12 percent, and 5 percent, respectively.

On Monday, EGX ended the session in red, as: EGX 30 declined 1.16 percent, EGX 50 dipped 2.26 percent, EGX 70 dropped 2.53 percent, and EGX 100 lessened 1.12 percent.
]]>
5/5/2020 4:58:30 PM
<![CDATA[Nilepreneurs launches new initiative to boost SMEs exports via e-commerce]]>
The new program has been launched in light of the recent developments at the world level, especially after the coronavirus pandemic began to take its toll on many local as well as global businesses, director of the centers of excellence for export and supply chains management at the initiative Ahmed Farouk said in a press release on Tuesday.

The program seeks to increase regional and global market reach via e-commerce by helping companies improve their products in terms of design and quality and develop new products suited to the needs of overseas markets, Farouk noted.

The Nilepreneurs is a national fast-growing initiative funded by Central Bank of Egypt, and implemented by Nile University to enhance the ecosystem for entrepreneurs in Egypt through different programs with the support of different banks, government bodies and international organizations. ]]>
5/5/2020 4:21:54 PM
<![CDATA[Ministers of transport, petroleum confer on latest developments of renovation project of Qena/Safaga/Abu Tartour]]>
According to a statement by the Ministry of Transport on Tuesday, both ministers reviewed the latest developments on the economic visibility study of the project which will be completed by the end of May.

They also tackled the funding of the project and the mechanism to be used in establishing the company that will manage it to allow the participation of the private sector in the management, operation and maintenance of the railway.

Wazir asserted that renovating this line will serve the Golden Triangle project and contribute to transferring crude phosphate.

The renovation will positively contribute to developing the New Valley and refreshing tourism between Luxor and Hurghada.

Meanwhile, Mulla lauded the fruitful cooperation between the ministries of oil and transport, asserting that the strategic project serves the industries of mining and transportation.]]>
5/5/2020 3:28:14 PM
<![CDATA[Supply min.: 1.25 tons of wheat supplied so far]]>
The minister was briefing Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli on the status of the wheat supply nationwide.

The Finance Ministry has allocated EGP 5.2 billion for paying financial dues to framers who supply their wheat harvest, Moselhy said. ]]>
5/5/2020 3:20:09 PM
<![CDATA[CBE governor: Banks should utilize LE 4T worth of deposits, savings]]>
He added that many countries use and invest all their savings.

Amer was addressing a House of Representatives session held to debate a bill proposed by the government to issue a law on the CBE and the banking system.

The draft law comprises 424 articles that are of special importance amid the global economic developments, Amer said.

The banking system is in need of upgrade in order to grant people nationwide access to banking services with a view to achieving an all-out economic development, the CBE governor noted.

Besides helping banks to utilize savings and deposits, the bill shall give the CBE the right to monitor the banks' performance, he added. ]]>
5/5/2020 2:35:32 PM
<![CDATA[QNB Al Ahli applies for up to $100M solidarity loan from EBRD ]]>
The loan that is scheduled for approval on May 6 is under the EBRD’s Resilience Framework ("RF"). “Proceeds of the proposed loan will be on-lent to local private Small and Medium Enterprises ("SMEs"), and to Corporates to cover financing needs that may arise as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak,” it clarified.

EBRD noted that the proceeds of the loan will help QNBAA in providing funding to local SMEs and Corporates experiencing either a decrease in their activity, turnover and/or profitability, in turn leading to delays in payments and potential defaults, or growing capacity needs due to a significant fluctuation in demand in particular sectors.

“COVID-19 crisis response allowing QNBAA to respond to liquidity needs for SMEs and corporates experiencing slowdown and payment delays, or increased capacity needs following a massive fluctuation in demand,” EBRD noted.

Qatar National Bank Alahly (QNBA) recorded consolidated profits of LE 1.86 billion during the first quarter of 2020, compared to LE 2.02 billion including minority rights, during the same period of 2019, marking a decrease of 7.5 percent.

QNB Alahli operates within the banking sector. It has subsidiaries operating across Egypt.


]]>
5/4/2020 5:54:11 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, UK cooperate to fight COVID-19 outbreak ]]>
Adams set out in a letter addressed to Al-Mashat, the UK’s support for the Ministry’s efforts, in line with its People, Projects, and Purpose framework.

“Under this framework, the Embassy and British businesses will work together to address the immediate medical needs of both Egypt and the UK. The UK has already provided training to over 250 Egyptian medical staff, equipping them with advanced skills in Intensive Care, Basic Life Support, and Cardiovascular Life Support,” he said in the letter.

He added that Vodafone has donated LE 10 million, while BP has offered LE 2 million to equip quarantine hospitals with ventilators and to support the treatment of COVID-19 patients. AstraZeneca has also donated 20,000 rapid Coronavirus-related tests worth $100,000, in addition to 100,000 surgical masks, 100,000 gloves and 3,000 disposable gowns.

“The UK is placing emphasis on support to healthcare provision, social protection, and the economic reform agenda in its programs in Egypt,” he referred, saying that on 20 January this year a joint statement was issued by the then Secretary of State for International Development of the United Kingdom and Minister Al-Mashat, outlining a number of areas of enhanced economic cooperation.

“Meanwhile, the UK is playing a leading role in the global campaign against the Coronavirus. It is the G7 lead on support to vulnerable countries during the crisis. The UK has confirmed a responsive funding package of more than £700 million, including £130 million contribution to the UN, £65 million of which is allocated to the WHO,” he clarified. In addition, the UK is co-hosting the virtual Global Coronavirus Response Summit on 4 May, and will host the virtual Global Vaccines Summit on 4 June.
]]>
5/4/2020 5:05:53 PM
<![CDATA[Suez Canal’s revenues reach $1.907B in 4 months of 2020]]>
Rabea added in a statement that traffic in the canal has not been affected by the outbreak of COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

He clarified that the number of ships crossing the Suez Canal in April increased 9.6 percent on a year-on-year basis.

“Up to 1,731 ships carrying about 101.8 million tons crossed the Suez Canal from both directions in April, compared to 1,580 ships that transited the international waterway during the same month a year earlier,” he added.

]]>
5/4/2020 4:33:20 PM
<![CDATA[1,731 ships transited Suez Canal in April: chairman]]>
In a statement released Monday, Rabie added that the number of ships crossing the Suez Canal last month saw a year-on-year increase of 9.6 percent.

Meanwhile, the chairman noted that navigation movement at the Suez Canal is normal and has not been affected by the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic so far. ]]>
5/4/2020 4:09:26 PM
<![CDATA[EGX stays in red zone for 2nd session in row, market cap. loses LE5.2B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 declined 1.16 percent, or 117.89 points, to close at 10,081.96 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 2.26 percent, or 35.23 points, to end at 1,526.37 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dropped 2.53 percent, or 29.88 points, to close at 1,150.11 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 1.12 percent, or 12.36 points to 1,088.93 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 5.2 billion, recording LE 551.21 billion, compared to LE 556.41 billion in Sunday’s session.

The trading volume reached 235.5 million shares, traded through 30,090 transactions, with a turnover of LE 605.38 million.

Foreign investors were sellers at LE 3.02 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 824,029, and LE 2.2 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 20.46 million, LE 4.27 million, and LE 1.11 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 19.64 million, LE 2.07 million and LE 4.13 million, respectively.

Glaxo Smith Kline, Memphis Pharmaceuticals, and Medical Packaging Company were top gainers of the session at 9.55 percent, 8.30 percent and 8.05 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Atlas for Investment and Food Industries, Dice Sport & Casual Wear, and General Company for Land Reclamation,Development & Reconstruction were top losers of the session by 10 percent, 10 percent, and 9.45 percent, respectively.

On Sunday, EGX ended the session in red, as: EGX 30 declined 3.36 percent, EGX 50 dipped 4.39 percent, EGX 70 dropped 3.70 percent, and EGX 100 lessened 2.89 percent.
]]>
5/4/2020 3:44:32 PM
<![CDATA[ITFC pledges $100M aid to ease coronavirus ramifications]]>
In a statement issued Monday, the ITFC said the agreement would ramp up GASIC's ability in dealing with the current economic situation amid the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The package would also enable the authority in meeting basic commodities needs, the statement added.

On his part, Minister of Supply and Internal Trade Ali el-Moslhi hailed the corporation's support in this reagrd, according to the statement.

ITFC Chairman Hani Salem Sonbol pointed out that the financial offer is meant to support exporting basic products citing wheat and sugar, being Egypt's two main strategic commodities, the statement said. ]]>
5/4/2020 2:50:43 PM
<![CDATA[Oil prices slide on demand concerns, US-China trade tension]]>
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell as low as $ 18.10 a barrel earlier in the session and were down $1.14, or 5.8 percent, at $18.64 at 0506 GMT. The benchmark contract rose 17 percent last week.

The market found support last week on signs of reduced infection rates and as major oil producers led by Saudi Arabia and Russia were set to begin cutting production on May 1.

The top two US producers, Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp, each said they would cut output by 400,000 barrels per day this quarter.

The output cuts combined with the loosening of business restrictions in some US states and cities around the world were expected to ease the global fuel glut and pressure on storage tanks, helping to drive prices up last week.

However, a threat by US President Donald Trump late last week to consider raising tariffs on China to retaliate for the spread of the coronavirus renewed fears that trade tensions could crimp an economic recovery, putting a lid on oil price gains. ]]>
5/4/2020 2:43:23 PM
<![CDATA[El-Nasr Export & Import Company board restructured: ministry]]>
In its statement, the ministry said that both Adel Rashad Danish and Tawfik el Rashidi were appointed as part-time CEO and board member, respectively in El-Nasr Export & Import Company, which is a subsidiary of the Holding Company for Maritime and Land Transport.

Holding PhD in communication network systems from France's Sorbonne University, Danish is the CEO of Silicon Waha, while Rashidi is the CEO of Kemet Corporation.]]>
5/4/2020 2:31:04 PM
<![CDATA[Qalaa Holdings records LE 1.5B losses during 2019]]>
The company’s financial results revealed reaching revenues of LE 14.916 billion in 2019, up from LE 13.182 billion in the previous year. Meanwhile, the cost of revenues rose to LE 12.789 billion in 2019, compared to LE 11.359 billion.

As per standalone results, the company’s losses increased 52 percent, recording LE 334.2 million in 2019, compared to losses of LE 219.54 million in 2018.

During the first nine months of 2019, Qalaa Holdings recorded net losses of LE 901.23 million, compared to net profits of LE 106.44 million in the same period of 2018, including minority shareholders’ rights.

Founded in 2004, Qalaa Holdings operates within the diversified financial sector focusing on asset management and custody banks. It has companies operating across North America, the Caribbean, Northern Africa and Eastern Africa.
]]>
5/4/2020 2:21:20 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 6.5B in T-bonds Monday]]>
The T-bonds were offered in two installments, with the first valued at LE 3.5 billion with a five-year term and the second worth LE 3 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.
Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
]]>
5/4/2020 1:48:36 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt expects 30% decrease in investments if COVID-19 continues]]>
Saeed added that the volume of private investments is expected to decrease, which will in return affect the volume of total investments, which is estimated at LE 740 billion during the next fiscal year, as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

She added that government investments are planned to increase 33 percent from LE 211 billion in 2019/2020 to LE 280.7 billion during the next fiscal year, and investments funded by treasury and loans increase from LE 140 billion to LE 225 billion, with an increase of 61 percent.

This came during the Minister of Planning's discussion of the basic features of the sustainable development plan for 2020/2021 before the Parliament's Plan and Budget Committee, during the discussion of the state's draft general budget.

Saeed reviewed the performance indicators of the Egyptian economy before exposure to the crisis facing the Corona virus, noting that the economic growth rate reached 5.6 percent, the unemployment rate fell to less than 8 percent, the average inflation rate decreased to about 5 percent, and the foreign exchange reserves recovered to cover more than 8.5 A month of imports.

She also noted the decrease in the non-oil trade balance deficit by 24 percent, the increase in net foreign direct investment by 19 percent, the remittances of workers increased by 13 percent, and other positive financial and monetary indicators that were the focus of a qualitative shift in the case of sustainable development in Egypt.

]]>
5/3/2020 5:23:03 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to hit 2% growth rate if coronavirus continued till end of 2020]]>
She added in a statement that there are two scenarios to recover from the coronavirus crisis, which are containing the virus by the end of June 2020 or the end of December 2020, and each of them would affect different sectors with various degrees.

She added that it is expected to achieve a growth rate of 3.5 percent during the next fiscal year if the outbreak of the coronavirus ends at the end of the current fiscal year on June 30, and that its effects are expected to extend to the first quarter of the next fiscal year or the entire first half.

"But if the crisis persists until December 2020, the targeted growth rate will decrease to 2 percent," she noted.

She explained that it was intended to achieve a rate of growth of 5.8 percent in 2020, but it is expected to reach 4.2 percent with the slowdown in the growth of the third and fourth quarters to 4.5 and 1 percent, respectively.

This came during the Minister of Planning's discussion of the basic features of the sustainable development plan for 2020/2021 before the Parliament's Plan and Budget Committee, during the discussion of the state's draft general budget.

She pointed out that in the case of recovery, not all sectors will recover in a similar way, some will recover quickly, others will require longer time to recover, but there are some sectors that have a great deal of flexibility and ability to bear the crisis and quick recovery.

She noted that there are sectors that have opportunities to maximize the benefits of the corona's consequences, such as "agriculture, communications, information technology, the pharmaceutical and chemical products industry, and construction and building".

The Minister stressed that most of the global institutions unanimously agreed that the current crisis is the most severe economic crisis, as it affected both the supply and demand sides with the impact of global value chains, the suspension of manufacturing activity in many countries, the decline in the level of wages, as well as the high rates of unemployment, and consumer confidence has plummeted.
]]>
5/3/2020 4:29:37 PM
<![CDATA[EGX starts week in red, market cap. loses LE 15B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 declined 3.36 percent, or 354.19 points, to close at 10,199.85 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 4.39 percent, or 71.62 points, to end at 1,561.6 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 dropped 3.70 percent, or 45.36 points, to close at 1,179.99 points, and the broader index EGX 100 lessened 2.89 percent, or 32.79 points to 1,101.29 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 15.03 billion, recording LE 556.41 billion, compared to LE 571.43 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 394.81 million shares, traded through 37,889 transactions, with a turnover of LE 878.54 million.

Foreign investors were sellers at LE 53.46 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 49.94 million, and LE 3.52 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 6.95 million, and LE 6.83 million, respectively, while Arab individuals were net buyers at LE 9.68 million.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 56.89 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 6.16 million, and LE 46.63 million, respectively.

Wadi Kom Ombo Land Reclamation, Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co, and Arab Real Estate Investment CO.-ALICO were top gainers of the session at 9.50 percent, 9.22 percent and 9.09 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Atlas for Investment and Food Industries, Dice Sport & Casual Wear, and Minapharm Pharmaceuticals were top losers of the session by 10 percent, 9.98 percent, and 9.96 percent, respectively.

On Thursday, EGX ended the session in a semi-collective rise, as: EGX 30 inched up 0.08 percent, EGX 70 hiked 1.34 percent, EGX 100 climbed 0.58 percent, while EGX 50 dipped 0.03 percent.
]]>
5/3/2020 4:11:40 PM
<![CDATA[Int'l institutions expect Egypt to achieve economic growth amid COVID-19 crisis: minister]]>
The minister was addressing the House of Representatives' Plan and Budget Committee that convened to discuss the outlines of the fiscal year 2020/2021 plan.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expected that Egypt would achieve a growth rate of two percent in 2020, while other institutions envisaged that Egypt's growth rate may reach four percent, the minister said.

The macroeconomic indicators of Egypt have been high till mid -March 2020, Saeed said, noting that the Q4 of the current fiscal year, the period between April-June 2020, will witness a drop in the economic indicators due to the COVID-19 crisis.

The minister affirmed that the impact of the novel coronavirus would be grave and wider in scale than the great recession that hit the global economy in the 1920s and caused a 4.9 percent retreat as well as the 2008 financial crisis that led to a 4.6 decline of the global economy.

She added that the international financial institutions predicted that the coronavirus crisis would cause a global economic decline by up to seven percent. ]]>
5/3/2020 3:32:37 PM
<![CDATA[State keen on reducing Covid-19 economic fallout with no burdens on citizens]]>
Maait made his remarks during a meeting of the parliament's plan and budget committee to debate a government bill for imposing a new fee to develop state financial resources.

Planning and Economic Development Minister Hala el Saaed was in attendance.

"The state is trying to mitigate the adverse effects of the novel coronavirus on economy," Maait said, highlighting the need to cover staff salaries and other expenses incurred to provide aid, pay debt interests and supply subsidized commodities.

He also underlined the importance of seeking new resources as long as it does not result in further burdens for the average citizen.]]>
5/3/2020 3:15:36 PM
<![CDATA[Economic reforms saved us from difficult situation: finance min.]]>
The minister was addressing the parliament's plan and budget committee that convened to discuss a draft law proposed by the government to amend law no. 147/1984 on imposing a fee for the development of state's financial resources.

The allocation of LE 100 billion from the 2020 budget to pensions and salaries proves that the state privileges the citizens, the minister said, adding that state took decisive decisions in critical times to champion the citizens.

Despite the tough decisions adopted by the state to carry out economic reforms, the situation would likely not be as good as now, Maait said.

The impact of the coronavirus on the economy is being assessed, the minister said, noting that the state revenues were badly affected as well as several activities. ]]>
5/3/2020 3:09:37 PM
<![CDATA[Mashroak project provided more than 19,000 jobs: minister]]>
The aim of this project is to provide employment opportunities in all governorates, particularly for young citizens and women through achieving sustainable development, limiting internal migration from villages to cities and improving the quality of life of the youth and their families, he said.

He added that all governorates are committed to postponing the project loans for six months as of March in a bid to ease economic repercussions of coronavirus outbreak.

Since it was launched, Mashroak financed 142,633 projects that provided more than 770,000 jobs.

Mashroak is part of the Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) initiative to finance micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) with loans at an interest rate of 5%.

Banks participating in the initiative are the National Bank of Egypt (NBE), Banque Misr, Banque du Caire, ALEXBANK, Housing and Development Bank, and the Agricultural Bank of Egypt. ]]>
5/3/2020 2:59:12 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 19B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 8.5 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
5/3/2020 10:14:53 AM
<![CDATA[Maait: Economic reforms fostered Egypt's economy in face of COVID-19]]>
The government seeks to turn the crisis of the novel coronavirus into a privilege of the industrial sector with a view to encouraging the domestic production, the minister said.

The price of gas and electricity for factories has been reduced with a total value estimated at LE 10 billion borne by the state treasury, the minister said.

Maait pointed out to the supportive financial package introduced by the government to support Egypt's economy that is worth two percent of the GDP. ]]>
5/3/2020 10:03:28 AM
<![CDATA[Egypt develops exceptional plan for fiscal year 2020/21, says minister]]>
Amid the global crisis of coronavirus outbreak, the government decided that the 2020/21 plan should put more focus on the citizen's life and health to help him resume his ordinary life as soon as possible with the least possible damage, el Saeed said.

The new plan takes into consideration the government's initiatives aiming at facing the ramifications of coronavirus outbreak and achieving national sustainable development goals in Egypt Vision 2030.]]>
5/2/2020 4:38:53 PM
<![CDATA[EGP 150 mln allocated to withstand COVID-19 impact on Qena, Sohag: minister]]>
The allocation aims to secure medical equipment for the fever and isolation hospitals as well as the intensive care units in the Qena and Sohag governorates.

The minister made the remarks during a meeting with Urban Specialist at the World Bank Group Mohamed Nada, who supervises the technical support team of the Upper Egypt development program.

The meeting tackled measures meant to boost the ability of Qena and Soha governorates in dealing with the repercussion of COVIS-19 outbreak.]]>
5/2/2020 4:30:43 PM
<![CDATA[Private sector contributes by 26% of total investments in ICT sector in FY2020/2021]]>
The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology had announced that the number of companies established in the sector between October 2019 and December 2019 reached 414 compared to 398 companies during the same period in 2018.

In the draft budget, total investments are estimated at LE740 billion down from LE840 billion expected in FY2019/2020, which is less than the approximately LE970 billion achieved in FY2018/2019. That is due to COVID-19 global crisis.

In order to make up for the decline in private investments, public investments will compose 80 percent of total investments pumping LE595 billion, including LE281 billion governmental investments with an increase of 34 percent compared to FY2019/2020.

In FY2020/2021 budget, the total expenditure and revenues are worth LE1.7 trillion and LE1.3 trillion, respectively.

]]>
5/2/2020 4:24:02 PM
<![CDATA[LE6.8B to be spent on data center establishment in Egypt's New Administrative Capital]]>
LE2.6 billion and LE400 million are allocated to the mechanization of governmental services and the development of information infrastructure, respectively.

In the draft budget, total investments are estimated at LE740 billion down from LE840 billion expected in FY2019/2020, which is less than the approximately LE970 billion achieved in FY2018/2019. That is due to COVID-19 global crisis.

In order to make up for the decline in private investments, public investments will compose 80 percent of total investments pumping LE595 billion, including LE281 billion governmental investments with an increase of 34 percent compared to FY2019/2020.

In FY2020/2021 budget, the total expenditure and revenues are worth LE1.7 trillion and LE1.3 trillion, respectively.
]]>
5/2/2020 4:02:08 PM
<![CDATA[LE14.1B allocated to maintenance of utilities, public buildings in FY2020/2021]]>
The breakdown is indicated below:

LE906.8 million are allocated to the maintenance and cleaning of irrigation and wastewater canals.

LE5.6 billion are allocated to the maintenance and restoration of buildings.

LE257.7 million are allocated to the maintenance of electricity networks and facilities.

LE2.7 billion are allocated to the maintenance of equipment.

LE1.9 billion are allocated to the maintenance of means of transportation, and communications facilities.

LE74.8 million are allocated to the renovation of furniture, and stationary purchasing at public buildings.

LE154.2 million are allocated to the maintenance of computers and electronic devices at public buildings.

LE126 million are allocated to other general maintenance works.

CAIRO – 2 May 2020: Minister of Planning, Follow-up and Administrative Reform Hala al-Said announced Saturday the allocation of LE60.9 billion in FY2020/2021 budget to the introduction of water supply and wastewater networks, and building residential units.

The ministry plans to raise the coverage of the water supply network from 98 percent to 98.5 percent introducing 12,800 kilometers for 2.6 beneficiaries. The focus will be on new and deprived communities in Daqahliya, Giza, Qalyoubeya, Matrouh and Beni Suef.

In parallel, 40 water purification plants with a total capacity of 857,000 cubic meters of water daily will be established. That is in addition to 52 wastewater treatment plants in Upper Egypt and the rehabilitation of eight others.

LE1.1 billion is dedicated to the introduction of infrastructure in new cities, including New Rafah City, and 500,000 social and middle-income housing units will be built across the country.

In the draft budget, total investments are estimated at LE740 billion down from LE840 billion expected in FY2019/2020, which is less than the approximately LE970 billion achieved in FY2018/2019. That is due to COVID-19 global crisis.

In order to make up for the decline in private investments, public investments will compose 80 percent of total investments pumping LE595 billion, including LE281 billion governmental investments with an increase of 34 percent compared to FY2019/2020.

In FY2020/2021 budget, the total expenditure and revenues are worth LE1.7 trillion and LE1.3 trillion, respectively.
]]>
5/2/2020 3:42:51 PM
<![CDATA[LE60.9B allocated to water projects, housing in FY2020/2021]]>
The ministry plans to raise the coverage of the water supply network from 98 percent to 98.5 percent introducing 12,800 kilometers for 2.6 beneficiaries. The focus will be on new and deprived communities in Daqahliya, Giza, Qalyoubeya, Matrouh and Beni Suef.

In parallel, 40 water purification plants with a total capacity of 857,000 cubic meters of water daily will be established. That is in addition to 52 wastewater treatment plants in Upper Egypt and the rehabilitation of eight others.

LE1.1 billion is dedicated to the introduction of infrastructure in new cities, including New Rafah City, and 500,000 social and middle-income housing units will be built across the country.

In the draft budget, total investments are estimated at LE740 billion down from LE840 billion expected in FY2019/2020, which is less than the approximately LE970 billion achieved in FY2018/2019. That is due to COVID-19 global crisis.

In order to make up for the decline in private investments, public investments will compose 80 percent of total investments pumping LE595 billion, including LE281 billion governmental investments with an increase of 34 percent compared to FY2019/2020.

In FY2020/2021 budget, the total expenditure and revenues are worth LE1.7 trillion and LE1.3 trillion, respectively.
]]>
5/2/2020 3:14:12 PM
<![CDATA[ITIDA Disburses Cash Incentive to Second Batch of Egyptian IT Exporters ]]>
ITIDA said that the total amount approved to the second batch of companies is 11,863,223 EGP pounds and will go out to 27 medium-sized companies. ITIDA explained that 8 out of 27 companies have joined the program for the first time.

The total number of ICT companies benefiting from the program so far is 52 where the total amount of export rebate disbursed to the first and second group together is 17,032,626 EGP.

Export-IT program forms an integral part of ITIDA strategy. The program supports local ICT exporting companies aiming at increasing their competitiveness and helping reduce export-related costs.

Export-IT was first launched in 2010 to help Egyptian companies grow their exports from IT/ITES products and services. Since its inception, the program has supported more than 185 local companies with around EGP 350 million, thus contributing to increasing IT exports in volume, achieving a total of EGP 6.2 billion revenues, through the program's previous rounds.

In a related context, ITIDA clarified that the total number of companies that applied for the program reached 165 companies, where 113 of which provided their export transactions and supporting documents.

ITIDA has accelerated the procedures of disbursing Export-IT cash support to start last April instead of June with priority to micro and small companies.

The acceleration process was part of a list of urgent measures taken by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and ITIDA to revive the Egyptian IT market, support local companies, and counteract the negative impact and global market slowdown caused by Covid-19 crisis.]]>
5/2/2020 2:36:54 PM
<![CDATA[US offers $23.1 mln assistance to Sudan for countering COVID-19]]>
The US Agency for International Development (USAID) said that around $ 16.8 million of the total sum will be allocated for public communication on infection prevention control and disease surveillance, as well as water, sanitation and hygiene programs. the US Embassy in Khartoum said in a statement carried by Sudan News Agency (SUNA).

Some $ 5 million in cash assistance will be dedicated to vulnerable families adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, the statement added.

The new assistance also includes the allocation of more than $ 1.3 million to support humanitarian response efforts for refugees in Sudan, the statement read. ]]>
5/2/2020 11:54:37 AM
<![CDATA[AOI signs cooperation protocol with Siemens in digitization field]]>
During the signing ceremony, AOI Chairman Abdel Monem Al Tarras stressed the importance of implementing the directives of President Abdel Fattal El Sisi to transfer technology to the country in the fields of digitization, technical training and developing systems and mechanisms of manufacturing in cooperation with the international experienced bodies specialized in these fields.

Tarras voiced the AOI's keenness to engage in partnership and cooperate with Siemens company to achieve digitization in line with the country's strategy and 2030 vision for sustainable development.

The two sides agreed to cooperate to establish a center of research excellence in the field of technical training as well as to develop the training programs offered at the AOI.

As per the agreement, training centers belonging to the AOI will be accredited by Siemens Technologies to offer training programs and certificates endorsed by the German company in several fields.

Meanwhile, Siemens Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in Egypt Mostafa El-Bagoury asserted the importance of benefiting from the advanced industrial base of the AOI, saying that Egypt is a key strategic market for his company.

Bagoury affirmed that his company will provide Egypt with the best and state-of-the-art specialized solutions in the technical and research training field to develop the techniques of industry in accordance with the modern standards]]>
5/1/2020 2:07:22 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, Belarus mull deepening joint cooperation]]>
Assar made the remarks during a video-conference meeting held on Friday with Belarus Minister of Industry Pavel Utiupin to tackle joint cooperation issues.

Assar asserted his ministry's keenness to continue joint cooperation with the Belarus companies in various fields, saying that both sides should seek exporting to Africa.

Meanwhile, the Belarus minister voiced his confidence in the industrial, technological and technical potentials of the Egyptian Ministry of Military Production and its affiliate companies.

Virtual meetings will be held between the Military Production and Belarus companies to discuss means of joint cooperation and production as well as transferring expertise, he said.

Both ministers discussed the latest cooperation developments between a number of Belarus companies and the Military production factories.

They also tackled fostering means of cooperation between Minsk Motor Plant and Minsk Tractor Works of Belarus and Egypt's Helwan Diesel Engines Co. in the joint production of all kinds of tractors and engines]]>
5/1/2020 1:06:27 PM
<![CDATA[Finance Ministry auctions T-bills worth LE 21B]]>
In an online statement, the ministry said it sold 182-day T-bills worth LE 10 billion, with an average yield of 12.583 percent, adding it accepted bids at rates between 12.251 percent and 12.64 percent.

The ministry also sold 364-day T-bills valued at LE 11 billion, with an average yield of 12.599 percent, noting that it accepted bids at rates between 12.2 percent and 12.65 percent.]]>
4/30/2020 5:10:11 PM
<![CDATA[Trade min.: MSMEDA financed 44,000 projects worth LE 960M]]>
These projects secured around 66,000 job opportunities for young people across the nation, Gamea added in a statement released by the agency on Sunday.

She went on to say that the MSMEDA also provided LE 30 million to execute community and human development projects to develop the basic infrastructure and create the appropriate environment to expand in the establishment of small projects.

Gamea noted that the MSMEDA organized 44 internal and external exhibitions during the same period, where more than 1,000 projects were displayed. These projects posted gains exceeding more than LE 15 million.

She asserted that the state gives a top priority to the entrepreneurship sector, citing the recent ratification of a law on the development of micro, small, medium-sized enterprises, despite the economic disruption caused by the global outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The minister explained that a stimulating mechanism has been developed to reconcile the conditions of projects operating in the informal economy to transfer them into the formal sector.

She revealed that this mechanism will provide a set of financial and non-financial incentives to promote these projects and help them increase their production and export activities. ]]>
4/30/2020 5:00:33 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt tops world countries in orange exports]]>
In press statements on Thursday, Attar added that the Spanish markets received this year around 3,000 tons of Egyptian orange.

With the beginning of 2020, Egypt's total exports of orange hit 1.3 million tons, he said, asserting that there is a growing global demand for Egyptian agricultural products, which are characterized by their high quality.

Since January 2020, Egypt's total exports of agricultural products exceeded 2.2 million tons, despite the global outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.]]>
4/30/2020 4:52:27 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian ministers, IsDB probe coronavirus containment measures]]>
A statement issued by the Planning and Economic Development Ministry Thursday, following a video conference grouping the minister of planning and Minister of International Cooperation Rania El-Mashat and IsDB Governor Bandar Hajjar, El Said highlighted the need to benefit from the IsDB offered help in this regard, especially for the sectors most hit by the crisis.

The minister of planning and economic development referred to the government's keenness on helping the private sector in obtaining the full support of the IsDB, highlighting the economic measures adopted by the Egyptian state to back private businesses hurt by the crisis including easing financial policies' regulations, postponing tax payment, as well as insurance installments.

The statement pointed out to the government's decision to put off all due payments of all ailing sectors for three months, and its seriousness in ensuring their strict compliance with precautionary measures adopted to curb the spread of the coronavirus till life gradually returns to normal.

The meeting also tackled the cooperation mechanism between Egypt and the IsDb, together with Egypt’s readiness to lay out a common strategy, with the aim of easing the economic burdens caused by the novel coronavirus outbreak. ]]>
4/30/2020 4:42:27 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to record 4% of growth rate in 2019/20]]>
Saeed pointed out that the crisis came at a time when the Egyptian economy is witnessing a remarkable boom in various indicators, in light of the serious reforms undertaken by the Egyptian state in the past five years, which started with the Egyptian economy achieving an upward growth rate of about 5.6 percent in the first half of 2019/2020, which is the highest rate of growth achieved in more than 11 years.

This came during the minister’s meeting with Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat and President of the Islamic Development Bank Bandar Hajjar, via video conference. The meeting discussed the mechanisms of cooperation between the Egyptian government and the Islamic Development Bank in facing the economic and social effects caused by Corona virus, and to support the private sector.

The minister pointed out that the Egyptian state moved quickly to face coronavirus crisis and its repercussions, by taking many financial and monetary measures, explaining that these measures were characterized by a great degree of inclusiveness. For example, they included the allocations of the comprehensive plan to deal with the crisis, which is estimated at LE 1 billion, and providing support to the affected sectors, the most important of which are: the health, tourism and industry sectors, in addition to revitalizing the Egyptian Stock Exchange, and supporting regular and irregular employment.

She said that it is important for Egypt to benefit from all the assistance provided by the Islamic Development Bank, especially the private sector that was severely affected, stressing the state’s keenness to provide it with all support from financial policies or delay in taxes or insurance premiums, pointing to the cabinet’s decision to postpone all Sovereign receivables of sectors affected for a period of 3 months are renewed.

Saeed explained that Egypt is working to have a balance between maintaining health procedures and at the same time returning again to work, taking into account precautionary measures.

For his part, President of the Islamic Development Bank Bandar Hajjar affirmed the bank’s readiness to support the private sector in Egypt through its three institutions, namely the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector, the International Islamic Corporation for Trade Finance and the Islamic Corporation for Insurance of Investment and Export Credit, noting that the bank is moving rapidly to support its member states, and also ready to provide technical support.

Hajjar said that the Islamic Development Bank has several short-term and long-term plans to support member states and mitigate them from the negative economic effects of the corona virus, and there is coordination with the G20.

The Islamic Development Bank announced earlier the allocation of about $2.3 billion to member countries to confront the coronavirus. Moreover, there is a framework for strategic partnership signed between Egypt and the Islamic Development Bank until 2021 with a value of $3 billion, which aims to align between the strategic plans of the Egyptian government and its development priorities in accordance with the 2030 sustainable development strategy, where the signed strategy focuses on four main axes, namely, raising the efficiency of production elements with high added value, enhancing their sustainability, economic and environmental quality, and reducing regional disparities and Economic exclusion by addressing rural poverty by building basic infrastructure and increasing farmers ’productivity, by supporting integrated rural development projects, trade finance development and financing, and supporting and developing the private sector, through trade financing and promotion, investment and export insurance, and financing for small and medium-sized companies, and capacity development through programs for exchange of knowledge and experience, effective cooperation and strengthening Islamic finance services.
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4/30/2020 4:37:39 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt discusses private sector role with int’l financial institutions]]>
The meeting, that was called on by the Minister, was organized by International Finance Corporation (IFC) and attended by officials from World Bank (WB), IFC, European Investment Bank (EIB), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and African Development Bank (AfDB).

During the meeting, Al-Mashat emphasized the key role of private sector as a catalyst for development and the need to enhance collaboration among all development stakeholders, especially during times of predicaments.

She also urged private sector participants to bring forth the main challenges they encounter as a result of the COVID-19 economic implications, including supply and demand disruptions, as well as their views on needed measures to overcoming these challenges and identifying potential opportunities.

The minister elucidated that her ministry fosters multilateral partnerships among the Egyptian government, international financial institutions and the private sector, to mitigate the economic and social adverse effects of the pandemic.

She further noted that the ministry is keen on engaging the private sector in the development process through promoting partnerships, synergies and integration among development cooperation financing and private sector investments.

Al-Mashat referred to the new narrative launched by the ministry with development partners aimed at achieving sustainable development through leveraging partnerships in priority sectors. The three main pillars of this narrative are P&P&P: People at the Core, Projects in Action and Purpose as the Drive. Another important form of inclusive partnerships in promoting sustainable development is Public Private Partnerships, which contributes to identifying existing gaps, especially following COVID 19, and provides assistance across various sectors to millions of beneficiaries, thus enabling citizens to unleash their full power.

During the meeting, private sector representatives referred to the challenges they faced as a result of the economic implications caused by the pandemic, and commended the transparency and risk management measures taken by the Egyptian Government to enable private sector enterprises to continue operation and production, working even during curfew times. This helped maintain balance between the production wheal in plants and taking the necessary precautions to protect workers on the other hand, as sterilization of plants has become a basic part of their work. It was also noted that the food industries sector was able to continue to offer food products in spite of the challenges of market supply and transportation operations, which all had their toll on the supply chain, besides the impact on shipment to other countries.

Private sector representatives revealed that 2021 formed the real challenge if the crisis continued, as it would be expected that demands for commodities would be affected, and that there would be clients failing to pay for products. Accordingly, precautions were taken by plants and companies, and negotiations were held with insurance companies for payment collection. Availability of liquidity and operating capital fall among expected challenges in 2021. It was noted that the second half of 2020 and 2021 would be more challenging for projects, where some projects may even be suspended, should the crisis continue. However, there could be future opportunities in sectors as health and renewable energy sectors. Over the past years, Egypt has taken unprecedented measures in the new and renewable energy sector that would enable it to contribute to increasing economic growth and to achieve SDGs in spite of the pandemics implications.

Representatives of international financial institutions stressed that they will continue extending their support to the Egyptian economy to help face the crisis and to increase technical and monitory support during such critical period. They noted the importance of unifying efforts to ensure the availability of the necessary liquidity to large as well as small and micro enterprises to continue to build and enhance public private partnerships.

It is worth noting that IFC, a member of WBG, is the largest development institution worldwide that exclusively focuses on supporting and developing the private sector. Also, part of the activities of EIB and EBRD, focus on supporting the private sector. These institutions offered private sector companies credit lines for increasing liquidity following the Coronavirus crises.

On her part, Marina Wes, WB Country Director, Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti, thanked
Rania Al-Mashat for her initiative, which was the first of its kind to unify efforts of international institutions to effectively face the implications of the pandemic outbreak. She noted that it was inspiring to listen to the private sectors on-going experiences in dealing with the daily challenges posed by this unprecedented situation due to COVID-19 pandemic adding that their innovative ideas, not only to mitigate the impact of the pandemic but also to identify opportunities of growth and turnaround. The World Bank Group, is supporting Egypts efforts in implementing and financing structural reforms, projects, and policy measures to enable an increased private sector role in development, economic growth and job creation.

On the other hand, IFC Country Manager in Egypt, Libya and Yemen, Walid Labadi, stated: private sector dialogue is critical for economic growth and sustainability, especially in times of economic uncertainty. We are very excited to see the government both consult with private sector partners and support private businesses during this crisis. IFC is working with clients in various sectors to find innovative solutions to the COVID-19-related challenges they are facing and turn them into opportunities."

EBRDs Managing Director, Southern and Eastern Mediterranean Region (SEMED), Heike Harmgart, ascertained that EBRD decided to increase the solidarity parcel flexible framework from EUR 1 M to EUR 4 M, which included funds for facing the short term need for liquidity, including for the private sector. It focused on financial institutions, SMEs, and companies operating in the fields of tourism, transport, agriculture and medical supplies.

Head of EIBs Cairo office Mr. Alfredo Abad noted that EIBs assistance of the private sector was focused on rendering liquidity available, as EIB had coordinated with several European states and EBRD to provide around EUR 20 B to foreign countries that were not EU members, where EIBs contributed with around EUR 0.5 billion. In addition, EIB supported around 300 SMEs, noting that it would be willing to increase credit lines and to provide new ones, as well as to cooperate with the private sector for the production of medicine.

Other participants from international financial institutions were AfDBs Country Manager Malinne Bloomberg and Representatives of the private sector in the field of food and agriculture included Hany Berzy, Chairman of Edita for Food Industries, Karim Baraka, Representative of Savola, specialized in the food and retail sectors in the MENA region, Diaa El Din Yahia, Country Head & Regional Director of Majid Al Futtaim Group. In the field of industries, attendees included Ahmed Elsewedy, Chairman of Elsewedy Group and Reham Elbeltagy Head of the Financial Department of Orascom Construction Group. In the field of energy and logistic services, Alczar Energys Co-founder & Chief Executive Officer Daniel Calderon and the Chairman of Nile Capital Basel Roushdy attended the meeting.
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4/30/2020 3:52:32 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Thursday in semi-collective rise]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 inched up 0.08 percent, or 8.78 points, to close at 10,554.04 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 hiked 1.34 percent, or 16.16 points, to close at 1,225.35 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 0.58 percent, or 6.54 points to 1,134.08 points.

On the other hand, the equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 0.03 percent, or 0.55 points, to end at 1,633.22 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 202.06 million, recording LE 571.44 billion, compared to LE 571.24 billion in Wednesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 319.44 million shares, traded through 31,121 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.04 billion.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 133.35 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 21.18 million, and LE 112.16 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 27.55 million, LE 23.35 million and LE 6.33 million, respectively.

Foreign organizations sold at LE 105.83 million, while Egyptian and Arab organizations bought at LE 160.9 million, and LE 2.16 million, respectively.

Misr National Steel - Ataqa, The Arab Ceramic CO.- Ceramica Remas, and Sinai Cement were top gainers of the session at 18.14 percent, 14.56 percent and 9.55 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, National Bank Of Kuwait- Egypt- NBK, The Arab Dairy Products Co. Arab Dairy - Panda, and Cairo for Investment and Real Estate Development were top losers of the session by 9.46 percent, 8.19 percent, and 4.31 percent, respectively.

On Wednesday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX30 increased 1.25 percent, EGX 50 rose 0.61 percent, EGX 70 hiked 0.57 percent, and EGX 100 climbed 0.24 percent.

On Thursday, the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan.

EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan

CAIRO - 23 April 2020: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan. EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.


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4/30/2020 3:18:43 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's M2 money supply accelerates to 14.82% year-on-year in March]]>
The money supply stood at LE 4.28 trillion ($272.61 billion) as of the end of March, compared with LE 4.19 trillion at the end of February.]]>
4/30/2020 2:41:26 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to auction $800M in dollar-denominated T-bills]]>
Maturity will be on May 4, 2021, it said. ]]>
4/30/2020 2:37:52 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 21B 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 11 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022. ]]>
4/30/2020 2:23:37 PM
<![CDATA[579,000 tons of local wheat harvest supplied till now: agriculture ministry]]>
About 893,000 tons of wheat have been harvested so far, the ministry said.

Agriculture Minister El Sayed Qusair received a report from head of the services sector Abbas Shenawi about wheat supply and harvest.

Coordination is under way with the Supply Ministry and the Egyptian Agriculture Bank to facilitate farmers' supply of wheat to state-owned silos, he said.

The local season of wheat supply began April 15, and is to continue for three months as Egypt targets to procure 3.6 million tons of the grain from local farmers. ]]>
4/30/2020 2:10:00 PM
<![CDATA[Deadline for filing added value tax returns extended to May 10]]>
This privilege is only available for taxpayers if they pay the due amount, according to the tax returns, on April 30, 2020, Abdel Qader said.

The move comes as part of the tax authority's measures to ease the collection process for all the taxpayers amid the coronavirus crisis. ]]>
4/30/2020 2:05:34 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt has strong strategy in dealing with COVID-19: Al-Mashat]]>
This came during a webinar organized by the American Chamber of Commerce and the Egyptian-American Joint Business Council today in the video, that was titled "The COVID-19 pandemic: Corona virus is an imminent opportunity for multilateralism."

The Minister affirmed that Egypt has taken early steps to counter the spread of coronavirus, as President Abdel Fatah El-Sisi decided to allocate LE 100 billion to finance the comprehensive plan to confront the negative effects caused by the emerging virus on the social and economic level, and the Ministry of Health took several steps to counter the spread of the virus, and the central bank took several measures, including reducing the interest rate by 3 percent.

Al-Masat reviewed several efforts to confront the crisis, its stages of development and the role played by the Ministry of Health in this regard.

The Minister of International Cooperation pointed out the importance of having global solutions to the crisis, pointing out that Egypt has dealt with it with regard to health and with regard to education through distance education.

She also reviewed the economic indicators related to the ability of the Egyptian economy and its dealing with the crisis, especially the sources of foreign exchange flow, whether from tourism or the Suez Canal or the remittances of Egyptians from abroad, and the extent of all this being affected by the crisis.

The American Chamber of Commerce organizes monthly and annual meetings on many economic issues and has resorted to dealing through virtual meetings as a precautionary measure against the Corona virus.

]]>
4/29/2020 5:12:01 PM
<![CDATA[5 factors to affect Egyptian economy due to COVID-19: Al-Mashat]]>
Among these factors, the Minister pointed out that the volume of Egyptians ’remittances from abroad amounted to $26.8 billion, most of which were from the Gulf countries, which were currently affected by the crisis related to the decline in oil prices, and consequently the companies that Egyptians work on were affected, pointing out that the transfers contribute 10 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP).

This came during a webinar organized by the American Chamber of Commerce and the Egyptian-American Joint Business Council today that was titled "The COVID-19 pandemic: Corona virus is an imminent opportunity for multilateralism."



Rania Al-Mashat added that the tourism income amounted to $13 billion from tourism, which was 80-percent affected by the virus, compared to the previous period of 2019, and contributes to 5 percent of the GDP.

She explained that the decrease in global trade and the movement of transport due to the pandemic will negatively affect the revenues of the Suez Canal amounting to about $ 6 billion, noting that what relates to the oil-related war and its effects will also affect Egypt besides increasing the prices of incoming goods to Egypt, where Egypt is a large market for importing Goods from abroad.

“We have entered the crisis of the Corona virus strongly, as we have strong reserves of foreign exchange and foreign currencies,” the minister stated.

The American Chamber of Commerce organizes monthly and annual meetings on many economic issues and has resorted to dealing through virtual meetings as a precautionary measure against the Corona virus.
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4/29/2020 4:58:38 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's agricultural exports exceed 2.4M tons since January]]>
This came in a weekly report handed over to Quseir by head of the Central Administration of Plant Quarantine (CAPQ) ?Ahmed el Attar.

The exports included about 1.2 million tons of citruses, 550,000 tons of potatoes, 150,000 tons of onions and 20,000 tons of strawberries, according to the CAPQ report. ]]>
4/29/2020 4:34:19 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet approves measures to get concessional financing from WB to support health insurance system]]>
It comes in light of the bank’s approval on increasing the value of its funding for Egypt to $ 400 million, up from $250 million.

The move is meant to fund the subscriptions of the poor registering in the comprehensive health insurance system and rehabilitate infrastructure in the governorates where the new system will be applied.

The cabinet also approved authorizing the Egyptian Railway Authority to make limited agreements with a number of foreign specialized companies. ]]>
4/29/2020 4:28:51 PM
<![CDATA[Foreign purchases keep EGX in green zone on Wednesday]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 increased 1.25 percent, or 130.14 points, to close at 10,545.26 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 0.61 percent, or 9.9 points, to end at 1,633.77 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 hiked 0.57 percent, or 6.82 points, to close at 1,209.19 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 0.24 percent, or 2.67 points to 1,127.54 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 2.52 billion, recording LE 571.24 billion, compared to LE 568.72 billion in Tuesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 411.34 million shares, traded through 36,620 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.11 billion.

Foreign investors were buyers at LE 33.15 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net sellers at LE 22.61 million, and LE 10.54 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 44.4 million, LE 7.26 million and LE 2.31 million, respectively.

Arab organizations sold at LE 3.27 million, while Egyptian and foreign organizations bought at LE 21.79 million, and LE 35.46 million, respectively.

Misr National Steel - Ataqa, Delta Construction & Rebuilding, and United Arab Shipping were top gainers of the session at 9.72 percent, 9.40 percent and 9.27 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, GMC Group for Industrial Commercial & Financial Investments, Atlas for Investment and Food Industries, and Raya Contact Center were top losers of the session by 5.70 percent, 5.67 percent, and 5.20 percent, respectively.

On Tuesday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX 30 increased 0.38 percent, EGX 50 rose 2 percent, EGX 70 hiked 1.25 percent, and EGX 100 climbed 0.59 percent.

On Thursday, the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan.

EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan

CAIRO - 23 April 2020: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan. EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.



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4/29/2020 4:10:36 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt, UN work to mitigate socio-economic implications of COVID-19 outbreak]]>CAIRO – 29 April 2020: Ministry of International Cooperation is working closely with UN agencies to mitigate the socio-economic implications of the Coronavirus outbreak, which would contribute to ensuring that development efforts were not interrupted and were on the right track to achieve their aspired goals, especially the SDGs, Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat said Wednesday.

This came during a high- level meeting with the UN to discuss socio-economic impact of the Coronavirus outbreak towards a comprehensive cooperation program.

Al-Mashat chaired the meeting with heads of the four Results Groups of the United Nations Partnership Development Framework (UNPDF) Steering Committee. The meeting was attended by the Minister of Planning and Economic Development Hala El Saeed, the Minister of Environment Yasmin Fouad, the Minister of Social Solidarity Nevein Elkabbag, President of the National Council for Women Maya Morsi, and UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt Richard Dictus.

The meeting was also attended by Randa Abulhosn, UNDP Resident Representative in Egypt, Menghestab Haile, WFP Representative & Country Director, Nasredin Hag Elamin, FAO Representative, and Gielan Elmeseiri, UN Women Head of Office a.i.

Al-Mashat noted that UNPDF was drafted based on the outcomes of national consultations with 400 stakeholders from Government, the UN, civil society and private sector. The Minister pointed out that the Framework was in line with the Governments vison and Social and Economic Program and with the ministry’s new partnership strategy with development partners, which is based on three main pillars, People at the Core, Projects in Action and Purpose as the Drive, which addressed developmental partnership aiming at achieving SDGs.

The Minister elaborated on the four pillars of the UNPDF, explaining that the Inclusive Economic Development pillar focused on achieving the agreed upon goals targeting sustainable inclusive economic development, creating job opportunities and capacity building. The Social Justice pillar focused on national efforts dedicated to control population growth and to ensure access for all to public services, such as social protection, health, nutrition and education. The Women Empowerment pillar aimed to enhance women’s capabilities and their engagement in leadership positions and in several other economic activities, in addition to supporting their access to education and labor opportunities.

“The Environmental Sustainability and Natural Resources Management pillar sought the effective and constructive management of Egypt’s natural resources and mitigating environmental risks as well as climate change risks. This could be achieved through integrated urban communities, improving poor districts and unofficial areas, using water resources in a more efficient manner and using renewable energy,” she added.

Al-Mashat stressed that it was agreed during the meeting to continue the strategic dialogue between the government and the UN and to enhance ongoing coordination in order to reach a comprehensive plan for cooperation with the UN towards mitigating the socio-economic and health implications of the Coronavirus outbreak and to address the post-Coronavirus post-recovery by collaborating efforts to mitigate the impact on the economy and to support infrastructure, digital transformation and financial inclusiveness for women, which would contribute to creating more job opportunities and ensure the ongoing achievement of SDGs.

In addition, the Minister of Planning & Economic Development chairs the Inclusive Economic Development Results Group, the Minister of Social Solidarity chairs the Social Justice Results Group, the Minister of Environment chairs the Environmental Sustainability and Natural Resources Management Results Group, and the President of the National Council for Women chairs the Women Empowerment Results Group, the four Results Group of the UNPDF.

For her part, Minister of Planning and Economic Development, said that the government response plan that was adopted in Egypt, whether to reduce losses or mitigate the negative impact of COVID-19, is very solid.

El Saeed noted that the full support of Egypt's development partners during this phase is extremely important to mitigate the risks of the Covid-19 crisis and prepare the post-Coronavirus stage.

Egypt’s Minister of Planning explained that the localization of the Sustainable Development Goals in the governorates is crucial to maximize the benefit of the comparative advantages of the Egyptian governorates and regions, and to achieve inclusiveness, sustainable growth and balanced regional development, as one of the main pillars of Egypt's 2030 vision.

The Minister of Environment Yasmin Fouad pointed out that it was important to pay more attention to waste-management workers and to support them by setting up an official sector that would guarantee they obtained their rights. She also stressed that it was important to support women working in the environmental field, especially in natural reserves as some women made natural products that could be sold in the reserves but they need help to be able to display and promote their work through social media means.

Fouad stated that it was important to also address climate change across all development sectors and sustainable development fields and not just efforts from the agriculture and food sectors.

Moreover, El-Kabbag presented the priorities of the Ministry of Social Solidarity to mitigate the implications of the pandemic, whether on the level of social protection, social care or development initiatives, by extending social security networks to include additional households, to include the poorest, most vulnerable and most affected by the crisis, such as unofficial workers, the elderly, those on pension, children without social care, endangered women, those with disabilities and those living in unofficial and remote rural areas, besides ensuring the payment of pensions, automating means of payment, contributing to extending isolated villages with the necessary nutrition and sanitation and hygiene tools, expanding social awareness campaigns, particularly in rural and unofficial areas.
President of the National Council for Women (NCW) Maya Morsi stressed that NCW gave priority to the economic empowerment of women, noting that UN Women commended Egypts efforts to cater for womens needs in Egypts plan to face the novel Coronavirus, as well as presenting policies and proposing programs with regard to the governments emergency response plan, especially addressing womens needs during the virus outbreak, and the report reflecting policies and programs in response to womens needs during the virus outbreak.

Morsi presented several proposals, most importantly to protect women from internet crimes and to lay a unified strategy for communication and awareness about all efforts taken by the state to combat the novel Coronavirus pandemic.

“Egypt has been proactively taking the necessary measures to effectively address the COVID-19 outbreak and to mitigate its socio-economic impact,” UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt Richard Dictus said.

Dictus added that the UN is committed to supporting Egypt in building on, and scaling up, the successes of the economic reform program, and continue to closely work with the Government of Egypt in adjusting to the new reality in light of the COVID-19 outbreak and in realizing the targets set in Egypts Vision 2030 and in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

Country Director of the World Food Program in Egypt Menghestab Hailey said: “As WFP our immediate focus is to support the government to upscale the national social protection system to protect the vulnerable families with cash transfers primarily targeting families of casual and informal sector workers and female-headed households and other vulnerable communities. He added I would like to congratulate the Government of Egypt for its exemplary response to mitigate the socio-economic impact of the coronavirus on the Egyptian population, including adopting a gender-sensitive approach.”

“On behalf of the Womens Results group, I would like to underscore our commitment to support the GoE in protecting and sustaining the gains already made to accelerate the achievement of Womens Empowerment, notably in the area of womens leadership and political participation and women economic participation, which the current crisis risks rolling back. In addition, we remain committed to further improving our reporting on results and to ensuring alignment in our approaches as a Results Group,” Head of Office a.i., UN Women Egypt Country Office Gielan Elmessiri.

FAO Representative in Egypt Nasredin Hag Elamin said that there is a need to intensify work in a broader and wider manner between the United Nations organizations working in Egypt, the Egyptian government and all relevant parties, to develop policies and programs in the areas of climate change, food systems, and water issues, in a way that enables Egypt to face COVID-19 pandemic challenges and contributes to achieving the sustainable development goals. He praised the efforts and the precautionary measures undertaken by Egypt in facing the challenges of Coronavirus crisis, that contributed greatly to mitigating the impact of this crisis.

The GoE-UN Joint Steering Committee meeting to review progress on Covid19 response and progress on UN Egypt Partnership Development Framework (208-2022) chaired by the Minister of International Cooperation, emphasized the urgency for an integrated response to Covid19 and proactive measures for a smooth recovery” UNDP Resident Representative in Egypt Randa Abulhassan, said.

The four Ministers, all women, spoke in a unified voice on acting fast to mitigate Covid19 effects and continue to focus and scale up ongoing programs in the areas of social justice and social protection; economic development and prosperity; climate change, natural resources, and food security; women’s social and economic empowerment and protection from gender-based violence.
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4/29/2020 3:41:31 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt Gas agrees to complete LE232.8M-agreement with Town Gas ]]>
The company said in a filing to the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) that the agreement stipulates the implementation of natural gas connections for 120,000 customers in Cairo, Giza, Alexandria, Ismailia and Port Said, with an estimated total value of LE 232.8 million.

The company indicated that the period of validity of this agreement is one year, and it may be renewed for another period with the consent of both parties.

Moreover, the Board of Directors agreed to complete the signing of a contract for the implementation of natural gas delivery works for the first stage in Mansoura City, Dakahlia Governorate, with the Urban Communities Authority at a value of LE 114.4 million, with a duration of 18 months.

In March, Egypt Gas increased its share in the capital of the Egyptian Company for Natural Gas Distribution in Cities (Town Gas) from 30 to 41 percent.

The company clarified in a filing to the Egyptian Exchange (EGX), Tuesday, that it purchased 11 percent of the Egyptian Natural Gas Company’s (GASCO) share in Town Gas for LE 19.4 million.

In 2019, Egypt Gas accomplished profits of LE 164.96 million, compared to LE 35.16 million in 2018.

The company operates within the gas utilities sector focusing on utilities. It has subsidiaries operating across Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Germany and Canada. Egypt Gas was established in September 1983.
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4/29/2020 2:43:02 PM
<![CDATA[15%-revenue certificates not canceled because of new certificates: NBE]]>
In statements to MENA on Wednesday, Abul Fotouh said that the old 15 percent-revenue certificates will not be canceled because of auctioning new certificates with a revenue of 14% for two years or three years with a revenue of 12.5 percent for the interest of the National Investment Bank.

The income of the 15 percent-revenue certificates that were auctioned in March 22 reached LE 75 billion until the middle of this week. ]]>
4/29/2020 1:26:21 PM
<![CDATA[Madbouli probes with economists, politicians COVID-19 challenges]]>
A statement issued by the Cabinet's Media Office said the meeting tackled the economic repercussions of the virus and the new post-coronavirus world order.]]>
4/29/2020 1:23:02 PM
<![CDATA[Capital Economics expects 7.5% depreciation of Egyptian Pound after turning to IMF]]>
The economic research consultancy said in a report that Egypt has become the latest emerging market to turn to the IMF for assistance and one of the priorities for the Fund is likely to be for the central bank to loosen its grip on the pound.

The report affirmed that the immediate concern for the IMF is likely to be the exchange rate.

“Egypt’s turning to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) means that the authorities are likely to loosen their grip on the pound sooner rather than later,” it added.

According to Capital Economics, a depreciation on that scale is unlikely to lead to significantly higher inflation. “Monetary policymaking has improved in recent years and, by keeping real interest rates elevated, the central bank has brought inflation under control. The headline rate stood at 5.1 percent y/y in March and the CBE’s preferred measure of core inflation, which includes some food products, came in at just 1.3 percent y/y.”

It expected inflation to stay below the mid-point of the CBE’s target range of 9±3 percent throughout our forecast horizon.

“Allowing the currency to depreciate will negate the need to keep interest rates high in order to attract capital inflows and, with inflation well-anchored, the central bank is likely to follow up last month’s emergency 300bp interest rate cut with further easing to support the economy,” it stated, expecting the benchmark overnight deposit rate to be lowered by an additional 225bp, to 7 percent, over the coming months.

In addition, it thought that the IMF will probably keep one eye on the public finances, clarifying that solid progress was made under the previous IMF programme to address Egypt’s poor budget and debt positions.

“Revenue-raising measures, spending restraint and subsidy reform resulted in the primary budget balance swinging from a deficit of around 3.5 percent of GDP to a surplus of close to 2 percent of GDP in the 2018/19 fiscal year. Meanwhile, debt has declined from a peak of more than 100 percent of GDP to 84 percent of GDP,” it noted.

According to the report, the budget position will no doubt take a hit from the current crisis, but there are signs that the authorities are well aware of the fiscal constraints they are under – direct fiscal stimulus for the economy has, so far, amounted to a relatively modest 1.8 percent of GDP.

“Even so, the IMF will want to ensure that support is scaled back once the crisis is over and that the debt ratio quickly resumes its decline,” it added.

Comparing Egypt’s conditions between 2016 and 2020, It said that Egypt’s external position was in much better shape compared with 2016, when the government last turned to the IMF. A combination of stronger exports and weaker imports, attributable to the effects of the 2016 devaluation as well as a marked improvement in the energy trade balance, had supported a narrowing of the current account deficit. The shortfall came in from 6.6 percent of GDP in 2016 to 3.1 percent of GDP last year. Meanwhile, the central bank had rebuilt its foreign exchange reserves.

In November 2016, the Executive Board of the IMF approved a $12 billion loan as a financial assistance to Egypt to support the Egyptian economic reform program.

Upon the board's approval in November, Egypt embarked on a bold economic reform program that included floating its currency, losing around 50% of its value, as part of the economic reform program which imposed taxes, including the value-added tax (VAT), and cut energy subsidies, all with the aim of trimming the budget deficit.

“The current crisis [coronavirus] has undoubtedly led to strains in Egypt’s balance of payments. Travel restrictions have brought the country’s tourism industry, which was close to returning to its pre-Arab Spring peak, to a grinding halt,” it said, explaining that tourism receipts are a vital source of foreign currency, equal to 4.2 percent of GDP, and the industry directly accounts for just over 6 percent of GDP and around 4.5 percent of total employment. PM Madbouly said that the government would use financing from the IMF to prioritise support for the tourism industry.

Earlier in April, Capital Economics expected the Egyptian currency to fall by around 7.5 percent by the end 2020 to 17/$. It clarified the decline will take place as the Egyptian authorities would loosen their grip on the pound over the coming weeks.

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday that the Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program.

This package is to enhance the state’s capabilities to face the new COVID-19 virus crisis, in a proactive step based on the successful implementation of the economic reform program; to maintain the continuing gains and positive results achieved by the Egyptian economy, in light of the exceptional circumstances experienced by all countries of the world and developments in global conditions.

Egypt requests new financial package from IMF for 1 year

CAIRO - 26 April 2020: The Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday.



]]>
4/28/2020 5:36:23 PM
<![CDATA[Beltone expects sale of US subsidiary Arabach Grayson to end in 3 months]]>
The company said in a filing to the Egyptian Stock Exchange (EGX) Tuesday that the sale process has not been completed yet, and accordingly, the final value of the deal has not been reached.

It pointed out that this step comes within the framework of the company's strategy that aims to focus mainly on the Egyptian market and the neighboring markets in the investment banking sector, in addition to expanding the non-Egyptian financial services platform that the company started in early 2020.

Beltone emphasized that the move also comes to strengthen the group of financial and non-Egyptian consultancy services for its clients inside and outside Egypt, as well as maximizing the return on the company’s investments and restructuring. The returns of the deal will be used to support its strategy.

Earlier in April, Beltone, along with other investors, signed an agreement to sell the US Auerbach Grayson & Company.

Meanewhile, the company recorded an increase in its consolidated losses during 2019 by 11 percent, reaching LE 91.5 million, compared to LE 82.4 million in 2018.

Beltone Financial operates within the diversified financials sector focusing on investment banking & brokerage. Beltone Financial was established in May 2006.
]]>
4/28/2020 5:16:03 PM
<![CDATA[CIB’s chairman reveals details of acquisition of Kenyan bank]]>
Ezz al-Arab added, during a phone call to Al-Arabiya TV, that CIB administration wasn’t targeting to acquire a large bank, but aimed at acquiring a bank where it can make a change in it, especially since the central bank in the Kenyan market decided not to issue licenses to new banks.

He explained that the acquisition process did not take place through the purchase of shares, but rather by increasing the capital in the bank as the strategy depends on pumping money to serve growth in the future. Ezz al-Arab further clarified that the shareholders within the Kenyan bank agreed on matters related to governance, the role of the Board of Directors and the risks, stressing that the agreement is based on mutual benefit.

“We aim to learn from the Kenyan market as it is a developed market for financial inclusion,” he noted.

Ezz al-Arab indicated that the Kenyan bank will also benefit from the strength and history of the Commercial International Bank, stressing that what happened is more of an integration than an acquisition process, in addition to that Kenya serves closed countries such as Ethiopia and Uganda.

He also announced that the Commercial Bank opened a representation office in Addis Ababa.

"We seek to obtain medical experience in the African market as it is a very promising market. Africa is one of the continents that witnessed the highest growth rates in the world before the coronavirus crisis," he said.

CIB’s chairman also pointed out that the coordination between Egypt and the African countries encouraged us to expand within the African continent.

He stressed on focusing on a majority stake in the bank and contributing to the Egyptian and Kenyan economies to gain experiences that would help to the bank enter other markets, affirming that the non-financial sectors do not occupy the bank during the coming period.

Regarding banking conditions inside Egypt, Ezz al-Arab explained that work is done in two ways, the first is through business that he expects to be better starting the second half of the year, and the second is through risk management, where there are sectors that stopped working, such as tourism, adding that risk management seeks to deal with the worst-case scenario, and operate in a modest manner

“No one can say for sure that the economy will return; the picture is still blurry, especially regarding the health sector and how to deal with the coronavirus,” he said.

CIB recently announced the completion of the acquisition deal for 51 percent of Bank Mayfair (CIB Bank Mayfair) after the approval of the boards of directors of both banks and obtaining all the necessary approvals from the competent regulatory authorities, most importantly the approval of the Egyptian and Kenyan central banks. The total value of the deal is $ 35.35 million, which will be used to increase the capital of Mayfair CIB Bank.

]]>
4/28/2020 5:12:21 PM
<![CDATA[Minister reveals status of industrial sector amid COVID-19 crisis]]>
"Those factories operate in the sectors of chemicals, textile, and engineering industries," the minister said in a phone-in with a TV program.The minister added that since January, imports have declined by 24 percent, while exports, particularly agricultural goods, rose by 2 percent.

Gamea clarified that the decline in imports is mostly caused by the exporting countries' inability to achieve a surplus due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic. She notedthat the manufacturing inputs needed in many industries are still available because they had been imported months ago, and that the ministry is currently setting a plan on how to handle the situation after the stocks are finished.

Gamea stated that the ministry examines the possibility of producing certain manufacturing inputs locally.

On another note, the minister stated that around 400 SMEs applied for the exceptional loan worth LE1 million maximum for businesses in the manufacturing sector, and LE500,000 maximum for businesses in the service sector.

The loan is offered by the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Development Agency (MSMEDA) for businesses operating in intensive-labor sectors to cover operating costs, and must be repaid within a year.

In addition, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) is offering LE100 billion worth of soft loans with 5 percent interest rate for the manufacturing sector.

CBE is also offering LE50 billion in loans to the tourism sector which is exempted from real estate tax for 3 months.

President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi declared on April 7 offering the civil aviation sector a bailout amid COVID-19 global crisis

The other measures, endorsed to support companies and businesses to alleviate the crisis include real estate tax exemption for 3 months, paying the fees of tax statement reports over 3 installments until June 30, and removing holds on bank accounts of default investors if they pay 10 percentof the debt.
]]>
4/28/2020 4:55:59 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian agricultural exports enter 4 new markets ]]>
During that period, Egypt has begun exporting dates to Australia, orange to New Zealand, citrus to Brazil, and potato to Mauritius.

Attar speculated in a phone-in on a TV interview programon the phone that Egypt's agricultural exports wouldill rise to become 5.5 million tons in 2020 compared to 5.4 million tons in the previous year.

The official pointed out that Egypt has been able to beat Spain and become the world's top citrus exporter with 1.8 million tons annually. He added that since January Egypt has exported 1.2 million tons of citrus and 550,000 tons of potato, which is the country's second top export crop.

In 2019, Egypt exported 687,842 tons of potato and 602,016 tons of onion, which is the country's third top export crop. Since September, Egypt has exported 68,000 tons of onion.
]]>
4/28/2020 4:17:44 PM
<![CDATA[Coronavirus crisis to cause labour market recession worse than 2008 financial crisis: UN special envoy]]>
Mohieldin discussed Egypt's situation amid the coronavirus crisis in an interview with nation branding platform Narrative Summit published in two parts on Wednesday and Thursday.

“The coronavirus crisis has had a tremendous impact on the global economy and on people’s lives, because governments had not prioritised the health, education and human capital sectors,” Mohieldin said in statements published by Al Ahram Online Tuesday.

Mohieldin underlined that the lessons learned from this crisis should never be forgotten, and should be translated into prioritising spending on aforementioned sectors and engaging the public in decision-making processes.

“In the future people will not have any tolerance towards negligence in healthcare, pollution or climate change, or anything that might have a negative effect on their lives,” he asserted.

Mohieldin said that Egypt and the Arab region will need huge investments in healthcare, education and infrastructure, warning that the humanitarian repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic should not be underestimated.

He added that Egypt and the Arab region also need to enhance data sector infrastructure and pay attention to modern science and artificial intelligence.

Mohieldin drew attention to social security systems and the individual's right to well-defined state support.

He said that states already offer assistance systems like subsidies and pensions. However, governments should consider what is known as “universal basic income” that guarantees a minimum standard of living for all, as an addition to, and not a substitute for, education, health insurance and state services.

Social security is especially important in the upcoming period as the world will see a very high unemployment rates that will last for a long time, so the consequences of the labour market recession must be addressed, Mohieldin asserted.

To apply systems like universal basic income and to contain the repercussions of high unemployment, the state needs to review its budget and spending priorities in the coming period.

Mohieldin also discussed the situation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Egypt and how they have been affected by the Covid-19 epidemic. He noted that they represent 90 percent of total economic projects and represent between 45-75 percent of the labour market.

In current circumstances, 75 percent of these projects have reportedly been under pressure due to the pandemic and consequent recession, with only five percent witnessing an increase in interest in their services.

Although such enterprises are very beneficial to the economy, according to surveys there have been several problems reported that have been holding them back, such as training, adaptation, R&D activities, financing services, and digital transformation systems, Mohieldin said.

There are lots of initiatives to support SMEs, especially in finance, whether from the banking and non-banking sectors, but we will need more of these initiatives, Mohieldin added.

“Around the world and in Egypt, there have been support packages, whether through tax or credit concessions, so that SMEs would not lag, as they are part of the productive sector.”

Mohieldin mentioned that according to the International Labour Organisation, 195 million jobs will be lost due to the global recession, which is 10 times the figure caused by the 2008 global financial crisis.

He warned that communities will no longer be tolerant towards any policy that may harm their lives, health or the environment, asserting that this in fact is a positive outcome, since it will contribute to and speed up achieving sustainable development goals in all aspects. ]]>
4/28/2020 3:48:22 PM
<![CDATA[EIB ready to increase credit lines in Egypt, EBRD expands its solidarity package]]>
Moreover, the executive director of the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced that the bank decided to expand the solidarity package, Flexible Framework, which provides financing to meet the need for financial liquidity in the short term. The Flexible Framework focuses on financial institutions, small and medium enterprises, tourism, transport companies, agricultural business, and medical supplies.

This came during Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli's meeting with Minister of International Cooperation Rania al-Mashat, as part of the continuous follow-up of the ministry's work, and its efforts to mitigate the negative economic effects of the emerging coronavirus pandemic, in cooperation with international financing institutions, and the private sector.

The minister of international cooperation reviewed the results of the meetings she held through video conferencing with the representatives of the international financial institutions and the private sector, to discuss possible ways to help the private sector overcome the negative economic impacts of the coronavirus.

Mashat clarified to the prime minister that all parties affirmed their support for the Ministry of International Cooperation’s vision of the importance of the private sector's participation in a greater proportion of the development projects, given its role as a major driver of growth. They stressed that successful participation of the private sector can be implemented through the integration between development projects funded by development partners and private sector investments.

She indicated that the World Bank Group affirmed its support for Egypt's efforts to implement and finance structural reforms and public policy measures, to enable the private sector to play a greater role in development.

According to Mashat, International Finance Corporation (IFC) officials in Egypt confirmed their support for the government's vision on consulting with its private sector partners, and supporting private companies during the current crisis.

The officials affirmed their full cooperation with various sectors to find innovative solutions to the challenges related to the virus and to help them turn these challenges into opportunities.

Mashat also mentioned the extraordinary high-level meeting of the heads of the four working groups emanating from the Steering Committee of the Strategic Framework for Partnership with the United Nations, which was held by the Ministry of International Cooperation on April 27 through via video conference, and was attended by a number of ministers, the president of the National Council for Women, and the resident coordinator of the United Nations.

The minister noted that during the meeting, which comes in the strategic framework of the partnership with the United Nations 2018-2022, all the parties agreed on the need to continue the strategic dialogue between the government and the United Nations. They stressed the importance of the continuous coordination to reach a unified strategic plan for the support that the United Nations will provide to the Egyptian government to face the social and economic consequences as well as the negative impact of the coronavirus on the health sector.

She explained that the framework is based on 4 axes: Comprehensive economic development, social justice, women's empowerment and sustainable management of natural resources with a total value of $1.2 billion. The minister of international cooperation will chair the steering committee of the strategic framework for partnership with the United Nations.
]]>
4/28/2020 3:11:26 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Tuesday in green, market cap. gains LE 4.2B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 increased 0.38 percent, or 39.12 points, to close at 10,415.12 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 2 percent, or 31.9 points, to end at 1,623.87 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 hiked 1.25 percent, or 14.83 points, to close at 1,202.37 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 0.59 percent, or 6.56 points to 1,124.87 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 4.2 billion, recording LE 568.72 billion, compared to LE 564.51 billion in Monday’s session.

The trading volume reached 374.15 million shares, traded through 36,798 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.17 billion.

Egyptian investors were buyers at LE 114.17 million, while Arab and foreign investors were net sellers at LE 11.35 million, and LE 102.82 million, respectively.

Egyptian and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 36.02 million, and LE 1.22 million, respectively, while Arab individuals were net sellers LE 8.38 million.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 78.15 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 2.97 million, and LE 104.03 million, respectively.

Misr National Steel – Ataqa, United Arab Shipping, and Cairo For Investment and Real Estate Development were top gainers of the session at 12.89 percent, 8.48 percent and 8.10 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Egyptian Transport (EGYTRANS), Credit Agricole Egypt, and International Co for Investment & Development were top losers of the session by 11.37 percent, 10.15 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively.

On Monday, EGX ended the session in a semi-collective regression, as: EGX 30 inched down 0.01 percent, and EGX 50 dipped 0.22 percent, and EGX 100 declined 0.17 percent, while EGX 70 increased 0.23 percent.

On Thursday, the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan.
]]>
4/28/2020 3:04:41 PM
<![CDATA[Ministers of military production, environment discuss recycling waste system]]>
They affirmed the need for swift and sustainable solutions for the cleaning issues and quick intervention to get rid of garbage in the different governorates especially in the quarantined areas in light of the preventive measures taken to face COVID 19.

Assar reviewed the efforts of the Ministry of Military Production to qualify recycling factories in a number of governorates to improve the cleaning level for the interest of the citizens.

The ministry is ready to work on meeting the needs of the workers in the cleaning system by offering them sanitizers and preventive equipment, Assar said.

Meanwhile, Fouad said that the Environment Ministry is following up getting rid of the wastes and establishing factories to recycle wastes. ]]>
4/28/2020 1:37:09 PM
<![CDATA[Oil, environment Mins discuss environmental coordination efforts with oil companies in Suez, Red Sea]]>
During the second meeting of the higher committee for coordination and environmental reform to face the issues of industrial drainage in Suez, both ministers discussed the efforts of the petroleum companies and the plans of environmental reform to reach drastic solutions for the problem of industrial drainage in the waters of the Gulf of Suez.

They both agreed on continuous coordination between the officials of both ministries on reform plans for the public interest and asserted the importance of using latest the technology specialized in treating industrial sanitation water.]]>
4/28/2020 1:29:04 PM
<![CDATA[Finance min. issues decision to pay govt dues by cash or electronically]]>
This comes within the framework of a bundle of measures taken by the government to face COVID 19.

In a statement on Tuesday, Maait said that the decision allows the citizens to pay the dues of the hospitals by cash or electronically until the measures taken to face coronavirus are finalized.


He said that electronic payment is much easier in collecting governmental dues. ]]>
4/28/2020 1:23:24 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt’s SMEs draft law exempts informal economy projects from stamp duty ]]>
In Article 27, the draft law included the exemption from documentation and a month fees for founding companies, establishments, credit facilities and mortgage contracts related to its business, in addition to other guarantees provided by the projects to obtain financing, for a period of five years from the date of their registration in the commercial registry.

The draft law that was approved by the Parliament also included that the land registration contracts necessary for the establishment of these projects shall be exempted from the taxes and fees.

Moreover, it included a package of tax and non-tax incentives to encourage young people to enter this sector. The SMEs sector provides a major driving force for sustainable economic growth, contributes significantly to the diversification of economic activities, enhances the competitiveness of the national economy, reduces poverty rates and enhances social stability, as it provides livelihoods for the largest segment of the population in both developed and developing countries alike.

According to the state owned statistics body, the number of informal sector establishments hit 2 million establishments, representing 53 percent of the total number of economic establishments, compared to 1.7 million formal private sector establishments, and 1.5 million public sector public enterprise establishments.

The number of workers in informal private sector enterprises is estimated at 4 million, representing 29.3 percent of the total number of workrs employed in economic establishments, compared to 8.6 million employed in the formal private sector and 881,900 employed in the public business sector.

In addition, the paid-up capital in the informal private sector is 69.3 percent, which represents only 5 percent of the total capital of economic establishments in general, compared to LE 877.2 billion for the formal private sector and LE 401.8 billion for the public sector and public works, according to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS).

CAPMAS clarified that the total profits of all enterprises in the informal private sector in 2019 reached LE 194.3 billion, compared to LE 1.2 trillion as the total profits of all enterprises in the formal private sector.

It also added that 36.9 percent of the total employment of the informal private sector is concentrated in the governorates of Cairo, Giza and Qaliubiya.

“Four economic activities account for 84.2 percent of the total number of workers employed in the informal sector; 52.9 percent of them are in the wholesale and retail trade, and repair of vehicles and motorcycles; 17 percent in manufacturing industries; 7.7 percent in food and accommodation services; and 6.6 percent in agriculture, forest exploitation and fishing,” CAPMAS stated.

The ratio of the informal sector to the total economic enterprises recorded a decrease between 2013/2018, from 55.5 percent to 53 percent. On the other hand, the number of informal enterprises increased from 1.3 million establishments to 2 million establishments. The total number of economic establishments increased from 2.8 million establishments to 4 million establishments, hence exceeding the increase in informal enterprises.

In 2019, Deputy Minister of Planning, Follow-up and Administrative Reform of Planning Ahmed Kamali said that Egypt is preparing to issue a law to merge the informal economy with the legitimate economic system.

Kamali added in a statement that the integration of the informal economy into the formal system of the economy helps combat poverty, which contributes significantly to the acceleration of growth.

He clarified that Egypt has two types of economy: official and informal, noting that workers in the informal economy represent 50 percent of all workers and that this type of economy records 40 percent of GDP.

Vice President of the Federation of Industries Tarek Tawfik said in April 2019 that the informal sector represents more than 50 percent of Egypt's economy.

The Central Bank of Egypt’s (CBE) Deputy Governor Gamal Negm previously said that the informal sector accounted for about 40 to 50 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP).

Meanwhile, the International Labour Organization revealed that informal workers in Egypt mark over 63 percent of the state’s estimated 30 million employed population.
]]>
4/27/2020 5:17:12 PM
<![CDATA[PM: Development has to continue in line with anti-coronavirus measures]]>
The premier made the remarks at the conclusion of his inspection tour of a number of projects being carried out in various areas in Cairo.

He was accompanied by the ministers of tourism and antiquities, local development, and housing, along with the Cairo governor and representatives of the Armed Forces Engineering Authority.

Madbouli said the aim of the tour was to inspect several development projects being implemented in Cairo and to follow up the removal of unlicensed buildings that have been constructed in an attempt to exploit the State’s preoccupation with the coronavirus pandemic.

In this regard, the prime minister directed the Cairo governor to immediately demolish such buildings, stressing that the State will not tolerate any unpermitted construction while it exerts much effort to establish new roads in a bid to reduce congestion.

He added that the tour included a visit to Ain El-Sira region and surrounding areas in Old Cairo.

The premier highlighted his tour of Tahrir Square, where he saw for himself development works that are about to come to an end.

He also pointed out to his visit to the so-called “Maspero Triangle” near downtown Cairo, and the construction works being carried out there.]]>
4/27/2020 5:09:40 PM
<![CDATA[Manpower min.: 2.5 million beneficiaries of President Sisi's grant for irregular workers]]>
In an interview with MENA Board Chairman and Editor-in-Chief Ali Hassan on Monday, the minister said that the first stage of disbursing the presidential grant for seasonal workers was finalized from April 13 to April 16.

The second stage of disbursing presidential grant for irregular workers started on Sunday, April 26, and will continue till May 10, the minister added.

The LE 500 monthly grant will be paid out at the branches of the Agricultural Bank of Egypt (ABE), he said.

Saafan further noted that the disbursement of the grant will be temporarily halted at Egypt Post offices from May 1 to 5.

The emergency payment will be resumed again at the post offices from May 6 to May 10, Saafan added.

The minister said that each beneficiary will receive a text message from toll-free phone number 2030 on his registered mobile phone number 24 hours before the date of disbursement.

In March, the manpower ministry announced the opening for the registration on its website www.manpower.gov.eg. to receive the monthly grant.

According to the Manpower Ministry's data, there are around 120,000 persons officially registered as irregular workers nationwide.

The allowance is meant to help irregular workers whose incomes were severed because of the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

As for the Manpower Ministry's efforts to follow up conditions of Egyptian workers abroad in light of the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the manpower minister said that he received reports around the clock from the operations room of the ministry's commercial representative offices at the Egyptian embassies and consulates abroad, which work 24/7 to reply to the workers' inquiries and provide support for them during this critical period.

Regrading efforts to reduce the unemployment rate to its lowest level in more than 10 years, Saafan said that the State managed ahead of the COVID-19 crisis to reduce the unemployment rates to unprecedented levels, thanks to major national projects implemented by the State, the organization of employment forum and the implementation of small and medium-seized enterprises by the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (MSMEDA).

He further noted that the unemployment rate dropped to 8 percent of the workforce estimated at 28.9 million in the last quarter of 2019, after it was 8.9 percent in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2018, compared to 13.2 percent during the first quarter (Q1) of 2013.

Saafan added that the ministry was planning to reduce unemployment rates in 2020 by 1 to 1.5 percent to reach 6.3 percent of the workforce, however after the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic and what the world is going through in this regard, this plan will be revised.]]>
4/27/2020 4:58:49 PM
<![CDATA[To avoid $2 million worth of fines daily, Alexandria Port enlarged ]]>
This came during the minister's fourth visit to the port in one month to follow-up on expansion, and upgrade works. He pointed out that out of 15 seaports across the country, Alexandria Port is the gate of 40 percent of imports and exports,and handled 157 million tons per annum.

In the visit that took place earlier on Sunday, the minister, accompanied with Head of the Parliamentary Transportation Committee Hisham Abdel Wahed and committee members, checked the construction of a multi-purpose station on quays no. 55 and 62 at a cost of LE6 billion, including LE1 billion for equipment procurement.

The station and quays will be completed by the end of 2021 so that they become ready to receive large cargo ships in the first quarter of 2022, as reported by Al Watan newspaper.

Moreover, the minister followed up on the renovation works – worth LE14.9 million - of a key bridge located in Zone 27 of the port as the progress rate is 25 percent.

Wazir visited the construction site of Quay 85/3 witha length of 433 meters and a cost of LE390.6 million, as the project is 41 percent accomplished. The quay is allocated to handling woods and other general goods, and has a backyard spanning over 35,000 square meters. The construction of the quay will be completedby the end of 2020.

Another project that is underway is a road linking the Port of Alexandria with the International Coastal Highway at Gate 54. The road is expected to smoothen the traffic flow western Alexandria.

The minister told press that Egyptian seaports operate 24/7, highlighting thatEgyptian exports of onion, potato, vegetables, and fruits have increased. He added that ships are not allowed to anchor at quays until all crew members are tested for fever, which is a symptom of COVID-19, in coordination with the doctor of each vessel. Wazirsaid that containers, facilities, and equipment at the port are subject to sterilization regularly.

]]>
4/27/2020 4:18:35 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's agricultural exports tap into global markets during coronavirus period]]>
This came in a report submitted to Agriculture Minister El Sayed El Quseir from Head of the Central Administration of Plant Quarantine Ahmed el Attar about the Egyptian agricultural exports.

Egypt does not allow to export poor quality commodities and implements the technical specifications, set by the importing countries, Quseir noted.

The minister pointed out to an increased demand for most of the Egyptian products.

Meanwhile, Attar stated that Egypt exports more than five million tonnes of agricultural products annually, adding the total exports hit 2.2 million tonnes from the beginning of 2020 despite the pandemic.

The US tops the importing countries followed by the European Union, Russia, the Netherlands, and Australia. ]]>
4/27/2020 4:18:06 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Monday in semi-collective regression]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 inched down 0.01 percent, or 1.24 points, to close at 10,376 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 dipped 0.22 percent, or 3.49 points, to end at 1,591.97 points, and the broader index EGX 100 declined 0.17 percent, or 1.9 points to 1,118.31 points.


On the other hand, the small and mid-cap index EGX 70 increased 0.23 percent, or 2.67 points, to close at 1,187.54 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 382.7 million, recording LE 564.51 billion, compared to LE 564.89 billion in Sunday’s session.

The trading volume reached 404.27 million shares, traded through 36,592 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.04 billion.

Foreign investors were sellers at LE 100.53 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 77.58 million, and LE 22.94 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 3.34 million, and LE 3.03 million, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net sellers LE 58.05 million.

Foreign organizations sold at LE 103.56 million, while Egyptian and Arab organizations bought at LE 135.64 million, and LE 19.6 million, respectively.

Gulf Canadian Real Estate Investment Co., Arab Valves Company, and BEl Ahram Co. for Printing and Packing were top gainers of the session at 9.85 percent, 9.59 percent and 9.39 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Dice Sport & Casual Wear, Golden Coast Company, and Ismailia Development and Real Estate Co. were top losers of the session by 8.49 percent, 7.27 percent, and 6.68 percent, respectively.

On Thursday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX 30 jumped 2.54 percent, EGX 50 rose 3.63 percent, EGX 70 increased 3.39 percent, and EGX 100 climbed 2.29 percent.

On Thursday, the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan.

EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan

CAIRO - 23 April 2020: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan. EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.



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4/27/2020 3:47:30 PM
<![CDATA[Juhayna's consolidated profits jumps to LE 113.6M in 3 months]]>
The company's sales rose to LE 1.78 billion during January-March period of 2020, compared to LE 1.73 billion in the comparable period of last year.

As per standalone profits, the company’s profits fell to LE 95.88 million during the three months of 2020, compared to LE 137.25 million in the same period in 2018.

The company recorded consolidated profits of LE 328.76 million during 2019, compared to LE 406.09 million during 2018.

The company’s capital reached LE 941.4 million, distributed over 941.4 million shares at a nominal value of LE 1 per share.

Juhayna was established in 1995 and joined the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) in May 2010. It operates within the food, beverage and tobacco sector, focusing on packaged foods with six subsidiaries operating across Egypt.
]]>
4/27/2020 3:11:46 PM
<![CDATA[Meetings on IMF’s new financial package to be held online: CBE]]>
Abu El-Naga clarified that negotiations do not require travelling to the Fund's headquarters in the American capital, Washington, due to the flight ban as a result of the consequences of the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus).

CBE’s deputy governor noted that the Egyptian negotiation team includes members of the Central Bank and the governmental economic group.

Moreover, he stressed that the value of the financial agreement of the funding package has not been determined yet. “This will be announced within the next few weeks,” he stated.

Abu El-Naga said that the Egyptian government is in constant contact with international financial institutions, including the International Monetary Fund.

He pointed out that the new agreement is a "fast financing tool", which allows obtaining a financing package from the IMF, without conditions in addition to a credit readiness agreement. He added that it is a year-long program that come in segments spent in installments, within a year.

CBE’s deputy governor further clarified that the technical assistance from the fund is continuous.

He stated that the new loan from the IMF is one year long, and works to preserve what has been achieved with successes of the Egyptian economic reform program, which has been over a period of 3 years, according to which Egypt obtained $12 billion dollars from the Fund.

Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Kristalina Georgieva said that this comprehensive package of financial support, if approved, would help strengthen confidence in the Egyptian economy, make further progress to protect the most vulnerable and provide the basis for a strong economic recovery. It would also help accelerate Egypt’s reform efforts aimed to support broad-based, job-rich and sustainable growth.

“We fully support the government’s aim to safeguard the significant gains made under the successfully completed three-year Extended Fund Facility last year,” she said.

IMF praises Egypt's measure confronting COVID-19, comments on new package request

CAIRO - 27 April 2020: "Like many countries around the world, Egypt's economy has been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, the related global recession, and financial markets turmoil.



Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday that the Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program.

This package is to enhance the state’s capabilities to face the new COVID-19 virus crisis, in a proactive step based on the successful implementation of the economic reform program; to maintain the continuing gains and positive results achieved by the Egyptian economy, in light of the exceptional circumstances experienced by all countries of the world and developments in global conditions.

Egypt requests new financial package from IMF for 1 year

CAIRO - 26 April 2020: The Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday.



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4/27/2020 3:01:06 PM
<![CDATA[IMF praises Egypt's measures confronting COVID-19, comments on new package request]]>
Georgieva added that the Central Bank of Egypt has also implemented timely measures to support the domestic economy.

“To support these efforts and contain the economic and financial impact of the pandemic, the Central Bank and the Government of Egypt have requested financial assistance from the IMF under the Fund’s Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) and a Stand-By Arrangement (SBA),” she referred, noting that the emergency financing under the RFI will allow the government to address any immediate balance of payments needs and support the most affected sectors and vulnerable groups of people. I expect the request for the RFI to be presented to the IMF’s Executive Board within the next few weeks.

Georgieva said that her staff is also working with the Egyptian government to support its strong set of macroeconomic policies through an SBA.

“We fully support the government’s aim to safeguard the significant gains made under the successfully completed three-year Extended Fund Facility last year,” she said.

She clarified that this comprehensive package of financial support, if approved, would help strengthen confidence in the Egyptian economy, make further progress to protect the most vulnerable and provide the basis for a strong economic recovery. It would also help accelerate Egypt’s reform efforts aimed to support broad-based, job-rich and sustainable growth.

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday that the Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program.

This package is to enhance the state’s capabilities to face the new COVID-19 virus crisis, in a proactive step based on the successful implementation of the economic reform program; to maintain the continuing gains and positive results achieved by the Egyptian economy, in light of the exceptional circumstances experienced by all countries of the world and developments in global conditions.

Egypt requests new financial package from IMF for 1 year

CAIRO - 26 April 2020: The Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday.


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4/27/2020 2:46:32 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank 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) decided Monday to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

The overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation are cut to reach 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively.

Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.]]>
4/27/2020 2:04:29 PM
<![CDATA[Value of IMF financial assistance agreement not yet agreed - CBE]]>
Rami Abulnaga told MENA that negotiations are still underway to reach the agreement, set to be divided into two packages.

A Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) will be received within the next few weeks, the CBE deputy governor said.

The package will be urgently determined upon certain accounting transactions based on the performance and indicators of the Egyptian economy. Repayment will be within 5 years, he added.

Another one-year Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) will be requested to allow the government to address any immediate balance of payments needs, Abulnaga said.

The package will be divided into three installments; the first will be received immediately after signing the agreement, he added. ]]>
4/27/2020 1:56:37 PM
<![CDATA[Banking sector holds over LE 1T of cash liquidity: CBE]]>
Addressing a press conference held by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli and the ministerial economic group, Amer noted that the Egyptian banking sector holds over LE 1 trillion of cash liquidity.

This gave a boost to both the public and private sectors during the coronavirus crisis, Amer noted.

It also helped citizens to get access to various financial services, including finance and saving services, he pointed out.

The IMF is keen to go ahead with the new program of cooperation with Egypt, which lasts only for one year, Amer noted. ]]>
4/27/2020 1:53:10 PM
<![CDATA[Goals behind Egypt’s new financial package request from IMF]]>
Egypt Today reviews goals behind this request according to the announced data:


- This package is to enhance the state’s capabilities to face the new COVID-19 virus crisis.

- It’s a proactive step based on the successful implementation of the economic reform program.

- To maintain the continuing gains and positive results achieved by the Egyptian economy, in light of the exceptional circumstances experienced by all countries of the world and developments in global conditions.

- It’s an important step in these current and exceptional circumstances.

- It also aims to continue to maintain the stability of the indicators of the Egyptian economy, as a precaution against any negative effects that may hinder its ability to recover and return to economic growth.


Egypt requests new financial package from IMF for 1 year

CAIRO - 26 April 2020: The Egyptian government and the Central Bank have requested a financial package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to the Rapid Funding Tool program (RFI) and the SBA program, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli announced Sunday.



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4/26/2020 5:17:18 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt requests new financial package from IMF for 1 year]]>
This package is to enhance the state’s capabilities to face the new COVID-19 virus crisis, in a proactive step based on the successful implementation of the economic reform program; to maintain the continuing gains and positive results achieved by the Egyptian economy, in light of the exceptional circumstances experienced by all countries of the world and developments in global conditions.

Madbouli added in a press conference that the government started discussions with IMF to obtain financial support besides the technical one, noting that his government works in parallel to maintain the Egyptian economy with measures to face coronavirus.

“We target to avoid any negative repercussions that affect the Egyptian economy,” he clarified.

The Premier said that the economic reform program helped the government in facing COVID-19 (coronavirus).

For his part, Governor of Egypt's Central Bank Tarek Amer stated that Egypt's new financial program with IMF lasts for a year.

Amer said that Egypt's economy is flexible in terms of obtaining international funding to compensate loss occurred in some sectors due to COVID-19.

“IMF's board is very excited with the new package due to the success of the previous program Egypt obtained,” Amer revealed.

As per banking sector, he said that the sector has been prepared well over the past years, and it was able to withstand well during the current crisis.

Amer noted that Egypt has foreign reserves that exceed its people needs, pointing out that the volume of foreign reserves will help in meeting the Egyptian economy needs during the coming years without disturbances.

‘We have capital of more than LE 450 billion in banks,” he said.

“The deal with IMF has technical and financial parts with the aim to maintain the confidence of the market and positives and gains of economic reform program,” Minister of Finance Mohamed Ma’it said.

Ma’it clarified that the economic reform program has been praised by all economic institutions and it saved a good financial extent for the government and the economy.

‘We were able to absorb big part of current crisis,” he added.
Meanwhile, Minister of Planning Hala el-Saeed said that sectors that are affected by the lockdown are information and communication technology (ICT), agriculture, some of the industrial sectors, clarifying that the government pumped large investments in ICT sector.

“Egypt will record growth rate of 4.2 percent by the end of 2020,” Saeed announced.

As per Minister of International Cooperation, she said that her ministry sought coordination and cooperation with various multilateral and bilateral institutions, clarifying that funds that come from large international institutions are the least costly.


In November 2016, the Executive Board of the IMF approved a $12 billion loan as a financial assistance to Egypt to support the Egyptian economic reform program.

Upon the board's approval in November, Egypt embarked on a bold economic reform program that included floating its currency, losing around 50% of its value, as part of the economic reform program which imposed taxes, including the value-added tax (VAT), and cut energy subsidies, all with the aim of trimming the budget deficit.
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4/26/2020 5:01:17 PM
<![CDATA[Electricity sector accounts for LE 45.3B of Egypt’s public investments in 20/21]]>
These investments will help in the implementation of several strategic projects, including, electrical feeding to East Al-Uwaynat, and projects for extracting minerals from black sand, and the power linkage project with Sudan. In addition, the projects will include transferring and transforming the conflicting network with the project of developing national roads, completing the nuclear plant in Dabaa, electrical feeding to the southeastern coast, and replacing air lines with terrestrial cables.

EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan

CAIRO - 23 April 2020: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan. EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.




Saeed delivered a statement of the sustainable development plan project for the fiscal year 20/2021; the third year of the mid-term plan 18 / 2019-21 / 2022, on Tuesday, before the plenary session of the House of Representatives, headed by Dr. Ali Abd El Al, Speaker of Parliament.

Electricity linkage with Sudan starts experimental operation

CAIRO - 12 January 2020: Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy announced that electricity linkage with Sudan started experimental operation on Sunday and that if it goes well in the next 24 hours, the project will be officially launched in a ceremony by the end of this week.




The minister said that everyone should cooperate and adhere to the precautionary precautions to confront the Corona virus, noting that we are facing a state of uncertainty; it is difficult to determine the required procedures precisely, but it requires the greatest degree of adaptation and flexibility in taking necessary actions and at the appropriate times.

Things to know about Egypt's sustainable development plan for 20/21

CAIRO - 26 March 2020: Egypt's cabinet approved the sustainable development plan for 2020/2021, that was prepared in light of the negative repercussions of the spread of the Corona virus on the global economy, and its expected effects on the Egyptian economy.




She indicated that according to the first scenario - which is the likely scenario - the crisis ends with the end of the current fiscal year (June 2020), but if the crisis continues according to the second scenario until the end of December 2020, the expected estimates will be reduced 30 percent than the first scenario.

Egypt's budget in COVID-19's era

CAIRO - 21 April 2020: Coping with the global and economic circumstances taking place as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19) and the precautionary measures taken to curb it, Egypt's cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli, approved, on March 26, the draft budget and the sustainable development plan for the new fiscal year 2020/2021.



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4/26/2020 4:36:10 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian, Arab organizational purchases keep EGX in green during Ramadan's 1st session ]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 jumped 2.54 percent, or 256.78 points, to close at 10,377.24 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 3.63 percent, or 55.95 points, to end at 1,595.46 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 increased 3.39 percent, or 38.81 points, to close at 1,184.87 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 2.29 percent, or 25.1 points to 1,120.21 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 9.5 billion, recording LE 564.89 billion, compared to LE 555.39 billion in Thursday’s session.

The trading volume reached 408.32 million shares, traded through 35,748 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.02 billion.

Foreign investors were sellers at LE 60.03 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 57.35 million, and LE 2.68 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 15.13 million, LE 7.6 million, and LE 732,536, respectively.

Foreign organizations sold at LE 59.3 million, while Egyptian and Arab organizations bought at LE 72.48 million, and LE 10.29 million, respectively.

Arab Co. for Asset Management and Development, Arab Cotton Ginning, and Belton Financial Holding were top gainers of the session at 11.48 percent, 9.96 percent and 9.95 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, The Arab Dairy Products Co. Arab Dairy - Panda, Northern Upper Egypt Development & Agricultural Production, and Qatar National Bank Alahly were top losers of the session by 8.54 percent, 2.97 percent, and 1.84 percent, respectively.

On Thursday, EGX ended the session in green, as: EGX 30 jumped 3.26 percent, EGX 50 rose 3.59 percent, EGX 70 increased 3.47 percent, and EGX 100 climbed 2.06 percent.

Earlier Thursday, the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan.

EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan

CAIRO - 23 April 2020: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan. EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.



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4/26/2020 2:54:15 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's exports of aluminum, copper hit $171M in Q1 of 2020]]>
Algeria, Italy, Syria, Libya, Turkey, Greece, Jordan, Germany and Morocco accounted for 75.5 percent of the country's aluminum and copper exports during the first three months of 2020, at a total value of $129.7 billion, the ECBM added in a report released on Sunday.

The report pointed out that Egypt's exports of copper and its derivatives went down during the first half of 2020 by about 25 percent to reach $33 million, compared to $44 million in the same period last year. ]]>
4/26/2020 2:20:20 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt Maintains its Leading Position in Startups Deals in MENA : ITIDA]]>
According to the report which was seen by the Information Technology Industry Development Authority (ITIDA) Egypt recorded the largest number of deals, accounting for 37 percent of the total deals in the region, Saudi 24 reported.

According to the report, the volume of financing announced for startups in the Middle East and North Africa increased by two percent compared to the same period in 2019, to reach $ 277 million in 108 projects and startups in the region during that period.

Engineer Hala El Gohary, CEO of ITIDA, pointed out that the authority places the focus of entrepreneurship in the field of information and communications technology within its strategic priorities and its business agenda.

She added that the authority aims to enhance Egypt’s position on the global map of entrepreneurship and technological innovation by doubling the number of companies operating in this field in Egypt and holding more local, regional and international partnerships with the aim of encouraging investment in Egyptian startups and attracting capital and financing to them.

A special report also on Egypt, published by the MAGNiTT Intelligence Research Unit on its website, stated that the climate and business environment for startups in Egypt has become one of the best markets in the Middle East and North Africa region.

The report attributed the growing interest and investment activity in the field of emerging companies in Egypt to several factors, including the availability of government and private initiatives such as the Egyptian Central Bank initiative worth one billion pounds to invest in the financial technology sector, as well as the Commercial International Bank initiative to establish the first risk capital investment company in Egypt in the field of financing Startups with financial technology and the new generation of financial services platforms, and finally the partnership between StartupBootcamp and Pride Capital Fund to launch the StartupBootcamp FinTech program in Cairo.

The report also shed light on the multiple advantages that Egypt enjoys in this field, including increased government support, as well as its population exceeding the barrier of 100 million, which represents 17% of the total population in the region, providing a large market for business leaders, in addition to the direction of many Among students and professionals is increasingly towards entrepreneurship in order to seize the opportunities presented by this market, which the report described as rapidly developing.

The report also praised the movement of investors and the risk capital interest in Egyptian startups in 2019 and the increase in the number of investing entities at unprecedented rates than at any time in the past, as 52 investment entities, mostly from outside Egypt, pumped investments and made new deals in local startups.

On the other hand, a recent report issued by Wamda, a multi-platform platform aimed at accelerating and enhancing incubating environments for entrepreneurship in the MENA region, stated that Egyptians came in first place with a significant difference from their counterparts with regard to the nationality of the founders of startups in the region by 25.7 percent, while Jordanian nationality came in second place with 12 percent, followed by Indian nationality in third place, 7.1 percent, and Lebanese came in fourth with 6 percent.

The report, which was titled “The state of startups in its initial stages”, indicated that Egypt also came first with 33 percent as the most countries in which startups were created and registered, and the UAE came second with 27 percent, followed by Jordan by 11 percent, then the United States of America by 6 percent, and the report also ranked countries that are a center for startups in the initial stages, as the UAE came first with 35 percent, followed by Egypt in second with 25.6 percent, then Jordan with 10.4 percent, Lebanon by 5.9 percent, and Saudi Arabia ranked the fifth by 4.7 percent.

The aforementioned report was based on data from 627 startup founders in addition to the results of research conducted by the work of STEP 2020, one of the largest technical conferences in the Middle East.]]>
4/26/2020 2:15:28 PM
<![CDATA[CAPMAS reports 8.7% increase in patent number in 2019]]>
The office granted 750 patents in 2019 compared to 690 in 2018, the agency said.

The number of patents issued to Egyptians this year hit 175 against 155 in 2018.

Some 575 patents have been granted to non-Egyptian authors this year against 535 in 2018.

A total of 2,183 patent applications were filed with the office in 2019, including 1,027 by Egyptians and 1,156 by foreigners, down by 3.2 percent from 2018.

The CAPMAS statement came on the occasion of the World Intellectual Property Day. ]]>
4/26/2020 2:11:23 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's exports of sanitaryware hit $64M in 3 months]]>
Libya, Germany, Yemen, Britain, Jordan, Turkey, Sudan France and Saudi Arabia take 72 percent of Egypt's sanitary ware and ceramics exports, according to a report by the Export Council for Building Materials, Refractory & Metallurgy Industries. ]]>
4/26/2020 2:09:25 PM
<![CDATA[Sarwa capital’s subsidiary obtains first consumer financing license in Egypt ]]>
“With this license, Contact Credit will be governed and regulated by the Consumer Credit Act no. 18 of the year 2020 instead of the Companies Act no. 159 of the year 1981, and will legally be authorized to operate as a non-banking financing entity regulated by the FRA rather than a trading entity,” Sarwa clarified in a filing to the Egyptian exchange (EGX).

The change brings a number of structural benefits to the company, its partners and its large and growing client base, with a more efficient legal environment helping promote both opportunities and transparency in the consumer credit market, it noted.

According to Sarwa Capital, Contact launched the first dedicated consumer finance platform providing automotive credit to consumers in 2001, and growing to become the largest provider of auto credit in the market, offering financing under various structures for new and used passenger cars and trucks.

“Contact and its subsidiaries offer a range of consumer financing services including mortgages, home finishing and furnishing financing, consumer durable credit, as well as commercial financing through its affiliates Contact Leasing and Contact Factoring,” it clarified.

In total, Contact has provided consumer financing, excluding mortgages, of LE 20 billion with an outstanding portfolio of over LE 5.5 billion at the end of 2019, Sarwa noted.

The company referred to the Consumer Credit Act that was enacted in March, saying that it represents an important milestone in the development and formalization of the large and wide-ranging non-bank consumer financing market.

“The new law comes to light as a result of a sustained and methodical process adopted by the FRA over the course of several years and which involved all stakeholders in the market,” the company said.

Under this law, new consumer finance companies would pay LE 100,000 to the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) to obtain a license provided they have at least LE 10 million in issued capital. In addition, at least 25 percent of the companies must be owned by a financial institution, and founded by legal persons that hold at least 50 percent of the company. Consumer finance companies established before the passage of the legislation would be exempt, unless they are acquired or a third of their issued capital is restructured.

“We are thrilled to receive our newly issued license for our largest operating business of consumer finance, bringing all of our financial activities under the FRA’s regulatory umbrella. The new Consumer Credit Act comes as a culmination of years of efforts led by the FRA in what we believe was an exemplary process to formalize a large and growing industry,” Chairman of Sarwa Capital, Hazem Moussa, commented.
Sarwa Capital Holding for Financial Investments operates within the diversified financial sector focusing on asset management & custody banking.
]]>
4/26/2020 2:00:27 PM
<![CDATA[FRA approves Cairo 3A mandatory offer to acquire Egyptian Starch and Glucose]]>CAIRO – 26 April 2020: The Egyptian Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) has agreed to publish the mandatory tender offer (MTO) submitted by Cairo 3A for International Industries to acquire the Egyptian Starch and Glucose.

FRA clarified in a statement Sunday that Cairo 3A’s MTO includes the purchase of up to 50.077 million shares, which represents 100 percent of the shares of the Egyptian starch and glucose capital, at a price of LE 8.61 per share.

“The period of validity of the compulsory purchase offer begins from the day following the date of the announcement of the offer, starting from Sunday to the end of the trading session on Thursday, May 7,” it noted.

It pointed out that the minimum of the purchase offer is up to 25.5 million shares, representing 51 percent of the shares of the company targeted by the offer.

Earlier in April, the board of directors of Cairo Poultry Company approved the final offer submitted by Cairo 3A for International Industries to buy the company’s stake in the Egyptian Starch and Glucose.

The company clarified that the final decision is still pending the approval of the ordinary general meeting (OGM) set to be held on May 5.

Cairo 3A has offered to buy Cairo Poultry’s stake, 13.65 million shares, in the Egyptian Starch and Glucose for LE 8.54 per share.

On another note, Cairo Poultry recorded net profits after taxes of LE 116.9 million in 2019, compared to LE 147.62 million in 2018.

Cairo Poultry operates within the food, beverage & tobacco sector focusing on packaged foods & meats, and the Egyptian Starch & Glucose operates within the food, beverage sector focusing on agricultural products.
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4/26/2020 1:39:54 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 19B in T-bills Sunday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 8.5 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.
]]>
4/26/2020 1:20:28 PM
<![CDATA[ECBM: Egypt's exports of building materials hit $ 1.5 bn during Q1 2020]]>
According to the monthly report of Export Council for Building Materials, Refractory & Metallurgy Industries (ECBM), the country's exports of building materials, refractory and metallurgy industries recorded 501 million dollars in March.

Ten countries account for almost 75.4 percent of the exports with a values of 1.15 billion dollars, according to the report.

Egypt's exports of building materials to the UAE increased during the first three months of 2020 by 64 percent to reach 567 million dollars.

The latest rise in exports to the UAE makes the Gulf country absorbing nearly 37 percent of Egypt's building material export, the report read.

Egypt's exports of building material to Canada have reached 191 million dollars between January-March 2020, with am increase of 23 percent, while exports to Italy rose by 29 percent and to Turkey by 34 percent.

Exports to Australia rose by 4,048 percent to record 33 million dollars and to Spain by 19 percent to reach 33 million dollars as well.

Exports of building materials to the US retreated by 56 percent to hit 26 million dollars during the first quarter of 2020, as exports to Saudi Arabia dropped to 74 million dollars with a decline of 24 percent.

Meanwhile, exports of jewels and precious stones reached 743 million dollars during the first three months of 2020, with an increase of 58 percent, according to the report. ]]>
4/25/2020 2:53:36 PM
<![CDATA[Oil ministry: Gas supplied to 110 tourist facilities in Sharm]]>
This came in a report Minister of Petroleum Tareq al Mollah received from Sinai gas CEO Mohamed Anwar on Saturday, as the report pointed out that the three-stage project comes within the framework of ministry’s efforts to develop Sinai peninsula.

It said out that 90 percent of the first stage of the project has been fulfilled.
The report indicated that the project would contribute to the promotion of tourism and provide more job opportunities through the use of natural gas as alternative fuel, said a statement issued by the Ministry.

It added that natural gas will also be supplied to houses in the city of Arish in north Sinai and that the city citizens will enjoy facilitation in the supply service as they will pay the dues in installments over six years.]]>
4/25/2020 1:19:38 PM
<![CDATA[Coronavirus: EGAS ends 2 agreements with foreign partners over non-compliance]]>
The EGAS, in a statement issued on Saturday, said a settlement agreement and another framework agreement signed with ENI, Naturgy, Union Venusa Gas and the Spanish Egyptian Natural Gas Company (Cigas) were canceled.

The statement indicated that EGAS is ready to enter into new negotiations in this regard after observing some of the conditions.

Under the settlement agreement, all the international arbitration clauses issued against Egypt should have been settled along with all conflicts between Egypt and EGAS from one side and Union Venusa Gas along with Cigas from the other side as regards the selling and buying of natural gas.]]>
4/25/2020 12:26:12 PM
<![CDATA[Minister says developing Sinai major axis in Egyptian government program]]>
In a statement on Friday, the minister added that the state exerts constant efforts to achieve Sinai development and reconstruction as well as to secure the funding needed for implementing projects in North and South Sinai.

The state seeks to achieve comprehensive development in Sinai and protect the Egyptian national security as well as to carry out several national and services projects in Sinai, Shaarawi pointed out.

Shaarawi asserted that his ministry has followed up with the other state bodies the implementation of a number of national projects over the past two years in Sinai, including those implemented in North Sinai at total investments of EGP 7 billion and the others implemented in South Sinai at investments worth EGP 18 billion.

Allocations for the projects of the investment plan for the South Sinai government in the current fiscal year 2019/2020 have hit about EGP 288 million, he said.

Meanwhile, allocations for the projects of the investments plan for North Sinai in fiscal year 2019/2020 reached about EGP 261 million, he added. ]]>
4/24/2020 2:16:55 PM
<![CDATA[Coming phase offers great opportunity to boost local industry - PM]]>
Meeting with businessmen at the General Authority of Investments HQs, Madbouli added that the government is willing to provide all possible incentives for Egyptian manufacturers to support the industrial sector.

Some incentives recently announced by the government were previously considered, such as reducing the price of natural gas and electricity to factories and other initiatives to ease bureaucratic procedures, the premier said.

The state needs to compensate many imports that have stopped due to the current global circumstances, he added.

Madbouli urged a serious national initiative aiming to expand the production of industry inputs locally to meet the needs of many sectors.

He urged businessmen and investors to help the government apply its vision aiming to achieve a quantum leap in the industrial sector. ]]>
4/24/2020 2:13:02 PM
<![CDATA[Businessman Ayman Al-Gamil praises efforts of developing Sinai ‘largest construction movement’ ]]>
“For the first time, the turquoise land [Sinai] is organically linked to the valley and the delta through tunnels, water spikes and infrastructure of the canal governorates, which promises a comprehensive revival in that precious spot on Egypt, whether in agricultural or industrial projects or mining projects and extracting natural resources,” He said, noting that this will be reflected in providing hundreds of thousands of job opportunities for the people of Sinai and the surrounding governorates.

Gamil, which is concerned with investing in labor-intensive agricultural and industrial projects, said that President Abdel-Fatah Al-Sisi is implementing the largest reconstruction movement witnessed by the turquoise land in its history, which will change the stereotype image of the desert Sinai to a completely new area replete with industrial, agricultural and tourism projects, and will turn into a destination for investment and skilled labor from all parts of Egypt.

He also emphasized the importance of the role of the Suez Canal tunnels in connecting the residents of the Delta governorates to the Sinai, and thus the ease of citizens movement there instead of the crowds around the Nile Delta, in addition to facilitating the establishment of huge investment projects in the turquoise land, in addition to the implementation of a group of tunnels in a record time by Egyptian companies which is an achievement for the private sector.

The businessmen also called for positive interaction from investors, businessmen and entrepreneurs, referring to President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi’s speech, who called for continued economic activity with taking all preventive measures from the new Corona virus “Covid-19”.

He further stressed his companies ’commitment to continuing work and ensuring maximum protection for employees, And do not do without any employment.
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4/23/2020 5:12:45 PM
<![CDATA[WB: Egypt sees strong economic growth rates]]>
In a report published on Thursday, the WB said the successful economic reform program introduced in 2016 helped the country in supporting macroeconomic stability and enhancing rate of growth, generating a strong surplus in the primary budget, and reducing the debt-to-GDP ratio, as well as replenishing the foreign currency reserves.

The report showed that Egypt achieved a growth rate of 5.6 percent in the 2018/19 fiscal year, upping from 5.3 percent in the fiscal year 2017/18.

The WB ascribed the rise in growth rate to the recovery of some sectors, such as wholesale and retail trade, agriculture and manufacturing, in addition to the improvement in investment rates and net exports.

The WB pointed to the cash facility available in private credit, especially after the Central Bank of Egypt's decision to cut interest rates by 3 percent in March, as a result of the decline in the average inflation rate by 5.8 percent during the first half of the 2019/20 fiscal year. ]]>
4/23/2020 5:03:54 PM
<![CDATA[Cabinet publishes infograph on keeping Egypt's credit rating by Moody's, S&P]]>
International credit rating agencies Moody's and Standard & Poor's (S&P) maintained the country's credit rating at B2 with a stable outlook.

This was ascribed to the success of the economic reform program in building sound economic foundations that help the country to deal with any crises, including the coronavirus pandemic, the center said.

The center added that Moody's kept Egypt's credit rating unchanged, given the expected growth rates backed by the implementation of economic and financial reforms since 2016, as well as an improvement in the monetary policy.

Moody's also predicted that the country's external liquidity will remain sufficient to absorb shocks, in spite of the negative impact of the coronavirus crisis on the economic activity and the foreign reserves, the center noted.

Meanwhile, Standard & Poor's expected that the rate of investments will reach 17 percent of the gross domestic product in 2021, as a result of taking a number of measures to raise consumption and increase public and private investments, the center said.

The financial rating agency S&P forecast that Egypt will achieve a growth rate of 2.8 percent in 2020, compared to 5.6 percent in 2019, while the average inflation rate will hit 6 percent in 2020, against 13.9 percent in 2019.

According to the agency's estimates for 2020, the country is expected to see a decline in the trade deficit by 11.1 percent of the GDP, while the unemployment rate would stand at 7.5 percent. ]]>
4/23/2020 4:59:46 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Thursday green, market cap. gains LE 11.24B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 jumped 3.26 percent, or 319.13 points, to close at 10,120.46 points.

The equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 3.59 percent, or 53.41 points, to end at 1,539.51 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 increased 3.47 percent, or 38.43 points, to close at 1,146.06 points, and the broader index EGX 100 climbed 2.06 percent, or 22.4097 points to 1,095.11 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 11.24 billion, recording LE 555.39 billion, compared to LE 544.15 billion in Wednesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 400.19 million shares, traded through 37,467 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.09 billion.

Foreign investors were sellers at LE 112.14 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 74.16 million, and LE 37.97 million, respectively.

Arab and foreign individuals were net sellers at LE 2.68 million, and LE 3.91 million, respectively, while Egyptian individuals were net buyers at LE 26.7 million.

Foreign organizations sold at LE 108.22 million, while Egyptian and Arab organizations bought at LE 47.44 million, and LE 40.66 million, respectively.

Dice Sport & Casual Wear, Universal for Paper and Packaging Materials (Unipack), and Belton Financial Holding were top gainers of the session at 11.85 percent, 10.05 percent and 9.98 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Al Baraka Bank Egypt, Grand Investment Capital, and Egyptian International Pharmaceuticals (EIPICO) were top losers of the session by 7.66 percent, 6.53 percent, and 6.37 percent, respectively.

On Wednesday, EGX ended the session on a semi- collective rise, as: EGX 30 dipped 0.75 percent, while EGX 50 rose 0.87 percent, EGX 70 increased 1.13 percent, and EGX 100 inched up 0.04 percent.

EGX was off on during the first two days of the week on the occasion of Easter and Sham El-Nessiem Holidays.

Earlier Thursday, the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan.

EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan

CAIRO - 23 April 2020: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) decided the time of trading session during the Holy month of Ramadan. EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.



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4/23/2020 3:58:56 PM
<![CDATA[EGX announces trading hours during the Holy month of Ramadan]]>
EGX added on its website that trading session of main market listed securities and SMEs market (NILEX); will be from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm, preceded by a discovery session at 9:30 am.

“The time to record orders in the deals market for transactions with large volume from 9:15 am to 9:45 am,” it added.

According to EGX, the trading session for non-listed securities (Orders Market, OTC) will be on Monday and Wednesday only of each week from 11:30 am to 12:00 pm.

“The trading session for non-listed securities (Deals Market, OTC) will be from 09:30 am to 1:30 pm,” it added.

Moreover, the trading session for non-listed securities (Central Depository) will be from 10:00 am to 11:30 am, and the time to divide Omnibus Accounts will be from 1:30 pm to 2:00 pm.

On Wednesday, EGX ended the session on a semi- collective rise, as: EGX 30 dipped 0.75 percent, while EGX 50 rose 0.87 percent, EGX 70 increased 1.13 percent, and EGX 100 inched up 0.04 percent.
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4/23/2020 3:21:30 PM
<![CDATA[High-efficiency of cash dispensers is urged - CBE]]>
In a statement, the central bank also underlined the importance of sterilizing all cash dispensers on a periodical basis as part of precautionary measures against COVID-19.

The statement came after the CBE raised the withdrawal limit from ATM machines from LE 5,000 to 20,000 daily to help secure citizens' needs during the fasting month of Ramadan.

It also increased the withdrawal limit through bank tellers from LE 10,000 to 50,000 daily. ]]>
4/23/2020 2:41:24 PM
<![CDATA[Total output of Egypt's MSMEs hits LE 1.2T: CAPMAS]]>
The official statistics agency added that the MSMEs produced a total output recording LE 1.237 trillion and achieved a total added value of LE 804 billion.

These figures have been announced as per the economic census for the 2017/2018 fiscal year, the agency said.

The number of micro-sized enterprises was put at 3.4 million, accounting for 94 percent of the total MSMEs in Egypt, it said, adding that 7.7 million staffers work there, constituting 79 percent of the total workers in the field.

The production of micro projects is estimated at LE 534.9 billion, representing 43.2 percent and achieving an added value of LE 411.5 billion representing 51.2 percent, it said.

The CAPMAS added that the number of small enterprises hit 216.9 constituting 5.6 percent, with a total output recording EGP 527.5 billion accounting for 42.6 percent of the total MSMEs production.

They achieved an added value of EGP 296.3 billion, representing 36.8 percent, it noted.

The statistics agency added that the number of medium-scale projects registered 2,181, representing 0.1 percent of the total MSMEs, with total production hitting EGP 175.1 billion constituting 14.1 percent and an added value of EGP 96.3 billion representing 12 percent.]]>
4/23/2020 2:37:59 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt approves $6B-amendment of U.S. assistance agreement]]>
This approval brings the total of the agreement that was initially signed between the Ministry of International Cooperation and the Government of the United States of America represented by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)to $56 million.

Commenting on this agreement, Minister of International Cooperation Rania Al-Mashat affirmed that this agreement comes in line with the new strategy of her ministry which is based on 3 main axes, noting that the first axis is about “Egyptian people” who are the focus of attention and ongoing projects.

“For the first axis, the citizen is the focus of the government attention and the project will provide drinking water for about 300,000 citizens and sanitation services for about 100,000 citizens,” she clarified.

“With regard to the second axis, which is ongoing projects; this project is compatible with the economic and social reform program of the Egyptian government, and includes drilling water wells in North Sinai, the establishment of desalination plants, the work of a fish farm and the use of water from the farm in agriculture, and support for transportation services throughout the governorate,” Al-Mashat noted, pointing out that these come as part of the efforts of the Ministry of International Cooperation to provide grants through development partners that contribute to improving the lives of citizens in Sinai, as part of the second phase of the Sinai Development Program.

The Minister noted that the project contributes to achieving five goals for sustainable development. including clean water and hygiene goal by providing safe drinking water for citizens, along with the goals of eliminating hunger, providing food security and improved nutrition and promoting agriculture Sustainable, through the work of a fish farm and the use of water from the farm in sustainable agriculture, and the eighth goal of sustainable development which is decent work and economic growth, where the project contributes to improving employment opportunities in North Sinai governorate in light of the exceptional circumstances the economy is going through, as a result of the emerging Corona virus.

She added that the goals also include the eleventh goal of sustainable cities and communities through the means of transport for rural communities and improving the infrastructure, and support the most needy groups, and the seventeenth goal is to hold a partnership to achieve the goals, through the partnership between Egypt and the U.S. in North Sinai development, which comes within the economic partnership between the two countries in the development sectors of national priority and the development projects and programs that have been identified in accordance with the priorities of the citizen.

For his part, Chairman of the Transport and Communications Committee in the House of Representatives, and Chairman of the Joint Committee of Transportation, Agriculture, Local Administration, Foreign Relations and Housing Committees of the Council, Hisham Abdel Wahed, confirmed that the committee agreed to this grant because of its clear growth impact affecting improving services provided to citizens in the center And North Sinai.

He stated in the report submitted by the joint committee before the plenary session of the House of Representatives, that the amendment made by the Ministry of International Cooperation to this agreement would enhance the necessary capabilities to achieve the goals of the North Sinai initiative by providing logistical services for agricultural activities such as the construction of wells and desalination and treatment of groundwater that work to improve productivity and technology, including irrigation and marketing, to allow Sinai farmers and their producers to compete in the internal and export markets, and to improve transport services in the central and northern Sinai region.]]>
4/23/2020 2:12:40 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt's central bank issues LE 20.5B in T-bills Thursday]]>
The T-bills will be offered in two installments; the first installment is valued at LE 10billion 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) decided April 2 to keep the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation at 9.25 percent, 10.25 percent, and 9.75 percent, respectively. Moreover, credit and discount rates are cut at 9.75 percent from 12.75 percent.

Earlier, CBE decided to cut the overnight deposit rate, the overnight lending rate, and the rate of the main operation in an emergency meeting by 300 basis points.

Egypt's 2020/2021 draft budget aims to reduce public debt of GDP to 82.7 percent by end of June 2021, up from earlier target of 82.5 percent by the end of June 2020 and to 77.5 percent by the end of June 2022.

Due to official holiday on next Sunday and Monday, Ministry of Finance issued Wednesday T-bills and T- bonds worth LE 21 billion and LE 3.5 billion, respectively.
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4/23/2020 1:38:49 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt targets LE620M- revenues from offering licenses for iron, cement ]]>
The cement sector in Egypt is witnessing a severe recession amid a large surplus in production, and companies are searching for how to discharge it, which threatens the industry and led to the closure of some factories, according to Reuters.

In the same vein, the iron sector is witnessing a conflict between the pallet producers and the small rolling factories that depend on imports due to the preventive fees imposed by the country at the end of last year on some imports of iron and steel products.

Pharos Holding said earlier that total sales volume (domestic and export) decreased by 0.8 percent on a year on year basis, to 49.8 million tons in fiscal year 2019. It added that domestic consumption dipped by 3.5 percent on an annual basis, to about 48.7 million tons.

Egypt's production of reinforcing steel is between 7 million and 7.5 million tons annually.]]>
4/22/2020 6:14:03 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to cut fuel subsidies, increase net debt issuance in 2020/21 budget]]>
It allocates 52.963 billion pounds for fuel subsidies for the 2020/21 fiscal year, which begins on July 1.

In the most recent data available, the government cut its spending on fuel subsidies by about 69% to 7.25 billion pounds in the July-September 2019 quarter.

The government’s draft budget also shows it aims to increase its net debt issuance by 19.7% to 974.482 billion pounds.

Its plans include issuance of treasury bonds worth 700 billion pounds and treasury bills worth 274.482 billion pounds, the document said.]]>
4/22/2020 6:10:50 PM
<![CDATA[BNP Paribas: Egypt economy to reach positive growth, can limit coronavirus negative effects]]>
In a report, a copy of which has been received by MENA, the bank said Egypt's foreign currency reserves have noticeably improved over the past few months, which supports the Egyptian pound's rate against foreign currencies.

The pandemic has caused a retreat in growth rates but are still positive and would not hinder the government's ability to finance the current balance or pay foreign debts, the report said.

Offering aid and economic support has been a priority to the Egyptian government through a series of economic measures taken recently to confront the repercussions of the coronavirus with the aim to ease the burden on the citizens and limit the expected losses of companies, the report added.

The French bank expected a positive growth by 2.6% during this fiscal 2020 and by 3.4% in 2021.

The bank also expects the annual rate of inflation to reach 5.9% in 2020 and 7.5% in 2021.

Before the pandemic, Egypt reached a 5.6% growth rate in fiscal 2018/2019 and maintained a strong pace in fiscal 2019/2020 and during the third quarter of the same fiscal, according to the report.]]>
4/22/2020 5:35:44 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends Wednesday on semi-collective rise, market cap. Loses LE 1.9B]]>
The benchmark EGX 30 dipped 0.75 percent, or 73.61 points, to close at 9,801.33 points.

On the other hand, the equally weighted index EGX 50 rose 0.87 percent, or 12.84 points, to end at 1,486.1 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX 70 increased 1.13 percent, or 12.36 points, to close at 1,107.63 points, and the broader index EGX 100 inched up 0.04 percent, or 0.47 points to 1,073.02 points.

Market capitalization lost LE 1.92 billion, recording LE 544.15 billion, compared to LE 546.07 billion in Tuesday’s session.

The trading volume reached 373.1 million shares, traded through 30,840 transactions, with a turnover of LE 1.67 billion.

Foreign investors were sellers at LE 204.59 million, while Egyptian and Arab investors were net buyers at LE 195.4 million, and LE 9.19 million, respectively.

Egyptian, Arab and foreign individuals were net buyers at LE 39.95 million, LE 19.06 million, and LE 1.8 million, respectively.

Egyptian organizations bought at LE 155.44 million, while Arab and foreign organizations sold at LE 9.86 million, and LE 206.44 million, respectively.

Ismailia National Food Industries, Dice Sport & Casual Wear, and Modern Company for water proofing (Bitumode) were top gainers of the session at 20.14 percent, 9.79 percent and 9.76 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Misr Hotels, Delta for Printing & Packaging, and Egypt for Poultry were top losers of the session by 8.90 percent, 7.18 percent, and 4.94 percent, respectively.

On Tuesday, EGX ended the session on mixed note, as: EGX 30 dipped 2.75 percent, EGX 50 declined 0.78 percent, EGX 70 dropped 0.19 percent, and EGX 100 lessened 1.06 percent.

EGX was off on during the first two days of the week on the occasion of Easter and Sham El-Nessiem Holidays.]]>
4/22/2020 5:32:16 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt raises daily limit for cash withdrawal to LE20K]]>
According to El-Etreby, the withdrawal limits for individuals will be modified to be LE 20,000 per day via ATM machines, up from LE 5,000. He clarified that withdrawal limit in banks' branches will reach LE 50,000 instead of LE 10,000.


By the end of March, CBE decided to set a daily limit for deposits and cash withdrawals for a temporary period in banks' branches, at LE 10,000 for individuals and LE 50,000 for companies.

"Companies are excluded from this limit to be able to pay the dues of their employees," CBE said in a statement.

It also decided a daily limit for deposits and cash withdrawals from ATM machines at LE 5,000, indicating that the banks sterilize and disinfect those machines periodically.

This comes in the context of the state’s keenness on the health and safety of citizens and reducing the risks of coronavirus (COVID-19) with the aim of ensuring protection and avoiding crowding and gatherings, especially in the periods of withdrawing salaries and pensions.

Egypt sets daily limit for deposits, cash withdrawals temporarily

CAIRO - 29 March 2020: The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) decided Sunday to set a daily limit for deposits and cash withdrawals for a temporary period in banks' branches, at LE 10,000 for individuals and LE 50,000 for companies.


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4/22/2020 5:20:24 PM
<![CDATA[How is COVID-19 affecting Egypt’s startup ecosystem? Entrepreneurs talk, consultants advice]]>
A lot of reports, published in the past couple of weeks, asserted that it is going to be harder for startups to attract consumers and show traction. Consumers may not buy as much as they used to. The growth of these startups will suffer making it even more difficult for them to raise a round of funding sooner.

Trying to get a clearer picture, we have gathered some responses from startups in different industries as well as business consultants. Although we can’t forecast the future, a collaborative urge amongst entrepreneurs is clear, with everyone eager to share their advice for survival.

Transportation: Wasel

“The curfew affected our company significantly, now the demand on intercity transportation dropped, and the number of our weekly trips decreased by nearly 50 percent in the first two weeks of the curfew, which in turn affected our revenue and our drivers' revenue,” Founder and CEO of Wasel Ahmed el-Rawy told Egypt Today.

Wasel is an intercity transportation platform that connects passengers with professional limousine drivers for a convenient, reliable, and available on demand trips.

Asked about the measures his company took to mitigate the pandemic’s effect, Rawy said the company re-developed its business model, cutting the company’s commission on trips and making it 25-percent cheaper to make it easier for travelers to use the service safely with less money. This has gradually increased tractions and revenues for the company’s drivers; revenues could also be enhanced by taking a commission on round trips only to cover the company's expenses without affecting the driver's daily revenue.

Furthermore, Wasel launched the new service, Intercity Carpooling, so that any driver with an air-conditioned car can pick-up up to three travelers on his way with a cheap price that covers his fuel cost, and only a 10-percent commission for the company, a win-win situation.

“The crisis' impact will continue until the end of September with possibilities to extend to the end of the year, but we are working continuously on developing our business model, and alternative plans. We are doing everything to make our company sustainable to pass this hard time for everybody,” he said.

Rawy advises all startup owners to have a deep look at their financials; cut extra expenses; re-develop their business model; look for other sources of revenues; and decide together to push, pause or even pivot their activity. "It is time to do whatever it takes to make your company sustainable."

Digital Marketing: LemonAI LLC

The situation isn’t much better when it comes to digital marketing startups, as Mohamed Ali, the owner of LemonAI LLC, admitted that business nowadays is very tough especially that his startup is b2b focused and most of his company’s customers are currently trying to save as much cash as possible instead of spending it on software services and digital marketing.

“As a company, we know that it’s a real hard to sell or gain new customers nowadays, but we are trying to save enough cash to cover our expenses for a period of three months,” Ali told Egypt Today.

In an attempt to limit the losses, the company launched an initiative offering free marketing services to companies, including managing social media platforms, doing designs, article writing, and managing the software. “This initiative aims to help us in building a new database so that we can have some work to show off after the end of this crisis,” Ali clarified.

Sadly, the creative entrepreneur said that if the crisis lasts more than three months, it will be very tough for his company to continue. However, Ali still holds hope to survive. He advises startups’ owners to save as much cash as possible, limit expenses, and most importantly save employees and never give up on them as they are the real assets.

Tourism & Travel: Hub Adventure

“It’s a tough moment to be in the tourism industry as tourism and entertainment are the main sectors affected by the crisis. We are totally shut down until the end of this pandemic,” Ahmed al-gameel, founder of HubAdventure told Egypt Today.

HubAdventure Travel is a travel company offering luxury corporate and leisure travel and advisory services.

Explaining the company’s situation right now, gameel said that all travel and tourism startups are on hold. “We don’t know when this will end but we know that our sector will be the last one to be back.”

“However, there is a light of hope amid the darkness, as some reports said that once the global economy has somewhat recovered, tourism-related startups will be the toast of the town,” gameel told us. He indicated that after the rate of infection has decreased significantly in China, large numbers of people flocked to popular tourist sites and major cities across the country, where several hotels in touristic areas are now fully booked in weekends.

“But still, there is another scenario that individuals in Egypt might remain afraid of going out of the country even after the crisis ended and travel go back,” he added.

Automotive Engineering: Auto Parts

“The pandemic has severely affected me and my business in many aspects; the sales are not of the same speed or quality as before. The sales have dropped by 60 percent,” Abo Bakr el-Mashtoly, founder and CEO at Auto Parts said.

Nonetheless, Mashtoly sees this period as a good opportunity to develop his company’s product and train his employees so that they can compensate losses caused by the crisis after it ends.

“One piece of advice I give to newly launched startups is to survive the crisis and take advantage of it; life has paused and you have some time to take further steps in your product’s improvement,” Mashtoly concluded.

Motorsports industry: MK

“We aren’t so much affected by the pandemic until now, as the company has adopted new procedures, including offering discounts and delivery services that mitigate the losses,” Moustafa Farouk, founder of MK industries Egypt said.

MK is an Egyptian startup that is specialized in fabricating premium quality parts for cars, motorcycle, karts, and racing parts.

Co-working Spaces

“Businesses that have high fixed costs are the most affected and co-working spaces are going through a huge crisis as most of them have a strategic location, and pay high rents, so their margin may be very low,” Abdul Rahman el-Gohary, a freelance business developer said.

Though many startup owners are not optimistic about the coming months, business consultants see many opportunities in this tough stage.

“I believe that the economy will recover after the crash because this is what happened in past crises. Startups will undoubtedly need some time to recover, but how long this takes depends on the type of business and the governmental support that startups, SMEs and the business sector will receive. In general, it will take less than one year,” Managing Partner at AJA Venture, CEO at ITEX, Hany Sewilam told Egypt Today.

“One of the advantages of COVID-19 is that most startups have started to carefully monitor their financial metrics and understand the importance of cash. In business we say, 'Cash is king.' And finally, we see entrepreneurs deal with that fact,” Sewilam added.

More so, startups changed their business attitude from counting on contracts in the pipeline, to going into survival mode by counting on managing the current accounts they already have.

Asked about measures entrepreneurs should take to face the current challenges, Sewilam said that many startups and entrepreneurs have found ways to reduce the drain of their expenses by controlling the monthly fixed and variable costs, and negotiating with vendors, distributors, business suppliers and service providers to reduce variable costs. Unfortunately, many startups have also laid-off employees to cope with the decrease in sales volume and business income.

On the effect of working from home on revenues, Sewilam clarified that most startups were not qualified for this step. “It was difficult for business owners and entrepreneurs to work from home in a way that generates profit and revenue, but with many resources and guidelines explaining how to manage your business and your team from home, I see that many of the startups start to make profit and customize a home-based revenue model, which is amazing.”

He said that entrepreneurs shouldn’t let this crisis kill their dreams, make it an opportunity to gain experience and build a good relationship with their existing customers. "Also, I want every entrepreneur to stay alert for the inflection point as with almost all things in life, this crisis will pass very soon, and if your company is alive and flexible, there will be great opportunities for you to write your business name in the new economy chapter," Sewilam stressed.

"Finally, if you are going through the most difficult time in your business cycle, don’t let the wrong decisions take over you. I know that right now most of the startups are looking for sources of cash; my advice is to find sources of cash that are non-equity. Think of ways to get government grants, explore the SBA programs that have been put in place to help small businesses, be creative with finding sources of cash to stay alive, including potentially doing some short-term deals that help the immediate crunch. After the crisis, this cash can push your business forward or hold you back," Sewilam concluded.

Walid Saed, business consultant at Callmars, also advises startups to think of completely pivoting their businesses, especially if they are in early stages.

“We don’t know when this crisis will end; we have no expectations. But I’m sure that few startups will grow, a lot will close, and many more will withstand these circumstances.”
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4/22/2020 2:50:23 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to direct LE 47 billion to Upper Egypt during 2020/21 ]]>
She clarified that the directed amount increased 50 percent compared to 2019/2020 plan.

“The government investment plan includes about LE 2.9 billion directed to development programs in Qena and Sohag governorates, raising the amount directed to this program to about LE 7.9 billion in 4 years starting from 2017/2018,” she clarified

She said that the plan also includes directing LE 19.2 billion to the border governorates (North and South Sinai, Matruh, and New Valley) with a growth rate of more than 60 percent.

The sustainable development plan for Egypt estimated that the total investments amounted to LE 740 billion during the next fiscal year, compared to LE 840 billion pounds expected in the current year, and LE 970 billion investments in 2019-2018.

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4/21/2020 9:25:17 PM
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