Thursday, 25 March 2021

EnterprisePM — The Suez Saga continues.

TL;DR

WHAT WE’RE TRACKING TONIGHT

Good afternoon, everyone and what a lovely sunny and clear day to kick start the weekend. Today’s weather has us playing The Peddlers on loop (listen, runtime: 3:38).

THE BIG STORY OF THE DAY here at home and abroad remains the ongoing traffic jam at the Suez Canal, with the situation still unclear as of dispatch time on when normal traffic can start to resume at the waterway. Officials are still working to move the moored container vessels. The global press, meanwhile, is still trying to count the cost of the impact of the congestion on the global economy. The situation still remains fodder for twitter comedians, and regular ones too, with the US late night talk shows chiming in, including Stephen Colbert (watch, runtime: 12:05). We have the story chapter and verse in the Speed Round below.

CATCH UP QUICK on the top stories from this morning’s edition of EnterpriseAM (that don’t have anything to do with boats lining up):

  • The Madbouly cabinet signed off on the draft FY2021-2022 budget yesterday, which projects GDP growth at 5.4% and the overall deficit narrowing to 6.6%.
  • The central bank injected EGP 1 bn in preliminary funding to brokerages on the EGX to help boost trade volumes.
  • The EGX30 snapped its losing streak yesterday as institutional investors stepped up their activity again, accounting for 36% of activity yesterday against 29% on Monday and 33% on Tuesday.

YOUR MANDATORY COVID STORY OF THE DAY- AstraZeneca revised its covid-19 vaccine efficacy to 76% in updated US trials, just slightly lower than the previously reported 79% rate of effectiveness, the company said in a statement. Earlier this week, the US’s independent monitoring board called out AstraZeneca’s analysis of the jab’s efficacy as relying in part on old data and threatening accurate efficacy figures. In response, the biopharma company released more up-to-date data from its US vaccine trial. The vaccine was well tolerated, and no safety concerns were found, the statement added. The small revision to the efficacy rate will go a long way to putting the vaccine back on track for gaining emergency authorization in the US, which the company plans to do in the next few weeks, says Reuters.

🗓 CIRCLE YOUR CALENDAR-

Bok, prijatelji: The Egyptian-Croatian Business Forum meets next Wednesday, 31 March, for the first time since 2010. On the table: Giving a nudge to both trade and investment, a FEDCOC statement says. The forum will take place while Croatian Foreign Minister Gordan Grlić-Radman is in town next week. Grlić-Radman and Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry are expected to attend.

Former cabinet minister Ghada Waly will address AmCham on Sunday at 3pm. Now the executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Waly will talk about tackling corruption in African countries and women’s rights. Tap or click here to register for the event (Zoom event, not in person).

The Arab Federation of Exchanges Annual Conference 2021 is taking place virtually on Monday and Tuesday. The conference will discuss ESGs for economic growth and capital markets as well as fintech and innovation.

Head to Sharm for a startup gathering: Investors, entrepreneurs and policymakers will gather in Sharm El Sheikh for the Startup Festival on Sunday and Monday, 28-29 March. More than 80 startups will participate in the exhibition, which will feature panel discussions and workshops.

The National Museum of Egyptian Civilization is set to open on 3 April in El Fustat. Local and international visitors alike will pay less for admission for the first two weeks to explore the museum’s central hall, according to a cabinet statement. Meanwhile, the Royal Mummies Hall will be ready for visitors starting 18 April.

The Spring Flowers Exhibit (Ma3rad El Zohoor) is currently taking place at Orman Botanical Garden in Giza. More than 200 exhibitors have set up shop to sell flowers, plants, agricultural products, and gardening equipment. The exhibit runs through 13 April.

AUC Press’ Mad March book sale will wrap up by the end of the month. The sale is open to the general public every day from 10am–6pm CLT at AUC Tahrir Bookstore & Garden.

🚙 FOR YOUR COMMUTE-

Looks like ESG is just a buzz word for global banks: Global banks and financial institutions have provided USD 750 bn in financing to coal, oil and gas companies in 2020, despite many having pledged to back the Paris climate accord, according to research (pdf) done by the Rainforest Action Network (RAN). Since 2016, when the Paris Agreement was adopted, the world’s 60 largest private sector banks financed fossil fuels with around USD 3.8 tn.

RAN outs the bad actors: BNP Paribas in recent years has positioned itself as a leader in green finance and signed a UN-backed commitment to “align its portfolio” to limit global warming. On the ground, however, the French bank has recorded the largest absolute increase in funding to fossil fuel companies in 2020, with a 41% y-o-y jump to USD 41 bn, while overall pollution-contributing spending reached USD 121 bn since the Paris accord. Meanwhile, US banks such as JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup have reduced their financing to fossil fuel companies last year, but have provided a cumulative of USD 555 bn since 2016 and are in spots one and two respectively in the reports’ hall of shame.

Banks’ net-zero plans are “dangerously weak, half-baked or vague”, RAN said, pointing to the recent trend of big companies announcing plans to reduce emissions or make their portfolio more green.

READ MORE- We explore how some of the biggest asset managers have been using climate change as a marketing ploy. This came as the EU has taken steps to curb this green-washing.


Meanwhile, VCs have caught the ESG investing bug: There’s a new wave of investment in clean energy start-ups driven by China’s success in scaling solar power and cost reduction in wind energy and battery technology, says the Financial Times. Listed companies set to benefit from the transition away from fossil fuels are worth a collective USD 6 tn, with investors getting behind green battery metals, sustainable aviation fuel, lab-produced meat, and low carbon concrete, amidst rising concerns that climate stocks are overheating. VCs have doled out over USD 16.3 bn on climate-tech investments in 2020, according to a PwC report.

What happened during clean tech 1.0? In the last decade, green energy was touted as Silicon Valley’s next financial revolution, but “it was really a boom and bust driven by the over-allocation of venture capital,” experts tell the salmon-colored paper. China’s rapid expansion into the production of solar panels drove the cost of polysilicon down by 80% over the decade, and the need for solar energy innovation out of Silicon Valley diminished. VCs lost around half of the USD 25 bn invested in clean tech between 2006 and 2011, says PwC. By 2015, the majority of solar panels used around the world were made in China.

What’s different this time? Entrepreneurs are focused on a bigger set of challenges, they are backed by deep-pocket corporate investors promising to decarbonise their operations, and an existing market for these products is supported by government pledges to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, analysts suggest.


enterprise

A Lionel Messi lookalike is bringing joy to children’s faces at an orphanage in Zagazig, reports Reuters. Islam Battah puts on the Barcelona football player’s jersey and makes sure to challenge the kids to a match. We’ve got to say, the resemblance is uncanny.

📺 ON THE TUBE TONIGHT-

(All times in CLT)

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps has been added to OSN’s streaming platform. While the original took us into the depth of the corporate raider world and leveraged buyouts of the 80s, the sequel takes place squarely at the onset of the global financial crisis and Lehman collapse. The film follows Gordon Gekko (once again superbly portrayed by an aged Michael Douglas) after his stint in prison for insider trading as he tries to repair his broken relationship with his daughter by forging an alliance with her fiance, Jake (that guy from Transformers who lost his mind).

They don’t make proteges like they used to: Be forewarned, the sequel is nowhere near as good as the original, despite not being a bad way to kill a few hours. Shia Lebouf’s team up with Douglas comes across as bland and inauthentic compared to the Douglas-Charlie Sheen pair up. You can find the Oliver Stone original on Amazon Prime TV.

For the anime lovers, season two of B: The Beginning is out on Netflix. Set in a world powered by advanced technology, the anime follows genius investigator Keith Flick as he rejoins the royal police force just as serial killer "B" emerges and crime and action sweep through the nation of Cremona.

⚽ Egypt is playing against Kenya today at 6pm in the African Cup of Nations qualifiers. The Pharaohs have all made their way to Nairobi for the match where fans will not be let into the stands as a way to curb the spread of covid-19 Kenya’s Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed said on Twitter, adding that security will be very tight. Meanwhile, Liverpool’s Mo Salah came equipped with his own tight private security force, according to Goal. Out of 23 matches with Kenya in recent years, Egypt has won 18 times, tied four times, and lost once, reports Ahram Online.

🥐EAT THIS TONIGHT-

Where to get breakfast this weekend: Qahwa has been a staple of early morning breakfasts or late brunches for years now across Cairo with locations at The Waterway, Arkan Plaza, The Park at Mall of Arabia, and Tivoli Dome. From delicious salads to classic breakfast plates, Qahwa is a great place to start your day off right, especially with their signature omelettes and pancakes. We’ve also gone to Qahwa for lunch and are big fans of their chicken mushroom pasta and basically all their desserts. Make sure to top off the meal with one of their drinks. You can’t go wrong with their fresh juices or coffee options.

🎤 OUT AND ABOUT-

(All times in CLT)

Mohamed Khedr’s new exhibition ‘051’ is opening at Ubuntu Gallery in Zamalek today. The exhibition explores human behavior and relationships using abstract symbols and tools.

The grand opening of indoor bouldering arena Verge Climbing is taking place tomorrow at Club S in Allegria. Verge offers passes for those wanting to go climbing for the day or workshops to learn specific rock climbing techniques. The opening will include an art corner set up by Art Cafe, a live music performance by Beatles cover band Glass Onion, and a yoga session by Farah Ehsan. The event will be open to the public.

The Festival of the Bloom is taking place at Sheikh Zayed’s Galleria 40 tomorrow. The art, dance, and music festival will start at 2pm and boasts several art workshops and live performances.

Darb 1718 is hosting Glory — a trap night featuring Afroto, Dizzy, Batistuta, and Mousv Sam on Friday at 6pm.

💡 UNDER THE LAMPLIGHT-

Futureproof: 9 Rules for Humans in the Age of Automation is New York Times technology columnist Kevin Roose’s guide to how to be happy, successful humans in a world that is increasingly built by and for machines. Roose looks at people and organizations that historically thrived during periods of technological change, and uses that to set rules on how we can protect our own futures. Among the rules: be surprising, social, and scarce, demote your devices, and treat AI like a chimp army — all of which promote the idea that being more human is the way to stay relevant and compete with even the most advanced AI.

Call centers are already feeling the pinch of having to deal with AI in the time of covid. We explore the topic further in our Artificial Intelligence feature below.

🌤 TOMORROW’S WEATHER- Tomorrow should see the coldest weather we’ve seen in a while, with the mercury falling to 19°C during the day and 8°C at night, according to our favorite weather app. It will get slightly warmer on Saturday and Sunday going up to 21°C and 22°C respectively.

SPEED ROUND: SUEZ CANAL

Ekser wara shemal fi yemeen, Yasta

The Ever Given cargo ship is still blocking the Suez Canal as of dispatch, with the Suez Canal Authority closing down the waterway until the ship is freed, Suez Canal Authority (SCA) chairman Osama Rabie announced in a statement today. The authority had deployed this morning eight large tugboats in another attempt to dislodge the ship, he added.

No consensus on when things might start moving again: Some are expecting the ship to be dislodged soon, including the former head of Navigation Control at the SCA Mohamed Fawzy, who told Enterprise today that it may happen as soon as tomorrow. But some global experts beg to differ. The best chance for freeing the ship may not come until Sunday or Monday, when the tide reaches a peak, Bloomberg reports citing big ship rescue experts. If that window is missed, the next opportunity would be another 12 to 14 days away, when tides are expected to swell again, they added.

“We can’t exclude it might take weeks [to free the ship], depending on the situation,” Peter Berdowski, CEO of Dutch company Boskalis, which is trying to free the ship, told a Dutch TV program that

Hundreds of ships are still waiting to get through: Bloomberg’s latest tally puts the number of ships waiting to pass through at 185 (same as yesterday). Cargo ships waiting in line behind Ever Given will most likely be turned south back to Port Suez, in order to free the channel, AP reports, citing canal services provider Leth Agencies.

The world is still trying to count the cost of the fiasco: Currently, it is disrupting USD 9.6 bn worth of goods daily from travelling through the canal, Bloomberg cites shipping journal Lloyd’s List. Concerns over the disruption also caused oil prices to fall back after surging 6% on Wednesday, the news agency says. Expecting the fallout to last for days, the stuck ship is a new pressure point for a global supply chain already strained from winter and spring weather impacting infrastructure in the US, and a global shortage in microchips, the Wall Street Journal writes reports.

Commodities price boom to get a boost from this? The Ever Given disruption may uplift the tanker rates and commodity prices, senior vice president for equity research at financial services company Jeffries Randy Giveans told AP. Such disruptions are usually of benefit to the owners and the commodity being transported, as it forces tanker rates and crude prices to shoot up, he explains.

What’s an apology worth? Japanese owner of the ship Shoei Kisen apologized “for causing a great deal of concern” today, saying it was working towards a resolution of the situation in a statement (Japanese). Shoei Kisen KK could face claims from the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) for loss of revenue and canal damage, and from other ships for passage disruption, Reuters reports citing industry sources.

FURTHER READING- Groundings are the most common cause of shipping incidents in the Suez Canal, Reuters cites Allianz Global Corporate and Specialty (ACGN), adding that 25 groundings had happened in the canal in the past 10 years.

SPEED ROUND: INVESTMENT WATCH

Meet the players interested in getting in on the Egypt Mid-Cap Fund II

Everyone wants in on Egypt Mid-Cap Fund II, which will close in May: Private equity firm Ezdehar may be looking at a first close for its second fund, worth USD 120 mn, at the end of May, founder and managing director Emad Barsoum tells us. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank, the Sawiris family’s Gemini Holding, the UK's CDC and the Netherlands’ FMO have all committed capital to the Egypt Mid-Cap Fund II, will look at mid-sized investments in the manufacturing and pharma sectors. . They may also be joined by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Barsoum revealed to us.

The fund’s final close will reach USD 180-200 mn at the end of the year, Barsoum says, as Ezdehar is looking to raise an additional USD 50-100 mn. Investors that may join the final close are the Egyptian-American Enterprise Fund (EAEF), Germany’s DEG Impact, and African fund of funds Sango, he adds.

Look for M&A news from Ezdehar in the coming weeks: Ezdehar’s first fund, the Egypt Mid-Cap Fund I, is planning an acquisition in the chemical industry, Barsoum told us. The transaction will be announced in the next few weeks.

Ezdehar had previously told us that it will exit two high-growth companies this year as it nears the end of its five-year holding period. These companies are seeing annual growth of 30-40%, Barsoum told local media. This comes after it sold its full 22.5% stake in loyalty services provider Dsquares to Lorax Capital Partners in October.

SPEED ROUND: IPO WATCH

Edge Holding eyes IPO in 2022

Edge Holding eyes IPO in 2022: Edge Holding Urban Development is looking to list on the EGX in 2022, Chairman Hazem Sherif reportedly told local press today. This comes as Edge Holding plans to increase its investments in the New Administrative Capital from EGP 9 bn to EGP 25 bn in the next three years. The company is currently meeting with advisors, though Sherif did not disclose whom.

The securitization of a EGP 1 bn receivables portfolio is also in the works: The Saudi Egyptian JV wants to securitize its OIA project portfolio worth EGP 1 bn next year. The returns will be invested in upcoming projects, such as a touristic project at the North Coast during 2021. Edge Holding is currently receiving offers from different banks and financing institutions to manage the securitized bond issuance.

CATCH UP QUICK-

  • MOVES- CI Capital adds board members from Banque Misr, CBE following acquisition: CI Capital has added to its board CBE Deputy Governor Rami Aboul Naga (Linkedin), Banque Misr Vice Chairman Akef El Maghraby (Linkedin), and Banque Misr Board Member Ahmed El Guindy (Bio), according to an EGX filing (pdf). The board shakeup comes after state-owned Banque Misr acquired 90% of CI Capital this month.

GO WITH THE FLOW

Earnings Watch: OC

The EGX30 rose 1.6% at today’s close on turnover of EGP 819 mn (44.6% below the 90-day average). Foreign investors were net buyers. The index is up 0.2% YTD.

In the green: Eastern Co. (+7.7%), Fawry (+2.9%) and Heliopolis Housing (+2.6%).

In the red: AMOC (-2.6%), Sidi Kerir (-2.2%) and Export Development Bank (-1.1%).


EARNINGS WATCH- Orascom Construction (OC) net profits fell 6.2% y-o-y to USD 25.9 mn in 4Q2020 from USD 27.6 mn last year, the company said in its earnings release (pdf). Revenues for the quarter were up 3.2% y-o-y to USD 927.8 mn. FY2020 net profits fell 25% y-o-y to USD 90 mn from USD 121 mn, while revenues were up 5.9% y-o-y to USD 3.4 bn. Health and safety efforts allowed OC to successfully navigate covid-19 challenges as well as reaching targets that include Egypt’s mega water projects and commercial projects in the US, and securing new awards, said CEO Osama Bishai. Revenue increase came from projects operating on a “full-fledged basis” despite health and safety challenges. OC also saw positive cashflow, reflecting healthy operations, he added.

OC’s consolidated backlog excluding Besix inched slightly by 0.1% y-o-y to USD 5.4 bn as of the end of FY2020. Consolidated new awards rose 16% y-o-y to USD 920 mn during the year. Including the group’s 50% share in Besix, pro forma backlog as of the end of September rose 1.2% y-o-y to USD 8 bn.

WORK LIFE

Business owners beware, workers rejoice

The push for four-day work week is finally gaining ground: Good news for everyone who isn’t a business owner, as Spain could become one of the global frontrunners in trialling the four-day work week (32 hours) as early as this autumn, the Guardian writes. The Spanish government greenlit the nationwide pilot project, which had been put forward by left-wing party Más País, for interested companies last month.

The pilot project’s details are still under negotiation, but lawmakers have proposed a three-year, EUR 50 mn project to cover the potential costs of reduced hours to companies, that would allow companies to trial the system with minimal risks. Companies could have 100% of potential costs covered in the first year, 50% the second year and 33% the third year, for example. “The only red lines are that we want to see a true reduction of working hours and no loss of salary or jobs,” said MP Héctor Tejero of Más País. Some 200 companies, employing anywhere between 3-6k workers in total, are expected to participate in the project’s first round, Tejero says.

What about productivity? Though workers in Spain generally put in more hours than the European average, the country as a whole is not one of the most productive. “Working more hours does not mean working better,” says Más País MP Iñigo Errejón. The project’s less material benefits include improving workers’ mental, physical and emotional health, fighting climate change, and enhancing work-life balance.

Will this work out? Unsurprisingly, right wing lawmakers view the proposal as “madness,” and maintain that the path out of the country’s worst recession since the civil war requires more, not less work. But Más País is hoping to build on the success of the southern Spanish software company DelSol which last year became the first in the country to implement the four day work week and saw a rise in productivity and in worker satisfaction.

The pilot will be the first national initiative of this magnitude to cut working hours since France moved to cap the work week at 35 hours in 1998. Officials in New Zealand had also recently discussed a shorter work week, while a coalition of lawmakers from the UK, Germany, and Spain appealed to the EU last year to adopt a four-day work week as a way to manage the economic fallout of covid-19 by redistributing work between the under, and overemployed.

Some corporations have taken individual action to enact shorter work weeks, with Microsoft Japan and US burger chain Shake Shack introducing four-day schedules in 2019. Other companies have followed suit after covid-19, with Unilever in New Zealand and Shopify in Canada also launching trials of their own.

READ THIS- An alternative path to work life balance is the Swedish tradition of “Lillördag” or Little Saturday: A midweek excuse to pamper yourself or celebrate with friends or family, this day is usually observed on Wednesdays. Since lockdowns around the world placed additional stress on work-life balance, perceiving Wednesday as Little Saturday helps make the week more bearable and helps people “create structure and fulfilment even when they’re feeling lost,” experts from the Stress Research Institute of Stockholm University told the BBC.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

How AI and covid-19 may have killed the call center

Covid-19 is accelerating the shift away from human call center operators and towards AI-powered chatbot assistants. As customer service bots are becoming more common, they’re also becoming more realistically human, displaying the sort of empathy and consideration necessary for a good customer service experience. But AI’s ability to simulate empathy could put real people, and huge numbers of them, out of work, Bloomberg reports, as covid-19 speeds up the shift towards job automation in many sectors.

This is particularly bad news for countries whose economies are heavily dependent on call-center outsourcing: Nearly 286k call center workers in the Philippines are at risk of being replaced by chatbots by 2030, according to forecasts by the Asian Development Bank. This is almost a quarter of those employed in the outsourcing sector in the country, which accounts for a whopping 9% of GDP, according to estimates by Oxford Business Group. Other popular outsourcing countries like India, Brazil, and Mexico are perhaps less at risk because of a more diversified workforce.

Egypt itself had made outsourcing call centers a priority: Since at least 2018 and 2019, the CIT Ministry had made growing the outsourcing and call center industry a key policy platform. Back in 2019, the ministry was targeting USD 4.7 bn in outsourcing exports in 2020, compared to USD 3.2 bn. As recently as last December (watch, runtime: 7:34), CIT Minister Amr Talaat has continued to tout the importance of this sector to his ministry, though he did not give any updated figures.

Covid had hit our local industry when it first emerged: While there doesn’t seem to be any official figures out there for the sector’s performance in 2020, the local press noted last April (during the height of covid) that demand for outsourcing and call centers had fallen 70%, with some businesses recouping some of those losses from healthcare call centers.

But others think the alarm is overblown: Chatbots are still a long way away from being able to replace humans for more complicated queries, some experts say. Developing the software systems that run AI chatbots in the first place, as well as maintaining them and monitoring their performance, will also require human labor, thereby creating more jobs in a slightly adjacent sector.

Some think the goal should not be to replace human empathy but to augment it: Machines can be taught “cognitive empathy,” says author Minter Dial, who has written on the subject, by learning to assess the context of the situation and how that might make a human feel. But they cannot be taught emotional empathy, which is the simple co-feeling one experiences if another human is happy or sad. For that reason, a human being may still need to be part of the customer service process, perhaps after first having the customer screened by a chatbot. In looking to create empathic AI systems, we should not confuse the appearance of empathy with its actual existence, says AI researcher Stuart Russell, adding “we may even want to reserve the realm of interpersonal relationships for humans.”

CALENDAR

March: Potential visit to Cairo by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

25-27 March (Thursday-Saturday): The Real Gate real estate exhibition, Egyptian International Exhibition Center, Cairo.

28 March (Sunday): Executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime Ghada Waly will address AmCham in a talk on tackling corruption in African countries and reinforcing women’s rights. You can register for the event here.

29-30 March (Monday-Tuesday): Arab Federation of Exchanges Annual Conference 2021.

29-30 March (Monday-Tuesday): Arab Academy for Science, Technology & Maritime Transport Startup Festival, Sharm El Sheikh.

30 March (Wednesday): Deadline to visit the moroor and get an RFID sticker affixed to your car’s windshield — or run afoul of the Traffic Police.

31 March (Wednesday): Income tax deadline for individuals. Real estate tax filing deadline.

31 March (Wednesday): The Egyptian-Croation Business Forum will convene.

1-3 April (Thursday-Saturday): HVAC-R Egypt Expo.

6 April (Tuesday): French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Egypt working breakfast with Sovereign Fund of Egypt CEO Ayman Soliman.

7 April (Wednesday): British-Egyptian Business Association (BEBA) webinar on digital banking and fintech.

8-10 April (Thursday-Saturday): The TriFactory’s Endurance Festival at Somabay.

13 April (Monday): First day of Ramadan (TBC).

25 April (Sunday): Sinai Liberation Day.

29 April (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Sinai Liberation Day (TBC),

29 April (Thursday): The CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee will meet to review interest rates.

1 May (Saturday): Labor Day (national holiday).

2 May (Sunday): Coptic Easter Sunday.

3 May (Monday): Sham El Nessim.

13-15 May (Thursday-Saturday): Eid El Fitr (TBC).

25-28 May (Tuesday-Friday): The World Economic Forum annual meeting, Singapore.

1 June (Tuesday): The IMF will conduct a second review of targets set under the USD 5.2 bn standby loan approved in June 2020 (proposed date).

7-9 June (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Petroleum Show, Egypt International Exhibition Center, New Cairo, Egypt.

17 June (Thursday): The CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee will meet to review interest rates.

17-20 June (Thursday-Sunday) : The International Exhibition of Materials and Technologies for Finishing and Construction (Turnkey Expo), Cairo International Conference Center.

24 June (Thursday): End of the 2020-2021 academic year (public schools).

26-29 June (Saturday-Tuesday): The Big 5 Construct Egypt, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo, Egypt.

30 June (Wednesday): 30 June Revolution Day.

30 June- 15 July: National Book Fair.

1 July: (Thursday): National holiday in observance of 30 June Revolution.

1 July (Thursday): Large taxpayers that have not yet signed on on to the e-invoicing platform will suffer a host of penalties, including removal from large taxpayer classification, losing access to government services and business, and losing subsidies.

19 July (Monday): Arafat Day (national holiday).

20-23 July (Tuesday-Friday): Eid Al Adha (national holiday)

23 July (Friday): Revolution Day (national holiday).

5 August (Thursday): The CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee will meet to review interest rates.

9 August (Monday): Islamic New Year.

12 August (Thursday): National holiday in observance of the Islamic New Year.

16 September (Thursday): The CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee will meet to review interest rates.

30 September-2 October (Thursday-Saturday): Egypt Projects 2021 expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Cairo, Egypt.

1 October (Friday): Expo 2020 Dubai opens.

6 October (Wednesday): Armed Forces Day.

7 October (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Armed Forces Day.

18 October (Monday): Prophet’s Birthday.

21 October (Thursday): National holiday in observance of the Prophet’s Birthday.

28 October (Thursday): The CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee will meet to review interest rates.

1-12 November (Monday-Friday): 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), Glasgow, United Kingdom.

13-17 December: United Nations Convention against Corruption, Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

16 December (Thursday): The CBE’s Monetary Policy Committee will meet to review interest rates.

27 June – 3 July 2022 (Monday-Sunday): World University Squash Championships, New Giza.

Note to readers: Some national holidays may appear twice above. Since 2020, Egypt has observed most mid-week holidays on Thursdays regardless of the day on which they fall and may also move those days to Sundays. We distinguish below between the actual holiday and its observance.

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2021 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

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