Monday, 23 February 2015
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WHAT WE’RE TRACKING TODAY
The retrial of former Al-Jazeera English bureau chief Mohamed Fahmy and producer Baher Mohammed gets underway today. A Canadian national and native-born Egyptian who gave up his Egyptian passport as part of a bid to win deportation earlier this month, Fahmy has lashed out at Al-Jazeera in a high-profile Guardian story this weekend (h/t Karim N.). Fahmy accuses the network of “‘epic negligence’ and said it was partially to blame for his arrest and imprisonment. Fahmy called it naive and misleading to see the case purely as a crackdown on press freedom because Qatar, which funds the Al-Jazeera network, used it to ‘wage a media war’ against Cairo.”
A verdict is expected today in the retrial of Alaa Abdel Fattah and 24 other activists involved in the Shura Council protests from 2013. (Read)
President Abdelfattah El-Sisi confirmed in his “fireside chat” yesterday evening that the unified investment law will be ready by the time of the Sharm El-Sheikh conference.
The Oscars will be re-broadcast on OSN Movies Festival HD at 7pm CLT today, for those of you who inexplicably failed to wake up at 3:30am to watch them live.
WHAT WE’RE TRACKING THIS WEEK
Afreximbank will host on Tuesday a one-day forum on a USD 500 mn trade finance support program to support Egyptian exports.
On Wednesday, the one-day Egypt Tourism Investment Briefing will take place, hosted by Sahl Hasheesh and Egyptian Resorts Company. Contact information on the official website here if you’re an investor, operator or brand in the sector and want to grab a last-minute invitation.
Also on Wednesday, the Xpand Financial Summit will take place at the Cairo Convention Center. The summit will focus on assisting the growth of SMEs through financial solutions. The event is scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m., and tickets may be purchased here. The official website for the event is available here.
LAST NIGHT’S TALK SHOWS
President Abdelfattah Al Sisi’s fireside-chat-style address to the nation was very well received by talk show hosts last night. They were all strongly in favor of seeing this type of speech — a first for an Egyptian President — on a monthly basis. Detailed analysis of the speech took up the majority of the airtime as presenters dissected every word and nuance in the president’s remarks.
“The speech was well thought out, well organized and informative,” said Lamees El Hadidy. “He touched on exactly the right topics and reassured us that he is on top of things.” She took phone calls from Al-Akhbar’sYasser Rizk and publisher Hisham Kassem, who both spoke favorably about the unconventional venue (the President sat in a leather chair in the Presidential office) and the casual manner in which the President spoke. “The conversational tone and his use of colloquial Arabic made the speech all the more intimate and effective,” said Kassem, former publisher of the Cairo Times and founding publisher of Al-Masry Al-Youm.
El Hadidy also noted that viewers from a number of governorates have called in to complain that they experienced power outages either at the beginning or the end of the President’s speech. “The Ministry of Electricity is still full of ikhwan. I find it hard to believe that the timing of the outages were a coincidence,” saidEl Hadidy.
“I respect the fact that he admitted mistakes such as unlawful arrests. This is the first President that we have ever had that is actually speaking to us. I’m not saying that he’s perfect, but this frank dialogue is a step in the right direction,” said Khaled Abu Bakr. “I just wish that he would have said something about Qatar.”
“Our president is too polite,” said Amr Adeeb. “It is not in his nature to say anything even remotely negative about Qatar even though they are stabbing him in the back.”
“Egypt after the airstrikes is a different Egypt and the President is a different President. Al Sisi’s popularity inside and outside the country has skyrocketed,” said Adeeb.
Commenting indirectly on the decision not to led Ahmed Ezz run for Parliament, Adeeb said, “Today the NDP has officially died.” He claimed that other former NDP members have already started dropping out of the race following the official announcement on Ezz, who was DQ’ed for alleged failure to complete his financial disclosure.
Ever the critic, Ibrahim Eissa took issue with some of the camera angles that were used during Al Sisi’s speech, such as zooming in on the President’s hands and filming from an angle. “The President should be looking us in the eye at all times. But there is no doubt that this type of monthly report is very effective.”
Amid rising complaints from exporters of all kinds that they cannot source hard currency from banks, the EGP was steady again yesterday against the USD in the official market, changing hands at 7.53. The EGP weakened slightly on the parallel market to 7.70, with few transactions of any substance taking place. The catch: Central Bank chief Hisham Ramez’s campaign against the black market is simultaneously causing high-profile importers to default on obligations. As one of the more astute observers of public markets we know recently suggested: Keep an eye on FX availability come April, when foreign investors are looking to repatriate dividends. The length (or absence) of the queue to repatriate will speak volumes about the success or failure of Ramez’s campaign.
No notice before VAT imposition, says Finance Ministry: The good bureaucrats at the Finance Ministry will give zero notice before implementing the value-added tax, Al-Borsa reported yesterday, citing a ministry official. The zero-notice move is to prevent “unjustified price increases” before the VAT comes into effect. The official said the VAT law is nearly finished and that its implementation date is, in essence, a state secret.
EFG Hermes chief Awad confirms two IPOs for March execution, eyes leasing market: In a lengthy interview posted last night that doesn’t yet appear to have crossed into English, EFG Hermes CEO Karim Awad confirmed to Reuters’ Arabic service that the firm expects to take to market in March both high-profile snack maker Edita and the construction arm of OCI. Awad values the two transactions at about USD 300 mn and also notes the firm is also in the final stages of setting up a subsidiary in the lucrative leasing market as part of EFG’s drive to both grow and diversify its revenue base. The interview gives a look ahead at the EFG Hermes One-on-One, the premier regional investor conference slated for the first week of March in Dubai, and says the firm welcomes the planned opening of the Saudi market to qualified foreign investors later this year.
Speaking of OCI, the company has set a USD 13.33-15.23 price range for its spin-off of Orascom Construction Ltd. in its pathfinder offering circular, CPI financial reported yesterday. The demerged Orascom Construction is seeking a dual listing on the EGX and Nasdaq Dubai. EFG Hermes is global coordinator and joint book runner. CI Capital and HSBC are joint bookrunners. Al-Mal has more in Arabic, while the Daily News has additional details in English.
Palm Hills Developments closed the door on an outstanding 2014 yesterday as it released its FY14 earnings, reporting a 74% surge in statutory revenues to EGP 2.1 bn and a 2x rise in EBITDA. Net profit for the year rose to EGP 353 mn from EGP 239 mn the previous year, the company said in an emailed earnings release. Co-CEO Tarek Abdel Rahman tipped the company’s “successful sales strategy and marketing campaign, coupled with an influx of financing to speed up construction and increase the pace of deliveries” as underpinning its performance during the year. Critically, PHD reported continued strong sales momentum, booking reservations (gross new sales) of EGP 3.94 bn, a 166% surge year-on-year that bodes well for its future revenue stream. (Like other property developers in Egypt, PHD recognizes revenues not at time of off-plan sale, but closer to or at delivery, according to a revenue recognition policy.)
Echoing statements first made by President Abdelfattah El Sisi back in January, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb of Al-Azhar has called for a “radical reform” of religious teaching, the BBC reports. The statement was made during a counterterrorism conference in Mecca yesterday. The story does not delve into any further details or specifics of how these reforms will be enacted or what they may entail.
OUT: The local branch of the Higher Elections Commission in Menoufiya has disqualified steel boss and former NDP kingpin Ahmed Ezz from running in the upcoming elections for the House of Representatives, Al-Ahram reported yesterday. The committee apparently alleges that Ezz failed to complete his full financial and medical disclosures as required by law; a lawyer for Ezz said he would appeal the decision. Al-Ahram has color in Arabic, Ahram Online has facts in English, while at the New York Times David Kirkpatrick takes a pass, leaving Merna Thomas to do a solid take on the news.
ALSO OUT: The Higher Elections Commission announced yesterday that 7,416 people have successfully registered their candidacies to stand in the elections for the House of Reps kicking off on 22 March. Ahram Online has a rundown, noting that 4,836 candidates will run as independents and a further 2,850 on party lists. Nine electoral coalitions have registered to compete for 120 seats in four party-based constituencies, including Fi hob Misr and Tahya Misr. Only about 13% of all candidates are women. The announcement was subsequently overshadowed by news that a division of the Supreme Constitutional Court thinks some articles of the elections law may be unconstitutional. The full 12-member bench will rule on the opinion on Wednesday (25 February).
Up in smoke for the third time this year: Cigarettes will cost the nation’s addicts a bit more this morning (we say, with the smugness only ex-smokers can manage) after a presidential decree imposed a new sin tax yesterday on both imported and locally produced smokes. It’s the third time this year the government has raised prices on cigarettes. Al-Masry Al-Youm has details on the decree, published in the Official Gazette yesterday, Ahram Online does the duties in English, while Al-Borsa gives you before-and-after looks at prices.
CI Capital to open office in Oman. Al-Mal says it has an exclusive, quoting group head of securities Khaled Abdel Rahman as saying he was on his way to Oman to open a GCC branch for the Egyptian investment bank.
Hilton Worldwide announces first DoubleTree by Hilton in Egypt: Hilton Worldwide announced last Thursday the signing of a management agreement with Asala For Investment and Touristic Development Company to open the first DoubleTree by Hilton in Egypt. (Read the release)
A number of stores in tourist areas have already begun accepting rubles for payment ahead of an official agreement, according to Egyptian Ministry of Tourism spokesperson Muhammad Salem last Wednesday, as reported by the Moscow Times, citing Interfax.
Egypt’s Pioneers Holdings still interested in Arab Dairy bid -EFSA: Pioneers Holdings will continue participating in the bidding process for Arab Dairy through sealed bids after Lactalis raised its offer to EGP 65.75 per share, according to the EFSA yesterday, Reuters said.
Abraaj has bought a 25% stake in Turkish online retailer Hepsiburada, in a deal valued at more than USD 400 mn, according to sources speaking to the FT yesterday. Abraaj has invested USD 844 mn over the past 8 years. Meanwhile, Abraaj founder and CEO Arif Naqvi met with Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, Crown Prince and First Deputy Prime Minister of Bahrain, yesterday.
Prosecutor-General Hisham Barakat has placed two pro-Ikhwan television presenters thought to be based in Turkey on an airport watch list following a report filed against them after they used their programs to incite violence and murder in Egypt, as reported by Ahram Online. The two presenters are Moataz Matar of Al Sharq channel and Mohamed Nasser Ali of Masr Al’an. Mohamed Nasser, if readers recall, had the following to say last month during the Matariya clashes: (Watch in Arabic, running time: 2 minutes)
The Egyptian government has joined plaintiffs in a suit before an Egyptian court to designate Qatar and Turkey as state sponsors of terrorism. A session to hear the state representative Egyptian Lawsuit Authority has been set for 2 March, according to the Cairo Post.
Hamas warns Italy not to embark on Libyan ‘Crusade’: A senior Hamas official has decided to warn Italy not to intervene in Libya against Daesh lest it be viewed as engaging in a new Crusade against Muslim lands, ANSA reported yesterday.
Daesh in Libya have claimed responsibility for the bombing of the vacated residence of the Iranian envoy in Tripoli. (Read)
While the Turkish government refused to offer military assistance to save the lives of Kurds facing a siege of Kobane by Daesh, the Turkish military did finally decide to militarily intervene to retrieve the tomb of Suleyman Shah, along with a number of the guards who had been trapped at the site, despite their previous denials of the soldiers’ plight. (Read)
The BBC News site has gone the way of BuzzFeed, as have most news sites on the internet, includingBloomberg Business‘ garish-looking new site. By Buzzfeedification, we mean that it’s basically the same website, except everything is ten times larger because they assume everyone online is an idiot and will only read something if it’s involuntary due to the font size being set to 75px. The BBC redesign does, however, look somewhat restrained in comparison to others. You can view the new BBC News site, which is still in beta, here. Make sure to scroll down and click on “take me there” when you’re asked if you’d like to see their new site.
CORRECTION: Yesterday we noted an Al Mal piece regarding a study by Visa that stated that Egyptians spent USD 10.2 mn in Dubai during the first two weeks of its shopping festival, representing a c. 52% increase y-o-y. The link we provided yesterday, however, was broken. Please find the functioning link here. Our apologies for the inconvenience.
HIGHLIGHTS OF PRESIDENT EL-SISI’s ADDRESS TO THE NATION
As noted Last Night’s Talk Shows, above, a pre-recorded speech by President Abdelfattah El-Sisi aired yesterday evening. El-Sisi addressed a wide-range of issues, some of which he had not previously discussed, giving an overview of the challenges faced and progress achieved during his time in office. The speech broadlyfocused on five topics: Libya; the need to create a unified Arab military force; Egypt’s improved international relations in general and its strong relations with the Gulf Arab states in particular; progress on the nation’s economy and improving living standards; and lastly a promise to securejustice for those recently killed in incidents within the country as well as the freeing of innocent detainees.
Libya: The President began his address by asking, in reference to the recent air strikes in Libya: “How could I go to the Coptic Cathedral to extend my condolences if the Egyptian Army hadn’t avenged the attacks?” He stated the strikes were accurate, hitting 13 specific targets in precise attacks designed to minimize civilian casualties. He reiterated that Egypt is not an aggressor, but will take action to defend itself and the region at the request of allies, in an oblique reference to possible future military action in Yemen at the request of Saudi Arabia.
Establishing a regional military force: El-Sisi asserted that events in the region have demonstrated the need for a unified Arab military force to address security threats.
Improved international relations and strong relations with the Gulf: El-Sisi noted progress on the diplomatic front, including Egypt’s reinstatement into the African Union, African consensus and support for Egypt’s bid for a nonpermanent seat on the United Nations Security Council, and strengthened relations with European allies. He noted the recently signed agreement with Russia for a civilian nuclear power plant, reaffirming that Egypt has no hidden agendas but rather an urgently pressing need for energy, and reiterated Egypt’s commitment to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. With regard to the Gulf, the president called the relations brotherly and credited Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait for their support since June 2013, without which he said that Egypt would not have made it through its challenges. With regard to the alleged ‘Sisi leaks,’ he explicitly denied the statements attributed to him and reaffirmed that he holds Egypt’s Gulf allies in the highest esteem, Efforts to undermine these relations are part of a campaign of psychological warfare, which the president referred to as a “fourth generation” of warfare (more on that in Worth Reading, below).
Progress on the economic front and social justice: The President noted that the state has allocated EGP 1 bn in the development of the Doweiqa informal settlement, EGP 500 mn of which came from the Tahya Masr fund with the remainder coming from the state’s coffers. The President also confirmed that the unified investment law and the one-stop investment shop will be ready in time for the March investment summit, and that he has commissioned the Suez Canal Authority to prepare and present investment projects at the same gathering. The President stressed the importance of the Suez Canal Authority investment projects, which will be facilitated by the Unified Investment Law, which will be ratified once it is completed.
Justice for recent stadium deaths, Shaimaa el-Sabagh’s killer, and release of innocent detainees: With regard to the recent deaths of football fans at the Air Defense Stadium, he confirmed that those who are found to have been negligent in their duty will be punished, and that the killer of slain activist Shaimaa el-Sabagh will be brought to justice, however he affirmed that both cases are being handled by the judiciary and that he will not interfere. The President admitted that a number of innocent detainees may be in Egypt’s prisons and said that he would meet earlier promises to release them as was expected on the anniversary of 25 January, with the first batch of detainees to be released within the coming days.
Coverage of the President’s speech in the press: Ahram Online provides a good summary of the speech, which may be found here. Reuters provides a very brief take on some of the points, focusing on the comments about the air strikes in Libya, while the Washington Post focused on the President’s remarks regarding theneed to establish a joint Arab military force, picking up the AP’s story.
Watch the speech in its entirety here: (Watch in Arabic, running time: 40 minutes)
The concept of a “fourth generation warfare” noted in the President’s speech yesterday refers to the asymmetrical warfare that states are faced with by nonstate actors. These types of conflicts are usually long and drawn out, and feature tactics such as terrorism, guerilla warfare and media campaigns. The term was first coined by a team at the United States Marine Corps in 1989 in a paper titled The Changing Face of War: Into the Fourth Generation: “Fourth generation adversaries will be adept at manipulating the media to alter domestic and world opinion to the point where skillful use of psychological operations will sometimes preclude the commitment of combat forces. A major target will be the enemy population’s support of its government and the war. Television news may become a more powerful operational weapon than armored divisions.” (Read)
Gordon Kelly at Forbes has an incredibly interesting take on the competition between Google and Microsoft, and asserts that the two tech giants have switched places in terms of where both companies used to be, where Google was the upstart and Microsoft had become complacent with its market leadership in various fields. “Google’s pillars of ads and search have become its Windows and Office. Both are being chipped away by more targeted advertising within social media and the compartmentalization of an apps-based world. Your details and desires are on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram more than in your Google search requests and we increasingly go to specific apps (eg weather) rather than web searching for it. The knock-on effect: Adsense is declining and Google’s search market share is currently at its lowest point in seven years. Like Microsoft had done with Windows and Office, Google understandably still tightly holds onto the duo as its primary revenue pillars but the future implies only further slow decline with no obvious escape route.” (Read Microsoft Is The New Google, Google Is The Old Microsoft) H/t Yasser Salama
Egypt prepares for Arab League Summit in March 2015 in Cairo: Dina Ezzat of Ahram Online has a breakdown of the significance of the convening of next month’s summit, as well as the goals Egypt and its Arab allies hope to achieve over the next year as Egypt assumes its role as chair for that period of time. The Arab League is set to convene in Cairo, scheduled as of now to take place 10 days after the investment summit in Sharm. (Read)
The Egyptian Ambassador to the United States Mohamed M. Tawfik recently appeared on Fox News to present Egypt’s case regarding the need to support the internationally-recognized government of Libya and to take action now against Daesh in the country before it is allowed a chance to entrench itself further. (Watch, running time: 7:43)
ENERGY, RENEWABLE ENERGY & SUBSIDY REFORM
Electricity ministry paid OCI and GE USD 630 mn
Al Mal | 22 Feb 2015
The Ministry of Electricity announced it has paid USD 630 mn to General Electric and Orascom Construction Industries. They payment is the January installment of the emergency electricity plan the two companies are undertaking currently, bringing up the total amount paid so far to USD 1.16 bn. The ministry denied paying the Siemens and El Sewedy consortium so far. (Read in Arabic)
Actis sets up an African renewable energy arm, eyes opportunities in Egypt
Al Borsa | 22 Feb 2015
UK-listed private equity firm Actis is establishing a company called Lekela Power to investment in renewable energy in Africa. Lekela, of which Mainstream owns 40%, eyes renewable energy projects in Egypt, according to Actis’ Sherif El Kholy, through the new feed-in tariff system. Actis is also considering BOO agreements for energy projects in the Gulf of Suez area. (Read in Arabic)
OIL & GAS
Eight oil and gas blocks in the Mediterranean to be auctioned
Reuters | 22 Feb 2015
Egypt will auction off eight oil and gas exploration blocks in the Mediterranean, according to Khaled Abdel Badie, the head of EGAS. The blocks for auction are East Arish Marine, East Port Said Marine, North Rumana Marine, North Ras al-Ash Marine, West al-Timsah Marine, South Taneen Marine, North Hammad Marine, and East Alexandria Marine. The blocks cover a total area of 11,849 square kilometers. (Read)
EGAS to discuss technicalities of the Cyprus-Egypt gas pipeline next month
Al Ahram | 22 Feb 2015
EGAS will begin technical talks with Cyprus’ CHC regarding the specifics of connecting a gas pipeline from the Aphrodite gas field to the Idku liquefaction plant, according to Khaled Abdel Badie. The talks, which are set for next month, will involve discussions on the exact pathway of the pipeline and the timeline to finish the project. Abdel Badie said that Cyprus gave Egypt the liberty to use the gas in whatever way it sees fit; whether to use it domestically of export it after liquefaction. (Read in Arabic)
Finance ministry refuses to give EGPC credit guarantees for its EGP 10 bn
Al Mal | 22 Feb 2015
The Ministry of Finance (MoF) refused to extend EGPC with the needed guarantees for the EGP 10 bn loan being negotiated currently. The MoF’s guarantee was reportedly required by the consortium syndicating the loan. Al Mal reports that the banks’ consortium required the guarantee from the MoF as EGPC has almost exhausted its credit limit. EGPC informed the banks about it not being able to secure the credit guarantee and also asked them to revise the discount rate on offer. (Read in Arabic)
Qena Cements net profit rise by 15.2%; Dividends to be paid out to shareholders
Mubasher | 19 Feb 2015
Qena Cement saw its net profit rise by 15.2% in 2014, as a result of 20.3% increase in sales. In an official statement to the Egyptian stock exchange, the company announced its intention to distribute EGP 3 per share to shareholders for profits generated in the second half of 2014. This is the second time that shareholders receive dividends from Qena Cement for 2014; the company distributed a dividend of EGP 3 per share in the first half of 2014. (Read in Arabic)
Emirates Steel targets USD 60 mn in Egyptian sales in 2015
Amwal Al Ghad | 22 Feb 2015
Emirates Steel is targeting to register USD 60 mn in sales in Egypt in 2015. The company sold USD 35 mn worth of products in Egypt last year. Despite announcing its participation in the economic summits in March, Emirates Steel stressed that it does not currently have any plans to build a production factory in Egypt. (Read in Arabic)
Egypt begins charter flights from China to Aswan
Amwal Al Ghad | 21 Feb 2015
The Minister of Tourism, Hisham Zaazou, announced on Saturday the linking of three Chinese cities to Aswan via charter flights. This comes as part of the ministry’s attempt to increase Chinese tourists’ access to Egypt Zaazou notes that Chinese tourists are particularly attractive given China’s fast-paced economic growth and their longer average stay. (Read in Arabic)
Hisham Zaazou meets with representatives of US travel agencies
Al Wafd | 22 Feb 2015
Egypt’s Minister of Tourism, Hisham Zaazou encouraged US travel agencies to expand their activities in Egypt, at a conference in Luxor. The Minister also requested that the travel agencies reassure American tourists, through the various media outlets, that it is once again safe to visit Egypt. Lastly, Zaazou stressed the importance of historical Islamic and Christian monuments to Egypt’s heritage and tourism sector. (Read in Arabic)
Computer sales growth slow down as EGP depreciates –Emerio Technology
Amwal Al Ghad | 21 Feb 2015
Emerio Technology’s Egypt MD, Amr Sheira, told Amwal Al Ghad that computer and tablet sales fell since the start of year. The market remains weak, Sheira notes, as prices continue to increase with the depreciating EGP. Sheira also attributes the slowdown to government decisions that restricted exporting. (Read in Arabic)
BANKING & FINANCE
United Bank loans EGP 200 mn to Tanmeyah Micro Enterprise Services
Al Mal | 19 Feb 2015
Amro Abouesh, chairman of Tanmeyah Micro Enterprise Services, announced that the United Bank has agreed to provide the company with EGP 200 mn loan. Abouesh added that the loan will be used to finance the activities of Egyptian SMEs. Specifically, EGP 100 mn will be set aside for a new financial product for SMEs that the company will offer as soon as the loan is tendered, which should be in the coming few days. (Read in Arabic)
Three Saudi banks to offer financing opportunities at the Sharm summit –SEBA
Al Borsa | 22 Feb 2015
Three major Saudi banks will attend the Sharm investment summit to assess financing opportunities, according to the Saudi Egyptian Businessmen Association (SEBA). SEBA said the banks attending the summit are Al Rajhi, Al Ahli, and Banque Saudi Fransi. SEBA also denied the existence of any rifts between the Egyptian and Saudi governments. (Read in Arabic)
OTHER BUSINESS NEWS OF NOTE
Al Kaaki requests EGP 1 bn reimbursement
Al Mal | 22 Feb 2015
Saudi Arabian investor and owner of Nubaria Company, Sheikh Abdel Illah Al Kaaki, sent an official request to Prime Minister Mahlab, to be reimbursed EGP 1 bn for losses that Tanta for Linen and Oils, a sister company, incurred while operating in Egypt . According to Al Kaaki, the company experienced losses, and halts in production due to the failure of Chemical Industries Holding Company, a state-owned entity, in supplying the necessary raw materials for the company to operate. In spite of his legal troubles, Kaaki stated that he will not be exiting the local market completely, and remains keen on investing in Egypt. (Read in Arabic)
Alexandria ports resume operations, five Red Sea ones remain closed
Amwal Al Ghad, Al Mal | 22 Feb 2015
After operating for two hours yesterday, the Red Sea ports authority shut down operations at the ports of Suez, Al Adabiyah, Al Zeitiat, and Sokhna as Sharm El Sheikh’s remained closed due to poor weather conditions. On the Mediterranean, the ports of Alexandria and Dekheila have resumed operations following disruptions over the weekend. (Read in Arabic and here)
MAF completes Alexandria City Center expansion, allocates EGP 4.9 bn for Mall of Egypt
Al Mal | 22 Feb 2015
Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) announced the official completion of a EGP 70 mn expansion of the Alexandria City Center. The expansion, named the Leisure Precinct, began operating in December 2014 and features restaurants opening for the first time in. MAF also announced it is earmarking EGP 4.9 bn to continue the development of the Mall of Egypt and a further EGP 3.9 bn to be allocated for the expansion of the Maadi City Center. (Read)
EgyptAir allocates 600 seats on two airplanes for Libya airlift
Al Borsa | 22 Feb 2015
EgyptAir has allocated a total of 600 seats aboard two aircrafts to bring Egyptians wishing to leave Libya back home. If demand for flights to Egypt increases, EgyptAir expressed its willingness to add a third aircraft to the airlift. On Friday, 286 passengers were airlifted from Libya. (Read in Arabic)
GB Auto signs protocol of cooperation with Cairo University
Veto Gate | 21 Feb 2015
GB Auto has signed a protocol of cooperation with Cairo University, whereby the company has agreed to provide the faculty of engineering with a EGP 375,000 grant. This money will be used to support several Cairo University engineering students in their efforts, to compete in Baja SAE, an intercollegiate automotive design competition organized by the Society of Automotive Engineers. The Cairo University students have been commissioned to design and assemble two vehicles for the competition. (Read in Arabic)
Dar Al Handasah: Putting the final touches on the New Suez Canal Development Project
Al Mal | 22 Feb 2015
In a private sit-down organized by the American Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Egyptian Industries, Dar Al-Handasah CEO Dr. Yehia Zaki announced that the company is currently putting its finishing touches on the New Suez Canal Development Project. The plan includes turning Ismailiya into a regional IT and telecommunications’ hub, while transforming Port Said into one of the most important ports globally. (Read in Arabic)
EGYPT POLITICS + ECONOMICS
EU to sign EUR 120 mn in agreements with Egypt at the Sharm summit –James Moran
Amwal Al Ghad | 22 Feb 2015
The EU will sign EUR 120 mn in grant and cooperation agreements at the March investment summit, according to the head of the EU delegation to Egypt, James Moran. The agreements, which will be signed through the European Investment Bank will be go towards developments in the fields of gas, education, and rural development. Other agreements, which will be signed with the private sector, will come from the EBRD, Moran said. (Read in Arabic)
SEBA to invest EGP 30 bn to for 200,000 acres of agricultural land
Amwal Al Ghad | 22 Feb 2015
Ahmed Sabry, a member of the Saudi Arabia-Egypt Business Association’s (SEBA) board of directors, announced that member companies have been offered the opportunity to develop 200,000 acres out of the total 1 mn acres the government has planned for agricultural reclamation. Members of the organization reportedly plan to invest a total of EGP 30 bn in order to develop the land. Sabry added that a delegation from the association met with the Minister of Agriculture, as well as business executives from Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Egypt to discuss the upcoming steps for the project. (Read in Arabic)
ON YOUR WAY OUT
Al Baraka Banking Group records a net profit of USD 275 mn, Al Borsa reports. The Group’s figures were 7% higher than the previous year of 2013, Adnan Youssef, Al Baraka’s CEO noted that the reason behind this performance rests in the variety of products the Group offers, as well its strategy of focusing on SMEs while avoiding tourism industry at all costs.
EGX Chairman Mohamed Omran announced that the second phase of the development of the OTC market, involves allowing investors in unlisted companies to list their shares in case they are looking to exit, and set their price and wait for a matching buyer. Omran noted that previously these transactions use to be executed on the dealers market. (Read in Arabic)
Dr. Mustafa Madbouli, the Minister of Housing announced the second phase of the “Beit Al Watan” dollar denominated land auction will take place today. There will be 3,138 pieces of land auctioned out, and they are located in New Cairo, Sheikh Zayed, and New Damietta. Buyers can electronically reserve their place in the auction and are limited to only two pieces of land. (Read in Arabic)
Long lost wedding ring found in Weymouth Harbour: While on a walk, a man found his friend’s wedding ring washed ashore after it had been lost for six years after falling into the ocean. The owner of the wedding ring had searched for it underwater with a metal detector with no luck. While this story has a happy ending, we much rather prefer Adel Emam’s version: (Watch, running time: 52 seconds, Arabic)
BY THE NUMBERS
USD CBE auction (Sunday, 22 Feb): 7.5301 (unchanged since Monday, 02 Feb)
USD parallel market (Sunday, 22 Feb): 7.70 (+0.01 from Saturday, 21 Feb)
EGX30 (Sunday): 9,494.55 (+0.14%)
Turnover: EGP 129.7 mn (72% below the 90-day average)
WTI: USD 50.97 (+0.31%)
Brent: USD 60.46 (+0.40%)
TASI: 9,301.3 (flat, 0.00%)
ADX: 4,647.3 (-0.5%)
DFM: 3,840.1 (-0.5%)
KSE Weighted Index: 453.4 (+0.1%)
QE: 12,525.4 (+0.2%)
MSM: 6,634.5 (-0.1%)
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. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.
Enterprise is available without charge thanks to the generous support of HSBC Egypt (tax ID: 204-901-715), the leading corporate and retail lender in Egypt; EFG Hermes (tax ID: 200-178-385), the leading financial services corporation in frontier emerging markets; SODIC (tax ID: 212-168-002), a leading Egyptian real estate developer; SomaBay (tax ID: 204-903-300), our Red Sea holiday partner; Infinity (tax ID: 474-939-359), the ultimate way to power cities, industries, and homes directly from nature right here in Egypt; CIRA (tax ID: 200-069-608), the leading providers of K-12 and higher level education in Egypt; Orascom Construction (tax ID: 229-988-806), the leading construction and engineering company building infrastructure in Egypt and abroad; Moharram & Partners (tax ID: 616-112-459), the leading public policy and government affairs partner; Palm Hills Developments (tax ID: 432-737-014), a leading developer of commercial and residential properties; Mashreq (tax ID: 204-898-862), the MENA region’s leading homegrown personal and digital bank; Industrial Development Group (IDG) (tax ID:266-965-253), the leading builder of industrial parks in Egypt; Hassan Allam Properties (tax ID: 553-096-567), one of Egypt’s most prominent and leading builders; and Saleh, Barsoum & Abdel Aziz (tax ID: 220-002-827), the leading audit, tax and accounting firm in Egypt.