Monday, 17 July 2017

Edita inaugurates a new factory, launches new wafer line.


What We’re Tracking Today

The Egyptian Exchange announced yesterday the final list of candidates vying for the listed companies’ seat on its board of directors, Al Masry Al Youm reports. The first round of board elections was held in June.

It’s Game of Thrones day in Egypt as the season seven premiere airs on OSN. The New York Times has got your back with a primer. No spoilers from us (or for us, please), but we will say that one of us saw the opening scene while editing this morning’s edition and, well, it was a perfect start to the season.

GoT not your speed? The season premiere of Suits is already out on iTunes. We’re saving it for an upcoming plane ride back to Omm El Donia.

What We’re Tracking This Week

GB Auto investor relations officer Andre Valavanis will contest the World Boxing Federation Intercontinental Welterweight Title on Tuesday, 18 July in a WBF championship bout in Cairo. Valavanis will square off against former Tanzanian champion Omari Ramadan, the WBF notes. The fight card will include five other title fights and one MMA bout and will take place at the Fitbox Corner in Kattameya Hills. More detail here on the event’s Facebook page.

It’s peak Sahel season: We’re heading into a three-day long weekend in observance of the 1952 Revolution.

On The Horizon

French President Emmanuel Macron will visit Egypt in the coming months, Paris’ ambassador to Cairo said last week.

Egypt and Romania are expected to sign MoUs on investment, SMEs, agriculture, water resources and irrigation, oil and gas, and tourismin Bucharest on 26-28 July.

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry is heading to Khartoum at the end of the month, according to Sudanese ambassador to Cairo Abdel Mahmoud Abdel Halim.

Enterprise+: Last Night’s Talk Shows

Our daily roundup of Last Night’s Talk Shows is on summer hiatus and will be back in a couple of weeks’ time. If anything particularly newsworthy should break on the talkies overnight, we’ll have coverage in Speed Round.

Speed Round

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Edita Food Industries announced the inauguration of its E08 factory in the Polaris Al Zamil district in Sixth of October and the commissioning of its new wafer line. Edita says the factory is its fifth and “is set to house around 11 new production lines. The factory will deploy state-of-the-art technology and is in compliance with international quality and safety standards, including HACCP, ISO 22000, ISO 9001, and ISO 18001.” Edita says it is also currently installing a new cake line at the facility with commercial production scheduled for August 2017. Chairman Hani Berzi says “the new factory will allow us to both expand our current product offering through the introduction of variants on existing products and, in parallel, give us the space we need to continue rolling out new products developed through the company’s in-house R&D department.” Edita also announced the start of commercial production of the new wafer line, which was marked with the launch of the latest entrant in its product lineup: Freska Fingers.

Arafa Holding has “no plans to inject any new investments in Egypt” in the coming period following the central bank’s decision to raise interest rates, Chairman and CEO Alaa Arafa told Al Shorouk. The cost of capital at the moment is not conducive to new investment, Arafa said, adding that no project can now be profitable given the mix of taxes, tariffs, and the high interest rate. The safest option now is to park funds in deposits, he added, stressing that the government needs to expand investment incentives if it wants to deliver on its economic goals. Arafa is the latest in a string of business leaders who have said they’re holding back on new capex given the prevailing interest rates after successive rate hikes.

More interest rate ripples as Naeem Holding will not extend subscriptions on its EGP 1 bn real estate fund for now because of the rate hike, the company said in a regulatory filing (pdf). The fund — the first of its kind in Egypt — is 1.3x oversubscribed, the company said.

The Ismail government has ordered the closure of market research firm Ipsos’ Cairo office, citing workplace health and safety violations, according to Reuters. A spokesman for the Manpower Ministry confirmed the ministry had ordered Ispsos closed in a decree handed down on 20 June. The spokesman also says the authorities have not yet carried out the closure. Amr Qais, managing director at Ipsos, told Al Mal that they hadn’t received an order of closure, that the company is currently still operating as usual. He added that Ipsos adheres to the highest standards of safety in the workplace. An anonymous source from the company had told Reuters that the government’s claims are “false.” Ipsos runs audience testing and opinion polls on Egyptian television networks.

Under cost pressure, the Oil Ministry has scaled back its target for the number of homes it will connect to the national natural gas grid in FY2017-18, aiming to hook up some 600k, down from a previously planned 1 mn, undersecretary for gas projects Mohamed Hassanein Radwan tells Youm7. The reduced target comes as the ministry faces rising cost pressure: Contractors to whom it grants concessions to connect and service homes are demanding higher connection fees given that up to 75% of their materials are imported. The ministry’s initial target of 1 mn homes was expected to cost EGP 4.2 bn. The Finance Ministry has allocated EGP 1.2 bn in the state budget for the current fiscal year to connecting homes to natural gas.

IPO WATCH- 10 state-owned companies will list under the government’s IPO program over the next three years, Investment and International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr said on Sunday, according to Al Mal. These companies will list 10-20% of their shares, which imply a cap of 20% on all state IPOs. The first of these companies to list, Enppi, appears to break with this mold as 24% of its shares will be listed. We had noted yesterday that state-owned Banque du Caire, which has been slated for an IPO, will cap its shares on offer at 20%.

IPO WATCH- The Egyptian Propylene & Polypropylene Company (EPPC) is expecting to rake in USD 300 mn from its planned IPO in 1Q2018, Karim Saada, country head of MENA private equity firm Amwal Al Khaleej, tells Daily News Egypt. EFG Hermes was tapped as the lead manager for the listing. The proceeds from the IPO should help EPPC expand production capacity at its petrochemicals plant to 600K tonnes annually from 290K tonnes.

INVESTMENT WATCH- Cairo Angels is investing in Egypt-based shipment platform Bosta, according to Forbes Middle East. The report did not disclose the investment value, but says it followed Numu Capital’s decision to invest in the startup. Bosta is a logistics tech company that allows customers to send and receive shipments and track them online. “We are very confident that Bosta can deliver a compelling solution to a very real problem that is clearly identifiable across emerging markets and beyond,” Cairo Angels chairman Aly El Shalakany is quoted as having said. Bosta is planning to expand regionally.

EFG Hermes Research announced it topped the leaderboard of Institutional Investor’s 2017 EMEA Investor Poll and came in second on the Thomson Reuters Emerging Markets Extel Survey. The investment bank also said it recently initiated coverage of Vietnamese banks, 11 Egyptian small and mid-cap stocks and introduced economic analysis on frontier markets, including Pakistan and Kenya, bringing the total number of regional equities covered to over 170. EFG Hermes says it is accommodating growing interest in frontier markets given the “low interest rates in developed markets and slow growth in emerging markets, coupled with improving political and economic conditions in frontier markets.”

The Egyptian Media Production City (EMPC) resumed broadcasting Al Hayat TV channels yesterday after the television network’s chairman Al Sayed Badawi repaid its debts to EMPC, Ahram Gate reports. EMPC had decided earlier this month to cut off services provided to the network, including electricity, due to EGP 20 mn in overdue payments, pushing the network to begin broadcasting from abroad. Al Hayat had issued a statement at the time alleging it had already paid its bills and that EMPC was was in fact indebted to the broadcaster.

Lobna Helal, Mona El Garf, Mona Zulficar make Forbes power list: CBE Deputy Governor Lobna Helal was ranked second on Forbes Middle East’s list of the 100 Most Powerful Arab Businesswomen. Egyptian Competition Authority chief Mona El Garf was placed 20th, and Zulficar & Partners founding partner and EFG Hermes non-executive chairperson Mona Zulficar is also on the list, coming in at number 23.

FDI to grow by 20% y-o-y in FY2017-18: Foreign direct investment to Egypt in FY 2016-17 is likely to have recorded USD 8-8.5 bn, Planning Minister Hala El Saeed projects, according to Reuters. El Saeed says the government is targeting 20% y-o-y increase in the FDI figures in FY2017-18. The official data for the whole fiscal year is not out yet.

Freezones are back in fashion under the new Investment Act, and the Investment Ministry has a strategy running through 2034 that will see more roll out nationwide, Investment and International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr told investors in Alexandria, according to a ministry statement. A public freezone is set to be established in each governorate, with a logistics center built for every port across the country. Private-sector-run free zones will also play a role in the strategy, Nasr said, with an emphasis on infrastructure and utilities projects. The state will offer 406 projects at freezones worth a total of USD 9.9 bn, she added, 71 of them in private freezones. Nasr also noted that SMEs will be welcome in freezones and emphasized that the Alexandria freezone will include a startup incubator.

Nasr also noted that the ministry’s investment map, which will outline the geographic distribution of some 600 priority projects, should be ready within the month, Al Borsa reports. The minister had previously said that the map would be out last week.

Meanwhile, Alexandria Governor Mohamed Sultan has submitted a request to the New Urban Communities Authority (NUCA) to allocate 700 feddans at the Borg El Arab freezone to the expansion of industrial installations there, according to Al Borsa.

60-40 split with gov’t on revenues from CFLD’s developments in new capital: Nasr also spoke of China Fortune Land Development Company’s (CFLD) project in the New Administrative Capital, saying that the government will retain 60% of revenues from CFLD’s projects there as part of a revenue sharing agreement with the company. As we noted last week, CFLD had pledged USD 13.5 bn over the next 10 years in developing the 14,000 feddan first phase of the new capital — an apparent reduction in the size of its initial pledge of USD 20 bn. USD 4 bn will be invested in the development of industrial parks in the new capital over the coming four years, an Ittihadiya statement picked up by Al Borsa had said.

Overhaul of bread subsidy system unlikely to change how much wheat Egypt imports: The Ismail government’s overhaul of its bread subsidy program is unlikely to lead to any significant change in how much wheat Egypt buys on the international market, traders and analysts tell Bloomberg. “Import demand will be the same as people still need to consume wheat and flour and Egypt’s bread consumption is one of the highest in the world,” CEO of Roots Commodities in Egypt Haitham Nouh said. “We expect import volumes to stay normal and any increase in wheat imports will only be a reflection of the increase in population.” Nouh also believes the political sensitivities underlying the bread subsidy program would mean that the pace of reforming the system will be gradual, and hence unlikely to impact wheat imports significantly. Last Wednesday, the Supply Ministry had announced it is ending subsidizing the production of flour and will only subsidize the production of bread beginning in August. A few days prior to announcing the decision the Supply Ministry said that it will increase wheat imports in FY2017-18 to 6.2 mn tonnes from 5.5 mn tonnes during the previous fiscal year.

Security forces’ attempts to clear state-owned land on El Warraq island in Giza have reportedly resulted in the death of one person there, in a story getting major pickup across both local and international news. The clashes erupted as the security forces moved to clear squatters and illegal building from the area, but were met with heavy resistance. Al Shorouk reports that police officers were injured in the clashes which were followed by a decision to halt the move to clear the settlers off the island indefinitely, according to a Giza governorate source. Prime Minister Sherif Ismail defended the evictions, saying it was the government’s right to seize unlawful developments on illegally occupied land. Ismail issued a decree forming a committee to investigate the events that took place, according to Al Shorouk.

Several tour operators believe Friday’s knife attacks in Hurghada will have negative repercussions on Egypt’s tourism industry, Al Shorouk reports. Some tourists staying at the hotels where the attacks took place have reportedly requested to leave, says Ali Okda, CEO of German tour operator FIT’s subsidiary Meeting Point. Hossam El Shaer, the president of Thomas Cook’s local agent, Bright Sky, said he expects German tourism in particular will take a hit. He denied, however, that any of his agency’s bookings have been canceled, telling Al Mal that it may be too early to properly gauge the international reaction.

Meanwhile, Egypt’s State Information Service (SIS) issued a statement yesterday saying that the motives behind the knife attack have not yet been determined. SIS asserts that “the assailant is still being questioned by the investigation authorities … the authorities have not yet identified the nature of the attack and motives behind it.” The government’s PR arm also said that the English translation of the statement issued immediately after the attack “contained an error, falsely indicating that the attack is ‘a terrorist act,’ and the same error was in the statement French translation.” SIS says it fired the two freelance translators who prepared the statements.

Erdogan is hurting gas exploration in East Mediterranean to score political points at home: The inability of Greek Cyprus and Turkish Cyprus to reach an understanding in these latest round of talks does not bode well for natural gas exploration in the East Mediterranean, writes Cyril Widdershoven for Oil Price Magazine. This comes at a time when the gas exploration in the area is picking up, with oil majors Total and Eni presumably having begun offshore drilling as scheduled yesterday, not to mention talk of a possible gas export line between Israel and Turkey. The situation is made worse by the involvement of the Turkish Sultanate under potentate Erdogan, who is likely seeking to drum up national fervor of the issue to draw attention to the massive protests erupting in commemoration of last year’s failed coup to have him ousted. Ankara condemned drilling operations on Cyprus’ coast and threatened to take all necessary measures. Turkey has reportedly sent a frigate to the area, with as its sole purpose to monitor the West Capella, the drilling vessel used to drill on Block 11. For the record, Block 11 is close to Egypt’s Zohr field.

Washington Post claims the UAE orchestrated hacking of Qatari government sites: The UAE reportedly orchestrated the alleged hack of Qatar’s news agency, the event that (publicly, at least)sparked the whole Qatar Smackdown, the Washington Post reports, citing unnamed US intelligence sources. Intelligence officials reportedly confirmed to the newspaper senior members of the UAE government discussed the plan and its implementation on 23 May — a day before comments by the ruling Emir appearing to praise Iran and Hamas were aired on Qatar’s news agency. The officials said it remains unclear whether the UAE carried out the hacks itself or contracted it out. “The UAE had no role whatsoever in the alleged hacking described in the article,” the UAE’s ambassador to the US, Yousef al-Otaiba, said in a statement. “What is true is Qatar’s behavior. Funding, supporting, and enabling extremists from the Taliban to Hamas and Qadafi. Inciting violence, encouraging radicalization, and undermining the stability of its neighbors,” he added.

Unilever and Hormel Foods Corp will be vying to acquire the foods division of Reckitt Benckiser, according to a Reuters brief. Whomever outbids on this one is probably going to shell out in excess of USD 2.9 bn for the acquisition.


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The Macro Picture

Global growth will be slower, more sustained: Goldman Sachs Research’s Chief Economist Jan Hatzius expects “good” economic growth to continue in 2H2017 but without much of the “acceleration” seen in the “last year or year and a half.” In one of the firm’s 2017 mid-year outlook videos (runtime 02:55), Hatzius says growth will be slower in “places like Japan and Europe” with the US expected to see continued above-trend growth in the 2-2.5% range. There are many places with a “very good recovery” in emerging markets, he says, pointing to Brazil and India as well as “many smaller emerging economies around the world [that] look a lot better than they did a year or a year and a half ago.”

Hatzius remains concerned over the increase in debt in China that is rising at an “unsustainable” rate. As for the international energy markets, Head of Commodities Jeff Currie says the oil market will continue to search for equilibrium, but the balance of risks is tilted to the upside in 2H2017. Currie says “driving that uncertainty are the costs and technological innovations that are being generated from the New Oil Order in a shale industry that is continually evolving” (runtime 02:33).

Egypt in the News

Topping coverage of Egypt in the foreign press this morning are pickups of the clashes at El Warraq, where one resident of the neighborhood was killed and fifty policemen were injured. Most of the coverage, particularly pickups of the Associated Press, appeared to focus on the poor timing of the campaign in the wider context of the residents of El Warraq being mostly poor and already hurting from inflation and the economic reform measures. “To El Warraq’s middle class and poor residents, however, the sight of bulldozers coming to demolish their homes may have been more than they could bear at a time when they, like most Egyptians, are struggling to cope with soaring prices for food and services,” writes Hamza Hindawi.

Coming in at a close second are continued wire pickups of the stabbing attack which took place in Hurghada over the weekend. Not much new there beyond what we looked at yesterday. Euro News, however, is running images of the attacker from Friday.

Also worth noting in brief this morning:

  • Disney has cast Egyptian-Canadian actor Mena Massoud to play Aladdin in the reboot of the film. Will Smith will take the role of the Genie and Naomi Scott will play Jasmine.
  • President Abdel Fattah El Sisi is seeking to quiet opposing voices ahead of presidential elections, Salma Islam writes for Newsweek Middle East
  • A USD 4.8 mn grant from Egypt to help sugarcane irrigation in Kenya is receiving positive press from the Kenya’s the Star.
  • India provided all the solar panels and subsystems for a solar energy project designed to power a village in Matrouh near the Libyan border, Indian publications reported.
  • Ancient cities around the shores of the Mediterranean and Adriatic are being “overwhelmed” by tourists looking for alternative, “safer” destinations to places like Egypt, Tunisia, or Turkey, according to a BBC report.

On Deadline

Raising interest rates will have widespread negative repercussions, and reap few benefits, Mohamed Ali Ibrahim writes in a column penned for Al Masry Al Youm. In addition to bringing investment to a grinding halt due to the high cost of borrowing, high rates will significantly increase the state’s debt service burden, he points out. He also says that while interest rate hikes are theoretically useful in situations where citizens spend much of their cash on goods and services, the theory does not apply to Egypt, where people have simply been forced to spend more on goods as their prices have increased, not because of a jump in purchasing power. Ibrahim rails against the government and its policymakers, saying their decisions seem to be based on a survey of a select segment of society and economic indicators that do not show the whole picture. He says that to point to the minority that is still able to purchase expensive homes in gated communities is to ignore how the population at large is faring.

Worth Reading

Has the war against corporate BS been lost? The FT’s inimitable Lucy Kellaway thinks so, writing that “Over the past two decades …business B.S. [she writes it out in full] has got a man per cent more B.S.y. Not only has production risen in aggregate, the worst individual offenders have gone on surpassing themselves… Howard Schultz is a champion in the B.S. Space. The Starbucks executive chairman has provided me with more material for columns than any other executive living or dead. Yet he is still at it. Earlier this year, he announced that the new Starbucks Roasteries were “delivering an immersive, ultra-premium, coffee-forward experience.” In this ultra-premium, jargon-forward twaddle, the only acceptable word is “an”. Read the full column at the Financial Times (paywall).

Worth Watching

Heartache in a WhatsApp voice note: With nothing more than a voice note and unfussy footage of a girl playing with her hair, actor / director / scriptwriter Ashraf Hamdi’s short film, Hesitant, gives us insight into an unseen narrator’s heartache. Complete with the beeps and pops of sending a voice note on WhatsApp, the film, which runs under two minutes long, relays its core message with impressive speed and accuracy as we gather all the information and emotions from the (hesitant) voice note. Hesitation is the sixth installment of Hamdi’s aptly titled series, Voice Note (watch, runtime 1:28).

Diplomacy + Foreign Trade

Sweden’s Minister for EU affairs and Trade Ann Linde will visit Egypt in November, the Swedish embassy’s First Secretary for Political, Economic and Cultural Affairs Radoslav Živković tells Al Mal. An Egyptian business delegation is also set to visit Sweden in the autumn to explore investment opportunities in health and renewable energy, he adds. Egypt is among 20 countries with which Sweden wants to increase trade, according to Živković.

Also from euroland, Deutsche Bank has an interest in a piece of the Egyptian government’s IPO pie after a sit-down with Investment Ministry Sahar Nasr, if a ministry statement is any gauge.

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi discussed economic cooperation with Argentina’s Vice President, Marta Gabriela Michetti, in Cairo, according to a statement from Ittihadiya. This comes after Argentina’s parliament approved the freetrade agreement between Egypt and the Mercosur in May. Argentina and Egypt can cooperate in agriculture, scientific research and technology, renewable energy, education, culture and sports, Michetti said. The two leaders also discussed cooperation on counter-terrorism and agreed to hold the joint economic and trade committee meetings soon. Michetti also met with Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry for talks on trade and economic cooperation between Egypt and Argentina, which will chair the G20 in 2018, according to a ministry statement.

Michetti is set to attend today the Egyptian-Argentinian Business Forum organized by the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce, Al Masry Al Youm reports. Michetti’s visit comes ahead of a visit by the Argentinian President Mauricio Macri to Egypt in the coming period, according to the ministry spokesperson.

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and French President Emmanuel Macron discussed Egyptian-French cooperation on regional and international issues during a phone call yesterday, according to an emailed Ittihadiya statement (pdf). El Sisi stressed the need for international cooperation to reach political solutions to the ongoing crises in the Middle East and restore stability, including in Libya.


Electricity Holding Company to sign two loans worth EGP 37 bn

The Egyptian Electricity Holding Company expects to sign two loan agreements worth EGP 37 bn with Banque Misr and National Bank of Egypt next week, Al Borsa reports. The financing will be allocated to expanding and improving the national grid as well as increasing power supply, sources tell the newspaper.

Solera plans to expand into energy projects in Africa

Egyptian solar power equipment supplier Solera is establishing a new solar power plant in Liberia in cooperation with USAID and other international partners, Al Shorouk reports. The move is part of an expansion the company is planning in the continent, which will include a solar power generator for an irrigation project in Sudan, said the company’s spokesperson.


China’s Gezhouba reduces number of villages served in water treatment project on cost concerns

China’s Gezhouba Construction will implement USD 1 bn in water treatment projects in 200 Gharbiya and Menoufiya villages, Al Mal reports. The number of villages in the project has been reduced from 260 initially as cost overruns were taken into account after the EGP float. The project is funded by the Bank of China, with a loan carrying a maturity of 20 years and at an interest rate of 0.5%.

Basic Materials + Commodities

Agriculture Ministry announces new prices for purchasing local cotton

The Agriculture Ministry will be buying cotton from local farmers during the current harvest season at a price of EGP 2,300 per qintar for long-staple cotton from the Delta, up from EGP 1,250 previously, and paying EGP 2,100 per qintar for short- and medium-staple cotton from Upper Egypt (from EGP 1,100 before), Al Masry Al Youm reports. The head of the Farmers’ Syndicate rejected these prices, saying they will cause cotton production to recede over the coming period due to the rising costs farmers are dealing with, Al Mal reports. The figures fall below previously proposed prices of EGP 3,000 for long-staple cotton and EGP 2,500 for short- and medium-staple cotton. The state is planning to double long-staple cotton production and exports in FY2017-18.

GASC issues soybean oil tender, says it accepts EGP bids

State grain buyer General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) has issued a tender to buy 30k tonnes of soybean oil and 10k tonnes of sunflower oil, according to Reuters’ Arabic service. The newswire says GASC will also accept bids in EGP for the tender. GASC is seeking delivery between 5-20 September with a bidding deadline of 20 July.


LG inaugurates new EGP 120 mn washing machines production line

LG inaugurated a new EGP 120 mn washing machine production line at its 10th of Ramadan factory, Al Masry Al Youm reports. The line has a production target of 87k washing machines this year, 56k of which are set to be exported. LG Egypt Managing Director Don Kwak said last month LG targets manufacturing 400k washing machines annually.


Orascom Hotels, Jordan arranging joint travel packages between Taba Heights, Aqaba

Orascom Hotels and Development reached an agreement with a number Jordan’s maritime transport companies to arrange boat trips for tourists between Jordan’s Aqaba and Taba Heights, Al Mal reports. The agreement will temporarily see tourists transported directly from the King Hussein International Airport in Aqaba to Taba Heights, according to Taba Heights chairperson Emad El Tarabishy. The two sides are working on a further agreement to organize a joint travel program for tourists to spend two nights in Aqaba and five nights in Taba Heights, and transport the tourists via cruise ship.

TPA to launch winter tourism promotion campaign in Europe in September

The Tourism Promotion Authority (TPA) is planning to launch a winter tourism promotion campaign in Europe this September, TDA head Hisham El Demery tells Youm7. The campaign, which will run until January 2018, will target markets such as the UK, Poland, Ukraine, and Germany.

Telecoms + ICT

MNOs to offer 4G services mid-August

Vodafone, Orange, and Etisalat will begin offering 4G services to customers mid-August, an unnamed National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (NTRA) source tells Al Shorouk. The companies are currently distributing frequencies among them nationwide. The NTRA source noted that the deadline for them to reach an agreement over the redistribution is the first week of August. Telecom Egypt, on the other hand, is scheduled to launch its mobile services in September, CEO Ahmed El Behery says, according to Al Shorouk. The state-owned land-line monopoly is currently preparing to provide 3G and 4G services.

Automotive + Transportation

Construction at Borg El Arab new terminal to begin this year

Construction works for a new terminal at Borg El Arab International Airport in Alexandria are set to begin this year, with a target completion date of within four years, Civil Aviation Minister Sherif Fathy said, according to Al Shorouk. Work on the new terminal was initially slated for July 2016 and will be funded through a JPY 26.4 bn (USD 234.6 mn) credit facility from the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The facility carries a long-term maturity of over 40 years, and a 0.1% interest rate. Two Japanese companies are set to provide consultancy work. Separately, Fathy said the launching the tender to develop infrastructure for 2.8 mn sqm of the Airport City project in Cairo will be postponed. No company applied as utilities to the project’s site were not provided.

Careem hikes its fares, temporarily halts surge pricing

Ride-hailing app Careem has hiked its fares to offset increased costs from last month’s fuel price increases, Al Mal reports. The base fare has been increased to EGP 5 from EGP 4.75 previously, while the fare for each kilometer traveled was raised to EGP 2, up from EGP 1.70. The company has also decided to temporarily suspend surge pricing until 20 July, Head of Careem Egypt’s operations Ramy Kato said, according to Al Borsa.

Banking + Finance

Consortium of investors make mandatory tender offer for Bitumode

A consortium of investors is making a mandatory tender offer for the remaining 34% of the Modern Company For Waterproofing (Bitumode), according to a filing by the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority (pdf).

On Your Way Out

A detachment of the Tourism Police has apparently lost its mind and is reportedly attempting to enforce a ban on alcohol consumption in Sahel, Youm7 reports. The ban supposedly applies to all beaches and establishments except for those with alcohol licenses. We’re not sure if that means you are now running the risk of arrest by having a beer by the beach. The move comes after pictures of “provocatively dressed” go-go dancers at a nightclub in Sahel stirred up a storm on social media, causing the club to be shut down, according to Scoop Empire.

Egyptian bass baritone Ashraf Sewailam is directing Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen in in August, his directorial debut in New York City, Ati Metwaly writes for Ahram Online. The production will be performed by dell’Arte Opera Ensemble for five days between 19 and 27 August. “The production is quite abstract in design, and mixes straightforward storytelling with an orchestral interlude that features abstract movement reflecting the themes of the story,” Sewailam tells Ahram Online.

The markets yesterday

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EGP / USD CBE market average: Buy 17.8859 | Sell 17.9859

EGP / USD at CIB: Buy 17.90 | Sell 18.00

EGP / USD at NBE: Buy 17.82 | Sell 17.92

EGX30 (Sunday): 13,816 (-0.1%)
Turnover: EGP 607 mn
EGX 30 year-to-date: +11.9%

THE MARKET ON SUNDAY: The EGX30 index ended Sunday’s session down 0.1%. CIB, the index heaviest constituent ended up 0.3%. EGX30’s top performing constituents were: Egyptian Iron & Steel up 3.8%, Orascom Construction up 2.5%, and Palm Hills up 2.2%. Yesterday’s worst performing stocks were: Amer Group down 2.9%, Orascom Telecom Media & Technology down 2.7%, and Porto Group down 2.6%. The market turnover was EGP 607 mn, and local investors were the sole net sellers.

Foreigners: Net Long | EGP +4.0 mn
Regional: Net Long | EGP +0.1 mn
Domestic: Net Short | EGP -4.1 mn

Retail: 75.5% of total trades | 77.3% of buyers | 73.7% of sellers
Institutions: 24.5% of total trades | 22.7% of buyers | 26.3% of sellers

Foreign: 11.6% of total | 11.9% of buyers | 11.3% of sellers
Regional: 10.7% of total | 10.7% of buyers | 10.7% of sellers
Domestic: 77.7% of total | 77.4% of buyers | 78.0% of sellers

WTI: USD 46.63 (+0.19%)
Brent: USD 48.91 (0.00%)

Natural Gas (Nymex, futures prices) USD 2.99 MMBtu, (+0.23%, August 2017)
Gold: USD 1,229.90 / troy ounce (+0.20%)

TASI: 7,348.76 (+0.48%) (YTD: +1.92%)
ADX: 4,524.00 (+0.13%) (YTD: -0.49%)
DFM: 3,573.00 (+1.01%) (YTD: +1.19%)
KSE Weighted Index: 405.50 (+0.22%) (YTD: +6.69%)
QE: 9,343.57 (-1.33%) (YTD: -10.47%)
MSM: 5,063.76 (-1.13%) (YTD: -12.43%)
BB: 1,314.08 (-0.25%) (YTD: +7.67%)

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15-19 July (Saturday-Wednesday): SSIGE’s GeoMEast 2017 International Congress and Exhibition, Sharm El Sheikh.

23 July (Sunday): Revolution Day, national holiday.

03-05 August (Thursday-Saturday): Watrex Expo Middle East, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Center.

17 August (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

26 August (Saturday): 27th Egyptian-Jordanian Joint Higher Committee meeting, Amman Jordan. (TBC).

02-05 September (Saturday-Tuesday): Eid Al-Adha, national holiday (TBC).

13 September (Wednesday): EIB MED Conference: Boosting investments in the Mediterranean Region, Cairo.

13-16 September (Wednesday-Saturday): Cairo Fashion & Tex exhibition, Cairo International Conference Center

17-19 September (Sunday-Tuesday): Pipeline-Pipe-Sewer-Technology Conference & Exhibition, Intercontinental Citystars Hotel, Cairo.

18-19 September (Monday-Tuesday): Euromoney Egypt conference, venue TBD.

20-23 September (Wednesday-Saturday): 2017 Automech Formula car expo, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

22 September (Friday): Islamic New Year, national holiday (TBC).

25-27 September (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Downstream Summit and Exhibition, Kempinski Royal Maxim Palace, Cairo.

23-25 September (Saturday-Monday): Invest In Africa Conference and Exhibitors Summit, Gala Theater Complex, Cairo.

28 September (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

03-05 October (Tuesday-Thursday): J.P. Morgan’s Credit and Equities Emerging Markets Conference, London, UK.

18-19 October (Wednesday-Thursday): Middle East Info Security Summit, Sofitel El Gezirah, Cairo.

06 October (Friday): Armed Forces Day, national holiday.

11-12 October (Wednesday-Thursday): 2030 Mega Projects Conference, Nefertiti Hall, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo.

11-13 October (Wednesday-Friday): Middle East and Africa Rail Show, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo.

18-20 October (Wednesday-Friday): AfriLabs annual gathering with the theme “Smart Cities,” The French University, Cairo. Register here.

16 November (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

01 December (Friday): Prophet’s Birthday, national holiday.

03-05 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Solar-Tec, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Centre.

03-05 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Electrix, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Centre.

08-10 December (Friday-Sunday): RiseUp Summit, Downtown Cairo.

28 December (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

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