Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Egypt’s non-oil business activity hits 17-month low


What We’re Tracking Today

Tourism forum ITB Berlin is kicking off today, according to the convention’s website. Tourism Minister Rania Al Mashat is taking part in the sessions of the first day.

A Port Said criminal court will rule today in a graft case involving former Customs Authority head Gamal Abdel Azim who was accused last year of accepting bribes worth EGP 1 mn in exchange for facilitating the clearance of goods from customs, Mubasher reports.

China has lowered its target range for GDP growth this year, “blaming in a rare admission the slowdown on the impact of the trade war with the US”, the Financial Times reports. The country previously set its target at 6.5%, but has now lowered it to a flexible range of 6-6.5%. Beijing needs a greater degree of macro policy flexibility amid softening growth, high corporate default rates and bank debt reaching a 20-year high.

And South Africa hasn’t been faring any better: The country’s GDP growth posted 0.8% in 2018, marking the fifth year of growth below 2%, according to the Financial Times.

Why are international investors still flooding the Chinese domestic market in the face of declining growth and still unresolved US-China trade talks? Because they take a long-term view, argues Fabiana Fedeli in the FT. MSCI China A International Index underperformed the MSCI World index by just over 30% in 2018, which is seen as “a good cushion for international investors.” While economic growth is down, earnings growth is positive. And both ongoing trade negotiations and continued stimulus measures by the Chinese government are seen as positive steps, while the inclusion of China’s mainland stocks in emerging market indices is also expected to increase.

Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump plans to end trade preferences for India and Turkey, Bloomberg reports. India and Turkey enjoy no-duty entry to the US of about 2,000 products including auto components, industrial valves, and textile materials. Trump can backtrack his plans if both countries address his administration’s concerns. India said the decision, if taken, wouldn’t have significant impact. Reuters has the story.

ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum’s discovery of a gas field offshore Cyprus “could add fuel” to the tension between Cyprus and Turkey over gas resources in the former’s Exclusive Economic Zone, Oil Review Middle East says. The Glaucus-1 field, hailed as “one of the biggest discoveries of the year,” represents a boon for the aspirations of both Cyprus and Egypt to become regional gas hubs, but the plan to bring the gas to the market “will not be straightforward,” Rystad Energy has announced.

In September last year, Egypt and Cyprus had signed a landmark USD 1 bn agreement to link gas fields offshore Cyprus with Egypt’s liquefaction plants, from where it could then be exported to the EU. However, the construction schedule, cost, and financing of the pipeline is still unclear.

Qatar is hoping to raise around USD 10 bn with a jumbo bond issuance that it will announce this week, sources with knowledge of the matter said yesterday. Reuters quotes a senior analyst from Moody’s Sovereign Risk Group as saying that the bonds’ proceeds will cover a USD 1 bn international bond repayment this year, as well as “taking out insurance against a potential downturn in oil prices” and pre-financing scheduled external redemptions due next year to the tune of USD 10.5 bn.

A second patient is reported to have been cured of HIV in a scientific breakthrough occurring 12 years after the first, according to the NYT. In both cases, the cures resulted from bone-marrow transplants given to the patients to treat cancer, a risky and difficult process that is unlikely to be the basis for a long-term cure. There is, however, hope that the treatment may be modified.

Saudi Arabia is looking to ease entry proceedings for tourists in what is the latest of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s efforts to liberalize and diversify the economy, according to the WSJ. Officials familiar with the matter noted that there is still much to be finalized, but current plans may allow citizens of the US, Europe, Japan and China to obtain visas on arrival to the country or enter sans visa by the end of the year. The Saudi cabinet also approved plans for an electronic tourist-visa system for those seeking to attend special events in the kingdom.

Enterprise+: Last Night’s Talk Shows

The anticipated inauguration of four tunnels and five bridges in the Suez Canal Economic Zone on April 25 stole the spotlight on the airwaves last night. Suez Canal Authority (SCA) boss Mohab Mamish phoned in to Sada El Balad to give the details on the projects’ anticipated completion (watch, runtime: 02:19). Mamish also said Suez Canal revenues are expected to reach USD 6 bn this year (watch, runtime: 03:18). He also said by 2030, the SCEZ would be generating 1 mn jobs.

Promotion for the Grand Egyptian Museum will be included in the Tourism forum ITB Berlin that kicks off today (watch, runtime: 03:32). Tourism Minister Rania Al Mashat, who’s attending the forum, said the promotion is positive for Egypt’s tourism industry (watch, runtime: 15:10).

Seven Egyptians have made it to the Middle East's 30 under 30 2019 list, including Mo Salah and squash champions Nour El Sherbini and Mohamed El Shorbagy, Hona Al Asema’s Lama Gebril highlighted (watch, runtime: 08:20).

Taking stock of fruit and veggie production, exports: Egypt produces 22 mn tonnes of vegetables, of which 7% are exported, and 11 mn tonnes of fruit, of which 18% are exported, Agricultural Exports Council ChairmanAbdel El Demerdash said (watch, runtime: 35:34).

Speed Round

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Non-oil business activity falls to 17-month low, sentiment hits 10-month high: The Egypt purchasing managers’ index (PMI) contracted for the sixth consecutive month in February to reach a 17-month low, according to Markit / Emirates NBD data. The index fell to 48.2 last month from 48.5 in January, “signalling a moderate deterioration in the health of the non-oil private sector economy.” Companies surveyed in the index attributed the decline to low sales, bad weather, and a lack of liquidity. February’s reading is “substantially weaker than the 2018 average of 49.5 … and while we continue to expect an improvement in conditions over the course of 2019, Egyptian firms clearly remain under pressure,” Daniel Richards, MENA economist at Emirates NBD, said.

Weakening market conditions and a drop in exports led to the biggest decline in new orders in 20 months, and foreign demand declined at the quickest rate since October 2016. Output also witnessed the largest decline since September 2017. Purchasing activity also fell for the first time in five months, while stock levels remained unchanged.

Input prices accelerated slightly month-on-month as a result of higher costs of transportation, raw materials, electricity, and water. Businesses offered discounts, leading to output prices declining for the second consecutive month.

Despite all this, business sentiment is at its highest levels in 10 months, with “44% of firms expecting conditions to improve in the coming 12 months. Some pointed to planned business development as a key reason underpinning confidence.”

Egypt is not alone — global PMI output levels were at a 33-month low, according to Markit. Worldwide PMI surveys point to a stagnation in global manufacturing levels, with 13 out of 30 countries included in the global survey reporting a decline in manufacturing “amid a faster decline of global trade flows. Export sales fell for a sixth straight month, with the rate of decrease accelerating.” Falling export orders were also reported by nearly two-thirds of the countries in the survey.

EGX outperforms regional peers in February: Egyptian stocks rose 4.8% in February, more than any of its MENA peers, Zawya reported. The EGX performance was boosted by an interest rate cut by the CBE and cheap valuations, according to Yogesh Khairajani, an investment research analyst at Century Financial. “With a US-China [transaction] in sight and a strong recovery in the EGP (Egyptian pound), the Egyptian market is expected to continue to accelerate,” Iyad Hweij, managing director of Allied Investment Partners, told Zawya.

“Government planned IPOs are also expected to be announced during the year, which is expected to attract investments.” The institutional offering of Eastern Company, which piloted the program earlier week, was 1.8x oversubscribed at EGP 17/share. The company’s shares were oversubscribed 4.27x on Tuesday, the last day of the secondary offering, according to an EGX statement (pdf).

Natgas regulator issues 18 licenses, none for private sector gas imports: The Natural Gas Regulatory Authority issued 18 natural gas import and distribution licenses in Egypt, government sources told the local press. The two gas import licenses went to EGAS, with the private sector still not receiving official licenses to import gas. It was a different matter for distribution licenses, 13 of which were awarded to private sector companies, and three going to the state-owned Egyptian Natural Gas Company (Gasco). This license will allow the companies to expand and build up the natural gas distribution grid, the source noted.

Background: The authority, which was made responsible for licensing in 2017  under the Natural Gas Act, postponed its first issuance in September, saying the private sector was “unprepared,” a position that the Oil Ministry appeared to reverse in offhand comments following the signing of the natural gas import agreement with Israel. The authority is handling requests from at least 14 companies, including Rosneft. It also set fees last year for the private sector’s use of the state’s natgas grid. It was reported in the local press that the regulator would begin issuing import licenses to the private sector last month.

Egypt LNG exports hit five-year high: Liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports from Egypt’s Idku liquefaction plant increased 44% in February to 391.3 mcm, according to analysis from Platts. This is the highest amount of LNG exported from Egypt since May 2013. Four cargoes were shipped during the month, including two to Turkey, one to France, and one Singapore. Oil Minister Tarek El Molla said last month that Idku operator and owner Shell increased its LNG exports to 800 mcf/d in February, from 500 mcf/d in January.

Export volumes will continue to rise: Platts projects that Egypt’s LNG exports will increase by 810 mcm over the course of the year due to production gains in the Zohr and West Nile Delta projects. This figure could increase further if the ministry manages to settle its dispute with Union Fenosa Gas (UFG) over the re-opening of the Damietta LNG facility. This resolution could be further off than we originally anticipated though, as UFG recently poured cold water on claims that the plant could reopen in April.

IPO WATCH- Fawry considering IPO by next year, plans expansions: E-payments platform Fawry is considering listing on the EGX sometime in 2019 or 2020 to finance its expansions, Managing Director Mohamed Okasha told Al Mal. The company hasn’t begun the IPO procedures yet but plans to hire a local investment bank to manage and advise on the offering when it decides on the timing. Fawry is planning to begin operations in the UAE this month, increase sales points to 150,000, partnering in new start-ups, buying new payment machines, and developing Fawry Pay, he added

M&A WATCH- Americana’s Adeptio to challenge FRA rejection of its appeal against MTO decision: The Egyptian International Tourism Projects Company’s (Americana Egypt) main shareholder Adeptio AD Investments will challenge before an administrative court the Financial Regulatory Authority’s (FRA) rejection of its appeal against an order to submit a mandatory tender offer (MTO) for Americana Egypt, the company said in an EGX disclosure (pdf). The FRA earlier this week rejected Adeptio’s appeal, asking the company to conduct a study on the fair share value, the authority said in a statement (pdf). Adeptio argues that its indirect ownership of Americana Egypt is less than 90% of its total capital and therefore does not require an MTO submission.

LEGISLATION WATCH- Gov’t to establish independent body to supervise pensions: The government is planning to do away with a provision in the draft Social Security and Pensions Act that would set up an authority directed by the social solidarity and finance ministries to manage the state’s pension and social insurance funds in favor of setting up an independent body, government sources told the domestic press. A new draft law separate from the Pensions Act establishing the entity will be presented to the House of Representatives for a separate vote not long after the Pensions Act is introduced, the source noted. The government expects to refer the draft Pensions Act to the House of Representatives before the end of the month.

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Up Next

Egypt and a UAE company will sign an operations and management agreement in the field of tire manufacturing “within days,” Public Enterprise Minister Hisham Tawfik said, according to Al Mal. The minister did not disclose the name of the UAE company, but said the move comes amid efforts to attract foreign investment, and boost manufacturing and trade.

AmCham is putting on a one-day entrepreneurship event on 11 March, in collaboration with the AUC School of Business, Mindsalike Network, the Entrepreneurs’ Organization and Endeavor Egypt. “The Egyptian Dream” will feature keynote speeches and workshops led by leading entrepreneurs to inform and educate aspiring business owners on the challenges and rewards of entrepreneurship.

A delegation of 50 Japanese companies is expected in Egypt between 10-12 March to sign several investment agreements and explore areas of cooperation for the development of technical industries, reports Egypt Today.

A consortium of Russian companies is expected to visit Egypt this month to explore investment and operational logistics in the Russian Industrial Zone area of the Suez Canal Economic Zone, reports the local press.

The gov’t will begin rolling out its debt control strategy this month. The four-year strategy aims to bring down Egypt’s public debt to 80-85% of GDP by the end of FY2021-22.

An Egyptian ministerial delegation will visit France this month to discuss boosting bilateral trade, local press reported.

The Egypt-Sudan electricity grid connection project is on track, and is set to begin its first-phase trials next month, according to The North Africa Post.

The Macro Picture

MENA growth to slow in the coming months, says Focus Economics: Economic growth in the Middle East and North Africa is set to slow in the coming months on the back of oil supply cuts, according to Focus Economics. The economic forecasting company says in its latest MENA outlook that OPEC’s voluntary production cuts result in a “sharp reduction in GDP growth” among oil-dependent economies albeit as it increases fiscal stability. As a result Focus Economics has left its MENA GDP forecast unchanged at 1.9% in 2019 and 2.8% in 2020. Unrest is also a key downside risk,with the eruption of protests in Algeria against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s rule and the potential for labor unrest in Tunisia.

Everything is looking up for Egypt, though. Egypt is still expected to be the top-performing MENA country in terms of GDP, with 5.3% growth in 2019 that will accelerate to 5.4% in 2020. Focus Economics expects inflation to average 12.1% through 2019 and cool to 10.8% in 2020, which would give the Central Bank of Egypt the breathing room to make further rate cuts over the next two years. The firm projects an overnight deposit rate of 14.93% by the end of 2019 (from 15.75% currently) and 13.46% in 2020. As for exchange rates, Focus Economics sees the EGP weakening against the USD as the CBE continues to ease, finishing 2019 at EGP 18.30 per USD, and 2020 at EGP 18.79 per USD.

Egypt in the News

It was another human rights-laden day in the foreign press. Nine international human rights organizations have exhorted states at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva to minimize Egypt’s involvement in the council’s human rights and counter-terrorism expert’s report, HRW said. Citing “systematic abuses”, they have urged the states not to allow the expert’s role to be “undermined.” Also from HRW, LGBT activist Neela Ghoshal writes that Egypt’s government can’t claim a piece of Rami Malek’s Oscar.

On The Front Pages

Egypt’s state-owned dailies are focused this morning on security and infrastructure developments. Al Ahram and Al Gomhuria are running with headlines on Defense Minister Mohamed Zaky’s assertion that the Armed Forces’ protection of the country is a “sacred responsibility,” while Al Akhbar joined Al Gomhuria in noting the inauguration of new platforms at the East Port Said Port.

Worth Reading

Money without trophies: Defining success in football. Manchester United’s post-2013 experience on the football pitch cannot by any stretch of the imagination be called a success. The departure of legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson created a void at the club, one that none of his successors has been able to fill. For the most successful team in Premier League history, the trophies dried up, title hopes faded, and laughter replaced envy among rival fans. And yet, Manchester United can still mount a strong case for being one of the top three biggest clubs in the world alongside Real Madrid and Barcelona. In 2018 they comfortably had the third-largest online fanbase and during the 2017/18 season they were the highest earning club in the world, according to Deloitte’s Football Money League. And with a stock market cap of around USD 4.12 bn, they are the second most valuable sports team in the world behind only the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. If the club’s poor performances become further entrenched though, continued financial success may not be sustainable, the FT writes.

Record revenues: Despite the hardships faced by the club on the pitch, United’s earnings have continued to break club records with each passing season with TV rights and sponsorship agreements. It seems that in the 21st century, football teams may not require sporting success to become successful financially. Taking it straight from the horse’s mouth: “Playing performance doesn’t really have a meaningful impact on what we can do on the commercial side of the business,” the club’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward told analysts last year.

Is money really enough? The club may be in for a wake-up call if on-pitch results do not begin to improve. Failing to reach the Champions League for two successive seasons would activate a clause in the club’s 10-year, GBP 750 mn Adidas contract that would see club will miss out on GBP 21 mn for each year it is outside the competition. And although the United brand is well established, Deutsche Bank analysts say that it could take damage if the team is not regularly featured in the top competitions. Besides, even if financial success is truly detached from on-field performance, for football fans should beg the question: Is money really enough? “We need to win,” United CFO Cliff Baty told the FT. “And we won’t need to win just to be successful [commercially], we just need to win because ultimately that’s our raison d’être.”

Worth Listening

Global equities are currently risk-positive as inflows into risk assets remain low, investors remain long on cash and central banks hold off rate-hikes, Dwyfor Evans, Macro Strategist for State Street, argues on Bloomberg Radio (listen, runtime: 06:57). Evans highlights EM equities and Chinese equities as being particularly attractive. “If you’re looking for a growth story, there are valuation and growth opportunities still in emerging markets, and China is leading the way there,” he said. “We like EM equities and we like Chinese equities,” he added.

Even if there is a US-China trade agreement, don’t expect the tariffs to vanish overnight, Evans says, suggesting that The Donald’s protectionist tendencies are a fundamental part of his administration. Where will he turn his attention next? (Hint: India and Turkey).

Has the Fed painted itself into a corner? It’s possible that the central banks have gone a bit too far with their rhetoric, Evans says. With core US inflation being very stable, the Fed doesn’t have much leeway in cutting rates, which sets up the markets which are beginning to price in rate cuts for disappointment.

Diplomacy + Foreign Trade

An EBRD delegation discussed financing metro upgrades with Deputy Transport Minister Amr Shaat yesterday, the ministry said in a statement. It is expected that the ministry and the EBRD will soon sign a financing agreement for upgrading Cairo Metro Line 1 and six new trains for Line 2. The officials also followed up on the purchase of six new trains and 100 new locomotives for the railways.

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry hosted talks with his Algerian and Tunisian counterparts in Cairo to discuss proposed Libyan elections announced by the country’s rival leaders last week,reports the Associated Press. The three ministers have met several times before to discuss the situation in Libya and had put forward a political resolution in 2017.

Basic Materials + Commodities

As Egypt’s rice production falls, Nigeria becomes Africa’s largest rice producer

Egypt’s rice production has fallen almost 40% y-o-y in 2019, with Nigeria now overtaking us as Africa’s largest rice producer,Nigerian news outlet reports. Egypt was previously producing 4.3 mn tonnes of rice a year but the government decided to cut production citing concerns about the amount of water used. The Agriculture Ministry was given greater powers to regulate crop growth last April following amendments to the Agriculture Act.

US Soybean Council announces trade visit to Egypt

The US Soybean Export Council (USSEC), a national group representing US soybean farmers, will visit Egypt to build trade relations and meet with investors, according to a statement issued by the council. Roughly 60% of US-grown soy is exported to international markets, with Egypt having increased its imports of US soy by 428% in the last year.

Egypt rejects Romanian wheat shipment over “quality issue”

Egypt has rejected a Romanian wheat shipment over a “quality issue,” an official told Reuters yesterday. The official said the rejection is final, adding that it’s now up to the seller and the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) to determine how they wish to proceed in regards to the contract.


FEI submits industrial export, import recommendations to the cabinet

The Federation of Egyptian Industries has submitted to the cabinet suggestions about how to grow net exports, reduce reliance on imports and tackle issues facing the manufacturing sector, Chairman Mohamed El Sewedy said, according to Al Shorouk. El Sewedy voiced approval of the government’s new non-cash incentives program for exporters, which aims to boost value-added exports, stimulate industrial activity in Upper Egypt and develop shipping and logistics operations. The government has hinted that the new incentive program might not be cash-based. It is expected to be ready for cabinet review soon.

Trade Ministry bans imports of finished iron pellets into Egypt

The Trade and Industry Ministry has restricted the importing of iron pellets to steel manufacturers, according to Al Mal.

Health + Education

Higher Education Ministry cancels accreditation requirement for foreign students

Egypt has reportedly canceled the requirement for incoming foreign college freshmen studying here at their own expense to provide equivalency accreditation from their embassies, reports Kuwaiti daily newspaper Al Qabas.


Oman’s SalamAir begins direct flights to Egypt’s Borg El Arab Airport

Omani low-cost airliner SalamAir has begun running direct flights to Alexandria three times a week and will begin daily flights starting 1 May, according to a press release (pdf). The Muscat-based operator landed its first direct flight in Borg El Arab Airport on Saturday.

Telecoms + ICT

Microsoft launches platform for tech solutions to startups in Egypt

Microsoft has launched a platform to provide tech solutions and marketing services to startups in Egypt, Microsoft’s startups initiative director Sherif Aziz said, according to Masrawy. The platform will also eventually allow startups to get in touch with investors and public bodies. Research by the International Data Corporation (IDC) recently found that cloud services could create almost 100,000 jobs by the end of 2022, Microsoft claimed in a press release. The IDC has predicted that the Egyptian government will significantly up-scale its investment in cloud services to USD 162.6 mn by 2022, up from just USD 48.5 mn in 2017. This level of funding would create around 69,570 new jobs, while the adoption of Microsoft’s tech infrastructure would add an additional 30,540 positions. Meanwhile, the government’s total IT spending is projected to rise to USD 1.17 bn over the next three years, leading to 417,135 new IT jobs.

Other Business News of Note

Egypt opens talks with UPS to partner on Africa air transport logistics centers

Trade and Industry Minister Amr Nassar discussed opening Egyptian air cargo logistics hubs across Africa in partnership with United Parcel Service (UPS) at a meeting between Nassar and UPS regional president for the Indian Subcontinent, Middle East and Africa (ISMEA) Rami Suleiman, according to a ministry statement (pdf).

Upper Egypt to get first commercial and logistics zone with EGP 2 bn investments

Head of the Supply Ministry’s Internal Trade Development Agency (ITDA) Ibrahim El Ashmawy and Qena Governor Abdel Hamid Al Hagan have signed off on the establishment of the first commercial and logistics zone in Upper Egypt with EGP 2 bn investments, Al Mal reported. The zone is set to be completed over three years and will generate 30k direct and indirect job opportunities for Qena residents.

Egypt Politics + Economics

Prosecutor general orders detention of four more people over train crash

Prosecutor General Nabil Sadek ordered yesterday that five more people be detained for four days pending investigations over last week’s Ramses train crash that resulted in the death of 22 people, MENA reported. The prosecutor ordered earlier this week the detention of six people, including the train driver, his assistant, another train driver and three railway workers.

National Security

Egypt, UK begin joint military exercises

Egyptian and British troops have started a month-long joint military exercise on Egypt’s Mediterranean coastto bolster counter-terrorism efforts, the British Embassy said in a statement. Egyptian naval and air forces also began joint exercises with their French counterparts earlier this week.

On Your Way Out

Lawmaker to introduce a 25% quota for women participation in Al Azhar’s ruling assembly: House Rep. Mohamed Fouad is planning to suggest a progressive amendment to the Al Azhar Act that would introduce a minimum 25% quota of representation for women in the institution’s ruling assembly of senior scholars, Fouad tells Al Shorouk. The assembly is responsible for electing the Grand Imam, nominating the Grand Mufti and discussing nationwide religious and ethical matters.

The Market Yesterday

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EGP / USD CBE market average: Buy 17.44 | Sell 17.54
Buy 17.43 | Sell 17.53
EGP / USD at NBE: Buy 17.44 | Sell 17.54

EGX30 (Tuesday): 14,278 (-0.6%)
Turnover: EGP 739 mn (19% below the 90-day average)
EGX 30 year-to-date: +13.0%

THE MARKET ON TUESDAY: The EGX30 ended Tuesday session down 0.6%. CIB, the index heaviest constituent ended down 2.0%. EGX30’s top performing constituents were Juhayna up 3.1%, Arab Co. Asset Management up 2.6%, and Global Telecom up 1.7%. Yesterday’s worst performing stocks were CIB down 2.0%, Oriental Weavers down 2.0% and Sarwa Capital Holdings down 1.4%. The market turnover was EGP 739 mn, and local investors were the sole net sellers.

Foreigners: Net Long | EGP +18.6 mn
Regional: Net Long | EGP +6.0 mn
Domestic: Net Short | EGP 24.6 mn

Retail: 59.9% of total trades | 61.4% of buyers | 58.3% of sellers
Institutions: 40.1% of total trades | 38.6% of buyers | 41.7% of sellers

WTI: USD 56.31 (-0.44%)
Brent: USD 65.86 (+0.29%)

Natural Gas (Nymex, futures prices) USD 2.88 MMBtu, (+0.00%, Apr 2019)
Gold: USD 1,288.30 / troy ounce (+0.28%)

TASI: 8,561.37 (-0.05%) (YTD: +9.39%)
ADX: 5,087.34 (-0.28%) (YTD: +3.50%)
DFM: 2,636.80 (-0.25%) (YTD: +4.23%)
KSE Premier Market: 5,571.77 (+0.4%)
QE: 10,010.24 (+1.07%) (YTD: -2.08%)
MSM: 4,165.98 (+0.31%) (YTD: -3.65%)
BB: 1,414.33 (+0.12%) (YTD: +5.76%)

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03-06 March (Sunday-Wednesday): EFG Hermes One-on-One Conference, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

8 March (Friday): SHE CAN women’s entrepreneurship event, Greek Campus, Cairo, Egypt.

10 March (Sunday): CIB will hold an EGM meeting to look into planned capital increase.

10-12 March: A delegation of 50 Japanese business companies is expected to visit Egypt.

11-13 March (Monday-Wednesday): International Conference on Material Science & Engineering Recent Advances and Challenges, Sofitel El Gezirah, Cairo, Egypt.

14-16 March (Thursday-Saturday): Metal & Steel, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

14-16 March (Thursday-Saturday): WINDOOREX, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

14-16 March (Thursday-Saturday): Egypt Projects, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

14-16 March (Thursday-Saturday): FabEx Middle East, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

March (date TBD): Traders Fair, Nile Ritz Carlton, Garden City, Cairo, Egypt.

15 March (Friday): Arab World Social Innovation Forum, American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt.

16-18 March (Saturday-Monday): Automation Technology Expo, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City, Cairo, Egypt.

17 March (Sunday): A court will look into a lawsuit by a subsidiary of Arabian Investments, Development and Financial Investment Holding Co. (AIND) against Peugeot Citroen, seeking EUR 150 mn in damages.

17-18 March (Sunday-Monday): OPEC Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee meeting, Baku (Bloomberg).

18-19 March (Monday-Tuesday): Coaltrans, Four Seasons Nile Plaza, Garden City, Cairo, Egypt.

18-19 March (Monday-Tuesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

19 March (Tuesday): Portfolio Egypt Conference for non-banking financial services, venue TBD, Cairo, Egypt.

20-22 March (Wednesday-Friday): Egypt International Green Building Conference, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

20-22 March (Wednesday-Friday): Watrex, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

27-30 March (Wednesday-Saturday): Cityscape Egypt 2019, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

28 March (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee will meet to review interest rates.

28-30 March (Thursday-Saturday): International Conference on Advanced Machine Learning Technologies and Applications, Venue TBD, Cairo, Egypt.

30-31 March (Saturday-Sunday): International Conference on Architecture Engineering and Technologies, Grand Nile Tower Hotel, Cairo, Egypt.

April: The African Tripartite Trade Area (TFTA) agreement is set to take effect in April after a majority from the participating governments ratified it, COMESA Secretary General Chileshe Kapwepwe said.

April: The EUR 250k first phase of Egypt’s national waste management program will kick off.

1-3 April (Monday-Wednesday): Infra Africa & Middle East Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

2-5 April: APPO Cape VII petroleum and energy conference, Malabo, Equatorial Guinea.

4 April: Egypt’s Emirates NBD PMI for March released.

4-6 April: LafargeHolcim Forum for sustainable Construction, American University in Cairo.

9-11 April (Tuesday-Thursday): International Conference on Aerospace Sciences & Aviation Technology, Military Technical College, Cairo.

9-12 April (Tuesday-Friday): International Conference on Network Technology, The British University in Egypt, Cairo.

9-12 April (Tuesday-Friday): International Conference on Software and Information Engineering, The British University in Egypt, Cairo.

16-17 April (Tuesday-Wednesday): North Africa Iron and Steel Conference, Four Seasons Nile Plaza, Cairo.

17-18 April (Wednesday-Thursday): OPEC+ meeting, Vienna, Austria.

21 April (Sunday): RT Imaging Summit & Expo-EMEA, InterContinental City Stars, Nasr City, Cairo, Egypt.

21-22 April (Sunday-Monday): Egypt CSR Summit, InterContinental City Stars, Nasr City, Cairo, Egypt.

20-22 April (Friday-Sunday): Spring meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, Washington, DC.

25 April (Thursday): Sinai Liberation day, national holiday.

28 April (Sunday): Easter Sunday, national holiday.

29 April (Monday): Easter Monday, national holiday.

30 April-1 March (Tuesday-Wednesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

01 May (Wednesday): Labor Day, national holiday.

06 May (Monday): First day of Ramadan (TBC).

23 May (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee will meet to review interest rates.

June: International Forum for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

04-05 June (Tuesday-Wednesday): Global Entrepreneurship Summit, The Hague, the Netherlands

05-06 June (Wednesday-Thursday): Eid El Fitr (TBC).

11-12 June (Tuesday-Wednesday): Offshore Congress MENA, InterContinental Semiramis, Cairo.

16-17 June (Sunday-Monday): Mega Projects Conference, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

16-18 June (Sunday-Tuesday): Middle East & Africa Rail Show, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

17-18 June (Monday-Tuesday): Seamless North Africa, Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo.

17-19 June (Monday-Wednesday): Cairo Technology Week, Hilton Heliopolis, Cairo.

18-19 June (Tuesday-Wednesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

30 June (Sunday): June 2013 protests, national holiday.

11 July (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee will meet to review interest rates.

19-21 July (Friday-Sunday): LED Middle East Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

23 July (Tuesday): 23 July revolution, national holiday.

30-31 July (Tuesday-Wednesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

7-11 August (Wednesday-Sunday) Eid El Adha (TBC).

22 August (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee will meet to review interest rates.

29 August (Thursday): Islamic New Year (TBC), national holiday.

2-4 September (Monday-Wednesday): The Big 5 Construct Egypt, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

8-11 September (Sunday-Wednesday): Sahara Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

17-18 September (Tuesday-Wednesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

26 September (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee will meet to review interest rates.

6 October (Sunday): Armed Forces Day, national holiday.

10-13 October (Tuesday-Sunday): Big Industrial Week Arabia 2019, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

23-24 October (Wednesday-Thursday): Intelligent Cities Exhibition & Conference, Hilton Heliopolis, Cairo.

29-30 October (Tuesday-Wednesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

3-5 November (Sunday-Tuesday): Electrix 2019, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

9 November (Saturday): Prophet Mohammed’s birthday, national holiday.

10-14 November (Sunday-Thursday): GeoMEast International Congress and Exhibition, Marriott, Cairo.

14-17 November (Thursday-Sunday): Machtech Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

14-17 November (Thursday-Sunday): Transpotech Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

14-17 November (Thursday-Sunday): Airtech Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

December: Egypt will host for the first time the Pack Process trade expo for the Middle East and African region.

3-6 December (Tuesday-Friday): Cairo WoodShow, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

9-11 December (Monday-Wednesday): Pacprocess Middle East Africa, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

9-11 December (Monday-Wednesday): Food Africa 2019 Expo, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

10-11 December (Tuesday-Wednesday): US Federal Open Market Committee will hold its two-day policy meeting to review the interest rate.

26 December (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s monetary policy committee will meet to review interest rates.

9-12 January (Tuesday-Sunday): PLASTEX, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

11-13 February (Tuesday-Thursday): Egypt Petroleum Show, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

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