Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Ever Given’s insurer still won’t pay up



Welcome to the final business day of Ramadan, wonderful people. Just a few more hours to go and we’re on break.

Egypt is closed from Wednesday, 12 May through Sunday, 16 May inclusive. Tomorrow is set to be the last day of Ramadan, with Eid El Fitr running Thursday-Sunday. Banks and the EGX will re-open for business as usual (and return to normal operating hours) on Monday, 17 May. Enterprise is also taking Eid off to recharge our batteries. We’ll be back in your inboxes at our customary time on Monday morning. Please have a relaxing (and safe) holiday long weekend — we’ve all earned it.

THE BIG STORY here at home on this final workday of Ramadan? That remains the unwinding of a mega-merger in healthcare that would have seen Fahad Khater’s Alameda Healthcare acquired by EGX-listed Cleopatra Hospitals in the biggest M&A in the industry by a wide margin. Neither party would tell us yesterday why they called off the transaction, but both were emphatic that it was not under pressure from either the Ministry of Health or the competition authority. The latter had signalled in January that it wasn’t a fan of the plan to combine the nation’s two premier healthcare private-sector healthcare businesses. You can catch our story in full in yesterday’s edition of EnterprisePM here.

Also from yesterday’s edition of EnterprisePM: An April inflation surprise. Annual urban headline inflation slowed in April against expectations, shrugging off rising global commodity prices thanks to a favorable base effect. Annual core inflation dropped to 3.3% in April, down from 3.7% in March 2021, according to Central Bank of Egypt figures (pdf).

MORNING MUST-READ: Our sit-down with the heads of the EBRD. We spoke with European Bank for Reconstruction and Development President Odile Renaud-Basso and Managing Director for the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean Heike Harmgart to talk about all things green economy in Egypt. Our discussion covered the bank’s funding plans for Egypt, how the green economy fits into that plan, and what Egypt needs to do to be best positioned for a green transition — including the optimal way to bring the private sector into the fold. Check it out in this morning’s Going Green, below.

THE BIG INTERNATIONAL STORY #1- You guessed it: It’s still the US Colonial Pipeline. Parts of the pipeline are being gradually brought back online and service should be fully up and running again by the weekend, according to Bloomberg. US officials are working on pushing emergency fuel truck shipments to southeast cities from Texas as concerns mount that fuel reserves will be depleted before the pipeline’s service is restored.

THE BIG INTERNATIONAL STORY #2- Israel and Palestine: The violence in our neighbors to the east escalated yesterday as Israeli forces and Palestinian militant groups began firing rockets, killing at least 20 Palestinians (most of whom were civilians), Reuters reports. The escalation began after Israeli forces stormed the mosque and evicted Palestinian worshippers in recent days. Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry condemned Israel’s attack on worshippers at Al Aqsa and separately stressed the importance of stopping Israel’s breaches of international law in a phone call with his Saudi counterpart Faisal Bin Farhan. The situation will likely be on the agenda for Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Çavuşoğlu during his visit to Saudi Arabia, which comes as part of a push from as Ankara to mend its relations with its peers in the region, Çavuşoğlu said on Twitter.

ALSO FROM THE REGION- Qatar’s corruption crackdown is expanding, with the country freezing the assets of six business figures yesterday, Bloomberg reports. The move follows the arrest of the country’s finance minister last week over misuse of public funds, which is being interpreted by observers as Qatar’s attempt to mount a defense against claims of corruption ahead of its hosting of the FIFA World Cup next year.

WATCH THIS SPACE- For all of its talk about its status as a new superpower, Beijing faces a really stark challenge: Demographic decline. Expect that theme to come up again and again in the western press in the coming days after China’s 2020 census reported the slowest population growth since the 1960s. It’s “fresh evidence of a looming demographic crisis that could complicate Beijing’s ambitions,” the New York Times opines.

** So, when do we eat? We sit down for our second-to-last iftar this Ramadan at 6:39pm. And our final sohour will need to wrap by 3:27am.


The virtual BIT Milano tourism expo runs through this Friday, 14 May. Egypt’s Tourism and Antiquities Ministry is participating in the exhibition to talk with Italian tour operators in a bid to bring more Italian tourists to Egypt, according to a ministry statement.

Africa-based startups have until 26 May to sign up for France’s AFD Digital Challenge, an annual startup competition (pdf) by the French Development Agency (AFD). This year, the competition involves startups finding solutions to curb the carbon impact of economic activities or promote sustainable economic activity and the use of natural resources. The 10 startups chosen will receive an “acceleration pack,” a package of technical and financial support worth EUR 20k.

The IMF will complete by the end of June a second review of targets set under Egypt’s USD 5.2 bn standby loan. The loan was approved in June 2020.

Check out our full calendar on the web for a comprehensive listing of upcoming news events, national holidays and news triggers.


*** It’s Going Green day — your weekly briefing of all things green in Egypt: Enterprise’s green economy vertical focuses each Tuesday on the business of renewable energy and sustainable practices in Egypt, everything from solar and wind energy through to water, waste management, sustainable building practices and how you can make your business greener, whatever the sector.


Call us to book a memorable coastal celebration full of love and pampering at Somabay.


Ever Given still won’t pay up

The Suez Canal Authority’s (SCA) reduced USD 600 mn compensation claim for the Ever Given saga is still too high, the ship’s insurer, UK Club, said, according to Reuters. “The Ever Given's owners still have not been provided with evidence that would support a claim of this size, which remains exceptionally large,” UK Club said in a statement. The SCA had originally been seeking USD 916 mn in compensation for the container vessel’s week-long blockage of the Suez Canal in March, but reduced its claim by a third, SCA boss Osama Rabie told El Hekaya’s Amr Adib over the weekend (watch, runtime: 5:25).

The vessel remains seized as the back-and-forth over compensation continues. An Ismailia court is set to review the Ever Given’s status on 22 May, after it rejected an appeal by the ship’s owner, Shoei Kisen, of a court order that allowed the SCA to impound the vessel. Shoei Kisen had said last week it wanted the owners of the 18k containers on board to help pay damages.

If Shoei Kisen doesn’t play ball with compensation rulings, the court could decide to allow the SCA to auction off the ship, sources told Reuters. The ship is currently being held in the Great Bitter Lake pending a resolution.


Nile Scan isn’t partnering with Speed on Alex Medical bid

Nile Scan is bidding independently for a majority stake in Alexandria Medical Services and isn’t in talks to partner with a rival consortium on the acquisition, Nile Scan Managing Director Tarek Moharram told Enterprise. We picked up a story from Al Mal yesterday citing sources “in the know” that claimed Nile Scan was in talks to join forces with a consortium made of Speed Medical, Sharif El Akhdar’s LimeVest and Saudi’s Tawasol Holdings to snap up a 51.4% stake in Alexandria Medical Services, which is owned by Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB). Both Moharram and a separate source from one of the other parties involved told us the report is not true.

A partnership isn’t off the table — it’s just not what’s happening right now: “We're open to negotiate with all the interested parties and remain at an equal distance from them,” Moharram told us.

What a Nile Scan acquisition of Alex Medical would look like: Nile Scan looks to be planning to bring Alex Medical under a newly-launched investment platform. The company’s interest in the stake came after Nile Scan’s strategic manager, Elevate Private Equity (where Moharram is CEO) launched a USD 380 mn healthcare investment platform in partnership with Banque Misr investment arm Misr Capital. The new platform, Nile Misr Healthcare is currently eyeing six potential investment targets in areas spanning diagnostics, hospitals, pharma manufacturing, medical education and healthtech.

BACKGROUND: Alex Medical is the hot property in healthcare right now: Nile Scan — which is operated by Nile Misr Medical Holding — joins five other interested bidders who want to snap up ADCB’s stake, including Cleopatra Hospitals Group, Alexandria for Medical Investment Company (the majority shareholder of Mabaret Al Asafra Hospitals Group), healthcare investment firm Seha Capital, the UAE’s Global One Healthcare Holding, and a consortium that includes Speed Medical. M&A activity in the healthcare sector has been red-hot over the past two years — a trend that is expected to be sustained moving forward. The private healthcare industry in particular is fragmented, CHG CEO Ahmed Ezzeldin has previously said, making it ripe for consolidation.


SME fund lands EGP 280 mn in commitments from local banks

Catalyst Partners has secured EGP 280 mn in commitments from local banks for an EGP 500 mn SME investment fund it is setting up with the UNDP, the local press reports, citing unnamed sources. Misr Ins. Holding, Banque du Caire, Suez Canal Bank and Attijariwafa Bank are all on board with commitments to the fund and are waiting for Central Bank of Egypt approval. A source familiar with the matter confirmed the news to Enterprise yesterday.

In detail: Misr Ins. and its subsidiaries plan to commit EGP 150 mn to the fund, while Banque du Caire and Suez Canal Bank intend to kick in EGP 50 mn apiece. Attijariwafa Bank is said to be in for EGP 30 mn.

CAVEAT- None of this is etched in stone right now, as the Financial Regulatory Authority has yet to sign off on the fund, a source tells us.

About the fund: Not much is known about the EGP 500 mn pact investment fund, which was set up in April by Catalyst and the UNDP. The vehicle will target “impactful” SMEs, but it remains unclear what criteria Catalyst is using to select companies for investment.

OTHER INVESTMENT NEWS- Elsewedy Electric has more investments in the pipeline for India and Pakistan, as the company pushes ahead with its expansion plans in South Asia, Ahmed El Sewedy told Asharq. El Sewedy did not provide any details on the specific investments the company is planning, or the value of the expected investments.


Wanna invest in some industrial zones?

Industrial investors can expect more clarity on how to create and manage both industrial zones and businesses that operate in them after the Trade and Industry Ministry approved yesterday the executive regulations to the law regulating the Industrial Development Authority (IDA). The Madbouly government will also be making public its plan for industrial zone development going forward.

Details to follow? The specifics of the executive regulations are yet to be made public, but will cover the rules for non-industrial projects within industrial zones as well how the IDA will charge for its services. The regulations also set up a mechanism to determine rent, sale, and usufruct prices for land in industrial zones.

The IDA still isn’t fully independent from the Trade and Industry Ministry, despite having been granted financial and administrative autonomy. While the IDA will allocate land to businesses and hand out industrial permits and licenses, its decisions will still require sign-off from the ministry before they go into effect, IDA Chairman Mohamed El Zalat noted in a statement. The ministry had previously said it was looking to expand the role of the Federation of Egyptian Industries to be able to collaborate with IDA to grant industrial licenses, establish industrial zones, and develop local manufacturing.


A draft law abolishing prison terms for women who have inherited debt from their spouses is now with the House legislative and social solidarity committees, the local press reports. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi had ordered his government earlier this year to address the issue.

The House of Representatives approved yesterday amendments to the Penal Code to ban the unauthorized filming of criminal trials.


Edita net income grows by a quarter in 1Q2021

Edita’s net income grew 25.3% y-o-y in 1Q2021 to EGP 80.7 mn on the back of recovering consumption “coupled with rising demand for Edita’s products,” as well as a bump in product prices, the company said in an earnings release (pdf). The snackfood maker also saw its top line growing 21% y-o-y to EGP 1.1 bn, driven by increased revenues from its cakes, wafers, and bakery segments. Though the rise in commodity prices threatens to impact Edita’s cost base, the 26.6% increase in the cost of direct materials in 1Q2021 was “largely offset by savings on manufacturing overheads on the back of cost cutting initiatives and higher utilization rates throughout the quarter.”

Looking ahead, Edita plans to launch new products across its segments as it works to “shift consumers increasingly toward higher price-points.” The company will also look to double down on growing its share of the biscuits market, which it recently entered with the launch of its Oniro range of cookies.


Incubator for assistive technology startups: NilePreneurs and the UNDP have launched a six-month incubation program to provide companies with the know-how and training required to produce products and services geared towards persons with disabilities (PwD), according to a statement. The incubator will take prototypes of disability-friendly products and services designed to improve access to public spaces and transport, health, employment and education. The four companies are in line for EGP 175k in funding each from the UNDP. Potential candidates can apply here.

Also on the inclusion front: PwD will pay less for mobile lines with voice and internet services under an agreement between the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority and the country’s mobile network operators.

Lafarge Group subsidiary Geocycle plans to safely dispose of 200 tonnes of pesticide-related waste, which were collected from various areas as part of the wider Sustainable Persistent Organic Pollutant Management Project, according to an Environment Ministry statement. Geocycle will destroy the pesticides in furnace stacks at the Lafarge cement plant in Suez.

AUC’s Cairo International Model United Nations has taken home the outstanding delegation award for the 11th straight year at the US-based National Model United Nations, AUC said in a statement (pdf). CIMUN also bagged six out of eight position paper awards and two best delegation awards.



The airwaves were awash with more regional political coverage and analysis last night, with the ongoing violence in Jerusalem remaining in the spotlight.

Israel’s actions show that it isn’t particularly concerned about any real repercussions from the international community, the Palestinian Authority’s Jerusalem Affairs Minister Fadi Al-Hidmi told El Hekaya’s Amr Adib (watch, runtime: 11:42). Al-Hadmi’s comments led Adib to go on an independent tirade about the lack of accountability for Israel’s actions, saying that the death of Israeli forces are taken more seriously than the death of Palestinian civilians. Adib also recapped the latest incidents at Al Aqsa and Sheikh Jarrah (watch, runtime: 13:51).


It’s a fairly quiet morning for Egypt in the foreign press: Afrik21 takes note of the Electricity Ministry’s plans to more than double the capacity of the 450 MW Egypt-Libya power line in the future.


It’s a big news day for Pfizer and BioNTech

Travel companies aren’t going to be operating buses between governorates over Eid break: The Egyptian Travel Agents Association has banned member companies from transporting citizens by bus between governorates during the Eid holiday, Al Mal reports. Whether this means major bus companies will cancel their routes entirely or only allow foreign tourists to travel remains unclear. The decision, which is meant to curb the spread of covid-19, comes after the Madbouly Cabinet announced a semi-lockdown for two weeks — although the Cabinet decision doesn’t restrict movement.

The Health Ministry reported 1,150 new covid-19 infections yesterday, up from 1,138 the day before. Egypt has now disclosed a total of 238,560 confirmed cases of covid-19. The ministry also reported 68 new deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 13,972.

The FDA has authorized the use of Pfizer / BioNTech’s covid-19 vaccine in 12- to 15-year-olds, the authority said in a statement, bringing the US a step closer to achieving herd immunity. “Having a vaccine authorized for a younger population is a critical step in continuing to lessen the immense public health burden caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the FDA’s Peter Marks.

BioNTech is building a vaccine plant in Singapore by 2023 that will produce “several hundreds of mns” of doses of its mRNA covid-19 vaccine every year, it said in a statement. This came a day after news surfaced that BioNTech will produce the vaccines in China alongside Shanghai Fosun Pharma Group.

South Africa has warned of “vaccine apartheid” should the World Trade Organization fail to agree to suspend IP protections on covid-19 vaccines.


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The global ETF industry is going from strength to strength: Assets managed by the global passive investment industry grew to more than USD 15 tn last year as exchange-traded funds (ETFs) came close to surpassing the traditional index-tracking mutual funds for the first time ever, the Financial Times reports, citing figures from the Investment Company Institute. The global ETF industry had USD 7.71 tn under management by the end of 2020, just shy of the USD 7.76 tn held by index mutual funds came in at USD 7.76 tn.

And they’ve now likely outstripped mutuals: ETFs have continued to see large inflows in 2021, and consultancy ETFGI estimates the industry was worth some USD 8.83 tn as of the end of March.

The Biden administration’s proposed global minimum corporate tax rate won’t help developing countries, who are the most in need of higher tax revenues, senior diplomats and lobby groups told the FT. Under the Biden-led proposal at the OECD, the largest corporations will still pay most of their taxes where they’re headquartered, they said, adding that many developing countries are also under-represented in negotiations to push the plan. Several major developing economies are taking part in a rival bid with the UN that would give them the right to tax tech companies based on where their revenues come from.

FROM THE REGION- Saudi Arabia’s non-oil economy is finally recovering from the pandemic: Saudi Arabia's non-oil business activity expanded for the first time since the pandemic, growing 3.3% y-o-y in 1Q2021, the General Authority for Statistics said in a statement (pdf). However, the overall economy shrank 3.3% in the same quarter, dragged down by the oil sector which contracted by the most in a decade, according to Bloomberg.




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The EGX30 rose 0.4% yesterday on turnover of EGP 819 mn (34.2% above the 90-day average). Foreign investors were net sellers. The index is down 1.5% YTD.

In the green: MM Group (+4.9%), Oriental Weavers (+4.5%) and Fawry (+2.1%).

In the red: Edita (-2.2%), Ezz Steel (-1.7%) and Cleopatra Hospital (-1.6%).

Asian shares are deeply in the red this morning, and futures suggest that major indices in Europe, Wall Street and Bay Street will largely follow suit later today.


The EBRD’s plans for a greener Egypt: An interview with President Odile Renaud-Basso + SEMED Managing Director Heike Harmgart. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has invested EUR 7.2 bn in Egypt since 2012 — and currently has an EUR 1 bn pipeline of investments planned for the country in 2021, a sizable part of which will be channeled to green projects. Just last month, the EBRD’s president conducted a two-day visit to Egypt to sign a USD 114 mn financing package for the Kom Ombo solar plant and announce the inclusion of Sixth of October City into the bank’s Green Cities program. EBRD plans to support even more green projects in Egypt in the coming years, while taking on a “greener” target worldwide.

We recently sat down with Odile Renaud-Basso, EBRD president, and Heike Harmgart, EBRD managing director for the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean, to talk about all things green economy. The discussion touched on the bank’s upcoming plans in Egypt, the progress on its green financing facilities, and how to best involve the private sector in making the country’s greener future.

Edited excerpts from our conversation-

Around 40% of the EBRD’s global financing this year will go into the green economy — including Egypt, Renaud-Basso told us. This target should increase to 50% by 2025, with 75% of that global financing going to the private sector.

The green economy will take up a significant portion of EBRD funding in Egypt this year: The bank’s total investments in Egypt totalled over EUR 7 bn, of which roughly 38% were directed at the green economy, in line with global targets, Harmgart said. Judging by this year’s EUR 1 bn pipeline, green injections will definitely surpass the target 40%, Harmgart said, particularly with projected partnerships with banks under green finance initiatives and green urban transport projects.

The priority now is to work with Egypt on a long-term green strategy, Renaud-Basso explained. In the context of the Paris Agreement, Egypt needs to define a long-term objective for net zero carbon emissions supported by a long-term strategy. From there, a sectoral approach needs to be built, which the EBRD is willing to help the Egyptian authorities with developing, Renaud-Basso said. The government’s commitment is visible in — among other things — their interest to host the UN Climate Change Conference in November 2021, she said.

Egypt has one of the lowest feed-in tariffs in Africa, making it attractive for private-to-private renewable energy projects. Private-to-private renewable energy plants are at the forefront of the EBRD’s activities, and Egypt’s low feed-in tariffs make it a good location for these kinds of projects. This is a chance to be a leader in the sector, said Harmgart. The EBRD had previously worked with the government on the Benban solar park, and recently co-invested USD 114 mn in the private-to-private Kom Ombo solar plant.

But its electricity grid needs a revamp, she said. For private-to-private renewable energy streams to work though the electricity grid needs to be upgraded, as a decentralized generation of renewables requires a grid that is equipped to absorb it. The EBRD is currently working with the Electricity Transmission Company (ETC) to help with the upgrade of the national grid, as well as to train staff on flexible and innovative management practices.

And cities need to become “greener”: In April, the EBRD included Sixth of October City in its EUR 2.5 bn Green Cities program, as the third Egyptian member city, after Cairo and Alexandria. The program aims to provide financing to invest in sustainable municipal infrastructure to help cities become greener through customized Green City Action Plans that tackle the most pressing environmental challenges. This includes working on public transportation such as metro projects, air pollution, as well as water and waste management, Renaud-Basso said. The program also provides financing to companies that want to improve their energy efficiency or reduce gas emissions.

Egyptian banks have been interested in EBRD’s green financing facilities, with the National Bank of Egypt (NBE) being one of the fastest to utilize all of EBRD’s green financing facilities since 2015, Harmgart said. One of those programs is the Green Value Chain facility, launched in November 2020 to allow banks to help borrowers make their value chain “greener.” Instead of focusing on helping one company improve its production and reduce its energy consumption, the program attempts to “greenify” the whole production value chain. The EBRD is currently in discussions with at least three to four banks on how to design their green value chain programs and hopes to sign at least two agreements in 2021, Harmgart said.

For the private sector, PPPs may be the best way into Egypt’s green sector: Public-private partnerships (PPP) in Egypt are essential, given that the infrastructure development necessary is a mammoth task the government cannot carry out alone. This is specifically applicable in the green economy, agreed Harmgart and Renaud-Basso. Replicating the Benban solar park framework in other green sub-sectors will accelerate the shift to a greener future, Harmgart told us. The sub-sectors most in need of PPPs are transportation, water and waste management. Whenever you have the capacity to generate revenues from a service, there is the potential to develop a PPP framework, according to Renaud-Basso.

But to spur investment, legislation is key to leveling the playing field and improving competition. One long-term structural issue that can help is integrating the informal economy. Arbitration laws also need to be brought up to international standards, in parallel to the work currently being done on legislation pertaining to fair competition and the establishment of effective competition authorities, Renaud-Basso said.

Kudos to Egypt for being one of three EBRD countries with positive economic growth in 2020. Egypt did well in macroeconomic terms during covid, and should continue on that path, Renaud-Basso said. The EBRD operates in 38 countries, of which only three attained positive macroeconomic goals in 2020, with Egypt being one of them. This is the result of a great amount of work to stabilize the macroeconomic framework with the IMF, as well as the country’s economic resilience. Sticking to these sound macro fundamentals and remaining on a consistent track will provide a good basis for moving forward, and could help Egypt lock in more support for the covid recovery, Renaud-Basso explained.

Your top climate stories for the week:

  • Update on the gov’t automotive natgas transition scheme: Egypt handed over 340 natgas cars as part of the natgas transition scheme during April
  • Africa-based startup competition looks to tackle climate change: This year’s French government-sponsored startup competition AFD Digital Challenge is targeting startups that work on environmental protection and tackle carbon emissions.
  • Commodities boom threatens green transition: Rising demand for raw materials used in clean energy technologies, including lithium and cobalt, are pushing up commodity prices and threatening to stall the transition to green energy.


9-14 May (Sunday-Friday): BIT Milano tourism expo (virtual).

12-16 May (Wednesday-Sunday): Eid El Fitr.

16-19 May (Sunday-Wednesday): The Arabian Travel Market (ATM) takes place in Dubai.

20-28 May (Thursday-Friday): Gouna International Squash Open 2021.

26 May (Wednesday): Final day for Africa-based startups to apply for the French government-sponsored AFD Digital Challenge (pdf).

27-29 May (Thursday-Saturday): Informa Markets’ Nextmove real estate exhibition, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City.

30 May (Sunday): Al Mal GTM is organizing the Portfolio Egypt conference under the theme ‘Growth under the weight of the pandemic.’

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

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

22-27 June (Tuesday-Sunday): The CIB PSA World Tour Finals for 2020-2021 will take place in Cairo.

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

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

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

30 June (Wednesday): 30 June Revolution Day.

30 June- 15 July: National Book Fair.

July + August: Thanaweya Amma exams take place.

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

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

15 June (Saturday): EGX-listed will have to complete filing their financial disclosures for the period ended 31 March.

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

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

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

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

9 August (Monday): Islamic New Year.

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

17-20 August (Tuesday-Friday): The World Economic Forum annual meeting, Singapore.

12-15 September (Sunday-Wednesday): Sahara Expo: the 33rd International Agricultural Exhibition for Africa and the Middle East.

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

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

30 September-8 October (Thursday-Friday): The Cairo International Fair, Cairo International Conference Center, Cairo, Egypt.

1 October (Friday): Expo 2020 Dubai opens.

6 October (Wednesday): Armed Forces Day.

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

12-14 October (Tuesday-Thursday): Mediterranean Offshore Conference, Alexandria, Egypt.

18 October (Monday): Prophet’s Birthday.

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

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

1-3 November (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Energy exhibition on power and renewable energy, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Cairo, Egypt.

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

29 November-2 December (Monday-Thursday): Egypt Defense Expo.

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

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

14-16 February 2022 (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Petroleum Show, Egypt International Exhibition Center, New Cairo, Egypt.

May 2022: Investment in Logistics Conference, Cairo, Egypt.

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

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

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