Monday, 24 May 2021

Budget debate, FRA’s role in regulating fintech take center stage in the House

TL;DR

WHAT WE’RE TRACKING TODAY

Good morning, friends. Longtime readers know that Mondays are often slow news days — and today is slower than our grandma’s joints move on a cold winter morning.

There’s no big story dominating the news cycle here at home or abroad. That may change today as the House of Representatives gets serious about about the 2021-2022 budget (we have more below), while abroad you have your choice of stories about the unusual arrest of an opposition journalist flying through Belarusian airspace, the debate over whether the world will ever hit herd immunity, and the idea that SPACs are losing their (very brief) allure.

Lab leak hypothesis is back. Oh, and as we report in Covid Watch, below, we’re all going to be back to arguing over whether covid escaped from a lab in Wuhan.

THE BIG QUESTION THIS WEEK: Are we going to see a sell-off in global markets? Stocks in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul are down this morning. Meanwhile, futures are mixed on how Wall Street will open, the outlook is sunny for markets in much of Europe, and BTC is sliding again. Speculation is rife that “stocks could be volatile in week ahead amid turbulence from cryptocurrency,” where some investors are now turning on cryptohead Elon Musk, resenting the fact that he has become what the WSJ calls “crypto’s biggest influencer.” BTC has resumed its selloff and Nobel prize economist “Robert Shiller is worried a bubble is forming in some of the market’s hottest trades,” including US shares, crypto and housing, where he sees a “wild west mentality” among many investors.

Either way: Expect crypto volatility to stick around for a while and continue spreading to other asset classes through “informal contagion channels,” markets sage Mohamed El Erian writes for Bloomberg Opinion. While crypto and traditional asset classes typically “live in their own ecosystems,” there is a growing contagion risk, particularly with skimpy yields on US government bonds that has led investors into crypto as a way to diversify their portfolios. These cross-holdings increase the risk of contagion, “especially when trades are levered, as quite a few are now, and the operational infrastructure supporting crypto trading comes under pressure, as it did last week,” El Erian says.

***CATCH UP QUICK on the top stories from yesterday’s edition of EnterprisePM:

  • Former CI Capital bosses Hazem Badran and Tarek Tantawi are setting up a new PE firm, Valor Capital Partners, with an initial focus on investing in the consumer goods, education, health and real estate sectors.
  • There will be no more subsidies to cover upgrades to the state’s water companies starting FY2021-2022.
  • Flat6Labs has completed the second close of its Egypt-focused Flat6Labs Accelerator Company, quadrupling the fund’s size to over EGP 200 mn.

WHAT’S HAPPENING TODAY-

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry is in Amman today to discuss cooperating on a strategy for long-term stability and peace in Palestine with his Jordanian counterpart Ayman El Safadi, according to a Foreign Ministry statement. Shoukry landed in Jordan yesterday ahead of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s planned trip to Egypt, Jordan, Israel, and Palestine later this week.

An Egyptian delegation arrived in Gaza yesterday to reinforce a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel that went into effect early Friday, a Hamas source told German news agency DPA, Al Shorouk reports. The delegation will discuss with Hamas the group’s conditions for a continued ceasefire, which include Israel halting aggression at the Al Aqsa mosque complex, suspending its efforts to displace the residents of Sheikh Jarrah, and allowing essential aid into the besieged strip. The delegation will also lay out reconstruction plans for Gaza. This is the Egyptian delegation’s second visit to the territory in two days, following a meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday. Egypt had played a central role in brokering the ceasefire agreement, a move that is expected to bolster its diplomatic credentials and thaw US-Egypt relations.

CIRCLE YOUR CALENDAR-

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry is due to hold meetings in Athens next month with counterparts from Greece, Cyprus, and France, Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides said in a statement picked up by Cyprus Mail. The announcement followed discussions between President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and Christodoulides on Egypt-Cyprus trade, investment, defense, and education ties, as well as extending the tripartite cooperation with Greece to include France. The EU could be looking to participate in the East Mediterranean Gas Forum and will send in a request soon, Christodoulides suggested. The Palestine-Israel conflict was also a topic of discussion, with Christodoulides lauding Egypt’s mediation efforts, according to an Ittihadiya statement.

Egypt's Green Economy Forum will be held on 14 June, according to a statement (pdf). Among the speakers: CIB Chief Sustainability Officer Dalia Abdel Kader, CDC Group's Egypt Coverage Director Sherine Shohdy, and Mayada Magdy, chief program officer of Japan International Cooperation Agency in Egypt.

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

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*** It’s Blackboard day: We have our weekly look at the business of education in Egypt, from pre-K through the highest reaches of higher ed. Blackboard appears every Monday.

In today’s issue: Education is generally counted as a highly automation-resistant sector. But for Egypt’s international schools, automation is becoming essential in managing core processes like admissions, registration, and admin reminders — and increasingly important for some forms of communication and data analysis. We look at the automation software these schools are using, and how it’s making educational processes more efficient.

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BUDGET WATCH

House pushes ahead with budget debate

The House of Representatives will be discussing the spending plan for individual institutions in the FY2021-2022 state budget throughout this week, according to the House agenda. The Endowments Ministry and Egyptian Competition Authority’s allocations are on MPs’ docket for tomorrow, kicking off the week of budget discussions. At the committee level, the House Agriculture Committee approved yesterday the budgets for institutions under the umbrella of the Agriculture and Land Reclamation Ministry, Al Mal reports.

Next up: At the time of writing, parliament’s schedule showed our representatives meeting Thursday to discuss the budgets for the General Authority for Healthcare; the Universal Healthcare Ins. Authority; the Health Ins. Organization; and the General Authority for Healthcare, Accreditation, and Regulation.

What’s the deadline for a new budget? The House needs to approve the full draft state budget before the start of the fiscal year on 1 July; if it fails to do so, government will keep operating under this year’s budget until a new one is passed — we don’t do US-style “government shutdowns.”

Need a refresher? The Finance Ministry published the draft budget for the upcoming fiscal year last month. Among the highlights: GDP growth is expected to come in at 5.4%, while our financing gap will widen 7.1% y-o-y to EGP 1.06 tn, our budget deficit is expected to narrow to 6.7% of GDP from an expected 7.7% in the current fiscal year, and a 22% growth in revenues will outpace a 14% rise in government spending.

ECONOMY

Net foreign assets at banks dip in March

Net foreign assets (NFAs) in Egypt’s banking sector dipped 13.7% m-o-m in March to reach USD 17.70 bn, from a record high of USD 20.50 bn in February, according to Central Bank of Egypt data. The banking sector’s NFAs nosedived 45% m-o-m in March 2020 when the beginning of the pandemic prompted investors to pull a record USD 83 bn from EMs that month alone. Net foreign liabilities at commercial banks inched up 3.2% m-o-m in March to USD 20.05 bn, from USD 19.43 bn at the end of February.

SUEZ CANAL

How low can we go?

SCA cuts its Ever Given compensation demand — again: The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) has again downgraded its compensation demands for the Ever Given’s blockage of the Suez Canal, saying it’s now looking for USD 550 mn, SCA boss Osama Rabie told Al Hayah Al Youm’s Mohamed Sherdy yesterday (watch, runtime: 7:55). The SCA had initially set its compensation request at USD 916 mn, but Rabie says this was a “preliminary” figure before the authority accurately crunched the numbers and determined the value of the cargo that is on board the mega vessel. The SCA decided has slashed its demand so that it doesn’t exceed the value of the cargo on board as a gesture of goodwill, Rabie told El Hekaya’s Amr Adib (watch, runtime: 11:20). Rabie had told Adib earlier this month that the SCA had revised its claim to USD 600 mn.

An initial USD 200 mn down payment could see the SCA release the ship from the Great Bitter Lake, where it is currently being held, if the ship’s owner gets an LG from an Egyptian bank for the rest of the amount, Rabie told Adib.

The counter offer: Shoei Kisen, the ship’s owner, has offered to pay USD 150 mn instead of USD 550 mn, Rabie told Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Moussa (watch, runtime: 15:33).

What is the SCA asking compensation for? The compensation package includes the cost of repairing the canal’s bank where the mega vessel was lodged and had to be dug out, as well as for dredgers that the SCA put to work around the clock and are now out of commission because of the Ever Given saga. The SCA is also asking Shoei Kisen to compensate the authority for a tugboat that sank during the operation, which resulted in the death of a member of the team working on digging out the Ever Given, according to a statement. In addition to covering compensation for the canal’s workers, divers, command center operators, and other employees for working overtime to resolve the blockage, the price tag also covers the canal’s lost revenues during the closure, estimated at around USD 90 mn.

Operation Pass the Buck continues: The Ever Given’s grounding in the canal is the responsibility of the ship’s captain and not of the two SCA pilots who were on board the vessel, Rabie insisted. The SCA boss also said that the choice of whether or not to enter the waterway was ultimately captain’s to make, since the pilots only fulfill an advisory role. Shoei Kisen’s lawyers argued at a court hearing over the weekend that the SCA was at fault for allowing the ship to enter the canal in the midst of a storm and without tugboats accompanying it through the route.

The compensation claim is still making its way through the courts, with a hearing scheduled for 29 May, while the ship continues to be held in the Great Bitter Lake following the rejection of an appeal by Shoei Kisen against its seizure.

*** A MESSAGE FROM IDG ***

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LEGISLATION WATCH

FRA’s fintech bill gets preliminary house committee nod

The House CIT Committee gave a preliminary nod yesterday to a draft law that would govern the fintech space, Masrawy reports. The new law would regulate the use of fintech to deliver non-banking financial services (NBFS) in a bid to expand the sector’s beneficiaries and promote financial inclusion by granting the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) the power to license and regulate NBFS businesses and fintech startups. Under the law, the FRA would have supervisory powers over the sector to ensure companies adhere to transparency and governance standards, in addition to protecting consumer rights. The FRA had drafted and approved the bill last year.

ALSO FROM UNDER PARLIAMENT’S DOME- Parliament rubber stamps public sector salary hikes: The House of Representatives’ general assembly gave its final approval yesterday to a bill raising basic salaries for public sector employees by 13% at the start of the next fiscal year on 1 July, according to Masrawy. The decision applies equally to employees covered by the Civil Service Act and those employed outside it. The same decision also stipulates an EGP 75 minimum increase to the monthly gross salaries of civil servants whose employment is not covered by the act, who will receive annual raises at the start of the fiscal year. It also increases monthly bonuses for state officials by a minimum of EGP 175 and a maximum of EGP 400, depending on rank.

LAST NIGHT’S TALK SHOWS

The latest on the Suez Canal Authority’s court battle with Ever Given owner Shoei Kisen led the conversation on the airwaves last night, as authority boss Osama Rabie phoned into several shows to recap and defend the authority’s position in the lawsuit. We have chapter and verse in the news well, above.

Coming in second place, negotiations on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam’s second filling: Irrigation Minister Mohamed Abdel Ati sat down with Kelma Akhira’s Lamees El Hadidi to discuss the most recent updates and the extent to which Egypt’s water supply could be affected.

There are no concrete updates on the stalled negotiations, even after US Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Jeffrey Feltman and African Union Chairman and Congolese President Felix Tshisekedi each paid a visit to Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan to discuss the issue and listen to the countries’ positions on the matter, Abdel Ati said. Egypt wants an agreement with Addis Ababa that would allow Ethiopia to continue building and filling the dam for its own needs, but would still provide Egypt and Sudan with the ability to ask Ethiopia to release some of the water in the dam’s reserve if they were to face shortages (watch, runtime: 4:26).

If the second filling moves ahead as Ethiopia is currently planning, the average Egyptian isn’t going to suddenly find themselves without running water, because authorities habitually hold water reserves to be able to offset naturally occurring water shortages, Abdel Ati explained. Nonetheless, the government really, really wants everyone to be more conscious of their water consumption. Making this reserve water available is also a difficult management operation, particularly when it comes to ensuring the water quality is up to par and that there are no periods of low water supply, the minister said (watch, runtime: 5:40).

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EGYPT IN THE NEWS

How quiet of a morning is it for Egypt in the foreign press? Quiet enough that the only story of note out there is Pennsylvania-based donut chain Duck Donuts’ plans to set up shop in Egypt through a franchise agreement with Masters Food. Under the agreement, we’re going to see 25 locations of Duck Donuts across the country within five years, according to ABC News. Reviews on TripAdvisor and Yelp give the donut shop a 4.5 / 5 rating.

ALSO ON OUR RADAR

A couple of things we’re keeping an eye on this morning:

  • The Arab Organization for Industrialization will work with the German arm of DMG Mori to set up Egypt’s first factory for high-precision lathe machines.
  • Egypt will receive EUR 145 in financing from the African Development Bank for the purchase of a European Train Control System (ETCS) to improve railway safety on an almost 1k stretch of the network.

COVID WATCH

Another round of speculation that covid-19 originated in a Wuhan lab

Egypt has so far identified two cases of mucormycosis — the black fungus viral infection spreading worldwide among covid patients with weakened immune systems — but it is unconnected to covid-19 and is not cause for panic, head of the covid-19 task force Hossam Hosny told Al Hadath Al Youm (watch, runtime: 3:57). Health Ministry spokesperson Khaled Megahed had also discussed the infection with Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Moussa over the weekend, as rumors began circulating that the infection is another pandemic in the making.

The Health Ministry reported 1,145 new covid-19 infections yesterday, down from 1,151 the day before. Egypt has now disclosed a total of 253,835 confirmed cases of covid-19. The ministry also reported 51 new deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 14,721.

Speculation that the virus causing covid-19 originated in China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology is getting a second wind after a US intelligence report indicated that three researchers from the institute “became sick enough in November 2019 that they sought hospital care,” the Wall Street Journal reports. That’s around the time when epidemiologists and researchers believe the virus began spreading around the Chinese city. The report’s findings don’t conclusively indicate whether or not this data point means the virus originated in the lab.

PLANET FINANCE

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Oil posts worst weekly losses on Iran nuclear agreement progress: Oil prices suffered their biggest weekly losses in over a month, with the prospect of a supply glut following the lifting of US sanctions and the return of Iranian crude supplies weighing on prices, Bloomberg reports. Rising inflation concerns and the continued impact of covid-19 on demand have been compounded by the prospect of Iran almost doubling its 2.4 mn bbl / d output in April to its pre-sanctions level of 4 mn barrels a day within three months, if US sanctions are lifted. The market is more prepared to absorb the additional supply in 4Q2021 but an earlier increase in supply “could hurt third-quarter balances,” said a Deutsche Bank analyst. Iran is expected to extend its nuclear inspections agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency ahead of a fifth round of multilateral talks in Vienna that the country hopes will lead to the US rejoining the 2015 nuclear accord and the removal of Trump-era sanctions.

US claims victory over China in Ethiopia's USD multi-bn telecom project: A US-backed consortium led by Vodafone was awarded contracts to build a 5G-equipped wireless network in Ethiopia, beating out MTN Group’s rival bid, which was partially financed by China’s Silk Road Fund, the Wall Street Journal reports. “The US and China are fighting a proxy war in Ethiopia for influence,” said Zemedeneh Negatu, the chairman of Africa-focused US investment firm Fairfax Africa Fund. The competition over the contract was particularly significant as the US and China increasingly vie over future tech pursuits covering everything from 5G rollout to chip manufacturing.

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The EGX30 rose 0.75% yesterday on turnover of EGP 1.29 bn (2.2% above the 90-day average). Foreign investors were net sellers. The index is down 0.35% YTD.

In the green: ElSewedy Electric (+4.8%), Heliopolis Housing (+3.3%) and Sodic (+1.9%).

In the red: Edita (-3.7%), Oriental Weavers (-1.9%) and Abu Qir Fertilizers (-1.4%).

AROUND THE WORLD

IN DIPLOMACY: Egypt and Ukraine talk Palestine-Israel peace process and bilateral ties: Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry briefed his Ukranian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba in a phone call yesterday on Egypt’s efforts to maintain the ceasefire between Palestine and Israel, the foreign ministry said in a statement. The ministers also discussed bilateral ties.

Meanwhile, the UN will launch an appeal for aid to rebuild Gaza after Israel’s airstrikes resulted in mns of USD-worth of infrastructural damage, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for the Palestinian territories Lynn Hastings said yesterday, according to Reuters.

blackboard

How Egypt’s int’l schools are embracing automation in school processes: Though global education has long been termed automation-resistant, automated processes are becoming key to operations. In Egypt, educational process automation is now essential for private schools to manage basic admin, sources tell Enterprise. Education management software also integrates automation into more sophisticated activities, like data tracking and communication.

Egypt’s top schools match regional and international peers in using this kind of automation, school leaders believe. Some prefer using ready-made programs, while others have designed their own software, tailored to need. But while all agree that automation makes processes more efficient, most struggle to quantify its value in terms of time and money saved.

What software are they using? AIS uses PowerSchool, a prominent US K-12 education management system, says Director Kapono Ciotti. All the schools managed by education management company Eduhive — the three branches of BCCIS, Regent British School, El Gouna International School and Saxony International School — use Engage, says Eduhive CEO Karim Mostafa. AIS spends some USD 5-7k a year on PowerSchool, says Ciotti. Eduhive spends some GBP 15-20k per school per year on Engage, says Mostafa.

Some are going in-house for their tech: El Alsson has invested roughly EGP 1 mn in creating its system, estimates Rogers. Malvern College Egypt has designed its own system, says CEO Azza ElSherbiny, and so has El Alsson, says Executive Director Karim Rogers.

What are they using these programs for? Most automate admin processes and even some communication and data analysis. Education management programs automate admissions, registration, and admin reminders. Automation is also an increasingly important part of data analysis and some internal and external communication, say school leaders. We break down what these processes are here:

Data analysis: Organizing and presenting student data — particularly on performance — is currently seen by the schools we spoke to as the most valuable service offered by automation software. “The big element for schools is tracking data,” says Regent British School Principal Claire Rowland. Engage allows real time tracking, and presents data on past performance. Power BI, which AIS uses for data visualization, doesn’t collect data but automatically extracts and presents it, says Ciotti. “It automates pulling multi-source data into one dashboard, and creating analytics, graphics and comparisons.”

Communication: Automating some communication with parents increases efficiency and parent engagement, says Rowland. This includes reminders about school trips and official holidays, and consent forms for using student images on social media. Non-automated, digitized communication about student progress or discipline is integrated into the same system, and helpful because it’s immediate and secure, she says. It works internally too: if a student visits the school doctor and is sent home, the doctor can inform teachers through an automated messaging system.

Admissions: AIS’ admissions system is digitized, so parents don’t need physical copies of documents, and it reduces the school’s manual entry, says Ciotti. Information is automatically fed into the student database, where it can be accessed when needed, he adds. Application through Malvern’s website registration page triggers an automated email to set up booking and payment for an admissions assessment, says ElSherbiny. Families receive automated reminders of the assessment date, and a bar code for entry. Malvern can then track everything from physical entry on assessment day to student application status.

Attendance: El Alsson has a semi-automated registration process for students, says Rogers. Teachers take roll-call twice daily, with information automatically syncing up with the management system, so senior management knows immediately if anyone is missing. “We tried a fully-automated system where students tap in with wrist bands, but they kept losing them.” AIS is testing a fully-automated system next academic year, automatically registering students when they pass through the school gates, says Ciotti. “We’ve installed everything, and it just mass scans people, which will definitely save time.” But they won’t try this at the classroom level yet. “We want to try it out at the school attendance level first, before we start monitoring where people are digitally to that extent.”

General and financial admin: When the BCCIS submits regular reports to the British Columbia Education Ministry, Engage uses plug-in data to automatically fill in information on the ministry’s website, eliminating any need for double entry, says Mostafa. Malvern sends automated fee payment reminder emails to parents, says ElSherbiny. Automated fee payments could be made in installments, says Rogers, but few parents do this. “It’s sometimes done by petroleum or telecom companies that pay on behalf of their employees, as part of a benefits system.”

Does automation increase efficiency? Absolutely, says Mostafa. “At certain key points in the year — when I’m writing report cards, for instance, or I need any kind of data analysis — automation software can cut down my workload considerably,” Rowland agrees. It undoubtedly saves time by reducing the need for humans to undertake certain repetitive tasks, with some jobs that would have existed ten years ago — like pure data-entry — now eliminated, says ElSherbiny. Ciotti believes that in particular, it saves parents time and money. And over 12 months, AIS might save half the salary of an employee thanks to automation, he adds.

But is this all it’s good for? The vast majority of schools we’ve polled appear to be automating processes that schools use, but does that mean we cannot automate education itself? Not for some, who have begun adopting new tech to shape how students learn in the classroom. We dive deeper into these programs next week.


Your top education stories for the week:

  • Egypt is ranked 30th worldwide for scientific research output by Spain’s SCImago Journal
  • Mandarin for middle schoolers: The Education Ministry is looking to give middle school students the option of studying Mandarin as a foreign language as of the next academic year.
  • Open Sky International’s first Egypt school: Paris-based education group Open Sky International is opening the doors to its first school in Cairo this September, with plans to set up another 10 schools in Egypt by 2025.
  • Vaccines for proctors + students: Thanaweya Amma and university exam proctors will begin receiving covid-19 vaccines, with exams set to be held in July and August, Health Minister Hala Zayed said.

CALENDAR

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

24-26 May (Monday-Wednesday): British Egyptian Business Association virtual healthcare week.

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.’

31 May (Monday): Egypt is hosting Trescon Global’s World AI Show with the support of ITIDA.

7 June (Monday): British Egyptian Business Association hosts event featuring Oil Minister Tarek El Molla.

14 June (Monday): The third edition of Egypt's Green Economy Forum.

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.

1 July (Thursday): Businesses importing goods at seaports will need to file shipping documents and cargo data digitally to the Advance Cargo Information (ACI) system.

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.

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.

1H2022: The World Economic Forum annual meeting, location TBD.

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.

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

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