Thursday, 27 May 2021

Washington + Cairo are getting (strategically) chummier



Good morning, friends, and welcome to a pleasantly quiet Thursday. We’re just a few hours away from the warm embrace of the weekend. In the meantime:

THE BIG STORY AT HOME- US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s visit to Cairo yesterday has everyone talking about a possible shift in Egypt and the US’ diplomatic relationship. We have chapter and verse in the news well, below.

TWO STORIES ABROAD are competing for your attention this morning:

#1- It’s a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day for Big Oil, which is taking it on the chin for its role in climate change after Shell was found in a Dutch court to be partially responsible for global warming on the same day that Exxon can now look forward to a future with two activist investors on its board of directors. “The events of today show definitively that many leaders in the oil-and-gas industry have a tin ear and do not understand that society’s views and the [legislative] and political environment in which they operate are changing radically,” said Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy professor Amy Myers Jaffe, who has advised energy companies. Lots more in the WSJ and Reuters.

#2- Things look to be heating up between the US and China. Word broke just before dispatch time that the top trade negotiators for Beijing and Washington have had their first phone conversation since Joe Biden took over the White House. The news came just after the US’ National Security Council’s top official for Asia “signalled that the era of engagement with China has come to an end. US policy toward China will now operate under a ‘new set of strategic parameters’ and ‘the dominant paradigm is going to be competition.’” Adding fuel to the fire: Biden has ordered an intelligence review of the Wuhan lab leak theory on the origins of covid-19. Keeping the dialogue going will fall to a new US ambassador to Beijing as Biden prepares to announce he’s tapping a retired career diplomat, Nicholas Burns, to lead the embassy there.

HAPPENING TODAY- Budget week continues at the house: Parliament’s Healthcare Committee is due 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, according to parliament’s schedule.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO: The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which turned 125 years old yesterday. Articles, books and podcasts (“it doesn’t matter”) have assailed the Dow for its multiple shortcomings, but the gauge continues to have a hold on the imaginations of investors and journalists alike. The WSJ has a birthday paean to the index owned by its parent company.

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

  • Macro Group has tapped EFG Hermes and RenCap as advisors on its planned IPO. CI Capital and Renaissance Capital had been splitting duties as lead coordinators and bookrunners when the transaction was first announced. The company is now looking to the fall IPO window.
  • Iron and Steel for Mines and Quarries will list on the EGX today: Egyptian Iron and Steel’s mining spinoff will list around 977 mn shares at EGP 0.20 apiece, giving it a market cap of EGP 195.4 mn.
  • Russia and Egypt are still discussing the 2015 Metrojet crash: Investigative teams have met to discuss and “exchange information” on the incident, which saw Moscow impose a ban on direct flights between Russia and Egypt’s Red Sea destinations.

Editor’s Note: We draw inspiration from many publications at Enterprise, including the Financial Times, the New York Times, Reuters, Bloomberg, The Information, Skift and many others — the list of institutions providing good business journalism globally is astoundingly long for a “dead” industry. We have always included the Economist on the list of publications we admire, and that’s in part why we have always written with a “house voice” — and done our best to have a point of view. By necessity, both things mean we have no bylines.

Why is Patrick blathering on about our inspiration and bylines? Because we are naming names this morning as we say goodbye to Salma El-Saeed, one of our two amazing managing editors, who is taking a very well-earned summer vacation before she decamps for New York, where she will be enrolling this fall at New York University’s graduate school of education. Salma came to us as our “resident grammar Nazi” and has become an editorial leader whose skill, story judgment and decency have enriched us for years. All of us — myself, Hadia, Hisham, Ahmed, Matt, Yasmine and everyone on the team, whether on the English or the Arabic editions — will miss her deeply. We love you, Salma. Be good, have fun, and write us every now and then.



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 EU could be looking to participate in the East Mediterranean Gas Forum and will send in a request soon, Christodoulides suggested.

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



Washington + Cairo are getting (strategically) chummier

The US and Egypt will “cooperate closely” to reinforce the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, as well as the Gaza reconstruction process, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said during a sit-down in Cairo yesterday, according to an Ittihadiya statement. Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and General Intelligence Service Chief Abbas Kamel also sat in on the meeting. All parties should work “immediately” to facilitate the resumption of direct negotiations between Palestine and Israel, El Sisi said, promising “active engagement” from the US to support the peace process.

Blinken had nice things to say: At a presser in Amman, Blinken underscored Egypt’s “crucial role” in mediating the ceasefire and our commitment of USD 500 mn to the Gaza reconstruction effort, according to a readout of his remarks. The secretary of state also “commended Egypt for its leadership in urging Libya’s legislature to keep elections on track for December” nad included a nod to the importance of a resolution on GERD. Reuters also had the story.

Human rights came up, however fleetingly: On Egypt’s human rights record, Blinken said in passing that he and El Sisi “agreed to engage in a constructive dialogue” on human rights. Although his initial remarks very briefly mentioned the rights issue, subsequent quesitons from the press fixated on the topic, leading Blinken to eventually say human rights are still “very much on the agenda with Egypt.”

Also on Blinken’s agenda yesterday: GERD. Washington is “committed” to working on reaching a solution that safeguards the water security and developmental rights of Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia, the secretary of state told El Sisi yesterday. US Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Jeffrey Feltman is still in talks with the three countries and is working on a political resolution, the Department of State’s Arabic Language spokesperson Geraldine Griffith told Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Moussa yesterday (watch, runtime: 2:48).

Could we get US backing on GERD after mediating the ceasefire? It’s too early to expect Washington to intervene in tripartite negotiations on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) to advance Egypt’s interests against Ethiopia’s, but we can at least expect a US push for negotiations geared toward reaching a binding agreement, former foreign minister Nabil Fahmy told Yahduth fi Misr’s Sherif Amer. In the meantime, Egypt should take the initiative and capitalize on its strong diplomatic standing now to nudge Washington towards supporting its position in the talks, Fahmy said (watch, runtime: 2:44).

The shift in the Biden administration’s tone towards Egypt also doesn’t necessarily mean we’re going to become besties: It’s the nature of foreign policy that the US will have policies on certain matters that aren’t to Egypt’s liking, and vice versa, but each country has to recognize the other’s significance, Fahmy said (watch, runtime: 1:50).

Blinken’s visit to Cairo comes as part of a four-city tour to the Middle East dedicated to solidifying the Egypt-brokered Gaza-Israel ceasefire. The US Secretary of State made stops in Jerusalem and Ramallah a day earlier, during which he pledged a combined USD 112.5 mn in US aid to Palestine.

El Sisi separately spoke on the phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan, both of whom praised Egypt for mediating the ceasefire and stressed the importance of reinforcing the truce with an eye to resuming political negotiations between Israel and Palestine, according to Ittihadiya statements.


Tourism revenue targets bumped up to USD 9 bn for 2021

Tourism revenues are expected to reach somewhere between USD 6 bn and USD 9 bn in 2021 on the back of increased rising arrivals from Eastern European and Gulf tourists, Tourism Minister Khaled El Enany said yesterday at a conference in Riyadh, according to Bloomberg. The announcement is an upwards revision of Egypt’s tourism revenue targets for 2021, which El Enany had last month put at USD 8 bn. Incoming tourists have reportedly reached some 500k a month — 60% of whom are from Eastern Europe — setting us on track to receiving a little over 6 mn visitors by the end of the year, the minister said.

Tourism revenues in 1Q2021 were down almost 60% y-o-y compared to 2019’s record highs of USD 13 bn, with Egypt losing out on some USD 600 mn in revenues per month during the quarter, El Enany said earlier this month. This puts our 1Q2021 tourism revenues in the range of USD 1.1 bn, according to our calculations, compared to the USD 2.6 bn recorded over the same period in 2019. El Enany had previously said we could reach pre-pandemic tourism levels by 2H2022 provided the vaccination rollout continues at the anticipated pace. The ministry had previously announced its plan to vaccinate all tourism workers in Red Sea resorts this month.

IN LOCAL TOURISM- Some tourism players are relying on domestic travelers, including Orascom Development Egypt (ODE), with domestic tourists comprising 95% of the guests at their hotels, CEO Omar El Hamamasy told Al Arabiya yesterday (watch, runtime: 1:33). Overall, ODE’s tourism revenues are at around 30-35% of where they were prior to the pandemic. This is a relatively good achievement, El Hamamsy says, considering the international slowdown in travel and the government maintaining its 50% capacity limit on hotels nationwide.



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CIB, TMG set up real estate SPV for commercial properties

CIB and Talaat Moustafa Group (TMG) established a new real estate SPV, dubbed TCA Properties, during 1Q2021, the bank said in its quarterly report (pdf). CIB will own 37% of the new entity, with TMG holding the rest. The new venture will acquire, sell and lease commercial properties, and CIB has obtained all the necessary approvals from regulatory authorities, the statement notes.

More about the new company: The SPV was established through TMG’s subsidiary Alexandria Real Estate Investment and its parent company TMG Real Estate Touristic Investment. It will be managed by Alexandria Company for Projects Management, a TMG unit, the bank notes in its investor presentation (pdf) by the bank.

TMG has been pushing for real estate JVs with banks in the past year. In late 2020, TMG set up a joint venture with the National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr to develop residential land owned by the banks in TMG’s Madinaty and Rehab compounds. The three also signed an EGP 4 bn financing agreement to construct two mixed-use projects in the same neighborhoods. The JV was later joined by other four banks, Suez Canal Bank, Export Development Bank of Egypt, United Bank and the Egyptian Gulf Bank.


HA Utilities is one step closer to expanding into transport with EgyTrans acquisition

HA Utilities BV has been valued at EGP 721.5 mn in a fair value assessment from Grant Thornton, Egytrans’ financial advisor, ahead of a potential reverse merger between the two companies, Egytrans said in an EGX disclosure (pdf). The report valued Egytrans’ shares at EGP 12.90 apiece, bringing its total value to EGP 414 mn. These valuations are more or less in line with earlier estimates by HA Utilities BV’s parent company HA Utilities Holding (HAUH), which valued its subsidiary at EGP 680-800 mn and Egytrans at EGP 375-405 mn. Egytrans’ board members convened yesterday to consider the fair value assessment, which still requires sign-off from the Financial Regulatory Authority.

Background: Egytrans had accepted in March an offer submitted by HAUH to acquire a controlling stake in the company via a share swap that would see Egytrans acquire 100% of HAUH subsidiary HA Utilities BV in exchange for HAUH acquiring a 65% stake in Egytrans. The transaction is key to Hassan Allam Utilities’ expansion into transportation, CEO Mena Sadek told us in March.

Advisors: Grant Thorton and an unnamed investment bank will act as financial advisors to Egytrans, while Matouk Bassiouny & Hennawy will act as counsel. White & Case will serve as counsel to HAUH.


CORRECTED ON 27 May 2021-

Egytrans was valued at EGP 414 mn by the FV report, not EGP 404 mn as was reported this morning.


Fresh funding for our railways from IBRD: The Madbouly Cabinet signed off yesterday on a USD 362.9 mn facility from the World Bank’s lending arm, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) to develop and upgrade the country’s rail network, according to a Cabinet statement. The funding will be earmarked for increasing railway safety and improving the quality of services on the Alexandria-Cairo-Naga Hammadi line by upgrading signaling systems and developing human resources, as part of a USD 640 mn planned upgrade of the line. Egypt had signed the loan agreement with the IBRD last month, according to the statement. The loan will contribute to an EGP 141 bn planned overhaul of the national rail network through 2022.

The package comes after a spate of deadly railway accidents earlier this year: Hundreds were injured and tens killed in a succession of rail accidents in March and April, including a derailment in Qalyubia and a collision in Sohag.

ALSO FROM THE COUNCIL OF MINISTERS- Cabinet agreed ot a set of measures as part of the government’s shift towards modern irrigation systems, as well as setting up a specialized committee to oversee the project. The statement did not provide further detail on what these measures entail. The government had announced a USD 50 bn water saving plan in 2019 focusing on promoting modern irrigation methods and the cultivation of non-water intensive crops. In the coming year, the government plans to expand irrigation networks, make better use of rainwater, and install utilities in unserved areas in its bid to reduce water waste, Water Resources Ministry spokesman Mohamed Ghanem told us last year.


Eva Pharma gets OK to partner with govt for Sinovac production + at-home vaccine rollout begins in Port Said

We’re one step closer to locally manufactured Sinovac vaccines, after ministers gave privately held Eva Pharma the green light to partner with the higher education and agriculture ministries to produce the jab, according to a cabinet statement. Eva Pharma was among the companies that agreed with China’s Sinovac last month to locally manufacture its vaccine, along with Pharco's BioGeneric Pharma and state-owned Vacsera. The Health Ministry had previously said it planned to manufacture 20-60 mn doses of the Chinese vaccine each year. Though it’s unclear when manufacturing is set to begin, Health Ministry officials said in March that manufacturing should start within a few months, and the first batch of raw materials that will be used to produce the Chinese jab arrived here in Egypt last Friday.

The Health Ministry began yesterday at-home vaccinations for citizens with physical challenges in Port Said according to a ministry statement. Individuals can request at-home vaccines through the ministry website, or by calling the hotline 15335. The ministry has designated 27 vaccine centers across the country to dispatch doses for home vaccinations, Health Minister Hala Zayed said.

Egypt’s on-site vaccination rollout is also getting a shot in the arm, with 403 state-run facilities across the country now administering the jabs, giving them a collective capacity to administer 110k vaccines per day, Zayed said in a separate statement.

As of yesterday, 5.25 mn individuals in Egypt had registered to receive a vaccine, Aysam Salah, advisor to the Health Minister on CIT, said on El Mehwar yesterday. The ministry is now seeing a daily average of 300k registrations, after starting out at 20k per day, Salah said (watch, runtime: 6:54).

Around 1.6 mn people — 1.5% of Egypt’s total population — had received at least one dose of the vaccine as of Sunday, while around 0.3% of the country has been fully vaccinated, Ayman Sabae, health researcher for the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, tells the National. Egypt could “catch up with other countries” with its vaccination program, especially with the recent addition of new centers and the government’s efforts to facilitate access to the jabs, Sabae said.

The Health Ministry reported 1,151 new covid-19 infections yesterday, up from 1,140 the day before. Egypt has now disclosed a total of 257,275 confirmed cases of covid-19. The ministry also reported 43 new deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 14,850.

Only vaccinated people in the UAE will be allowed to attend “live” events nationwide starting 6 June, the country announced Tuesday, in an effort to speed up its vaccination program, Reuters reports. The decision comes one week after Dubai made vaccinations mandatory for people wishing to attend events such as weddings, concerts, and other entertainment activities. The UAE says it has vaccinated over 78% of eligible citizens over 16 years and over 84% of its elderly population.



Diplomacy was once again the belle of the ball on last night’s talk shows, with everyone and their mother talking about and dissecting US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s visit to Cairo yesterday. Masaa DMC’s Ramy Radwan (watch, runtime: 2:54) and Al Hayah Al Youm’s Lobna Assal (watch, runtime: 5:44) were among those with standard coverage of the visit. We have chapter and verse — and all the analysis — in this morning’s news well, above.


It’s a mixed bag of nuts for Egypt in the foreign press this morning. Five Egyptian UN peacekeepers will be honored posthumously today, among 4k military, police and civilian personnel worldwide who died in 2020 while serving in peacekeeping missions, according to Egypt’s UN Office. The Committee to Protect Journalists is out with a statement calling for the release of journalist Gamal Al Gamal from pretrial detention, saying his health has “seriously deteriorated.


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MSCI’s emerging market currency index soared to a new record high yesterday as investors turned to EMs following the US Federal Reserve’s announcement of its plans to keep interest rates low and maintain its stimulus program, despite inflationary pressures, Reuters reports. The USD dropped to its lowest level since January, while the MSCI reading overtook peaks recorded earlier this month, buoyed by currencies such as China’s RMB, which jumped to an almost three-year high.

Amazon is officially acquiring MGM Holdings for USD 8.45 bn, after the two signed a definitive merger agreement, the e-commerce giant said in a statement. The price tag includes nearly USD 2 bn of debt, with the equity value of the acquisition put at USD 6.5 bn, the Wall Street Journal reports, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the matter. The agreement will bring more than 4k film titles produced by Metro Goldwyn Mayer to Amazon’s Prime Video streaming platform, giving it a leg up in the competition against streaming services Netflix and Disney+.




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The EGX30 fell 1.5% yesterday on turnover of EGP 1.36 bn (5.1% above the 90-day average). Local investors were net buyers. The index is down 4.4% YTD.

In the green: Orascom Financial Holding (+4.2%), Export Development Bank (+2.7%) and Pioneers Holding (+2.5%).

In the red: CIB (-3.2%), ElSewedy Electric (-2.3%) and Fawry (-2.3%).


Syrian President Bashar Al Assad looks set to remain in office for a fourth seven-year term in elections yesterday that have been widely criticized by US and European observers, Bloomberg reports. But a broader regional realignment centered on tempering regional conflict and countering Iran’s influence could see Arab leaders warm up to Assad — with some saying Syria may even soon be invited to rejoin the Arab League.

Also worth knowing this morning: The EU is at least partially responsible for migrant deaths in the Mediterranean after several European governments deliberately hindered humanitarian groups’ efforts at sea and scaled back their own search and rescue operations, according to a new UN OHCHR report (pdf).


Naila El Shishiny, co-founder of Markaz: Each week, my Morning / WFH Routine looks at how a successful member of the community starts their day — and then throws in a couple of random business questions just for fun. Speaking to us this week is Naila El-Shishiny, co-founder of Markaz. Edited excerpts from our conversation:

My name is Naila El Shishiny. I’m a social entrepreneur and co-founder of Markaz. I started Markaz in 2005 along with my co-founder Mohamed Amin out of a deep passion for handmade Egyptian crafts. Mohamed was already working in development at the time, with a particular focus on marketing locally crafted goods from Sinai, and I had a background in design and textiles. We were both concerned with the incredible level of craftsmanship across the country, with different styles and nuances, that was at risk of disappearing due to a lack of economic viability. We felt there was a lot of potential in preserving this important piece of cultural heritage by widening its exposure to consumers in Cairo and giving people the chance to continue working with their traditional crafts.

We saw an opportunity to build upon these existing products by improving quality and making them a little more contemporary in style and function. People often view handmade goods as trinkets they would buy on occasion with the explicit intention of supporting a cause. We started Markaz in the hopes of changing this dynamic. We wanted to set up a business that would sustainably support communities across the country through customers who would come back to buy our products more than every once in a while. Organizations working in the field tend to be small and individual in nature, sometimes even off the books. We registered the business as a joint stock company in 2015 and set out to make it a cost-effective enterprise through setting the right prices and offering people steady incomes. We saw this as the best path forward for growing the company

Ten years later and we’re now coordinating production across 14 governorates in Egypt, which can sometimes be a bit of a logistical nightmare. Given how remote a lot of these communities are, communication and transportation are two of our biggest challenges. We work with craftspeople in places like Damietta, Al-Arish, St. Katherine, Gabal Elba, Aswan and Marsa Matrouh — which is both an edge that Markaz has to offer over competitors but presents a unique set of challenges. While we don't like to interfere in the way artisans come up with their patterns or how they reconstruct images from their surrounding environment, we offer instructions on the overall design of a product that we feel might be more appealing to customers in Cairo. Over the past year however we’ve had to resort to conducting most of our business through phone calls. It's often difficult to describe these design details over the phone, and we’ve come up against misunderstandings that occasionally slowed down the process even further.

The vast majority of our production takes place outside of Cairo. Once a product is crafted we send it to one of our partner NGOs here in Cairo where they execute final technical specifications we’ve drawn out for them. But the bulk of the work, which includes specialized skills like basketry, weaving or embroidery is produced outside of Cairo using techniques that have been passed down for generations. There’s a lot of patience involved in the process, because these crafts are often deeply rooted in tradition and take place within very small and insulated communities, so it takes time getting used to minor adjustments or new requests.

I wake up at 6 am and grab a coffee, but I can’t really say I have a fixed routine. Sometimes I start my day with exercise, on other days I like to read things that are relevant to the arts in the morning. For Markaz, my responsibilities are usually split between time spent at our Maadi office coordinating production, being on the lookout for new materials at markets, and meeting with different artisans in the city who work with us on specific components of our products. Markaz is really all about fusion and bringing together very separate crafts to create a final product, so there’s a ton of time spent researching different ways to make this all come together. Our Maadi office handles coordination between the different craftspeople and NGOs before we put the products out for display at our Maadi store and on our website. We also have a seasonal store on the North Coast, open from June-August. We see a huge uptick in sales around the summer months and around Christmas.

Covid-19 has been tough on us, because unlike mass-produced consumer goods, the products we put on display can vary widely in their appearance. You really need to see the product for yourself to get a feel for it and appreciate the intricate design. This means you need to be at a store in person to get a better idea of the materials used and the small details of our product. This is a natural result of having production entirely handmade. It's not like buying something from H&M or Amazon, there is a large human element involved.

Unfortunately there’s no legislative framework that appropriately captures the work that we do. We’re currently registered and bound to laws that govern a registered shareholder company, but our operations are way more complex than your ordinary business. We deal with some 60 artisans in far flung places across the country, some of whom might not even have state-issued IDs. It makes acquiring all the necessary paperwork almost impossible. We face an equal challenge when buying materials. Because we’re buying very specific fabrics and beads in small quantities, we find difficulty retrieving official receipts from vendors. But at least there is progress on that front, which could make matters much simpler for us in the future.

For now, our goal is to get people to purchase our goods, not in support of local artisans but because they like them more than anything else. I think it's the only way you can have something sustainable.

A very dear friend of mine once told me “fill your days till you wish they were longer.” They’ve been words that have helped keep me creative and live a fuller, more rewarding life.


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

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 an event featuring Oil Minister Tarek El Molla.

14 June (Monday): 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 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.

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