Monday, 5 July 2021

Covid restrictions on hotels + other non-essential businesses eased from Tuesday

TL;DR

WHAT WE’RE TRACKING TODAY

Good morning, friends — We open today’s issue with good news: Wednesday is looking like the last time we will have to utter the words ’Ever Given’ after the Suez Canal Authority said yesterday it will finally unshackle the container ship this week following an agreement with its owners.

Though the news seems to be dominating the conversation on Egypt internationally this morning, of greater importance to us here at home is the news that from tomorrow covid restrictions on hotels and other non-essential businesses will be loosened, allowing them to operate at up to 70% capacity. All that and more in this morning’s news well, below.

THE BIG STORY THIS MORNING-

It’s the UAE vs the world as high stakes OPEC+ meetings resume today to hash out an agreement on raising oil production. “Accept our terms or blow up the OPEC+ alliance” appears to be Abu Dhabi’s negotiating tactic, which was the only country to refuse to sign onto an agreement to ramp up production last week. The UAE is demanding that it be allowed to produce more oil and argues that the quotas negotiated by Saudi Arabia and Russia are unfair.

The core of the disagreement: baselines. Under the current supply-cut regime, baseline production figures are used to calculate how much each country is allowed to produce. The UAE’s current baseline is 3.2 mn barrels per day, which it claims is too low and should be 3.8 mn. Abu Dhabi is also frustrated seeing the bns of USD it has invested in expanding capacity going to waste, and wants to ramp up production.

A clash between allies: Neither the UAE and Saudi Arabia have signalled that a pact is around the corner, with energy ministers from both countries taking uncompromising public stances.

Stakes are high: Failure to find an agreement would do one of two things. Oil prices — already surging due to rising demand and tightening supply — are sent even higher as output fails to meet demand. Or the fractious meetings cause a disintegration of the loose alliance of oil producers, triggering another race-to-the-bottom price war of the kind we saw last year. Bloomberg and CNBC have the info.

THE BIG STORY ABROAD- The global business press is zoning in on the latest regulatory crackdown in China, which yesterday pulled the plug on ride-hailing giant Didi just days after it listed on the Nasdaq. The country’s cyber security regulator has ordered Didi removed from domestic app stores, alleging that the company has illegally collected customer data and violated antitrust rules. The decision comes days after the ride-hailing giant raised USD 4.4 bn in the biggest Chinese IPO in the US since 2014. The story is leading the front pages of the Financial Times and Bloomberg, the Wall Street Journal and CNBC.

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

  • Leasing provider GlobalCorp’s owners want out: Unnamed Europe-based investors are looking to snap up 90% of Ezdehar and Sanad Fund’s leasing and non-banking financial services portfolio company GlobalCorp.
  • Tourism staging (somewhat) of a comeback: Tourism revenues clocked in at nearly USD 4 bn in 1H2021, almost as much as they were in the whole of 2020.

HAPPENING TODAY-

Shoukry is in New York today ahead of the UN Security Council meeting on GERD: Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry flew to New York yesterday to prepare for the UN Security Council meeting on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) crisis that is due to take place later this week, according to a statement by Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ahmed Hafez. Shoukry is set to meet with a number of officials from the council to press Egypt’s position on Ethiopia unilaterally resuming the second filling of the dam.

The council could meet this Thursday to discuss the crisis, the Sudanese government said last week. Cairo and Khartoum are also cooking up a draft resolution to hand to the council that would set a six-month deadline for the three countries to wrap up negotiations and draft a binding agreement on filling and operating the dam.

Will anything come of it? While Egypt and Sudan are pushing hard for the matter to be resolved at the meeting (and Ethiopia pushing in the opposite direction), French UN Ambassador and council president Nicolas de Riviere told reporters last week that the meeting will likely not amount to much.

The British Egyptian Business Association’s (BEBA) virtual education week starts today: Three seminars will take place today and tomorrow, starting with a talk about skills-based learning at 10am this morning. A session focusing on the future of education investment will follow at 12:30pm, before tomorrow’s talk on the digitalization of education in Egypt, which will be held at 12pm.

Among the handful of dates you should keep an eye on at the start of the month:

  • PMI out tomorrow: Egypt’s purchasing managers’ index for June lands tomorrow morning at 6.15 CLT. PMIs for Saudi Arabia and the UAE are out today.
  • Foreign reserves figures for June will be out early next week.
  • Inflation data for June will be released next week.

CIRCLE YOUR CALENDAR-

The Clean Energy Business Council (CEBC) MENA is holding a webinar titled Energy Efficiency in the MENA region: Status and Outlook on 6 July at 3:30pm.

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

enterprise

Celebrate Eid with a relaxing holiday and make the most out of your break with a diverse and well-earned trip.

COVID WATCH

Restrictions on hotels + other non-essential businesses eased from Tuesday: Hotels, restaurants, cafes, cinemas, theaters and retail stores are now allowed to operate at 70% capacity instead of the current 50%, the cabinet announced yesterday.

The new rules will come into play on Tuesday, and were taken in light of the improving situation, Cabinet spokesperson Nader Saad told Ala Mas'ouleety's Ahmed Moussa (watch, runtime 15:04) last night.

The daily covid tally fell again yesterday: The Health Ministry reported 179 new covid-19 infections yesterday, down from 181 the day before. Egypt has now disclosed a total of 282,082 confirmed cases of covid-19. The ministry also reported 22 new deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 16,264.

The 50% cap on hotels had been in place for more than a year since being raised from 25% in June 2020. Restaurants and cafes were allowed to have their capacity increased to half a month later.

The move comes as anticipation builds for a full tourism recovery: The government expects tourism to bring in between USD 6-9 bn this year as the global vaccine rollout helps to normalize international travel and visitors return to Egypt. Around 3.5 mn tourists visited the country during the first six months of the year, which is almost the same amount of people who visited Egypt in the whole of last year.

What’s the plan for Eid Al Adha prayers? The same precautionary measures implemented during Eid El Fitr will apply during prayers later this month, Saad told Al Kahera Wal Nas in a phone interview (watch, runtime 13:21). Traditional Eid prayers were held only at “major” mosques, while Eid prayers at mosques other than those where Friday prayers are being held or at large public spaces were banned. The Awqaf Ministry is yet to decide whether to open ladies’ prayer halls at mosques.

The latest vaccination tally: Around 4.5 mn people have now received at least one dose of a covid-19 vaccine in the five months since the government began its vaccination campaign, Saad noted. That would indicate that 500k people have been jabbed in the two weeks since 20 June, when local press reports claimed 4 mn people had received the vaccine.

This translates to 7.5% of all people eligible to be jabbed — given Capmas estimates there are a little more than 60 mn Egyptians aged over 18 — far behind the 40% targeted by the government by the end of the year.

How does Egypt plan to speed up the pace? The country will focus on local manufacturing of covid-19 vaccines due to global delays in vaccine deliveries. The government thinks it can produce 80 mn doses of Made-in-Egypt Sinovac by the end of the year. The first batch of Vacsera’s locally-made jabs were produced last week and are expected to be distributed to clinics next month.

Egypt hasn’t detected any cases linked to the Delta variant, Saad told Moussa (watch, runtime 3:15). The ministry is carrying out random checking for Delta to ensure that there aren't any cases diagnosed with the widespread variant. Inbound travellers from countries with the Delta variant will undergo a PCR test upon arrival even if they are either fully vaccinated or show proof of a negative PCR test. Check the full list of countries here.

M&A WATCH

These Alexandria bidding wars have us learning auction chants

Compass Capital ups ANFI bid in response to rival offer: Private equity outfit Compass Capital has made a higher offer to acquire 90% of Alexandria National Company for Financial Investments (ANFI), following in the footsteps of a rival bidder, Hong Kong-based Zeta Investments. Compass’ mandatory tender offer for ANFI will offer to snap up shares EGP 6.12 apiece, up from an EGP 5.72, the Financial Regulatory Authority said in a statement (pdf). The new offer values ANFI’s 5.22 mn shares at nearly EGP 32 mn. Compass’ higher bid came after Zeta raised its own per-share price to EGP 6.00 per share from EGP 5.48. Compass and Zeta aren’t the only two bidders eyeing ANFI.

And then there were two? So far, we have not heard from the other bidders who have expressed interest in acquiring ANFI in some, with Compass and Zeta appearing to be the only companies raising their offers. Offers to acquire ANFI had come from Tycoon Holding, which offered to acquire a 90% stake for EGP 5.60 per share. Then there’s Kayan Sustainable Development, Zaldi Capital, and a group of investors including Egyptian businessman Ahmed El Saba and Saudi Arabia’s Mostafa El Humeidan — who all expressed an interest in buying a stake in the company. Gulf lender Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) is the seller.

SUEZ CANAL

Ever Given unshackled

The Ever Given will be released on Wednesday, 7 July after the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) and the Ever Given’s owners reached a compensation settlement for the six-day blockage of the canal in March, the authority told Bloomberg yesterday. The SCA said that a signing ceremony will be held on the same day before the ship is allowed to leave the Bitter Lake, where it has been detained by the SCA for almost three months.

The breakthrough was confirmed by ins. company UK P&I Club and law firm Stann Marine, which is representing the owner of the ship, Shoei Kisen, and its ins. companies. “Good progress has been made and a formal solution has now been agreed,” UK P&I Club said. “Preparations for the release of the vessel will be made and an event marking the agreement will be held at the Authority’s headquarters in Ismailia in due course.”

The details on the settlement are still being kept on the down low: Unconfirmed reports over the weekend suggested that Shoei Kisen has agreed to pay the SCA USD 540 mn, a substantial increase from the USD 150 mn it was reportedly holding out for. The SCA in May slashed its demands to USD 550 mn from USD 916 mn. The authority will also receive a new tugboat as part of the agreement.

Ismailia Economic Court will hold a hearing which could be the last on Ever Given compensation case next Sunday. Both SCA and the ship’s owners asked yesterday the Ismailia Economic Court to adjourn hearings in the compensation dispute to 11 July as they’re close to signing a final agreement “within days.”

The story is getting coverage in the foreign press: Reuters | Associated Press | AFP | Sputnik.

IN RELATED NEWS-

The Ever Given crisis didn’t dent the canal’s revenues: The Suez Canal brought in USD 3 bn during the first six months of the year, up almost 9% from the same period last year, SCA boss Osama Rabie told Al Kahera Wel Nas last night (watch, runtime: 7:58). Canal revenues totalled USD 1.45 bn, according to balance of payments figures released last week by the central bank. The canal is expected to bring in over USD 6 bn worth of revenues in 2021.

DIPLOMACY

Egypt to weigh in on rebuilding Iraq’s manufacturing sector

Egypt and Iraq are stepping up cooperation in manufacturing projects in a plan that will see Egyptian companies work on rehabilitating factories in Iraq and setting up industrial zones, the Trade and Industry Ministry said following a meeting between minister Nevine Gamea and her Iraqi counterpart, Manhal Aziz Al Khabbaz, in Baghdad yesterday. Both ministers agreed on a “comprehensive plan” that covers finding avenues for cooperation between private sector companies in Egypt and Iraq, tenders the Iraqi government will open up to Egyptian industrial players for public-private partnerships to revamp state-owned factories, and sharing expertise that would help Iraq rebuild its manufacturing base, Gamea said.

The plan will focus on specific industries where cooperation is most possible, the minister noted. Those industries include pharma, textiles and ready-made clothes, car tyres, electrical equipment and electronics, building materials, chemicals, metals, glass and refractories, leather-making, processed foods, petrochemicals, and telecommunications equipment.

A presidential push: Gamea’s meeting with Al Khabbaz followed three-way talks between President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Iraqi President Barham Salih, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi and Jordan's King Abdullah II in the Iraqi capital last week. The talks saw the three countries agree to deepen security and economic cooperation including on plans to aid the reconstruction of war-torn Iraq, the dispute over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) and the situation in Palestine.

Egypt has been keen to get involved in the reconstruction of Iraq: Last year, the two countries — which have significantly stepped up bilateral ties in past months — signed 15 MoUs covering everything from oil and water resources to construction, transportation and environmental protection, as well as an “oil-for-reconstruction” agreement that is seeing Iraq supply the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation with 12 mn barrels of oil this year. This was followed last month by an agreement between the two countries’ ICT ministries to increase investments in digital and telecom infrastructure.

You can learn more about Egypt’s infrastructure diplomacy in our Hardhat feature here.

AUTOMOTIVE

Auto industry reboot

Passenger car sales almost doubled in May, increasing 88% y-o-y from the same month last year, according to figures from the Automotive Information Council (AMIC). Nearly 15.2k vehicles were sold during the month, up from only 8k in May 2020. On a monthly basis, however, sales were down from 16k cars sold in April.

Keep this in mind: The favorable base effect means that these annual percentages aren’t quite as impressive as they seem. This time last year, auto sales had hit the skids as the government’s lockdown measures caused a sharp drop in consumer demand.

Total auto sales up y-o-y but down m-o-m: Total auto sales, which includes busses and trucks, also soared 73% y-o-y to 21k vehicles in May. That said, auto sales fell 5% from 22k units in April. Truck sales rose 82% y-o-y to nearly 4k, from 2.2k in the same month in 2020. This was, however, a significant drop from 4.2k trucks sold in April. Bus sales were down both y-o-y (-3.5%) and m-o-m (-1%) with 1.8k units sold.

What’s been selling? GB Auto’s Hyundai held the largest market share of passenger car sales, coming in at 15%, followed by Nissan (12%), and Kia (11%). Across the wider auto market, Chevrolet (19%), Toyota (11%), and Hyundai (11%) led sales.

The pandemic wasn’t too kind to the auto industry (but it turned out alright): Sales fell as much as 26% at the height of the lockdown in April as dealerships were shuttered and consumers deferred purchases. Despite that, AMIC figures for FY2020 showed that, overall, sales rose in 2020 — even as the pandemic forced a partial lockdown on the economy.

Another thing to note: AMIC is an industry association which only reports data submitted by its member car dealerships.

AGRICULTURE

Egypt’s agricultural exports rise in 1H2021

Egyptian fruit and vegetable exports increased 15% in 1H2021 to more than 4 mn tonnes compared to 3.47 mn tonnes in the same period last year, according to Agriculture Ministry figures.

The breakdown: Citrus fruits made up a quarter of total exports, with 1.72 mn tonnes shipped overseas during the six-month period. This was followed by potatoes (619.8k tonnes), beet (405.3k), onions (151.5k), and grapes (111.5k). Citrus exports also had the lion's share in 1H2020.

LEGISLATION WATCH

El Sisi ratifies FY2021-2022 state budget

The FY2021-2022 state budget is now official: President Abdel Fattah El Sisi has ratified yesterday the FY2021-2022 state budget, which will see government spending rise 14%, according to a decision published in the Official Gazette (pdf). The budget will see health spending rise by 16% and education by 10% as the government’s tax reforms lead to a projected 22% increase in revenues. The House approved the budget in mid-June, three months after it received cabinet sign-off.

IN OTHER LEGISLATION NEWS-

The Senate has given preliminary approval to the Unified Budget Act, which brings together several pieces of legislation governing the annual state budget and government accounting into a single bill, reports Ahram Gate. The proposed bill — approved by the cabinet back in October — would, if passed in a final vote by the House of Representatives, also impose new requirements for the government to ensure fiscal discipline. These include spending limits for each ministry, as well as new mechanisms to monitor budgeting performance. It remains unclear when the bill will be up for a final vote at the House.

MOVES

Shakeup at the EGX board

The EGX was out yesterday with a list of nominees to fill its board of director seats for the 2021-2025 term, according to an official statement (pdf). Prime Securities Brokerage Managing Director Shawkat El Maraghy (LinkedIn) and Osool ESB’s Ehab Saied (bio) are among those vying for a seat to represent brokerage firms, while vice chairman and managing director of asset manager Azimut Ahmed Abou El Saad (LinkedIn) and Porto Group Chairman Gamal Fatahallah (LinkedIn) are both competing for a separate seat to represent other capital markets firms. Odin Investments CEO Hashem El Sayed (bio), meanwhile, is the only candidate vying for the seat representing EGX30-listed companies. It’s still unclear when the exchange will announce the election results.

Changes at the FRA board as well: The National Training Academy’s Executive Director Rascha Ragheb (LinkedIn) and former MP Marianne Azer (LinkedIn) have joined the board of directors of the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA), according to a statement out yesterday.

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LAST NIGHT’S TALK SHOWS

The expected release of the Ever Given this Wednesday topped discussion on the talk shows last night: Kelma Akhira’s Lamees El Hadid tackled the widely circulated yet non-official details on the settlement agreement including the USD 540 mn compensation and a newly manufactured tugboat to be delivered to the Suez Canal Authority (watch, runtime 8:59). The agreement and adjourning the hearing on Ever Given compensation case to 11 July was covered by Ala Mas'ouleety's Ahmed Moussa (watch, runtime 36:05).

Record-setting? The compensation value marks the highest ever paid for a maritime accident, El Hadidi claimed. The official value won’t be released due to a non-disclosure agreement signed by all involved parties, she said. We have the story in full in this morning’s news well, above.

GERD also got a mention, with Ambassador Maged Abdelfattah Abdelaziz, permanent observer for the Arab League, returning to the airwaves for a second night running to give his opinion on what could happen should Ethiopia refuse to play ball. Not much apparently: Abdelaziz told Ten TV that Egypt and Sudan should return to the UN Security Council after six months and lodge more complaints that Addis Ababa isn’t cooperating (watch, runtime 4:46).

EGYPT IN THE NEWS

If your name isn’t Ever Given, you’re not getting a mention in the foreign press this morning. Check out this morning’s news well above for the full story.

ALSO ON OUR RADAR

Two other things we’re keeping an eye on this morning:

  • The Saudi government has provided three banks with an EGP 270 mn grant for on-lending to Egyptian micro, small and medium sized enterprises. Banque Misr will receive EGP 70 mn, the Industrial Development Bank will get EGP 100 mn, and Banque du Caire the remaining EGP 100 mn.
  • The ICT Ministry has launched an artificial intelligence platform that showcases Egypt’s latest developments in the field of AI.

PLANET FINANCE

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Fears of the Delta strain are hitting emerging-market currencies: Developing countries with low vaccination rates could face currency pressure as the Delta variant prompts new restrictions, Bloomberg reports. In June, the South African rand and the Russian ruble — formerly this year’s best performers — stalled, weighing down an index of emerging-market currencies in June for the first time in three months. Both South Africa and Russia are being hit hard by what appears to be the Delta variant, with Durban last week announcing a strict lockdown to curb a rapid increase in cases and Moscow reporting record daily cases on Saturday.

Vaccination rates to determine the victors and losers in EM? “Achievements in terms of vaccination will increasingly be a differentiation factor among emerging markets in the second half [of 2021],” said one EM strategist.

The most vulnerable: South Africa and Colombia are likely to see the most pressure on their currencies as the combination of rising cases, low interest rates and higher state spending puts portfolio flows to the test, according to an interest-rate and currency analyst. South Africa has only vaccinated 5% of its population, and at the current rate, would have to wait until 2023 to inoculate 50% of its population, the percentage that experts say is needed to combat Delta. Colombia has also only 11% of its people vaccinated.

The fortunate: Chile, China, Israel, the UAE and the Central Eastern European countries, which have vaccinated almost half of their citizens, the percentage that experts say is needed to combat Delta, Bank of America said last week. Other EMs — such as Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia and Turkey — are expected to reach the same level by the end of 2021.

But the UK is showing right now that even the fortunate may not be on easy street: Covid cases are back above 20k per day in the UK, which has given more than 45 mn of its citizens at least one shot of a covid vaccine.

IN OTHER FINANCIAL NEWS-

MENA wealth funds get an ‘F’ for governance and resilience: Sovereign wealth funds in the Middle East are the world’s worst performers when it comes to governance and resilience, according to Global SWF’s latest GSR Scoreboard. The scoreboard, which ranks wealth funds based on 10 governance elements, 10 sustainability benchmarks and five resilience metrics, ranked only four MENA funds higher than 50%, with the region’s three biggest funds sitting at the bottom of the pile due to poor transparency and “significant withdrawals” caused by covid-19 and the last year’s oil crash. “The big three Middle Eastern funds seem to be getting worse at inspiring trust,” Bloomberg quoted the report as saying, referring to ADQ, the Kuwait Investment Authority, and the Qatar Investment Authority.

Up

EGX30

10,346

+0.9% (YTD: -4.6%)

None

USD (CBE)

Buy 15.63

Sell 15.73

None

USD at CIB

Buy 15.63

Sell 15.73

None

Interest rates CBE

8.25% deposit

9.25% lending

Up

Tadawul

11,031

+0.5% (YTD: +27.0%)

Up

ADX

6,948

+0.7% (YTD: +37.7%)

Down

DFM

2,804

-0.4% (YTD: +12.5%)

Up

S&P 500

4,352

+0.8% (YTD: +15.9%)

None

FTSE 100

7,123

-% (YTD: +10.3%)

Up

Brent crude

USD 76.17

+0.4%

Up

Natural gas (Nymex)

USD 3.70

+1.1%

Up

Gold

USD 1,783.30

+0.4%

Up

BTC

USD 34,928

+1.1% (as of midnight)

THE CLOSING BELL-

The EGX30 rose 0.9% at yesterday’s close on turnover of EGP 897 mn (27.7% below the 90-day average). Foreign investors were net buyers. The index is down 4.6% YTD.

In the green: TMG Holding (+4.8%), Abou Kir Fertilizers (+3.8%) and EFG Hermes (+2.1%).

In the red: MM Group (-1.0%), Cleopatra Hospital (-0.4%) and Orascom Development Egypt (-0.4%).

AROUND THE WORLD

Ethiopia’s Tigray rebels say they will accept the government’s ceasefire — on several conditions Rebels fighting the Ethiopian government for control of the country’s Tigray region have said they will accept a ceasefire if Abiy Ahmed’s administration recognizes them as a legitimate government. Initially dismissing the government’s unilateral ceasefire as a “joke,” rebels for the first time have signalled they are willing to wind down the eight-month conflict, having driven out government forces from the regional capital last week. They are also demanding that Eritrea withdraw its forces from Tigray, an independent enquiry into alleged war crimes committed during the conflict, and humanitarian aid before laying down their weapons.

ON YOUR WAY OUT

The Antarctic is hotter than ever: Temperatures in Antarctica reached a record high of 18.3°C (64.9°F) last year, providing yet more evidence that “climate change requires urgent measures," the UN’s World Meteorological Organization said last week.

CALENDAR

1-10 July (Thursday-Saturday): The government’s fuel pricing committee will meet to announce 3Q prices.

8 July (Thursday): The UN Security Council will meet to discuss the GERD crisis with Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia.

11 July (Sunday): Ismailia Economic Court will hold a hearing on Ever Given compensation case.

Mid-July: Legislative session expected to end.

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

21 July (Wednesday): Clean Energy Business Council’s webinar Women entrepreneurs in clean energy (3pm)

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

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

23 July-11 August (Friday-Wednesday): Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

2-4 August (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt is hosting the Africa Food Manufacturing exhibition at the Egypt International Exhibition Center.

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.

3-5 September (Friday-Sunday): The World Karate Federation will hold the third competition of the 2021 Karate 1-Premier League in Cairo.

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

15 September (Wednesday): The CFO Leadership & Strategy Summit is taking place in Egypt.

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.

30 September: Closing of 2021’s first oil and gas tender in the Gulf of Suez, Western Desert, and the Mediterranean.

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

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.

24-28 October (Sunday-Thursday) Cairo Water Week, Cairo, Egypt.

27-28 October (Wednesday-Thursday) Intelligent Cities Exhibition & Conference, Royal Maxim Palace Kempinski, Cairo, Egypt.

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

30 October – 4 November (Saturday-Thursday): The first edition of Race The Legends, Egypt.

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

November: Egypt will host another round of talks to reach a potential Egyptian-Eurasian trade agreement, which can significantly contribute to increasing the volume of Egyptian exports to the Russia-led bloc that includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

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

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

12-14 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Food Africa Cairo trade exhibition, Egypt International Exhibition Center, Cairo, Egypt.

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.