Wednesday, 5 January 2022

AM — Goldman is bullish on Egypt shares.
Plus: We’re off tomorrow for Coptic Christmas — see you on Sunday

TL;DR

WHAT WE’RE TRACKING TODAY

Good morning, wonderful people, and welcome to our final edition of EnterpriseAM for this holiday-shortened workweek. A very Merry Christmas to everyone celebrating this weekend — here’s to a wonderful break with family and friends.

PSA #1- We’re all off on Thursday, 6 January in observance of Coptic Christmas, which falls on Friday. The EGX, central bank, cabinet and manpower ministry have all issued statements confirming it’s a national holiday. Your next regularly scheduled holiday will be Thursday, 27 January. We then start a long holiday drought stretching into late-April, at which time we’ll be deep into Ramadan.

PSA #2- Heading to Dubai from Egypt? You’ll need a QR-coded PCR test before departure — and have to take another one on arrival. All travellers to Dubai must show a negative PCR test taken no more than 72 hours previously — but PCR certificates for passengers traveling from Egypt (as well as India and Vietnam) must also include a QR code, under new guidance on the Emirates airlines website. Egypt also made the list of dozens of countries from which arrivals to Dubai must also take another covid-19 PCR test upon landing in the emirate — and remain in their hotels or homes until they receive a negative result.

There’s no word yet on the outcome of the final votes that were scheduled for yesterday in the House of Representatives on the proposed fintech act and the unified budget act. The House did give its preliminary approval to the Unified Planning Act in a plenary session, according to Ahram Gate. The legislation would, if passed, dictate how governorate-level economic, social, and urban development plans are implemented.

WHAT’S HAPPENING TODAY-

THE BIG STORY ABROAD- The Big Quit is showing no signs of slowing in the US after a record 4.5 mn workers quit their jobs in November, according to official figures released yesterday. The so-called ‘great resignation’ was a hot topic throughout 2021 in the United States as the number of people quitting their jobs kept notching new records, indicating a tightening labor market and stronger wage growth. The figures are everywhere in the business press this morning from Bloomberg and the Financial Times to Reuters and the Wall Street Journal.

Warren Buffett’s rethink on Apple could prove to be his best play ever: The ex-tech skeptic has made more than USD 120 bn on paper thanks to his pivot into Apple stock, according to CNBC. Buoyed by the historic covid-fuelled tech rally, Apple on Monday became the first company to clock a USD 3 tn market cap, after adding USD 1 tn to its market value in less than 16 months. Buffett, who began buying shares in the company in 2016 and owned a 5.4% stake in Apple as of last September, has seen his USD 36 bn investment surge almost 400% to USD 160 bn.

MARKET WATCH-

The OPEC+ alliance of oil producers is going ahead with its plan to increase output by 400k barrels a day in February amid indications that the omicron variant will only have a limited impact on global demand, Reuters reports.

Do markets think covid is roaring to an end? The price of points in that direction. Brent and US crude both closed up yesterday, prompting one energy analyst to tell the newswire that “it appears that the market [thinks] that omicron is the beginning of the end of covid-19.”

CIRCLE YOUR CALENDAR-

Key news triggers to keep your eye on:

  • Foreign reserves: December’s foreign reserves figures will be announced before the week is out.
  • Interest rates: Further afield, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) will hold its first policy meeting of 2022 on Thursday, 3 February.

The 2021 Africa Cup of Nations gets underway in Cameroon next Sunday, 9 January. The championship will run until Sunday, 6 February.

The World Youth Forum kicks off in Sharm El Sheikh next Monday, 10 January and runs until Thursday, 13 January.

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

enterprise

*** It’s Hardhat day — your weekly briefing of all things infrastructure in Egypt: Enterprise’s industry vertical focuses each Wednesday on infrastructure, covering everything from energy, water, transportation, urban development as well as social infrastructure such as health and education.

In today’s issue: The past year saw Egypt move forward in its energy hub ambitions, which we detailed in Part 1 and Part 2 of our year in review series. Going into 2022, there are continued snarls when it comes to infrastructure such as high transportation costs and supply chain woes, but so far it doesn’t seem like they will phase the energy sector which is looking to continue its momentum in the coming year through a number of agreements, projects, and plans to increase energy exports.

enterprise

Endless discovery above and below.

ECONOMY

PMI outlook improves, but remains in contraction territory

Egypt’s non-oil business activity “inched closer to stabilisation” in December, contracting at its slowest pace in four months, according to IHS Markit’s purchasing managers’ index survey (pdf). An easing of inflationary pressures, increase in export revenues, and uptick in tourism supported new business, though subdued demand and lower output continued to weigh on firms, pushing the gauge up to 49.0 in December from 48.7 the previous month — an improvement, but still below the 50.0 mark that separates expansion from contraction. This is the thirteenth consecutive month private sector activity has contracted.

Input cost inflation saw its fastest slowdown in over three years, due to a softening of increases in purchasing costs and wages, according to the report. “The latest Egypt PMI gave increased confidence that inflationary pressures peaked earlier in the fourth quarter and are now beginning to soften,” said David Owen, IHS Markit economist.

Weak demand and overall price hikes are still problematic: Price pressures were still strong overall, leading firms to mark up their selling prices. These higher rates were partly to blame for subdued customer demand. Business output and new orders fell for the fifth month running.

Tourism and exports had a good month: New business was supported by an improvement in tourism activity and the sharpest rise in export orders since February, according to the report. Egypt’s export revenues recorded a record USD 31 bn in 2021, according to Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly.

Fewer jobs — though the hiring market shrank more slowly: Lower sales and a relatively mild rise in backlogs impacted hiring. However, the rate of job reduction was softer than the previous month and mostly driven by companies deciding not to replace employees who quit their jobs voluntarily, the report notes.

Global supply chain issues still have a local impact. Delivery times lengthened for the second month in a row, with suppliers unable to mitigate global bottlenecks. The supply delays meant that inventories were depleted for the fifth consecutive month, despite an increase in purchasing activity as some businesses attempted to replenish their stock. However, supply chains overall deteriorated only slightly in December, and less so than in November.

Omicron means businesses are still “downbeat” on outlook, with business confidence recording only a fractional rise from November's one-year low, says the report. Only around 23% of companies gave a positive outlook, as hopes for recovery were dampened by concerns over omicron and price hikes.

ELSEWHERE IN THE REGION- Saudi Arabia’s non-oil private sector activity fell to a nine-month low in December as omicron worries dented Saudi business confidence and new orders. The kingdom’s PMI fell to 53.9 in December from 56.9 in November, reflecting a sharp slowdown in growth even as it continued to expand for the sixteenth consecutive month.

DEBT WATCH

GB Leases returns to securitization market with EGP 4.3 bn sale

GB Lease has completed the sale of EGP 4.3 bn of securitized bonds to investors, according to a statement (pdf) from CIB, which worked on the transaction. The leasing arm of GB Auto sold the securities in two separate issuances with tranches rated A through AA+. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank was the sole subscriber to both issuances, which were backed by leasing receivables.

This is the company’s first issuance in a year: The last time GB Lease went to the securitization market was last January when it sold EGP 2 bn of asset-backed securities.

Advisors: CIB, Banque du Caire and the Suez Canal Bank acted as joint arrangers, underwriters, and financial advisors on a EGP 1.65 bn sale, while CIB, AAIB, Banque du Caire, and Al Ahly Bank of Kuwait worked on the second, EGP 2.65 bn issuance. Law firm Dreny and Partners provided counsel, while Sherif Dabbous was the auditor.

MEANWHILE-

Premium Card closed an EGP 170 mn short-term securitized bond sale, financial advisor EFG Hermes announced (pdf) yesterday. The issuance consists of a single ten-month tranche, and is part of a two-year, EGP 2 bn securitization program Premium Card launched last year. The bonds received a Prime 1 rating from rating service MERIS.

Advisors: EFG Hermes was the sole financial advisor, sole transaction manager, book-runner, underwriter and arranger for the offering.

2022 SO FAR-

The two sales bring the total value of securitized bonds sold since the start of the new year to almost EGP 6.9 bn, by our count. CI Capital’s leasing arm Corplease kicked off the year with a four-tranche, EGP 2.4 bn issuance earlier this week. A total of 19 securitized bond issuances with a combined value of EGP 15.8 bn went to market last year, according to our figures. Three of those issuances, together worth nearly EGP 1.75 bn, took place last week as the market saw a flurry of activity to close out 2021.

In the pipeline: Cairo Housing and Development’s maiden issuance to the tune of EGP 146 mn, while its sister companies are slated to take a EGP 190 mn issuance to market after receiving regulatory approval.

enterprise

GREEN ECONOMY

Solar energy players call for scrapping tariffs on solar panels

Solar energy players are lobbying to scrap a newly-imposed 5% import tariff on solar panels, Al Mal reports. The Solar Energy Development Association (SEDA) has sent a letter to Electricity Minister Mohamed Shaker requesting that the ministry cancel the duty, warning that the new levy will hurt the industry. “Egypt’s solar energy market is still trying to get on its feet and can barely afford to face more challenges,” a member of the industry body separately told Enterprise yesterday.

The fee was introduced in November as part of a bundle of customs hikes introduced by the Madbouly government as it looks to raise revenues. Previously exempt from tariffs, photovoltaic cells and solar panels are now subject to a 5% import tax, raising costs for local industry.

The solar industry is already under pressure from rising commodity + shipping prices: Rising shipping costs and surging prices of metals such as aluminum, steel and copper last year have squeezed margins and contributed to some projects being delayed.

SEDA members pessimistic: Members of the association, which includes more than 100 companies and investors in Egypt’s fast-growing solar industry, are downbeat on how the charge will affect the sector. The costs of constructing new solar stations will rise by 10% due to the tariff, Al Mal quotes Ahmed Hamdy, founder of Africa Solar Power, as saying. The newspaper also quotes Hatem Tawfik, managing director of Cairo Solar, as having said it will likely reduce the return on investment in the sector and hit demand.

*** Read Going Green: We recently took a look at how rising commodity prices are affecting Egypt’s local solar industry.

MOVES

Eastern Company has appointed Tamer Mosli (LinkedIn) as its chief financial officer, the company announced in an EGX disclosure (pdf) yesterday.

enterprise

KUDOS

The National Bank of Egypt finished 2021 still at or near the top of Bloomberg’s Africa syndicated loans league table, Hapi Journal reports. NBE managed 51 transactions — more than any other bank in the Middle East and Africa — worth more than EGP 235 bn during the year. The bank also ranked number three as financing agent and main arranger among banks in the MENA region.

LAST NIGHT’S TALK SHOWS

The capital gains tax featured on the nation’s airwaves last night, as head of industry lobby group the Egyptian Capital Market Association (ECMA) Mohamed Maher phoned into Kelma Akhira (watch, runtime: 13:22) and Masaa DMC (watch, runtime: 6:32) to discuss changes ECMA wants to see made to the law that governs a 10% capital gains tax on EGX transactions. The CGT came into effect on 1 January. Maher also leads Prime Securities.

The industry lobby seems to want changes to the package of EGX tax cuts and fee reductions recently proposed by the government, which members of cabinet discussed yesterday with representatives of the securities industry, and a group of MPs. The government announced a range of measures in November designed to soften the impact of the new 10% capital gains tax on EGX transactions. The basket of measures includes reduced trading and clearance fees and lower taxes on share swaps and earnings from equity funds.

Unfortunately, we don’t know much else: Maher didn’t say what ECMA is trying to negotiate with the government or provide an update on the talks, saying only that the lobby group will finalize its proposed amendments in a few days and hopes to present them to cabinet in the next two or three weeks.

Reminder: The capital gains tax replaced stamp duty on EGX transactions at the beginning of the year. Resident investors will now pay the 10% tax on net portfolio earnings at the end of the tax year. International investors are not subject ot the tax.

El Nasr might have a Chinese partner to produce EVs by March: The government is in talks with two Chinese companies to partner with El Nasr Automotive to produce electric cars in Egypt, Public Enterprises Minister Hisham Tawfik told Yahduth Fi Masr’s Sherif Amer (watch, runtime: 3:50). The government hopes to finalize terms later this month and sign final contracts by March, he said. The talks come after negotiations with Chinese auto firm Dongfeng collapsed in November.

Does this imply the short list has gotten shorter? El Nasr CEO Hani El Khouly said just a few days ago that negotiations are ongoing with seven international companies.

EGYPT IN THE NEWS

Leading the conversation on Egypt in the foreign press this morning: Egyptian authorities have arrested two people in connection with the death of a teenage girl, who committed suicide after allegedly being blackmailed with deepfaked images of herself. (BBC | The National)

Also getting attention: The former managing director of defunct Egyptian budget airline Flash Airlines has been charged by a French judge of involuntary manslaughter, eighteen years after an air crash in the Red Sea that killed 148 people. (AFP)

ALSO ON OUR RADAR

Green hydrogen plan in the works: Egypt will soon sign an agreement with a foreign consultancy to put together a 12-month strategy to develop the country’s green hydrogen industry, according to Electricity Minister Mohamed Shaker. Last year’s directive from President Abdel Fattah El Sisi to establish Egypt’s green hydrogen strategy could yield an initial phase of green hydrogen projects possibly worth USD 3-4 bn.

Other things we’re keeping an eye on this morning:

  • South Korea’s Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power could work on the construction of the Rosatom-built Dabaa nuclear plant after reaching an early agreement with the Russian state company.
  • PASSAP Home Appliances is planning to inaugurate its EGP 90 mn stove factory by the end of the year, with an eye to earmark 50% of its output for exports.
  • Air Supply Group could soon sign an EGP 250 mn agreement to construct, manage, and operate medical gas production facilities within Kima’s Aswan complex.
  • BelCash is partnering with Orascom Development Holding to offer education financing and home renovation services to Gouna and Makadi Heights residents.

COVID WATCH

New Pfizer + AstraZeneca covid treatments landing this month

Egypt will receive its first shipments of Pfizer’s Paxlovid covid pills and AstraZeneca’s Evusheld antibody treatment this month, Health MInistry spokesperson Hossam Abdel Ghaffar said (watch, runtime: 12:38). Abdel Ghaffar had recently said the pills will arrive in the “coming weeks.”

The Health Ministry reported 769 new covid-19 infections yesterday, up from 723 the day before. Egypt has now disclosed a total of 388,651 confirmed cases of covid-19. The ministry also reported 19 new deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 21,836.

The US reported over 1 mn new covid-19 cases on Monday — a new record single-day number of new infections from the virus, CNBC reports. The record could in part be down to delayed reporting over the New Year weekend. That said, many experts now suggest death and hospitalization rates are the key figure to pay attention to with omicron, given that it’s generally less severe — particularly in those who have been vaccinated, boosted or previously infected.

PLANET FINANCE

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Expectations of a tourism recovery in the latter half of 2022 has strategists at Goldman Sachs bullish on Egyptian equities, and the Thai and New Zealand currencies, Bloomberg reports. “We think you’re going to see a transition to a recovery driven by services and travel, and leisure would be an important part of that once the latest omicron wave fades,” said Kamakshya Trivedi, co-head of global FX, rates and EM strategy at the investment bank. The rebound in Egypt’s tourism sector — which prior to the pandemic accounted for 12% of GDP — gathered pace through 2021 as international travel began to normalize, with revenues rising 20% y-o-y in the first half of the year, according to central bank data.

Hedge funds were sluggish last year despite talk of revival: Performance concerns, “market jolts” and the emergence of omicron all led to relatively low gains for hedge funds in 2021. Hedge funds gained an average of 8.7% from January to November 2021 — considerably less than the S&P 500 index’s 24% return, the Financial Times reports citing research firm HFR. The lackluster performance came despite talk of a “pandemic renaissance” in the funds, after years of investors strongly favoring private equity and debt. But inflows remained weak last year as investors committed only modest sums, according to the FT.

JPMorgan’s crystal ball is bullish on global stocks: Equities are expected to continue rising in 2022 as “positive catalysts are not exhausted,” JPMorgan strategists said in a note cited by Bloomberg. According to the investment bank, risks to performance will either “fail to materialize or are already priced into stocks.”

That optimism is at odds with most market watchers, who see a wobbly and uncertain year ahead for equities, as inflationary worries and expected rate hikes threaten to scuttle last year’s stimulus-fuelled bull run.

Up

EGX30

11,983

+0.7% (YTD: +0.3%)

None

USD (CBE)

Buy 15.66

Sell 15.76

None

USD at CIB

Buy 15.66

Sell 15.76

None

Interest rates CBE

8.25% deposit

9.25% lending

Up

Tadawul

11,357

+0.3% (YTD: +0.7%)

Down

ADX

8,410

-0.7% (YTD: -0.9%)

Up

DFM

3,216

+0.8% (YTD: +0.6%)

Down

S&P 500

4,794

-0.1% (YTD: +0.6%)

Up

FTSE 100

7,505

+1.6% (YTD: +1.6%)

Up

Brent crude

USD 80.24

+1.6%

Down

Natural gas (Nymex)

USD 3.72

-2.6%

Up

Gold

USD 1,815

+0.8%

Up

BTC

USD 46,193

+0.3% (as of midnight)

THE CLOSING BELL-

The EGX30 rose 0.7% yesterday on turnover of EGP 1.09 bn (14.7% below the 90-day average). Regional investors were net buyers. The index is up 0.3% YTD.

In the green: Egypt Kuwait Holding (+7.4%), AMOC (+6.4%) and Raya Holding (+5.9%).

In the red: Cleopatra Hospital (-1.4%), Ezz Steel (-1.4%) and Orascom Development Egypt (-0.9%).

Most Asian markets are in the red in early trading this morning as traders wait for the release of the minutes from last month’s Fed meeting, when Chairman Jay Powell said the central bank would hike interest rates this year and end its bond-buying programme faster than expected. Futures indicate a mixed open among European bourses while US stocks are on course to fall in early trading.

DIPLOMACY

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi discussed regional issues in a phone call with Abu Dhabi crown prince Mohamed bin Zayed yesterday, Emirati news agency WAM reported yesterday. No further details were reported.

AROUND THE WORLD

Erdogan can’t pry Turkish investors from their greenbacks: Turkish government efforts to drive support for the TRY are doing little to persuade investors to part with foreign currency holdings, with total USD deposits rising to a record USD 239 bn in one week last month, Bloomberg reports. Despite apparent massive interventions in December to try and bolster the sliding TRY, the currency slid back to 13.30 to the USD yesterday. And with inflation at over 36% and Turkey’s official reserves dwindling, it’s unclear how long policymakers can stand in the way of USD demand, Bloomberg says.

hardhat

Infrastructure: What’s to come in 2022? 2021 saw major leaps forward on a host of transportations projects to modernize urban and trans-governorate travel and overhaul our ailing railway networks, and companies struggled to maneuver their way through a global supply chain crisis that led to jammed shipping routes and materials shortages.

Looking ahead to 2022, we see two big themes likely to dominate infrastructure news: While transportation and supply chain woes will continue to feature prominently in 2022, It is safe to say that moves to realize our ambitions of becoming a regional energy hub. The big question, however, is whether ongoing supply disruptions and inflationary pressures will get in the way of our energy goals. Today, we breakdown why our energy hub ambitions could be closer to our reach this year.

The Damietta LNG plant got the ball rolling on our energy hub ambitions: Plans to become an energy hub and boost natgas exports to Europe got a kickstart when the Damietta LNG plant came back online in February after an eight-year hiatus. Thanks in part to resumption of the Damietta plant’s operations, Egypt’s LNG terminals were running at full capacity by December, exporting the equivalent of around 1.6 bn cubic feet per day (bcf/d) as we tried to capitalize on the surge in natural gas prices overseas.

The Oil Ministry wants to increase the amount of gas it pipes in from Israel for export exports to 600-650 mn cf/d in 1Q2022, up from 450 mn cf/d currently. Under the existing USD 19.5 bn agreement with Israel, Egypt currently imports 2.1 bcm a year, which will increase to 6.7 bcm from 2023 through to 2034.

Europe’s natgas woes have the potential to boost exports further: With no sign of a detente between Russia and its NATO rivals, the squeeze on European gas prices is expected to last into 2023. Egyptian oil shipments are expected to fall to 1 bcf/d next summer due to rising domestic consumption, according to Oil Minister Tarek El Molla. But in the longer term, Europe’s gas troubles could pave the way for Egypt to boost exports to the continent.

And rival energy projects seem to be falling through: Last week, Israel’s Environment Ministry may have temporarily scuttled a pipeline by which Israel hopes to export UAE oil while bypassing the Suez Canal, according to AP.

Key to the plan to ramp up exports to Europe: The East Mediterranean Gas Forum. Headquartered in Cairo, the regional organization was ratified by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi in September after its founding members signed the charter last year. It brings founding members Egypt, Cyprus, Greece, Israel, Italy, Jordan and Palestine together to collaborate on strategy, development and financing in the sector.

All potential pipelines lead to Egypt: The EMGF forum’s November meeting saw the Madbouly government sign agreements with Greece and Israel that could help it grow exports to Europe — including pipeline plans galore. Under the MoUs, we can expect to see Greece and Egypt work more closely on natgas this year, while a new subsea pipeline between the two countries could be in the works. Israeli imports for re-export should also ramp up, and a pipeline for Israeli gas is also under consideration. That’s in addition to the planned link between Cyprus’ Aphrodite natural gas field and Egypt, currently expected to come online in 2024 or 2025.

There’s also Lebanon: The renovation of the Arab Gas Pipeline to begin to export natural gas to Lebanon amidst their electricity crisis is expected to be ready by early next year.

Expect electricity interconnection projects to light up 2022: Electricity interconnection agreements were all the rage last year. We inked agreements with Greece and Cyprus on the USD 4 bn EuroAfrica Interconnector project, which will connect the electrical grids of Egypt, Greece, and Cyprus by late 2023 — and made a separate pact with Cyprus that would also see us connect our electricity grids. Jordan and Egypt are also set to double capacity on the electricity link between the two countries, part of a larger project to eventually link Egypt’s grid to Libya, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Turkey. Meanwhile, a consortium of Orascom Construction (OC) and Japan’s Hitachi ABB Power Grids is working on connecting our grid with Saudi Arabia’s by 2024.

NEXT WEEK- The second part of our infrastructure year ahead series will focus on another sector that is expected to be big in 2022: water. Enterprise dug up a number of water projects that will be worked on or completed next year and talked to industry experts to get their take on what the big trends will be and what challenges they face.


Your top infrastructure stories for the week:

  • Eight new oil + gas exploration licenses handed out: Seven international energy companies — including BP and Eni — have been awarded eight of the 24 oil and gas exploration blocks included in the government’s bid round held last year.
  • Suez Canal rival nixed: A proposed oil transport corridor between the UAE and Israel has apparently been shelved after it was blocked by Israel’s Justice Ministry.
  • Elsewedy Electric's Egytech Cables signed an EGP 440 mn contract for the supply, installation and maintenance of 132 kV ground cables for the Kuwaiti El Mutlaa Residential city.
  • Nafeza user base expands: Some 27k Egyptian importers and 68k foreign companies have registered with Nafeza in the three months since its launch, according to Finance Minister Mohamed Maait.
  • Malta breaks ground on telecom cable connecting to Egypt: Malta has begun laying a 55 km-long subsea telecommunications cable that will link the country to a longer subsea line stretching from France to Egypt via Cyprus.

CALENDAR

Early 2022: Results to be announced for the second round of the state’s gold and precious metals auction.

1H2022: Target date for IDH to close its acquisition of 50% of Islamabad Diagnostic Center.

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

1H2022: e-Finance’s digital healthcare service platform, eHealth, will launch its services.

1H2022: The government will respond to private companies’ bids to build desalination plants.

1Q2022: Launch of the Egyptian Commodities Exchange.

1Q2022: Swvl acquisition of Viapool expected to close.

1Q2022: Waste collection startup Bekia plans to expand to the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

January: Tenth of Ramadan dry port tender to be launched.

1-15 January (Saturday-Saturday): Qualified Industrial Zones (QIZ) Joint Committee.

6 January (Thursday): National holiday in observance of Coptic Christmas.

7 January (Friday): Coptic Christmas.

9 January – 6 February (Sunday-Sunday): 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, Cameroon.

10-13 January (Monday-Thursday): World Youth Forum, Sharm El Sheikh.

Second half of January: Egypt will host the Egyptian-Bahraini Joint Committee.

Second half of January: Regulations for installing EV charging stations will be published.

16 January (Sunday): SODIC shareholders will vote on the company’s new board of directors at an extraordinary general meeting.

17-19 January (Monday-Wednesday): World Future Energy Summit, Abu Dhabi.

20 January (Thursday): Kadmar Shipping’s new line transporting agricultural crops between Alexandria and Russia begins its operations.

23 January (Sunday): Deadline for Macro Pharma to IPO on the EGX.

25 January (Tuesday): 25 January revolution anniversary / Police Day.

27 January (Thursday): National holiday in observance of 25 January revolution anniversary / Police Day.

End of January: The Egyptian-Romanian business forum will take place with the aim of strengthening joint investment relations.

January-February 2022: Construction work on the Abu Qir metro upgrade will begin.

February: Hassan Allam Construction’s new construction firm established with Russia’s Titan-2 to handle construction work on the Dabaa nuclear power plant begins its operations.

February: Ghazl El Mahalla shares will begin trading on the EGX this month.

Mid-February: End of grace period to comply with new minimum wage for firms who sent in exemption requests.

3 February (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

4-20 February (Friday-Sunday): 2022 Winter Olympics, Beijing.

11 February (Friday): Deadline for Anghami SPAC merger.

11-13 February (Friday-Sunday) FIBA Intercontinental Cup, Cairo.

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

15 February (Tuesday): The Industrial Development Authority’s deadline for receiving offers from companies for licenses to manufacture steel products.

19 February (Saturday): Public universities begin the second term of the 2021-2022 academic year.

End of February: Lebanon to receive gas from Egypt via a pipeline crossing Jordan and Syria.

March: Rollout of the government financial management information system (GFMIS), a suite of electronic tools to automate the government’s financial management processes (pdf) that will replace the existing “closed” financial management system.

March: 4Q2021 earnings season.

March: Deadline for the World Health Organization’s intergovernmental negotiating body to meet to discuss binding treaty on future pandemic cooperation.

March: World Cup playoffs.

March: Target date for Saudi tech firm Brmaja to IPO on the EGX.

9-18 March (Wednesday-Friday): The 55th edition of the Cairo International Fair.

24 March (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

31 March (Thursday): Deadline for submitting tax returns for individual taxpayers.

31 March (Thursday): Supply Ministry expected to take final decision on bread subsidies by this date.

2 April (Saturday): First day of Ramadan (TBC).

3 April (Sunday): Bidding begins on the Industrial Development Authority’s license to manufacture tobacco products.

4 April (Monday): CDC Group will formally change its name to British International Investment.

22-24 April (Friday-Sunday): World Bank-IMF spring meeting, Washington D.C.

24 April (Sunday): Coptic Easter Sunday (holiday for Coptic Christians).

25 April (Monday): Sham El Nessim.

25 April (Monday): Sinai Liberation Day.

28 April (Thursday): National Holiday in observance of Sham El Nessim.

30 April (Saturday): Deadline for submitting corporate tax returns for companies whose financial year ends 31 December.

Late April – 15 May: 1Q2022 earnings season

May: Investment in Logistics Conference, Cairo, Egypt.

1 May (Sunday): Labor Day.

5 May (Thursday): National Holiday in observance of Labor Day.

2 May (Monday): Eid El Fitr (TBC).

19 May (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

15-18 June: St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), St. Petersburg.

16 June (Thursday): End of 2021-2022 academic year for public schools.

23 June (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

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

30 June (Thursday): June 30 Revolution Day, national holiday.

End of 2Q2022: The Financial Regulatory Authority’s new Ins. Act should be approved.

End of 1H2022: Emirati industrial company M Glory Holding and the Military Production Ministry will begin the mass production of dual fuel pickup trucks that can run on natural gas.

2H2022: IEF-IGU Ministerial Gas Forum, Egypt. Date + location TBA.

July: A law governing ins. for seasonal contractors will come into effect.

8 July (Friday): Arafat Day.

9-13 July (Saturday-Wednesday): Eid Al Adha, national holiday.

30 July (Saturday): Islamic New Year.

Late July – 14 August: 2Q2022 earnings season.

18 August (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

September: Egypt will display its first naval exhibition with the title Naval Power.

22 September (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

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

8 October (Saturday): Prophet Muhammad’s birthday, national holiday.

18-20 October(Tuesday-Thursday): Mediterranean Offshore Conference, Alexandria, Egypt.

Late October – 14 November: 3Q2022 earnings season.

3 November (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

22 December (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee meeting.

End of 2022: e-Aswaaq’s tourism platform will complete the roll out of its ticketing and online booking portal across Egypt.

**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 above between the actual holiday and its observance.

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