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Tuesday, 21 March 2017

What we’re tracking on 21 March 2017

** What are the biggest challenges facing businesses in Egypt? Were the last three months good for doing business? Where do you and your business see the exchange rate stabilizing? Help us help you find out by taking Enterprise’s quarterly reader poll for 1Q2017. The survey would only take a couple of minutes to complete and, as always, you don’t need to answer every question — but we’ll be ridiculously grateful if you do. And taking the couple of minutes to fill it out will benefit everyone in the community by serving as a snap poll of sentiment.

Fill out the survey and maybe we’ll take you to lunch at the Four Seasons Nile Plaza. We’ll draw the names of two readers who filled in all survey questions and send them to lunch with the editors of Enterprise at the Four Seasons Nile Plaza (that’s the one in Garden City). Each reader will be entitled to bring a friend or colleague. If you’re interested, make sure you leave your full name, email address and best telephone number at the end of the survey.

“Large” electronic devices are banned from the cabins of US-bound flights out of CairoInternational Airport as of this morning. The United States will announce at around 9am CLT that it is “barring passengers on certain flights originating in eight countries from bringing laptops, iPads, cameras and most other electronics in carry-on luggage” starting immediately and for an indefinite period, the Associated Press reports. The ban, which appears to have first been broken by the Financial Times, applies to flights originating from at least 10 international airports, including all nonstop flights to the US from Cairo, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Jeddah, Istanbul, Amman, Kuwait City, Casablanca, and Doha. The ban, which the AP says does not include cellphones or medical devices, may have been promoted by intelligence “from a recent U.S. Special Forces raid in Yemen” according to CNN. We hope you enjoy pocket novels of the printed (non-Kindle) form and figure the big winners here will be the ladies from Diwan.

The electronics ban will take place one day before Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry is due in Washington, DC, for a meeting of the US-led anti-Daesh coalition.

Things are getting heavy with KSA. In the latest sign that the kingdom once again wants to be our BFF: “Egypt’s expatriate affairs minister Nabila Makram announced on Monday that Saudi Arabia has decided to pardon 30k Egyptians accused of visa violations in the country, state news agency MENA reported,” according to Ahram Online. That means the alleged offenders will not be deported and will not face a 10-year ban on entry to the kingdom.

Today’s cabinet meeting will focus largely on the economy, including discussion of the draft 2017-18 state budget ahead of its presentation to the House of Representatives, Ahram Gate reports. Also on the agenda is the stamp tax on stock market transactions, which the cabinet economic group approved last week, as well as basic commodity supplies and prices.

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Al Hariri arrives today in Cairo to meet with President El Sisi and Prime Minister Sherif Ismail.

Do you manage money? Fear the rise of the index funds and the robo investors? Read the Financial Times’ “Asset management: Passive resistance,” which takes a deep dive into Capital Group, the quiet giant with USD 1.5 tn in AUM that’s gone into a full-offensive mode to make its case for active fund management to remain a tool for investors. It’s also changing how it reports its distribution fees in a bid to show that fewer active fund managers are falling short of the index.

David Rockefeller is dead at 101. The veteran banker and “Cold War emissary for capitalism” who ran Chase Manhattan at the height of its power “in an era before bond traders came to dominate the world of international finance” has died. Nice obits in the Financial Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Reuters.

Apple is widely expected to (quietly) introduce a new product or two today, and speculation is that it will be a 128 GB iPhone SE (the tiny one that’s iPhone 5s in size, but with iPhone 6s internals) or maybe a Product Red iPhone 7 / 7 Plus. Either way, Apple’s online store will be down from about 9am CLT until 2:30am CLT ahead of the launch, Cult of Mac reports.

** Public service announcement: It is Mother’s Day in Egypt. Call your mom. Be kind to the mother of your children. Think of a present. Don’t be a jerk tomorrow because you remembered to be nice today. That is all.

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. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

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