On the horizon
US President Donald Trump heads to Saudi Arabia this weekend for his first trip abroad since moving into the Oval Office. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi will be in town at the same time, and pundits believe there is a good chance the two will have some face time. NPR has a preview of Trump’s visit, while the Financial Times notes that top bosses at JPMorgan Chase, Citi, Morgan Stanley, Dow Chemical, Blackstone and General Electric will be accompanying Trump “seeking to sign [transactions] and strengthen ties with the kingdom at a moment where his business agenda has been in doubt.” Described by the New York Times as a reluctant traveler, Trump will be hitting five countries in nine days, including Saudi, Israel, Belgium, Italy and the Vatican.
The Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee will hold a rare Sundaymeeting on 21 May to discuss interest rates. Thirteen of 14 economists surveyed by Reuters expect the MPC to leave rates on hold despite the IMF suggesting they remain an appropriate tool through which to cool-off inflation.
The IMF’s executive board is yet to disclose when it will meet to review and vote on the staff-level agreement to disburse the second tranche of the USD 12 bn extended fund facility by the end of June.
Slush funds in the spotlight: The Finance Ministry is working with Prime Minister Sherif Ismail to compel all ministries and government agencies to compile reports on special funds under their control, and will present the reports to the House of Representatives for review.
Siemens will begin commercial operations on 12 turbines at the Beni Suef, Burullus, and New Capital power plants next week at a combined production capacity of 4,800 MW, Al Borsa reports.
Nile University is inaugurating its 2017-18 Business School Guest Speakers Series with a talk headlined “Is the IMF-Egyptian program for economic restructuring on the right track?” Speakers on the panel discussion will include former supply minister Gouda Abdel-Khalek, former finance minister Ahmed Galal, and Nile University business school dean Hassan Aly. You can register to attend here if you’re so inclined.