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Sunday, 26 July 2020

Local consumer spending initiative top topic on talks shows

A government program to kickstart consumer spending and the latest on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam caught the attention of the talking heads last night.

Are we about to see an end to the demand slump? Masaa DMC’s Eman El Hosary spoke with Finance Minister Mohamed Maait to discuss the three-month “Not Too Expensive for You (Ma Yeghlash Aleik)” program to encourage consumer spending. Some 22mn ration cards will be topped up by EGP 200 per family member for a maximum of EGP 1k for every family, he said, adding that the initiative will be mutually beneficial for producers and consumers (watch, runtime: 8:00). Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Moussa phoned Amr Madkour, a tech advisor to the minister, to comment on the initiative (watch, runtime: 9:57).

An opening for local industry? Speaking on the initiative, Trade and Industry Minister Nevine Gamea told El Hekaya’s Amr Adib that the damage done to international markets and global supply chains provided an opening to support local producers (watch, runtime: 5:31). We have more on the program in this morning’s Speed Round, below.

The initial filling of the GERD isn’t yet a problem: Adib and Al Kahera Alaan’s Lamees El Hadidi both spoke with Irrigation Ministry spokesperson Mohamed El Sebaei, who told them that the first phase of filling the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) has not affected Egypt’s water share because of reserves held at the High Dam. Ethiopia last week completed the first stage of filling the dam, storing 4.9 bcm in the reservoir. Watch the interview with Lamees here (runtime, 11.29) and Adib here (runtime, 7:53).

Time to get strict on the timeframe for negotiations? There must be a firm timeframe placed on the African Union-sponsored GERD talks due to Ethiopia’s “prevarication” and “procrastination,” Khaled Abu Zaid, regional director of water resources at the Center for Environement and Development for the Arab Region and Europe (CEDARE), told Lamees. Cairo could return to the UN Security Council if the next round of talks falters, he said (watch, runtime:11.38). Masaa DMC’s Eman El Hosary phoned journalist Emadeldin Adib who commented on the previous failed negotiations with Ethiopia (watch, runtime: 22:57). We have more updates on the state of the GERD negotiations in Speed Round, below.

Emaar opens new EGP 950 mn Marassi hotel: Emaar Properties CEO Mohamed Alabbar dropped in to El Hekaya to talk to Amr Adib about the official opening of the company’s EGP 950 mn Address Marassi Golf Resort hotel on the north coast, which it announced (pdf) yesterday. The resort is the second of nine hotels that Emaar will open in the Sidi Abdelrahman bay area (watch, runtime: 1:02). Alabbar said that Egypt is proving to be the best market for Emaar during the pandemic, adding that the company is working with the Egyptian government to expand the Sahel season to 10 months, instead of 3-4 months now.

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