TONIGHT: We’re getting more development financing from AIIB + SODIC shareholders have 10 days to respond to Aldar-ADQ MTO. Plus: Biden turns on the oil taps
Happy hump day, wonderful people, and welcome to another relatively calm afternoon for the news as we slide towards the weekend.
THE BIG STORIES TODAY-
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) approved a USD 360 mn loan to support Egypt’s post-covid economic recovery, according to a cabinet statement. The loan comes following the World Bank’s approval of a separate but identical loan in October, under a larger development policy financing framework (pdf) set by the International Cooperation ministry in partnership with the two lenders. The two loans, amounting to a combined USD 720 mn, will be used to support the private sector, increase transparency at state-owned enterprises and promote women’s participation in the workforce, in a bid to bolster the second phase of Egypt’s economic reform program.
Regulators set 10-day subscription period for Aldar-ADQ acquisition of SODIC: SODIC shareholders have 10 working days, starting tomorrow, to weigh in on the mandatory tender offer (MTO) from the UAE’s Aldar Properties and sovereign wealth fund ADQ to acquire 90% of the real estate developer, according to an announcement (pdf) displayed on EGX screens today. SODIC made public the details (pdf) of the MTO, in which Aldar and ADQ are offering EGP 20 per share. The MTO subscription period wraps on Tuesday, 7 December. The Financial Regulatory Authority had greenlit the MTO yesterday.
The Comesa head of state and government summit is currently underway at the new administrative capital. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi assumed Egypt’s chairmanship of Comesa at the opening ceremony of the summit earlier this morning, according to an Ittihadiya statement. The president will be involved in setting the summit’s medium-term goals for 2021-2025, which will include improving regional trade between the summit’s nations, in tandem with the African Union’s Continental FreeTrade Area (AfCFTA). You can see his opening remarks here (runtime: 15:16).
** CATCH UP QUICK on the top stories from today’s EnterpriseAM:
- Aldar-ADQ acquisition of SODIC approved by FRA: New tariffs on imported phones: All imported mobile phones will be subject to a 10% import tariff, double the 5% originally imposed last year, with only phones assembled by local electronics outfit Sico exempt.
- Slightly less cement oversupply: Production is on course to easily outstrip demand in 2021 despite production cuts being introduced in July to ease the years-long supply glut.
- A national hydrogen strategy is in the works: The government is currently contracting with a global consulting office to develop a national hydrogen strategy, Electricity Minister Mohamed Shaker said.
THE BIG STORIES ABROAD-
Biden turns on the crude taps in defiance of OPEC: The US will release 50 mn bbl of crude oil from its Strategic Petroleum Reserve over the next few months, according to a White House statement, as part of an unprecedented effort to bring down global prices in tandem with countries including China, India, Japan, Korea and the UK. The move is likely to draw the ire of the Saudi-led OPEC group of oil exporting nations, which has repeatedly ignored calls from the US and other countries to up supply as demand rebounds following the pandemic, Bloomberg reports. US benchmark oil prices slid slightly on the news, with WTI futures for January slipping 0.6% to USD 76.33/bbl as of dispatch time.
It’s a risky move, and OPEC is baring its teeth: Biden has arranged the largest ever privately agreed release of oil from global reserves, as he attempts to break what some see as an OPEC-led stranglehold on supply. But OPEC+ officials have warned that they could cancel their own planned supply increases in response at the group’s December meeting, setting the stage for a tug-of-war on oil prices in the global market. Meanwhile, a resurgence of covid across Europe and the US could slow the momentum behind the recent pickup in demand, according to Bloomberg.
TRY takes a tumble (again): Turkey’s TRY extended its losses today to reach fresh lows with one of its biggest one-day drops after the country’s central banks decided to slash interest rates last week, while President Recep Tayyip Erdogan insists lower interest rates are crucial for boosting economic growth. The currency has been steadily falling 11 days in a row — its longest losing streak in 20 years — and is down around 40% against the greenback YTD. Erdogan’s grip on Turkey’s central bank has seen him fire multiple governors and other committee members who were not on board with his monetary policy visions, leading market confidence in a potential reversal of the rate cuts to all but dissipate. Bloomberg and the Financial Times have the story.
???? CIRCLE YOUR CALENDAR-
The Home Appliances and Table Show (HATS Egypt) is ongoing and will wrap up tomorrow. The event is organized by the Engineering Export Council of Egypt and brings together companies working in the home appliances sector.
Startup gathering RiseUp starts on Thursday and runs through Saturday.
The Cairo International Film Festival kicks off its weeklong run this coming Friday.
Check out our full calendar on the web for a comprehensive listing of upcoming news events, national holidays and news triggers.
☀️ TOMORROW’S WEATHER- The mercury has started to inch upwards, with a daytime high of 25°C tomorrow and a nighttime low of 17°C, our favorite weather app tells us.