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Sunday, 10 April 2022

THIS EVENING: Annual urban inflation rises in March + more FDI afoot as Vicat wants 100% of Sinai Cement

Happy Sunday, ladies and gentlemen. As we expected this morning, the news slowdown exists only in our dreams now, as rising inflation on the back of soaring global commodity prices and fresh FDI set us up for a busy week ahead.

SO, WHEN DO WE EAT? You’ll be breaking your fast at 6:19pm CLT this evening in the capital city, and fajr prayers are at 4:04am.


#1- Annual urban inflation rose in March to 10.5% — its highest in nearly three years — from 8.8% in February, as the Russia-Ukraine war’s impact on global commodity markets led to rising food and energy price inflation, according to figures released by statistics agency Capmas today. Monthly inflation was up 2.2%. The rise brings the headline rate above the Central Bank of Egypt’s 7% (±2%) target range.

#2- More FDI afoot: French cement producer Vicat Egypt has submitted a mandatory tender offer to acquire the remaining 42.12% stake in its subsidiary Sinai Cement Company, to bring its total stake in the company to 100%. Vicat is looking to buy 56.06 mn shares of Sinai Cement at EGP 6.74 apiece in a transaction that values the company at around EGP 897.1 mn, the EGX said in a bulletin.


The government’s draft social and economic development plan for FY2022-23 is now with the Senate’s financial affairs committee to discuss and prepare a report, Youm7 reports. The Senate will then debate the draft plan — which reportedly includes ramping up public spending to develop education, health, sanitation, transportation — in a plenary session, before it moves on to the House of Representatives.

^^We’ll have more on these and other stories in tomorrow’s edition of EnterpriseAM.

** CATCH UP QUICK on the top stories from today’s EnterpriseAM:

  • The Madbouly government now expects the budget deficit to contract to 6.2% this fiscal year, down from a previous 6.9% target, as the economy absorbs the initial shock of the outbreak of war in Ukraine.
  • Reserves decline as CBE deployed excess liquidity to “calm the markets”: Egypt’s foreign reserves declined last month for the first time since the early days of the covid pandemic as the conflict in Ukraine rattled the global economy, and the central bank “mobilized excess foreign currency reserves to calm the markets during periods of exceptional stress.”
  • ADQ could buy up National Investment Bank’s entire stake in Abu Qir: Abu Dhabi wealth fund ADQ is on course to acquire the National Investment Bank’s entire 21.5% stake in Abu Qir Fertilizers as part of its USD 2 bn investment in Egypt.


Are more Russian attacks expected against eastern and southern Ukraine? The EU’s military committee held an extraordinary meeting to discuss expected aggression by Moscow on Ukrainian cities and Ukraine’s request for more weapons, Bloomberg reports, citing an EU official speaking off the record. The meeting came days after Russia fired a missile against a train station in eastern city of Kramatorsk, killing at least 50 people.


*** It’s Inside Industry day — your weekly briefing of all things industrial in Egypt. Inside Industry focuses each Sunday on what it takes to turn Egypt into a manufacturing and export powerhouse, ranging from initial investment and planning to product distribution, through to land allocation to industrial processes, supply chain management, labor, automation and technology, inputs and exports, regulation and policy.

In today’s issue: Industrial automation has made strides in the past few years, fueled by the pandemic’s disruption of work-as-usual and an acceleration in the adoption of advanced technologies like artificial intelligence and robotics. But how is Egypt faring in the transition? Today, we look at where Egypt’s manufacturing industries stand when it comes to automation in comparison to its regional and global peers.


Companies have just under two weeks to file their first quarterly ESG compliance report: Listed firms and non-bank financial services companies need to submit their first quarterly ESG report by 20 April, the Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) announced last week. The regulator is making it mandatory for corporates to publicly disclose their performance on key environmental, social and governance metrics each year when they submit their annual financial statements, starting 2023. Reach out to Moustafa Taalab at InkankIR, our parent company, if you need some help.

State-backed Rowad 2030 is now accepting applicants between the ages of 22-40 for its masters program in entrepreneurship and Innovation in collaboration with the University of Cambridge and Cairo University. Learn more about the program requirements and application process here.

☀️ TOMORROW’S WEATHER- Don’t let last week’s heat wave fool you: It’s really cold at night. We realized after freezing during sohour this weekend that the sunny days can be deceptive. Tomorrow’s temperature will reach a daytime high of 31°C and a nighttime low of 13°C, our favorite weather app tells us.

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