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Wednesday, 15 February 2023

Is Egypt brewing up a fresh export subsidy program?


A new export subsidy program in the making? The government is considering launching a new export subsidy program at the start of the upcoming fiscal year, Finance Ministry sources told us. The government said last week that it would finish clearing the backlog of unpaid subsidies during FY 2023-2024 after years of paying out arrears. It wrapped the fifth phase of the program in December, which saw the Export Development Fund disburse some EGP 2.5 bn, putting the total of overdue subsidy payments at EGP 42.5 bn.

More sectors eligible for export subsidies: The state is also looking into adding new sectors to the subsidy program, the sources told us.


EGX-Tadawul dual-listings? The MoU signed between the Egyptian and Saudi stock exchanges earlier this week will see the two parties explore dual listings, the EGX said in a press release (pdf). The agreement, which was inked on the sidelines of the Saudi Capital Market Forum in Riyadh, also aims to facilitate an exchange of knowledge between the two bourses in fintech, databases, legislation, trade systems, ESG reporting, and HR, an EGX source told us, adding that a committee will be set up to determine areas for cooperation.


Suez Canal to hike transit fees for oil tankers in April: The Suez Canal Authority will raise fees for oil ships transiting the waterway from the beginning of April, it announced yesterday (here and here). Tankers carrying crude oil and petroleum products will pay a 25% surcharge as of 1 April, while their empty counterparts will pay 15%. Crude oil and petroleum product vessels, both laden and ballast, are currently charged 5% on top of the normal Suez Canal transit dues. The surcharges are “temporary” and revised or scrapped based on global shipping conditions.

Maersk sues Evergreen for blocking the Suez Canal in March 2021: Maersk filed a claim in a Danish court against Evergreen Marine, the parent company of the Ever Given vessel that blocked the Suez Canal in March 2021, the Associated Press reports, citing an email it received from the Danish shipping giant. The company is looking to get mns of USDs in compensation to recoup costs it incurred as a result of the blockage, according to the news outlet. The owner of the Ever Given reportedly paid out USD 540 mn to Egypt back in 2021. Fitch Ratings estimated that year that claims by everyone affected by the incident could easily surpass hundreds of mns of EUR.


Sha7en x Elsewedy EV charging stations: EGX-listed MB Engineering's EV charging subsidiary Sha7en has signed an initial partnership agreement with Elsewedy Electric to install, operate, and maintain EV charging stations over the coming three years, MB said in an EGX disclosure (pdf) yesterday. Sha7en received its license to start operating EV charging stations late last year.


Palm Hills Developments has restructured its 18.2% stake in International Company for Leasing (Incolease), selling it to Palm Holding for Financial Investments in an EGP 149.9 mn transaction, according to EGX disclosures (here, pdf and here, pdf). Incolease company offers leasing services with a focus on assets including commercial vehicles, machinery, IT equipment, production lines, and real estate. Other shareholders include El Tarek Automotive (23%) and SAIB Bank (20.2%). A consortium of four state-owned banks and ins. companies last year exited Incolease, selling their 38.7% stake for EGP 316.9 mn.


Egypt has reportedly expressed interest in buying fighter jets from Indian defense firm Hindustan Aeronautics, the company’s chairman and managing director told reporters, according to Reuters. The newswire doesn’t provide further details.


Tech startup Yassir eyes regional expansion with the help of M&P: Moharram & Partners will help Algerian tech startup Yassir expand across the Middle East and Africa under a newly signed strategic partnership agreement, the Cairo-based PR firm said in a statement (pdf). The statement didn’t disclose which markets Yassir is looking to enter.

About the company: Launched in 2017, Yassir offers ride-hailing, delivery and e-commerce services. Last year it raised USD 150 mn in series B funding, bringing its total funding raised to almost USD 200 mn. It currently operates in Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, South Africa, France, and Canada.

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