| Africatime
Wednesday 26 April 2017
(Bloomberg 04/26/17)
Egyptian authorities are in talks with local and international investment banks to advise the government on selling stakes in state-run companies on the stock exchange, a senior official said. The plan focuses on initial public offerings that would “broaden the ownership” of the companies among Egyptians, bolster local capital markets and help the government raise revenue, Investment and International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr said. Egypt has already hired HSBC and EFG-Hermes to advise on the planned IPO of state-owned lender Banque du Caire, while officials have said the program would also include oil companies. The stake sales are part of broader efforts to revive an economy battered by unrest since the 2011 Arab Spring uprisings...
(Independent Online 04/26/17)
Cairo - Egypt has halted fish exports after a surge in sales to foreign markets following last November's currency devaluation led to supply shortages locally and a spike in domestic prices, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said. Sisi did not say how long the suspension would last but promised Egyptians, who have seen their purchasing power sharply eroded by the devaluation, that measures would be enforced to help the market adjust prices lower. "We used to export 40 000 tonnes of fish a year. Within the first thee months [of this year] we exported 120 000 tonnes," Sisi told a youth conference aired on Egyptian television late on Tuesday. "[That's why] we took a decision to halt exports of fish." Much...
(Xinhuanet 04/26/17)
The Belt and Road (B&R) Initiative is a golden opportunity to bring about regional integration and sustainable economic growth for Africa, said Berhane Gebre-Christos, special envoy of the Ethiopian Prime Minister, on Tuesday. The special envoy made the remarks at the opening of a seminar organized on the B&R Initiative in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa. Welcoming the initiative, the special envoy said he is looking forward to the expected effects of the initiative. "The B&R is a project that will...
(Bloomberg 04/25/17)
Egypt plans to promote religious, medical and luxury trips, and develop new markets in India and Eastern Europe, as it pushes to revive its vital tourism industry to pre-2011 revolution levels within two years. In addition to more diverse tourism offerings, the home of the pyramids will ease travel for residents of the Gulf Arab nations through an e-visa program as part of a broader plan to boost visitors and encourage longer stays and more spending, Tourism Minister Mohamed Rashed...
(Bloomberg 04/20/17)
WorldRemit Ltd., a British money-transfer operator, sees revenue from transactions involving Africans doubling by 2020 as more people on the continent access mobile-payment platforms and expatriates send cash home. The seven-year-old company, in which Facebook Inc.-backer Accel Partners LP invested $40 million in 2014, will this year open a regional office in South Africa, its largest market on the continent in terms of money-transfer value, founder and Chief Executive Officer Ismail Ahmed said in an interview. Another site will start...
(Bloomberg 04/19/17)
The International Monetary Fund lowered its 2017 growth forecast for Egypt, reflecting the economic toll from the government’s decision last year to float the pound and introduce a reform program. Egypt’s real gross domestic product will expand 3.5 percent this year, less than the IMF’s 4 percent projection in October, the lender said in its latest World Economic Outlook on Tuesday. Growth will rebound to 4.5 percent in 2018, the report said -- close to the government’s target in its...
(Bloomberg 04/19/17)
An influx of foreign cash into Egyptian debt securities isn’t denting yields that remain the highest in emerging markets amid a government borrowing binge. Offshore investors boosted holdings of government Treasury bills to 79 billion pounds ($4.4 billion) as of April 4, compared with less than 1 billion pounds before a currency devaluation in November, according to Finance Ministry data. Average yields on Egyptian debt have climbed 84 basis points this year to 17.5 percent, compared with a 13-point rise...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/19/17)
Telecom Egypt will on Wednesday sign an agreement with Orange Egypt to offer 2G and 3G mobile services through Orange Egypt, one Telecom Egypt source and one source from the telecommunication ministry told Reuters. Telecom Egypt, the state's fixed-line monopoly, was the first company to take up the state's offer to buy a 4G license in August for 7.08 billion Egyptian pounds ($392 million) to enter the mobile market directly for the first time. (Reporting by Ehab Farouk; Writing by...
(Bloomberg 04/18/17)
A flood of new issuance is offsetting foreign-investor demand for Egyptian debt, keeping yields among the highest in emerging markets. Offshore investors boosted holdings of government Treasury bills to 79 billion pounds ($4.4 billion) as of April 4, compared with less than 1 billion pounds before a currency devaluation in November, according to Finance Ministry data. Government borrowing is already 11 percent higher than the target this year, and 18 percent over budget since the beginning of March, according to...
(Xinhuanet 04/18/17)
Africa's diaspora is playing a big role in the economic transformation of the continent, the UN said on Tuesday. UN Population Fund (UNFPA) Regional Director Dr Julitta Onabanjo told Xinhua in Nairobi that remittances are important source of income for many African families. "The diaspora therefore complements government efforts to lift many families out of poverty," Onabanjo said on the sidelines of the First Africa-China Conference on Population and Development. Onabanjo said that Africans in the diaspora also bring back...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/07/17)
Access to off-grid solar energy in rural areas of Africa goes beyond lighting up homes - it also enables people to connect to the wider world and boosts their economic prospects, said the head of one of the continent's biggest solar companies. Azuri Technologies' entry level solar system - for which customers pay a one-off installation fee, then use scratch cards or mobile phone payments to top up on a weekly or monthly basis - provides eight hours of lighting...
(Bloomberg 04/06/17)
The International Monetary Fund said it is working with Egypt to help bring inflation under control, as the government moves ahead with an economic reform program that boosted investment but also sent prices soaring. The IMF recognizes “the sacrifices made and the difficulties faced by many Egyptian citizens,” Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in a statement following a meeting on Wednesday with President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi in Washington. “The IMF is working to help the government and the central bank bring...
(Daily News Egypt 04/06/17)
The ministry will complete the repayment of its dues after receiving the third tranche of the World Bank and AFDB loans, sources said. The Egyptian government plans to repay a part of its dues—worth $500m—to a number of foreign companies operating in the local petroleum sector in the next month. Sources at the Ministry of Petroleum told Daily News Egypt that the government will repay a part of its dues—totaling $3.5bn—after obtaining the third tranche of the World Bank and...
(Daily News Egypt 04/06/17)
Egypt implements an economic reform programme that aims to provide more job opportunities. The managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Christine Lagarde, met with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi during his current visit to Washington. “President Al-Sisi and I discussed the progress of Egypt’s economic reform programme, supported by the IMF’s $12bn extended fund facility arrangement,” Lagarde said in a statement released on Thursday. The statement added that “Egypt is implementing a strong economic reform programme to help...
(Standard Digital 04/06/17)
Kenya has given an Egyptian company “impossible” terms to keep operating the century-old local railway business, including clearance of a Sh2.76 billion debt by June 30. Rift Valley Railways, owned by Qalaa Holdings of Egypt, was last Friday ordered to pay the contested debt, rehabilitate the track and significantly raise the uptake of freight from Mombasa within 90 days. Termination of the concession could have huge ramifications for thousands of RVR employees and the investors who have never reported a...
(Daily News Egypt 04/06/17)
Experts believe there are no other options but to ask for more loans, while national and foreign debt is equally dangerous. At the beginning of April, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) announced that the Egyptian public debt has increased significantly. The CBE’s statement showed that the size of Egypt’s foreign debt increased by $19.522bn in 2016, recording $67.322bn by the end of December 2016, compared to $47.8bn by the end of December 2015. Foreign debt amounted to 37.6% of...
(AFP (eng) 04/05/17)
Kuwait said on Wednesday it has signed a new a multi-billion-dollar deal to supply Egypt with crude oil and petroleum products for the next three years. Under the deal, Kuwait will supply Egypt with two million barrels of crude per month and 1.5 million tonnes of petroleum products annually over three years, state-owned Kuwait Petroleum Corp. said in a statement. It said the deal is worth over $4 billion (3.75 billion euros) based on current market prices. The previous three-year deal, signed after Egypt's military removed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, expired in December. Kuwait was among the Gulf countries that offered Egypt several billion dollars
(Libya Herald 04/05/17)
The Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) and Egypt’s petroleum projects construction company Petrojet are looking to reactivate their presence on Libya. Both had meetings today to that effect with Presidency Council deputy leader Ahmed Maetig as well as with Mustafa Sanalla, the head of the National Oil Corporation. In a statement following his meeting with the visiting heads of both EGPC and Petrojet, Maetig stressed the importance of economic cooperation with Egypt. It was also agreed to form a joint team from the National Oil Corporation and the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation which would study possible projects.
(Financial Times 04/04/17)
Countries should develop policies to attract labour-intensive production leaving China. China’s initial wave of investments in Africa focused on natural resource extraction. Their demand for metals and energy was so large that it actually boosted global commodity prices overall, which in turn accelerated growth across the African continent. These times of China propping up global commodity prices are now over, as it has built up excess capacity in many sectors and now faces slow investment growth. This lower demand has...
(Usa Today 04/03/17)
At first glance, software engineer Ahmed Elhaz, psychiatrist Mohammed El Shami and furniture maker Mahmoud Shaaban have little in common: One writes computer code, another provides counseling and the third uses carving tools to ply his trade. Yet all three are benefiting from an unexpected turnaround in Egypt’s long-suffering economy. The country recently made a deal with the International Monetary Fund for a $12 billion loan that saved it from bankruptcy but also required tough austerity measures. Those demands are...

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