Issue  No.74
16 May 2016

This report is designed to give you a snapshot about the MENA region tackling multiple issues:


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    Economic Outlook
  • According to Saudi Arabia's General Authority for Civil Aviation (GACA), the Kingdom is planning to privatize 11 airports by 2020. On the other hand, the country's ministry of health is planning to privatize 295 hospitals by 2030.
  • In order to regain its market share, Iran has refused to join the supply freeze initiative. As a result, Kuwait's deputy foreign minister has stressed on freezing oil production by exporting countries and that the oil market could not support further supply increase from Iran.
  • Amid its steps to boost mobility in the labor market, Emirate's ministry of human resources and Emiratization has announced that employees with fixed-term contracts will have the freedom to move to a new job once their contract has expired.
  • Dubai hotels' occupancy rates have registered a 0.9% decline (y-o-y) reaching 79.7% in April where the average daily rate declined by 15.4% reaching 771.74 AED per room which pushed down revenue per available room by 16.1%.
  • The Egyptian government has directed The General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) - the state's grains buyer - to import 80,000 tons of rice ahead of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.
  • According to UAE's ministry of Economy, The UAE's total non-oil foreign trade has registered a 10% increase reaching 1.75 TR AED in 2015 compared to 2014.
  • For the first time since December 2015, Iraq has surpassed Saudi Arabia to be the top crude exporter to India in April 2016 as the two biggest OPEC producers fight for market share in Asia's fastest growing oil market.
  • The majority of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has reported an increase in orders during Q1 2016, yet, collecting payments remains to be an obstacle.
  • Egypt's Telecom minister has announced that the country is planning to offer high-speed 4G license to companies operating in the country within two weeks in a move that could allow Egypt's fixed-line monopoly Telecom Egypt to enter the mobile phone services market.
  • Qatar's ministry of municipality and environment is planning to establish partnerships with private companies to develop 60 new smart public parks across the country.
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