Issue  No.65
14 March 2016

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


          37.95  USD           1,256  USD


    Economic Outlook
  • The Egyptian Central Bank has devalued the Egyptian Pound to 8.85 EGP/USD up from 7.73 EGP/USD at a 200 MM USD exceptional auction. Moreover, the central bank announced on its official trading page that it had sold 198.1 MM USD at that auction.
  • Bijan Zanganeh, Iran's oil minister announced that his country is considering joining the discussions with other producers regarding freezing the oil production after its output reached four MM barrels per day (bpd).
  • At the final quarter of 2015, over 51% of the GCC listed companies faced an unexpected plunge in profits which amounted to nearly 16% fall compared to the same period in the previous year. However, 31% of the companies beat their expectations.
  • According to NCB Construction Contracts Index, the value of Saudi Arabia's awarded contracts during the fourth quarter of 2015 descended by 25% compared to the third quarter of the same year amounting to 45.6 BN SAR.
  • The National bank of Egypt (NBE) announced that Egypt's three largest state owned banks will issue euro denominated debt certificates for Egyptians living abroad, with maturities of one, three and five years as the country aims to cut its foreign currency shortage.
  • The chairman of General Federation of Trade Unions in Oman announced that the Sultanate's government is considering setting up a redundancy fund to finance Omani private sector employees who lose their jobs.
  • To finance its budget deficit caused by low oil prices, Kuwait's finance minister announced that the government is planning to issue both international and domestic bonds.
  • Saudi Arabia is seeking a 5 years loan between 6 to 8 BN USD to shore up state coffers. It is worth mentioning that this will be considered as the first significant foreign borrowing by the kingdom's government in over a decade.
  • Fourth Generation (4G) services in Jordan are expected to widely expand to reach a penetration level of 70% by 2020 due to competitive prices and increased demand on data in the country. It is worth mentioning that the current 4G penetration in Jordan is around 11-14%.
  • To bridge its budget deficit caused by low oil prices, Iraq's central bank will sell 1.5 TR IQD two years' local government bonds. It is worthy to note that this is the country's first local bond since 2003.
  • Lebanon has signed a 65 MM USD loan with Bank Audi that will be used to finance work at three electrical relay stations, serving Beirut's southern suburbs and Tripoli, aiming to raise their capacity to 490 MW.
  • As Kuwait faces heavy pressure to cut costs and improve the efficiency of its economy, the country's government plans a legislation that will privatize the management of commercial ports as well as the country's international airport, with the government retaining its ownership of the assets. 
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