This report is designed to give you a snapshot about the MENA region tackling multiple issues:
49.32 USD 1,209 USD
The Egyptian government agreed to take a credit facility loan with 29 MM KWD from Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development. The aim of the loan is to finance the implementation of five water desalination plants in Sinai Peninsula.
Saudi Arabia's inflation rate has declined to 4.2% in April compared to 4.3% in March.
Qatar First Bank (QFB) is preparing to enter the Saudi Arabian market in the light of the Kingdom's vision 2030 to provide financial solutions and investment opportunities to shareholders and clients.
Qatar has sold 9 BN USD in Eurobonds, the biggest ever bond issue from the Middle East and its first sale in four years. Its worth mentioning that Countries in the region are tapping the bond market to plug fiscal deficits caused by low oil prices. Qatar in particular is in need for funds as it is engaged in 200 BN USD of infrastructure work required for hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
The Egyptian Cabinet approved the Saudi donation to support Egyptian Economic Program amounted to 2.5 BN USD.
Oman has reportedly approved a 35% tax on petrochemical firms and increased taxation on liquefied natural gas companies to boost government coffers. The measures were approved in a joint session of consultative assembly Majlis Al Shura and the State Council. It is worth noting that the country has unveiled subsidy cuts, reduced benefits for public sector workers and increased fees to make up for the shortfall, following a 4.5 BN OMR deficit last year.
Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority has awarded a 703 MM AED contract for phases four and five of the upcoming Water Canal project. Both the phases are set for completion by the end of September this year.
Kuwait has reported a 7.5 % pay rise to oil and gas workers given the pressure from local workers in the Oil and Petrochemical Industries Workers Confederation in April's strike. The ministerial committee and the union has agreed to 7.5% annual raise and 5 % to new recruits, and the offering of the option for retirees to choose between healthcare at a Kuwait Oil Company hospital or private health insurance.
Egypt's tourism sector is expected to decline by 5 BN USD in 2016 representing around 2% of GDP due to the crash of Egypt Air plan and other terror attacks that recently happened in Egypt.
According to Deputy Oil Minister Rokneddin Javadi, Iran has no plans to freeze the level of its oil production and exports, as the country tries to raise its crude exports to pre-sanctions levels. Currently, Iran's crude oil exports, excluding gas condensates, have reached 2 MM barrels per day and Iran's crude oil export capacity will reach 2.2 MM barrels by the middle of summer, according to Javadi.
Three bomb blasts in and around Baghdad killed at least 11 people and wounded dozens in the latest wave of attacks to hit the Iraqi capital.
Egypt will participate in the international peace conference in Paris, a move that was welcomed by the Palestinians and opposed by the Israelis. President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi said that Egypt will support any initiative that asserts the rights of the Palestinian people.
DP, a Developer Dubai Properties, has announced the launch of a new two-tower project in the emirate, close to its newest mega development Marasi Business Bay. Bellevue Towers will offer 300 residential units across 23 residential floors. The project is scheduled for completion in 2019.
Egypt's Suez Canal revenues increased by 0.6% in Q1 2016 as it reached 882.4 MM USD compared to 876.7 MM USD in Q1 2015.
Saudi Industrial Investment Group (SIIG); which is 25% owned by Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) has signed a joint investment memorandum of understanding (MoU) with New York-listed General Electric (GE), amounted to 1 BN USD that will be launched by 2017, adding investments 2 BN USD to support water, energy and digital technology sector.
Doha Bank's net income in the first quarter decreased by 16% to reach 354 MM QAR. The bank is the worst performing lender on the Qatar Exchange Index, declining by 20% this year and had its outlook revised to negative by the ratings of Standard & Poor's this month due to an expected further deterioration in its asset quality.
Sinai Cement's lost 37.29 MM EGP in Q1 2016 compared to 11.04 MM EGP loss in Q1 2015.
Dubai investment bank Shuaa Capital has cut about 15 % of its workforce ahead of a possible sale of a stake in the company by Dubai Group. Dubai Group, a unit of Dubai Holding, the investment vehicle of the emirate's ruler, mandated Emirates NBD in April to arrange a sales process for its 48% stake in Shuaa. The stake is worth about 315 MM AED at stock market prices.
The Expo 2020 Dubai announced Emirates Airline as its Official Airline Partner. Under the terms of the partnership, Emirates will be a licensed ticket re-seller. Expo 2020 Dubai and Emirates Airline are exploring opportunities on the site in the post-event phase, as part of securing a lasting cultural and economic legacy for the Expo. The site is located in Dubai South, close to the Al Maktoum International Airport, to where Emirates will move its operations later in the 2020s.