Issue  No.53
22 December 2015

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


        36.63  USD        1,071  USD


    Economic Outlook

  • Riyadh's governor, Prince Faisal bin Bandar, announced that 26% of the Riyadh metro project is complete. It is worth mentioning that the project will pass by 170 locations of the rail network around the city, in addition to tunnels and overland rail which extends to 13 km.
  • Following the US Federal Reserve's decision to raise its key interest rates for the first time in a decade, all GCC banks have decided to raise theirs. However, only the central bank of Oman announced that it has no intentions to change its monetary policy.
  • To help Iraq deal with its economic downturn -caused by its fights against ISIS and low oil prices- the world bank announced that it will lend it 1.2 BN USD in emergency support.
  • The deputy head of the Saudi-Egyptian Business Council announced that Saudi's 8 BN USD investments are to be invested in Egypt over the next three years mainly focusing on infrastructure projects.
  • The Gulf region's military spending has been cut from 86.7 BN USD in 2014 to 81.6 BN USD this year amid the region's trials to bridge its budget deficits caused by low oil prices.
  • Following the US Federal reserve's decision to raise its key interest rates, the UAE central bank announced its decision to raise the interest rates on the certificates of deposits by 25 basis points.
  • Egypt has signed a 1.5 BN USD loan with the African Development Bank, to be paid over three years. It is worth mentioning that the first 500 MM USD will be used to finance the economic development program and national projects.
  • Qatar's Ministry of Development Planning And Statistics announced that its 10 BN USD Barzan gas project is expected to start operation in 2016 with full output the following year.
  • Qatar's published 2016 budget has revealed a 46.5 BN QAR deficit which is considered to be the first in 15 years and an indication of the adverse effect low oil prices is having on the Gulf economies.
  • The late handover of about 6000 homes in Dubai has helped rents remain flat in 2015, though residential sales have dropped more than 10%.
  • In a trial to bridge its budget deficit caused by falling oil prices, Saudi's government has contacted local banks to sell them 20 BN SAR bonds in local currency.
  • Oman's National Center for Statistics and Information reported that its country's consumer prices dropped by 0.6% y-o-y to be considered as the fastest falling rate since January 2013.
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