- Egypt plans to increase its exports to 34 BN USD by 2020 from 19 BN USD through implementing specific export plans and policies.
- Trade exchange between Egypt and Pakistan has reached 182 MM USD during the first 10 months of 2016. Pakistan exports to Egypt amounted to 83 MM USD in the same period, while Egypt exports to Pakistan reached 99 MM USD.
- Jordan has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Iraq to promote and develop agricultural cooperation between the two countries.
- Iraq has reduced its oil production by more than 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) to reach 4.464 bpd in March 2017 as part of the supply cuts decided by OPEC.
- Jordan and Germany have signed a 44 MM EUR grant agreement to fund the Energy Supply for Host Communities and Syrian Refugees project's second phase. The project aims to reduce the electricity costs by generating electricity from solar energy at a 30-35 megawatt capacity.
- Oman Central Bank has signed an MoU with the Iranian Central Bank to strengthen the financial and economic cooperation between the two countries.
- Qatar population reached 2.6 million at the end of February 2017 with an annual increase of 5% compared to the same period last year.
- Saudi Arabia's number of expatriate student enrollment in the international schools has declined by 25% due to the economic fluctuations, yet a rise is expected to be witnessed as a result of several reforms.
- UAE has cut oil production by 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) in March 2017 and is expected to cut production by more than 139,000 bpd in the coming months.
- Saudi King Salman and Jordan King Abdullah witnessed signing several memoranda of understanding (MoU) and joint investment deals worth billions of dollars including the establishment of a Saudi-Jordanian investment company worth 3 BN USD, and investment protection agreement loan worth 105 MM USD to rehabilitate and maintain the Jordanian desert highway that links Amman with the southern city of Aqaba.
- Ten members of Egypt security forces were killed during a military operation against suspected militants in the Sinai Peninsula.
- The crime rate in Oman has declined by 7.5% in 2016 as a result of constant efforts of the law enforcement authorities and awareness campaigns. The total number of cases dropped to 37,972 in 2016 compared to 41,072 in 2015.
- .TASI banking sector has increased led by Alinma Bank and telecommunication sector led by Saudi Telecom Co. (STC).
- .KWSE banking sector has declined led by Gulf Bank of Kuwait (GBK) and Commercial Bank of Kuwait (CBK).
- .QSI banking sector has declined led by Doha Bank.
Note: Weekly values are calculated on Thursday of each week.
- Huawei is expanding in Bahrain and has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Bahrain Polytechnic to contribute network equipment to their IT lab.
- The Saudi-Jordanian Business Council has launched the Saudi-Jordanian Economic Project Development Company with a capital of 2 MM USD to establish several investment projects in 5 to 10 economic sectors between the two countries.
- Ooredoo has sponsored three SMEs as part of its recently launched Entrepreneur program which help the selected SMEs in the funding and training during their start-up phase.
- Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) and Zain Saudi Arabia have signed an agreement to execute the first high-speed Mobile Broadband project in rural areas.
- Saline Water Conversation Corporation (SWCC) has awarded a financial advisory mandate to Banque Saudi Fransi (BSF) for two greenfield projects. It is worthy to mention that BSF is committed to contribute to Saudi Vision 2030 with the objective of developing and delivering high-quality services to the private and government sectors.
- Abu Dhabi National Energy Co (TAQA) reported a full-year loss of 18.55 BN AED (5.05 BN USD) in 2016 due to the drop in oil prices.
- Tasjeel, the UAE one-stop-shop for all vehicle testing and registration needs, and a business unit of ENOC has signed an agreement with UDrive, the pay-per-minute car rental company to test and register their growing fleet of economic cars.
- UAE is aiming to attract 75 BN USD by 2025 into the country's new industrial manufacturing sector.
- Passenger traffic at Dubai International Airport increased by 8.8% in February 2017 reaching 6.95 million people.
- Amazon has agreed to acquire Middle East online retailer Souq.com, the U.S. e-commerce giant beating out Emaar Malls PJSC that offered 800 MM USD. Amazon and Souq.com didn't yet disclose the deal terms.
Sports and Culture
- A water bus will operate in Khasab; located on the tip of Musandam Peninsula in northern Oman, to host tourist visits to the port city. Fees of the water bus will be 10 OMR for adults and 5 OMR for children.
- Saudi Arabia is planning to replace all print books at schools with digital books by 2020. The Ministry of Education has allocated 1.6 BN SAR to implement the project within the next four years.
- Ten Emirati girls are preparing for a new challenge with the FBMA Adventures program which is organized by the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy (FBMA) on the 14th of April 2017. The girls will climb the summit of Jebel Jais, the tallest mountain in the UAE standing 1,900 meters above sea level.