- According to Moody's the growth in the Egyptian economy has begun to pick up following a series of market reforms, but it remains below pre-revolution levels. It is worthy to mention that the government has managed to cut its primary budget deficit to 1.8% of GDP during 2017 fiscal year (which ended in 30 June).
- Egyptian banks have provided 55.1 BN USD to fund trade since the country floated its currency in November 2016. The banks were able to extend up to 40 BN USD in documents for collections (IDCs) and letters of credit, and open new letters of credit for up to 15.1 BN USD.
- Egypt expects GDP growth between 5 and 5.25% in the current fiscal year ending in June 2018.
- The Ministry of Agriculture in Jordan is planning to allow the recruitment of new foreign workers in the agricultural sector aiming to increase the number of guest workers as more lands are expected to be cultivated.
- The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Lebanon Capital Markets Authority (CMA) to enhance information sharing and cooperation around supervisory issues, this should further enhance the existing relationship between the two markets.
- Two Qatari companies Qatargas and RasGas will be supplying Turkey and Bangladesh with liquefied natural gas (LNG) respectively based on new agreements. Qatargas will deliver 1.5 million tons of LNG each year for three years to Turkey, while RasGas will supply Bangladesh with 1.8 million tons a year of LNG for the first five years.
- Qatar has pumped 29.1 BN QAR (8 BN USD) into its banking system in August 2017 to cushion it from withdrawals by financial institutions from neighboring Arab states due to the Gulf diplomatic crisis.
- Saudi Arabia is considering raising domestic prices for gasoline and jet fuel by around 80% starting November. Octane-91 grade gas price will increase from 75 halalas per liter to 1.35 SAR per liter, while the price of octane-95 grade gas will increase by 72 halalas reaching 1.62 per liter.
- The security spokesman of the Ministry of the Interior has announced the crime indicators in Saudi Arabia in 2016 and the total number of crimes attended by Saudi police during the same year reached 149,781. The overall crime rate in the Kingdom has decreased by 4.5% compared to figures from 2015.
- The Economic Development Department in Abu Dhabi has ordered all commercial facilities operating in the emirate not to collect any additional fees on credit card transactions. The department will be posing fines of up to 8000 AED for the incompliant establishments
- Domestic and international grants provided by the UAE have increased by 73.8% reaching 27.7 BN AED (7.54 BN USD) during H1-2017, compared to a total of 15.9 BN AED (4.33 BN USD) in 2016. It is worthy to mention that the grants have accounted for 10% of total government spending during that period.
- The non-oil sector of UAE economy is expected to grow by 3.1% this year, accelerating to 3.5% next year.
- Earthquakes keep shaking Southern Mexico, whereas a 6.1 magnitude earthquake Saturday morning was centered in Oaxaca state near Matias Romero, a town about 275 miles southeast of Mexico City. The earthquake has killed more than 155 people in Mexico City and toppled dozens of buildings.
- Among recurring incidents consequent to the lack of strict gun control in Lebanon, a woman in south Lebanon was killed after her four-year-old son accidentally shot her with a hunting rifle. The incident followed another accidental death in which an 11-year-old boy shot his 8-year-old relative last week in another town in southern Lebanon. Lebanese officials have been calling for restraint of gun use to prevent regular accidents of stray bullets shot during celebrations and political events.
- Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani renewed a call for "unconditional dialogue" last Tuesday to end a crisis pitting Qatar against four Arab states while U.S. President Donald Trump said he expected the dispute to be resolved quickly.
- The UAE and the Republic of Chad have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the exemption of UAE nationals holding diplomatic, private, official, mission and regular passports, and Chadian citizens having diplomatic passports, from pre-visa entry requirement.
- UAE Embassy in Washington has announced that the UAE government has pledged 10 MM USD to help with recovery efforts that happened from the destruction caused by Hurricane Irma.
- .TASI banking sector has declined led by National Commercial Bank (NCB).
- .KWSE banking sector has declined led by Ahli United Bank (AUB).
- .QSI banking sector has declined led by Qatar National Bank (QNB) and Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB).
Note: Weekly values are calculated on Thursday of each week.
- Emirates NBD has opened two new branches in Egypt; Rehab City and Sudan Street in Mohandesin. The two branches offer all services at the highest level, including an electronic queuing system and a comfortable waiting area for customers equipped with displays and sound system.
- Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) has announced the closing of the Company deal to acquire 16.2% stake in Banque Saudi Fransi for 29.5 SAR per share, a deal with total consideration of approximately 5.8 BN SAR (1.5 BN USD), positioning KHC as the largest shareholder in the bank. By adding this deal KHC has increased its investments in Saudi Arabia from 23% to 34%.
- Oman & Emirates Investment Holding Co SAOG has invested 20 MM AED (2.1 MM OMR) in Taleem Investments Limited towards funding Amity School LLC, Dubai.
- Federal Eelectricity & Water Authority (FEWA) recently signed an agreement with Al Fardan Exchange, one of the oldest and most established names in the UAE remittance market, to improve customer experience and provide convenient seamless payment solutions across the country.
Sports and Culture
- The celebrations of the 87th Saudi National Day took center stage last Saturday with an atmosphere pervaded by euphoric excitement engendered by the various activities lined up to mark the annual historic event. For the first-time women were allowed to enter the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh.
- Egyptian Ahly team has beaten Tunisian side Esperance 4-3 on aggregate in the CAF Champions League quarter-finals. The Cairo giants managed to replicate their 2012 Champions League final scenario against Esperance, overcoming the Tunisians 2-1 in Rades to qualify for the competition's semis, following last week's disappointing 2-2 first-leg draw in Alexandria.
- The Saudi government is lifting a ban on calls made through online apps but will monitor and censor them. All online voice and video call services such as Microsoft Skype, Facebook WhatsApp and Messenger, and Rakuten's Viber which satisfy regulatory requirements were set to become accessible overnight.
- The holders of the Essential Basic Package (EBP) of health insurance in Dubai are likely to have their benefit package covering cancer treatments as of 2018. However, insurance companies have sent a mixed response to the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) Health Funding Department decision as it will increase the cost of reinsurance for them and also hike the premium (EBP).