- Egypt's Central Bank brought in over 14 BN USD to the local banks in order to enhance the imports activity. On the other hand, a central bank statement has revealed that prices on some food items have dropped by 25-35% due to the dollar injections and the annual urban consumer inflation rate fell from 11.1% the previous month to 10.1% after the flow of foreign currency to local banks.
- Tunisia will get a 560 MM USD loan from the European Union in order to boost its economy. It is worth mentioning that Tunisia is facing economic difficulties since 2011 including a drop in tourism, which is a main source of jobs and revenues to the country.
- The UAE Prime Minister announced that the country is planning to cut the number of ministries and outsource government tasks to the private sector. The Minister also announced the formulation of a single education ministry and removing the ministry of higher education.
- According to the Head of the European Union Delegation to Egypt, the European investment in Egypt has increased by 4% during 2015. Also he added that the volume of mutual trade between Egypt and the EU has increased by 11% since the beginning of 2015.
- Germany will provide a loan to Iraq that is worth 566 MM USD in order to assist the country with the great drop in oil prices. It's worthy to note that the projected deficit for Iraq's 2016 budget is more than 20 BN USD that will be mainly financed by aids from international organizations.
- OPEC is expecting an oil surplus in 2016 by 720,000 barrels per day as Saudi Arabia and other members produce more oil. OPEC also forecasted a 3.2% world economic growth compared to 3.4% forecasted before as a result of low oil prices.
- Saudi Arabia and Bahrain has banned some Iranian ships from entering their ports and imposed more shipping restrictions. It's still not clear what will be the impact of these restrictions on Iran's international trade after sanctions has been removed on their shipping sector.
- The UAE Ministry of Economy and US Department of Commerce have signed a partnership agreement. The aim of the agreement is to facilitate the exchange of innovation and entrepreneurship expertise in which the UAE's National Innovation Committee will be responsible for overseeing the execution of the initiatives.
- Oman has announced a 14 BN USD loss in 2015 revenues compared to 2014 as a result of low oil prices. Although the Omani government has produced 981,000 barrels per day of crude oil in 2015 compared to 943,500 barrels per day in 2014, however, the average price per barrel in 2015 was 56.5 USD which is 45% less than the average price in 2014.
- In order to limit foreign fighters reaching its territory, Turkey has restricted entry visas for Iraqis to control the flow of migrants and refugees to Europe.
- Following marathon talks in Munich, Major Powers have agreed to plan for stopping brutal actions in Syriaand to provide rapid humanitarian access to besieged Syrian towns. However, they failed to secure a complete ceasefire or end Russian bombing.
- The Yemeni forces hit an important Saudi airport and a key military base in Asir province with two missiles.
- Qatar is considering setting special courts during the 2022 soccer world to deal quickly and gently with alcohol-consuming fans that break the law. It is worth mentioning that Qatar is a conservative Muslim state where public drunkenness is prohibited.
- .EGX banking sector declined led by Commercial International Bank (CIB).
- .KWSE real estate sector declined led by Kuwait Business Town Real Estate. On the other hand, Kuwait real estate sector declined by 29% in 2015 and that was due to the fall in oil prices.
- .QSI banking sector declined led by Qatar National Bank (QNB).
- .DFMGI real estate sector increased led by Damac. On the other hand, banking sector declined led by Emirates NBD, and telecommunication sector led by du.
Index Watchlist Weekly % Change YTD% Change Egypt .EGX30 -6.3% -17.0% Construction & Materials -3.3% -16.4% Telecommunication -5.3% -12.6% Banking -4.8% -14.6% KSA .TASI -5.2% -18.1% Petrochemicals -6.5% -20.6% Banks & Financial Services -4.2% -14.0% Telecommunication & Information -2.1% -13.8% Kuwait .KWSE -1.3% -8.6% Banking -4.05% -12.9% Telecommunication -5.2% -7.9% Financial Services -3.0% -12.0% Real Estate -1.4% -11.2% Industrials -1.5% -7.5% Qatar .QSI -2.0% -9.0% Banking & Financial Services -2.4% -7.4% Industrials -2.2% -14.3% Real Estate -1.3% -11.7% Telecommunication -1.1% 6.7% UAE, Abu Dhabi .ADI -1.7% -5.5% Banking -2.0% -8.3% Telecommunication -0.6% 0.0% Real Estate -2.5% -0.1% UAE, Dubai .DFMGI -2.5% -5.4% Banking -2.9% -4.2% Real Estate & Construction 1.9% -3.5% Investments & Financial Services -7.4% -17.9% Telecommunication -3.5% 14.7%
- Egypt's Commercial International Bank (CIB) is in talks with international and local banks to raise a 1 BN USD to fund expansion after its board backed the plan.
- Abu-Dhabi's Islamic Bank, the emirate's largest sharia-compliant bank, posted a 16.6% rise in profits which amounted to 130 MM USD in the fourth quarter of 2015.
- Kuwait petroleum international reported that it is expecting a rise in oil prices to reach 50-60 USD per barrel by mid-2017.
- Banking sources revealed that Abu-Dhabi state-owned investment fund Mubadala is in talks with local and international lenders to finance it with 2 BN USD loan. The funding will be used to roll over a three-year revolving credit facility.
- In Q4 2015, UAE's Etisalat reported a 2.7% rise in its net profit which reached 632 MM USD compared to 615 MM USD in the same period last year.
- Saudi Arabia's Middle East healthcare company has rescheduled the sale of its public share to run from 3-9 March. The company was supposed to offer 30% of itself in its initial share sale, first to initial investors and then the public.
- Saudi's three telecom operators -Mobily, STC, and Zainare in talks to create a company to own and manage their mobile transmitter towers in a move that could cut costs and lower tariffs in the kingdom.