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Monday, 07 Sep 2020

Manama world’s most financially attractive city in the world, Riyadh second


Insights MENA

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Economic Outlook

Economic Outlook

  • The GCC cities dominated the global Financial Attractiveness Index list with Bahrain capital Manama being named the world's most financially attractive city in AIRINC’s latest Global 150 Cities Index followed by Riyadh in 4th place, Kuwait City in 6th, Abu Dhabi in 7th, Dubai in 12th, and Muscat in 16th.
  • The Egyptian Minister of Trade and Industry, Nevine Gamea is looking to increase the value of its commodity exports to 100 BN USD Gamea noted that the country aims to boost its exports with a special focus on the African continent, one of Egypt major trade partners. It is worthy to mention that Kenya, Ethiopia, and Nigeria account for two thirds of Egypt total exports to Africa.
  • According to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and statistics (CAPMAS), has issued primary data for the production index of Egypt manufacturing and extractive industries in June 2020. The primary data showed manufacturing and extractive industries index (without crude oil and petroleum products) stood at 7 in June 2020, compared to 86.6 in May 2020, reflecting an increase of 21.0%.
  • In Saudi Arabia, the 15th edition of Euromoney conference was virtually launched on Thursday, 3 September 2020. In partnership with MoF and the Communication and Financial Knowledge Center (CFKC), Euromoney organization holds a webinar connected series with a number of Saudi ministries, financial sector's experts and analysts.
  • Total salaries of small and medium-sized enterprises' (SMEs) employees in Saudi Arabia went up by 6% in Q2-2020, reaching 10.67 BN SAR (2.84 BN USD). The rate measuring entry of new SMEs into the Saudi market increased by 2% in Q2-2020, despite the impacts of the novel coronavirus
  • Total credit facilities provided to the logistics, storage and communications sectors in UAE amounted to 84 BN AED (22.87 BN USD) by the end of June 2020 compared to 57 BN AED (15.51 BN USD) in December 2019.
  • UAE non-oil private sector economy suffered its first decrease in business conditions for three months in August 2020, as record job cuts stifled the sector's recovery from the impact of the coronavirus. The seasonally adjusted IHS Markit UAE Purchasing Managers Index which is a composite indicator designed to give an accurate overview of operating conditions in the non-oil private sector economy, decreased below the 0 mark separating growth from contraction in August.
  • According to Kuwait Central Bureau of Statistics, the consumer price index in Kuwait increased by 1.92% in July 2020, on an annual basis. Noting that the inflation rate in Kuwait increased 43% in July compared to last June. The index of the first group (food and beverages) increased last July by 3.74% compared to the same period in 2019, and the price index of the second group (cigarettes and tobacco) increased by 3.9%.
Political Events

Political Events

  • French President Emmanuel Macron returned to Lebanon last Monday for a two-day visit noting that his first meeting wasn’t with the new prime minister-designate appointed hours earlier, nor with the country’s feuding politicians or civil society activists. Macron instead chose to see Lebanon 1 diva Fairouz, a national symbol and one of the rare figures in Lebanon beloved and respected across the country. The reclusive singer, arguably the most well-known in the Arab world, is now 86 years old and has rarely been seen in public in recent years.
  • Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi announced that his country is always ready to support Sudan, especially regarding the heavy losses it is facing due to flooding across the country. Sisi wished a speedy recovery to the injured, and condolences to the families of all those lost to the floods.
Stock Market

Stock Market

  • The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) closed Thursday’s trading session on a positive note on the back of Arab purchases with the main EGX30 index rising by 08% to 11,462 points. The small- and mid-cap EGX70 EWI climbed by 2.01% to 1,820 points, while the EGX100 EWI added 1.5% to 2,731 points. Likewise, the EGX50 index went up 0.57% to close at 2,038 points. The market cap value increased by 1.7 BN EGP (107.13 MM USD) to stand at 630.52 BN EGP (39.73 MM USD).
  • Goldman Sachs Saudi Arabia has completed all regulatory and technical requirements to become a member of the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul). Goldman Sachs will have the right to conduct brokerage services for derivatives trading and as a principal and agent in Tadawul for the new market launch. Yesterday, Tadawul is launching the derivatives market to offer investors a comprehensive and diversified range of investment products and services.

Note: All values are calculated by last Thursday.

Companies Transactions

Companies Transactions

  • The National Bank of Egypt (NBE) has signed 800 MM EUR financing agreement with the European Investment Bank (EIB) to fund SMEs that have been impacted by covid-19. The EIB funding comes as part of a larger 9 BN EUR financing package agreed to earlier this year that has seen the bank designate 1.1 BN EUR in loans towards public transportation infrastructure and the remaining 800 MM EUR in finance to help SMEs weather the impact of covid-19.
  • Egypt Kuwait Holding (EKH), listed on the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) and Boursa Kuwait, raised its stake in Delta Insurance to 5% from 56.5%. The dual-listed company purchased 1.57 million shares in Delta Insurance for 36.22 MM EGP (2.29 MM USD), averaging 23 EGP per share.
  • Arabian Food Industries Co (Domty) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) exploring possible means of cooperation with the world's fourth largest dairy manufacturer, FrieslandCampina, to further boost exports to African countries. In H1-2020, Domty registered 83 MM EGP (4.03 MM USD) in net profits, slightly down compared to 66.34 MM EGP (4.19 MM USD) in H1-2019, including minority shareholders’ rights.
  • UAE Dana Gas is holding negotiations with Texas-headquartered IPR Energy to sell its Egyptian assets. These talks came ahead of the Emirati energy producer's repayment of some 300 MM USD in debt in October. Dana Gas has sought to raise more than 500 MM USD from the sale of its main assets in Egypt and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq; however, the sale is expected to generate significantly less.
  • The board of National Marine Dredging Company (NMDC) has made an initial approval to the offer of the National Petroleum Construction Company's (NPCC) shareholders for acquisition. This approval was made after the board had agreed on the evaluation report made by KPMG.
  • The Emirates Steel has signed a comprehensive trade credit insurance package with Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI) to be provided with export credit protection to its global exports. Under the agreement, the ECI will protect Emirates Steel from any commercial risks of its customers in case of any disruption, including insolvency, payment default, and political risks.
  • Al Moammar Information Systems (MIS) Company announced the signing of a contract worth 50 MM SAR (13.33 MM USD) with a corporate entity to establish a reliable and high-security communication system. The contract term extends over three years and the execution period is six months.
  • Zahrat Al Waha Trading Company has renewed a sharia-compliant credit facility agreement worth 476 MM SAR (16.92 MM USD) with Alinma Bank to open documentary letters of credit to buy raw materials, machinery, and equipment. The loan term started on 3 September 2020 and will end on 30 June 2021.
Sports and Culture

Sports and Culture

  • Leejam Sports Company inaugurated on Saturday, 5 September, a new ladies fitness center in Dubai that spans 1,270 square meters. The center operates under the brand "Fitness Time - Ladies” and includes all services and facilities of that brand's category. The Saudi gym operator now has a total of 135 centers operating inside and outside the kingdom.
  • Egypt have discovered their group opponents in the 2021 World Men’s Handball Championship as the draw was held on Saturday. The tournament will consist of 32 teams and is set to take place in Egypt next year, starting from 14 to 31 January. The draw on Saturday revealed a challenging group for Egypt, who are set to host the competition for the second time in their history.

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