- The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) could cut benchmark interest rates by 50-100 bps when its Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meets this Thursday. CBE has cut rates by 350 bps so far in 2019, with 250 bps coming in the past two meetings bringing the overnight deposit rate to 13.25% and the lending rate 14.25%.
- The Cairo Chamber of Commerce's readymade garments division plans to establish a 3 BN EGP fabrics and textiles mall in the 1st Settlement in partnership with the private sector for manufacturers to sell their products.
- The SME Development Authority is distributing 800 MM EGP to the Natural Gas Vehicles Company (Cargas) and Gastec to finance the conversion of 10,000 cars to run on natural gas. The government is planning to have at least 50,000 car owners install dual-fuel natgas/gasoline engines, requiring no down payments and offering flexible, simplified payment terms.
- A survey conducted by Okaz/Saudi Gazette shows that there was a 14.43% increase in spending on entertainment and culture by citizens, expatriates and tourists in Q3-2019 with a total value of 2.8 BN SAR (746.6 MM USD), compared to 2.45 BN SAR (653.38 MM USD) in Q3-2018.
- Saudi Arabia posted a fiscal deficit of 32.1 BN SAR (8.56 BN USD) in Q3-2019, a big increase compared to 7.3 BN SAR (1.94 BN USD) in Q3-2018 but 4% less than Q1-2019.
- UAE economy is recovering after 'a challenging period' and it is expected to record an overall growth of 2.5% in its GDP in 2020, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
- Investment in space technology is essential for UAE, in order to direct its economy away from an oil-dependent model, as the country pursues its ambition to become a pioneer and leading player on the global economic stage according to Sara Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Sciences.
- Qatar Central Bank sold 600 MM QAR (164.84 MM USD) of Treasury bills in an auction. A total of 300 MM QAR (82,394 USD) worth of three-month T-bills were sold at 1.73%, 200 MM QAR (54,929 USD) worth of six-month T-bills were sold at 1.76%- and 100-MM QAR (27,464 USD) worth of nine-month T-bills were sold at 1.81%.
- Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan agreed to hold further US and World Bank-sponsored talks during a meeting in Washington D.C. to discuss the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) dispute. All three countries agreed to trigger article 10 of the 2015 Declaration of Principles if no agreement is reached by 15 January which states that countries can formally ask other countries to step in and mediate the dispute.
- The UAE Supreme Council of the Union has re-elected His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan as its President for a fourth five-year term, in accordance with the provisions of the UAE Constitution.
- EFG Hermes and theNational Bank of Egypt (NBE) have completed a second securitized bond issuance for Al Taamir Securitization. The issuance reportedly includes five tranches backed by a 6 BN EGP receivables portfolio held by the New Urban Communities Authority, making the issuance the largest ever securitized offering in Egypt.
- The latest 500 MM USD sukuk issued by Aldar Investment Properties LLC, Aldar Investments, a 100% owned subsidiary of Aldar Properties PJSC (Aldar), was listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, ADX, on 07 November 2019.
- Vodafone International has acquired Vodafone Egypt subsidiary Vodafone for International Services (VIS) in a 1 BN EGP transaction to expand its direct investments in outsourcing services in Egypt.
- Cairo Capital Securities majority shareholder Yasser Rashed has sold his entire 70% stake in the brokerage firm to a consortium of two Egyptian businessmen Ehab Shawky and Ayman Mekkawy.
- Travco Group will sell its portfolio company, Steigenberger-owner Deutsche Hospitality, to China Huazhu Group in a 719.2 MM EUR cash transaction. The agreement was reached earlier this week and is likely to close in early 2020 following regulatory approval.
- Egypt-based Multi Apex Pharma is planning to set up a 15k sqm production facility in Saudi Arabia. The facility will have three production lines that would produce three different products of unspecified OSD tablets, liquids and creams.
- Jadwa Investment, one of Saudi Arabia largest privately-owned investment banks, announced that Jadwa REIT Saudi Fund has acquired two new properties for a total value of 93 MM SAR (25 MM USD). The fund acquired an office tower amounted to 59 MM SAR (16 MM USD) and a hotel property in Riyadh amounted to 34 MM SAR (9 MM USD).
- Saudi-listed National Company for Learning and Education (NCLE) has signed a deal to fully acquire Riyadh-based Al-Khwarizmi Company for Education for 30 MM SAR (8 MM USD).
- Dubai largest listed developer Emaar Properties announced its net profit in Q3-2019 which increased 20% despite a prolonged slowdown in the emirate's property sector. Emaar made 1.3 BN AED (362 MM USD) in net profit in Q3-2019, compared to 1.1 BN AED (299.5 MM USD) in Q3-2018.
- Dana Gas announced that its collections have increased by 16.7% y-o-y to 844 MM AED (230 MM USD) in the first nine months of 2019. Moreover, the company saw a growth in returns from its share of Pearl Petroleum Company sales in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq by 52% to 118 MM USD by the end of September, compared with 77 MM USD in the same period in 2018.
- Top Indian airline IndiGo signed a one-way codeshare agreement with Qatar Airways, letting the Middle Eastern airline get more access to the fast-growing Indian market. The deal will help Qatar Airways bypass restrictions on adding more flights by funneling passengers onto the low-cost carrier.
Sports and Culture
- Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council joined Dubai Run 30X30 with UAE residents and motivate them for the run.
- Lionel Messi scored two exquisite free kicks as he netted his first hat-trick of the season in a 4-1 win over Celta Vigo at the Camp Nou on Saturday which took Barcelona back to the top of La Liga after a difficult week.