26 Sep 2021

Egypt Sells $3 Bn in Eurobonds at First Issuance of FY2021/22

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Egypt sold $3 billion in dollar-denominated treasury bonds at its first international bond issuance of the current 2021/2022 fiscal year, the finance ministry said Friday.

The issuance was three times oversubscribed, with total bids of $9 billion by more than 300 investors from the US, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

The sale included $1.125 billion in six-year notes at a yield of 5.8 percent, $1.125 billion in 12-year notes at a yield of 7.3 percent, and $750 million in 30-year bonds at 8.75 percent. 

Demand from investors helped cut final yields on the 6 and 12-year notes by 32.5 basis points, and by 12.5 basis points on the 30-year bonds, the ministry said. 

JPMorgan Chase & Company, Citigroup, HSBC Holdings, and First Abu Dhabi Bank managed the transaction.

This is Egypt's second Eurobond issuance of the 2021 calendar year.

In February, Egypt sold $3.75 billion in treasury bonds across three tranches, with $750 million sold in five-year bonds at a yield of 3.875 percent, $1.5 billion sold in 10-year bonds at a yield of 5.875 percent, and $1.5 billion sold in 40-year bonds at a yield of 7.5 percent.


Economics

Egypt Tax Authority Starts Pilot Scheme for New Consumer E-Receipt System

Finance Minister Mohamed Maait has announced the launch of a pilot scheme for the new e-receipt system for consumers at points of sale, in a move that will accelerate the country's efforts to digitalize its tax and customs procedures.

Under the new e-recepit scheme, Egypt Tax Authority will be able to follow up on all business-to-consumer (B2C) dealings via a central digital system.

The minister said that the e-receipt system will be ready for full-scale adoption within six-and-a-half months.

Maait said the move will help boost investments and bring more informal businesses into the formal economy.

The minister added that Microsoft, e-finance, E-Tax, Ernst & Young, and the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), are implementing the electronic receipt system at the tax authority.

The new system follows the implementation of the e-invoicing system for taxes, which currently has more than 2,700 companies registered and over 55 million e-invoices recorded, contributing to uncovering over 2,800 tax evasion cases worth over EGP 3.5 billion ($223.0 million).

Oil Hits Nearly Three-Year High on Global Supply Shortage Fears

Oil prices continued to rise on Friday for the fourth day in a row due to concerns about global supply in the wake of two hurricanes in the US, hitting the highest levels in almost three years. 

Brent crude gained 84 cents, or 1.1 percent, to close at $78.09 a barrel, the highest close since October 2018.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) rose 68 cents, or 0.9 percent, to end at $7.98, its highest since July 2021.

The rally was slightly dampened by China's first public sale of state crude reserves.

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced last week that crude stocks fell 3.5 million barrels in the week ending September 17 to about 414 million barrels, the lowest level since October 2018, after damage from two hurricanes in the US.

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China Declares Cryptocurrency Activities Illegal

China's central bank has deemed all cryptocurrency transactions and mining activities illegal, in its latest crackdown on the digital tokens.

"Virtual currency-related business activities are illegal financial activities," the People's Bank of China said on Friday, claiming that it "seriously endangers the safety of people's assets."

The announcement sent the price of bitcoin tumbling more than $2,000.

While cryptocurrency trading has been officially banned in China since 2019, it had continued to take place online via foreign exchanges. With last week's announcement, however, trading has effectively been banned.

Chinese regulators are concerned that cryptocurrency-related activities could disrupt the stability of the country's economy, in addition to putting pressure on the country's electricity resources and impacting global environmental goals due to the energy-consuming mining process.

Business

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Shell Sells Assets in Egypt's Western Desert

Shell Egypt and Shell Austria, both subsidiaries of Royal Dutch Shell, have completed the sale of their production and exploration assets in Egypt's Western Desert to a consortium made up of subsidiaries of Cheiron Petroleum Corporation and Cairn Energy for a base consideration of $646 million, Shell said in a statement on Friday. 

This is in addition to additional payments that may amount to $280 million between 2021 and 2024, contingent on the oil price and the results of further exploration.

"With this transaction Shell is refocusing its business in Egypt on our existing infrastructure position in the West Delta Deep Marine (WDDM), the Harmattan Deep Project and Exploration acreage in the new seven blocks in the Nile Delta, West Mediterranean and the Red Sea; in Midstream through our Egyptian LNG (ELNG) joint-venture; and in Downstream through Shell Lubricants Egypt (SLE)," the Shell statement reads.

Shell has been active in Egypt for 110 years and remains a leading player in the country's energy industry.

General Electric Completes $6 Mn Control Center for Benban Solar Complex

The US' General Electric Company has completed the construction of a EGP 90 million ($5.7 million) control and monitoring center at the Benban solar complex in Aswan governorate, Al Mal reported on Thursday, citing an unnamed source at the energy ministry familiar with the matter.

General Electric will carry out tests at the center for one or two months before beginning operations, the source added.

The Benban Solar Park project currently provides around 1.5 gigawatts of energy to the national power grid.

Considered the world's biggest solar park project, it is located on a 37-square-kilometer plot near the southern city of Aswan and is part of Egypt's efforts to expand its reliance on clean energy.

TMG Inks Deal with AZADEA Group to Bring 13 New Stores to Madinaty's Open Air Mall

Egyptian real estate developer, Talaat Moustafa Group (TMG) has signed a strategic partnership with premier lifestyle retailer AZADEA Group to bring 13 new brands to the Open Air Mall at its Madinaty development in Cairo.

AZADEA Group stores will occupy an area close to 10,000 square meters and are set to open in spring 2022.

The new brands include Zara, Zara Home, Oysho, Pull & Bear, KIKO Milano, Sunglass Hut, Stradivarius, Lefties, Virgin Megastore, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, PAUL and The Butcher Shop and Grill.

Madinaty is located in eastern Cairo off the Cairo-Suez Highway. The mall occupies a plot of 92,000 square meters.

The mall’s first and second buildings have been operational through a soft launch since 2019, while the third and fourth buildings will be opened before the end of this year.

Emerson, BioBusiness Collaborate to Manufacture Ventilators in Egypt

International automation technology firm Emerson is collaborating with BioBusiness, an Egyptian medical equipment manufacturer, to design and manufacture several types of ventilators that use Emerson ASCO valves and AVENTICS regulators to provide precise control of gas pressure and flow in these devices.

BioBusiness chose Emerson to work on the production of a new series of ventilators due to Emerson's capabilities in supporting local design and manufacturing standards that meet the stringent requirements of the medical industries in Egypt, according to a press release.

"Emerson's advanced automation technologies arm us with the weapons necessary to help combat the [coronavirus] pandemic and save lives," said Mostafa El Wakeel, BioBusiness CEO.

Egyptalum Moves From Red to Black in FY2020/21

The Aluminium Company of Egypt's (Egyptalum) net profits after tax amounted to EGP 28.28 million ($1.8 million) during the 2020/2021 fiscal year, compared with EGP 1.67 billion is net losses during 2019/2020, the company said in a bourse disclosure on Thursday.

The company's revenues rose to EGP 11.37 billion ($724.5 million) in 2020/2021, up 56.7 percent from EGP 7.25 billion a year earlier.​​​​​​

Egyptalum has attributed its surge in net profits to the increase of the aluminum average basic price on the London Metal Exchange.

Egypt News

Sisi Instructs House, Senate to Reconvene in October

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi has issued a decree asking the House of Representatives and Senate to commence their second legislative sessions on October 3 and October 5 respectively, the official gazette reported on Friday.

The country's lower chamber finalized the first legislative session of its five-year term in July.

The Senate's first session also ended in July.

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Egypt to Tax Bloggers, YouTubers

The Egypt Tax Authority has instructed local content creators on YouTube and other online platforms to open a tax file with it in order to allow the payment of taxes on their revenues, and has said that those who earn more than EGP 500,000 ($318,600) annually will need to pay value added tax as part of their tax obligations.

Authority head Reda Abdel Kader also said individuals and companies that use social media to sell their products must register at the authority's offices and to pay the required VAT due since the start of their activities, in accordance with the law.

Abdel Kader said that the move aims to enhance tax justice in the country.

Egypt to Export Locally Made COVID-19 Vaccines to Other African Countries Within Six Weeks

Egypt will start exporting locally manufactured COVID-19 vaccines to other African nations within six weeks, Health Minister Hala Zayed announced on Thursday.

The minister did not disclose details about the types or amounts of the vaccines, or the funding behind them.

She did say that the pandemic is currently under control in Egypt, and that the country has sufficient amounts of drugs and medical supplies to deal with the coronavirus.

She also said she expected the country's fourth COVID-19 wave would start within the coming three to four weeks.

The number of vaccination centers nationwide has increased to 850, Zayed announced.

She revealed that a new COVID-19 vaccine production line will be added to Egyptian Holding Company for Biological Products and Vaccines’ (VACSERA) factory in Agouza, in Greater Cairo, with a production capacity of 300,000 doses a day.

The new production line will start operations within five weeks.

The country is seeking to become a hub for vaccine exports, the minister said.

Pharaonic-Era Sarcophagus Arrives at Egypt's Pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020

An Ancient Egyptian sarcophagus has arrived in Dubai to be part of Egypt's pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020, the tourism and antiquities ministry said on Thursday.

The coffin of priest Psamtik will be on display at the Expo, planned to be a major international exhibition, for six months.

The sarcophagus is one of the colored wooden coffins that were recently discovered at Saqqara, through an archaeological mission from the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

It is an anthropoid coffin decorated with a large floral collar, ending with two falcon heads.

It is also decorated with incantations and other religious images, including images of the god Anubis.

A collection of modern replicas of King Tutankhamun's tomb goods will also be displayed at the pavilion.

Trade Exchange Between Egypt, Jordan Rises 30% YoY in 6M 2021

The volume of the trade exchange between Egypt and Jordan went up 30 percent during the first six months of the year to $370 million, from $283 million in the same period last year, Trade and Industry Minister Nevine Gamea said on Thursday.

Earlier this year, Egypt and Jordan signed seven agreements to enhance bilateral cooperation in different fields.

The agreements included establishing an executive program through which the Egyptian international cooperation ministry and its Jordanian counterpart will exchange experiences.

Banque Misr Provides Contactless Payment Service for Retailers

Banque Misr has launched a new contactless e-payment service for NFC-enabled smartphones, allowing retailers to use the latter as point of sale (POS) devices.

The service, dubbed Tap on Phone, allows customers to make contactless e-payments using their debit or credit cards by placing them over the retailers' NFC-enabled smartphones.

The Tap on Phone service is part of an agreement by Banque Misr and the digital payment company Paymob to provide advanced payment services, the bank said in a statement on Thursday.

The National Bank of Egypt was the first local bank to deploy a contactless e-payment service, after obtaining the licence last week.

Egypt to Plant 3.6 Mn Acres of Wheat in 2021-2022 Season

Egypt is aiming to plant 3.5 million feddans (3.63 million acres) of wheat in the 2021-2022 season, the same as last year's target area, to harvest at least 9 million tonnes, Reuters reported citing an agriculture ministry official.

The government is also aiming to increase its domestic wheat purchases to 4 million tonnes, up from 3.4-3.7 million tonnes.

The wheat planting season starts in mid-November.

ITDA to Deliver Services via Egypt Post Offices

Egypt Post has signed a cooperation agreement with the Internal Trade Development Authority (ITDA) allowing the latter to provide its services through post offices all over Egypt, ITDA head Ibrahim Ashmawy said on Thursday.

Under the agreement, citizens will also be able to have the documents issued by ITDA ​​​​​​, such as commercial register documents and trademarks, delivered to their home or work addresses.

Furthermore, ITDA will offer six commercial register-related services through Egypt Post's digital portal, including requesting an extract of the commercial register or updating a register entry.

By the end of this year, seven other commercial register-related services will be available on the portal, Ashmawy added.

Egypt Approves Russia's Sputnik One-Shot Vaccine

The Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA) has greenlit emergency use approval of Russia's single-dose COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik Light, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) announced on Friday.

In February, the EDA approved the two-shot Sputnik V vaccine, on which the Light version is based.

The RDIF said that Sputnik Light showed 78.6 percent to 83.7 percent efficacy against COVID-19 in the elderly in trials in Argentina, and 93.5 percent efficacy in Paraguayan trials.

Stock Market

US Stocks See Mixed Performance on Friday

US stocks saw mixed results on Friday, wrapping up a volatile week on Wall Street.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.10 percent to close at 34,798.00 points, while the S&P 500 edged 0.15 percent higher to settle at 4,455.48.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite ticked down 0.03 percent to 15,047.70 points.

Across the Atlantic, the pan-European Stoxx 600 ended down 0.90 percent on Friday at 463.29 points.

Egypt's blue-chip index, the EGX30, rose 0.43 percent to close at 10,642.02 points on Thursday, stretching its gains for a second session in a row.

The EGX30's turnover was EGP 316.28 million ($20.2 million) and its heaviest constituent, Commercial International Bank, inched up 0.09 percent to reach EGP 43.39.

The broader EGX70 EWI increased 3.14 percent to close at 2,763.74 points.

World

Novavax Files for Emergency Use Approval for Its COVID-19 Vaccine

Novavax has filed a request with the World Health Organization seeking emergency use authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine, the US biotech company announced on Thursday.

Given that a large segment of the population of the US and Europe are already vaccinated, Novavax is eyeing distribution in low- and middle-income countries, where vaccination rates are relatively low.

Novavax, in cooperation with India's Serum Institute, the world's largest vaccine producer, has pledged over 1.1 billion doses to the COVAX facility.

The company's protein-based vaccine showed a 90.4 percent overall efficacy against coronavirus in late-stage clinical trials.

Film

Menna Shalaby Becomes First Emmy-Nominated Arab Actress

Egyptian actress Menna Shalaby has become the first ever Arab actress to be nominated for an International Emmy, after being nominated for her role in the 2020 crime miniseries Every Week Has a Friday.

The ten-episode series features Shalaby as Layla, a mysterious girl who is forced to live with a man who suffers from mental disorders. The pair commit a series of crimes every Friday.

The series, which streamed on on UAE-based on-demand platform MBC Shahid, was directed by Mohamed Shaker.

The award winners will be announced at a ceremony in New York on November 22.

Sports

Salah Becomes 10th All-Time Leading Scorer for Liverpool

Mo Salah moved 10th in Liverpool's list of all-time top scorers after scoring against promoted Brentford in an exciting Premier League clash on Saturday.

The Egyptian King made it 2-1 for Liverpool on 54 minutes when he beat the offside trap to latch onto a long ball from Brazilian midfielder Fabinho and slot home.

He also wasted a golden opportunity to make it 4-2 when his attempted chip went over the bar with the goal at his mercy, a miss which proved costly as Brentford secured a share of spoils with a late strike.

Salah netted his 100th Premier League goal for Liverpool and 131st overall to surpass Sam Raybould (130 goals) in the team's all-time leading scorers list.

He also moved joint top in the league's scoring chart with five goals, on level with West Ham's Michail Antonio and Leicester City's Jamie Vardy.

Arab Markets
Egypt EGX30 10,642.02 +0.43%
KSA TASI 11,270.57 -0.40%
UAE ABU DHABI ADX 7,824.79 +0.55%
UAE DUBAI DFM 2,839.57 -0.15%
World Markets
US Dow Jones IA 34,798.00 +0.10%
NASDAQ-100 15,047.70 -0.03%
S&P 500 4,455.48 +0.15%
UK FTSE 100 7,051.48 -0.38%
Germany DAX 15,531.75 -0.72%
France CAC 40 6,638.46 -0.95%
Japan Nikkei 225 30,248.81 +2.06%
China HANG SENG INDEX 24,192.16 -1.30%
Currencies
US Dollar 15.66 15.76
Euro 18.35 18.47
Sterling 21.46 21.60
Saudi Riyal 4.18 4.20
UAE Dirham 4.26 4.29
Kuwaiti Dinar 51.97 52.40
Swiss Franc 16.94 17.05
Commodities
Oil Brent USD/bbl. 78.09 +1.09%
Wheat USD/bu.Mar 2020 723.75 +0.84%
Gold USD/t oz. 1,750.42 +0.44%
Gold Egypt LE/ oz. 27,478.86 +0.01%
Silver Egypt LE/ oz. 352.03 -1.15%

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