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Safer than Bitcoin? New digital currency to be launched by Saudi, UAE

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) has selected a consultant to work with the central banks of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, for launching a digital currency that would be accepted in cross-border transactions between the two countries.Ahmed al-Kholifey, Governor of the Saudi ArabianMonetary Agency (central bank), said Tuesday operations will take place for six months as a trial and to evaluate the experience, in statements quoted by Al Eqitisadia newspaper.Al-Kholifey said ...

Egypt’s central bank seen keeping key rates unchanged

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Egypt’s central bank will likely keep its key interest rates unchanged at its meeting on Thursday, a Reuters poll showed on Tuesday, as inflation rose slightly for the first time in eight months. Nine out of 11 economists polled by Reuters said the bank was expected to maintain the deposit and lending rates, currently at 16.75 and 17.75 percent. To combat soaring inflation, the central bank raised the rates by seven percentage points after it floated the currency ...

Egypt says seeks to raise $1 bln by selling stakes in four-six state firms

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Egypt is seeking to float shares in four to six state-owned companies this year to raise up to 18 billion Egyptian pounds ($1 billion), the cabinet said in a statement on Tuesday.The statement said that shares in the oil and petrochemical industries sectors will be offered on the Egyptian stock market starting in June and until the beginning of 2019. Egypt in March announced the names of 23 state companies that will sell stakes from this year under its plan to raise 80 billion ...

Japan’s SoftBank to open office in Saudi Arabia, sources say

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

SoftBank is planning to open a Saudi office, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Tuesday, further strengthening its ties with the kingdom. The Japanese technology investor already has close links with Riyadh after Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund contributed to SoftBank’s $93 billion Vision Fund, the world’s largest private equity fund. SoftBank and PIF, Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, are also in early talks with banks about potential ...

Turkey’s lira slides after Erdogan says wants greater economic control

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Turkey’s lira slid to a record low and bond yields briefly touched their highest in at least eight years on Tuesday, after President Tayyip Erdogan said he plans to take greater control of the economy after elections next month.Erdogan’s comments, in an interview with Bloomberg Television in London, reinforced long-standing concerns about the president’s drive to shape monetary policy and blunt the central bank’s ability to rein in double-digit inflation.He said the ...

Kuwait to postpone VAT implementation to 2021, says parliament committee

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Kuwait will not implement value-added tax before 2021 but will push ahead with introducing excise tax, parliament's budget committee said in a statement posted on the assembly's website on Tuesday. "The committee said implementation of value-added tax in Kuwait will be postponed until 2021, and that the finance ministry saw the need to expedite measures for excise tax on select products such as tobacco, energy drinks and carbonated drinks," it said without elaborating. ...

Egypt’s foreign inflows exceeded $120 bln since pound float

Monday, 14 May 2018

Egypt’s Central Bank Governor said foreign inflows have exceeded $120 billion since its pound currency was floated in November 2016, state newspaper Al-Ahram quoted him as saying on Monday. Tarek Amer also said Egypt would make a debt payment of $850 million to international oil companies, without specifying when. Once an energy exporter, Egypt has turned into a net importer in recent years, squeezed by declining production and increasing consumption. Cairo has promised to eliminate ...

Kuwait prepares plan to employ only Kuwaitis in government contracts

Sunday, 13 May 2018

As part of a move by the parliament as well as manpower planning departments, Kuwait has prepared a plan to employ only Kuwaitis in government contracts, reported Arab Times, quoting Al-Rai daily. Accordingly, Hind Al-Sabeeh, the Minister of State for Economic Affairs and Minister of Social Affairs and Labor, is set to hold further meetings with members of the Replacement Committee that has compiled the data, statistics and information on the subject. Khalil Al-Saleh, member of parliament ...

Belgian companies contend US sanctions on Iran will have ‘real impact’

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Belgium’s Federation of Enterprises (FEB) as well as its Wallonia Export-Investment Agency (AWEX) have both said that US President Donald Trump’ decision to withdraw from the nuclear agreement with Iran and the resumption of economic sanctions would have a direct impact on the Belgian companies.According to AWEX, Belgium’s exports to Iran totaled nearly 600 million euros in the first 11 months of 2017, while imports from Tehran reached 115 million euros.“It’s ...

Iran, Qatar hold sixth joint economic committee meeting in Doha

Sunday, 13 May 2018

An Iranian delegation of 70 experts and businessmen from the private and public sectors by the country’s deputy minister of industry, mines and trade landed in Doha for a two-day meeting.The delegations lead by Mohammed Reza Fayyad said that during the joint-economic meeting in Doha, both countries are expected to discuss many of the outstanding issues, according to Iranian news agency IRNA.“There are five committees that hold specialized meetings to deal with various issues related ...

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