Waleed Khalil Rasromani

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Latest by Waleed Khalil Rasromani


Electronic payment remains modest despite growth in credit cards

Visa executive says credit bureau crucial component of promoting alternatives to cash CAIRO: Every so often one bank announces that its number of credit cards has reached a record high while another bank launches a new line of specialist cards. This flurry of activity to promote plastic money is a sign of the potential gain …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Insurance holding company established

Move may be precursor to privatization CAIRO: President Hosni Mubarak issued a decree yesterday to form a holding company for insurance, bringing the four main public insurance firms as well as the country s only reinsurance company under the Ministry of Investment s asset management program. The newly-formed entity complements the nine other holding companies …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Public banks to receive $1 billion capital increase

CAIRO: Having recently been downgraded by the ratings agency Moody s, National Bank of Egypt (NBE) will share a capital injection of $1 billion (LE 5.7 billion) with the Banque Misr. Central Bank of Egypt Deputy Governor Tariq Amer announced the capital increase of the nation s two largest banks without specifying the proportion of …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

The challenge of multilateralism

Egypt s future in light of the WTO stalemate CAIRO: The Doha Round of the World Trade Organization (WTO) kicked off in Qatar five years ago in hopes of bridging the gap between industrialized nations and emerging economies. Having already given some concessions on tariffs for goods in previous negotiations, and with industrialized nations led …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Stock market goes online

MCDR creates joint venture with Atos Euronext to help brokers provide electronic trading CAIRO: The Capital Market Authority (CMA) has begun entertaining applications for online trading licenses and has approved Al-Arabia Online as the first provider of brokerage services on the internet. Meanwhile, Misr Clearing, Settlement and Central Depository (MCDR) will sign an agreement with …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Natural gas sold to Spain at five times domestic prices

Executive says exports necessary to attract investment and exploration CAIRO: Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) Chairman Sherif Ismail announced that the price of liquefied natural gas (LNG) sold to Spain was, on average, five times the price afforded to domestic consumers in the last fiscal year ending Jun. 2006. The state-owned EGAS has a …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Stock market recovers from losses relating to conflict

CAIRO: After nearly two weeks of Israel s massive offensive against Lebanon, the Egyptian stock market recovered all the losses it made in the initial days of the crisis. The CASE-30 index, which tracks the top 30 stocks on the exchange, fell by an average of 4 percent per day in the first three days …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Real estate auction generates LE 46 million in two days

CAIRO: Aside from situations of distress, auctioning real estate is a relatively new concept in Egypt. Traditionally, auctions are associated with negative circumstances, such as bankruptcy and seizure. But these views are being challenged with a number of auctions having been carried out of late as a conventional method of selling real estate. This is …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Consumers will bear the real burden of gasoline price increase

Comprehensive energy policy still absent CAIRO: With no warning, the government decided to increase the prices of gasoline and other oil products last Thursday. The state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper announced the decision the following day, at the start of a long weekend. Fuel prices at the pump immediately increased in line with the announcement. The price …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Solana's visit makes little progress

Ground attack increasingly likely CAIRO: In an attempt to diffuse the conflict between Israel and Hezbollah, European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana made a blitz visit to the region this week, where he met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, President Hosni Mubarak and Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa. “The …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

On-again, off-again, Omar Effendi sale blocked by a new offer

CAIRO: In the latest chapter of the saga of Omar Effendi, Egyptian businessman Mohamed Said El-Hanash has offered LE 2 billion for the nation s largest department store. The offer from El-Hanash emerges nearly one week after the Ministry of Investment told The Daily Star Egypt that the sale of the retail giant to the …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Competition authority investigates claims against cement and steel producers

CAIRO: The recently-established Egyptian Competition Authority will begin investigating whether cement and steel producers have violated anti-trust laws. The authority announced its intention to launch an investigation this week in response to a referral from Minister of Trade and Industry Rachid Mohamed Rachid, but the latest actions by the government have not come soon enough …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Inadequate skills challenge service liberalization

CAIRO: The liberalization of trade in services on a global scale has lagged behind that of goods, but the potential gain is significant for many countries. In Egypt, services account for nearly half of the nation s economic output, and opening up the market to foreign competition and investment can support the growth of other …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Violence threatens foreign investment and trade

CAIRO: As the Israeli strikes on Lebanon decimate nearly half a billion dollars worth of infrastructure and the Tel Aviv stock market plummets, the Egyptian economy and foreign direct investment in particular may be vulnerable to the regional instability. Egypt wants to attract $5 billion in foreign direct investment this year, excluding that of the …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Hundreds of Palestinians evacuate Rafah crossing after bombing

North Sinai declares state of emergency AL-ARISH: In the hours following the explosion at the Egyptian border with Gaza, scores of Palestinians who were stranded on the Egyptian side of the border rushed into Gaza. Meanwhile, North Sinai Governor Ahmed Abdel Hamid declared a state of emergency, according to the official MENA news agency, prompting …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Textile cluster exploits migration of industry from Europe

CAIRO: Over a century ago, Egypt s ruler Mohammed Ali took advantage of the halt of the American cotton trade owing to the civil war in that country and compelled Egyptian farmers to cultivate cotton almost exclusively. The cotton that was grown was long-staple, meaning that its fibers are longer than the other cotton produced …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Inspecting inflation, as IMF warns against reducing interest rates

CAIRO: Egypt has achieved a remarkable turnaround in its monetary situation. Until a few years ago, the state of the pound, controlled and overvalued by the government, made imports difficult due to the unavailability of foreign currency and exports too expensive. Subsequent to the devaluation and floatation of the pound in 2003, Egyptian exports have …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Financial executives foresee weaker correlation with Gulf stock markets

Managed funds and increased institutional investment are keys to stability CAIRO: Everything looks different in hindsight. Not long ago spectators marveled at the miracle of the Egyptian stock market. During a two year rally, encouraged by the global economic recovery and a new government keen on market liberalism, investors poured their savings into stocks and …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Mortgage refinance company established with LE 200 million capital

Additional funding of $37.1 million to be provided by World Bank CAIRO: In an attempt to address the shortage of long-term funds in the housing market, the central bank and 24 private and public financial institutions jointly established a new mortgage refinance company. The Egyptian Company for Mortgage Refinancing (ECMR) has been created with an …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Omar Effendi sale finalized

CAIRO: After years of unsuccessful attempts to privatize the retail giant, the board of directors of the Holding Company for Trade finally approved the sale of Omar Effendi to Anwal United Trading Co., a Saudi clothing and apparel retailer. The final approval by the holding company that owns Omar Effendi follows the endorsement of the …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

An accumulation of errors

CAIRO: A committee appointed by Minister of Transportation Mohamed Mansour to investigate the cause of the Al Salam Boccaccio 98 ferry disaster concluded its report yesterday, having found that a series of mistakes by the crew of the vessel, compounded by the inadequate actions of officials and the vessel owner both before and after the …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Center hopes to reinvigorate export promotion activities and double exports in five years

CAIRO: The Egyptian Export Promotion Center held its first board meeting on Monday, during which producers and government officials discussed sector-specific export objectives and results for the past year as well as factors inhibiting growth. Haytham Ahmed Deyab, the center s executive director, outlines the center s three main objectives: to double exports in the …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Short-selling system to be introduced in September

CAIRO: The testing of a computer system for short-selling stocks will begin on June 2 and is expected to be completed by September, after which investors will be able to sell stocks they do not own. Regulations to allow the short-selling of certain stocks were introduced earlier this year, and the implementation of the new …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Arab states create group in WTO

Council formed to address GAFTA rules of origin CAIRO: Arab trade ministers met in Cairo on Tuesday to address common product standards issues and form a negotiation group at the World Trade Organization. Product standards were one of the topics covered in the meeting of 20 officials in a ministerial meeting of the Arab Industrial …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Students connect with the stock market

CAIRO: The American University in Cairo (AUC) will establish a finance lab that will be connected directly to the Cairo and Alexandria Stock Exchange (CASE) The facility, which will include a simulated trading room, is being funded by a donation of $250,000 by Citadel Capital. It will, in effect, recreate the environment of the Cairo …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Xerox pursues wider range of document services

CAIRO: Having established its printing services with a number of large clients, Xerox plans to expand its range of document solutions in Egypt. Xerox currently serves several local companies that have a sizeable customer base and a need to communicate with those customers through customized documents such as bills, statements and pay slips. Documents that …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Teaching dependence

Education NGO decries private lessons ALEXANDRIA: Everyone adopts habits in their early years that shape their personality and that they carry with them for the rest of their lives. A child s environment at school and at home, where many of these habits are formed, may foretell their future capacity in the workplace and interaction …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

GAFI chief suggests collective resolution of disputes between businesses and the government

CAIRO: General Authority for Investment and Free Zones (GAFI) Chairman Ziad Bahaa El-Din suggests closer ties between the authority and business associations in resolving private sector disputes with the government. It allows us to move from the state of mind of dealing with individual issues and individual problems towards dealing with collective problems, says Bahaa …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani