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Latest in Opinion


Contact to sell $83 mln in securitized notes

CAIRO: Egyptian car purchase financer Contact on July 7 is selling LE 470 million ($83 million) in bonds securitizing expected car payments, the chief underwriter said on Monday. The bond, Contact’s sixth since the company entered the market about 10 years ago, consolidates LE 623 million in receivables whose underlying assets are more than 5,000 …

Reuters

Stevie Wonder cheers up Glastonbury after football failure

Motown legend Stevie Wonder made sure Glastonbury’s 40th anniversary came to a joyful end on Sunday despite England’s disheartening World Cup football defeat. The American soul pioneer treated the audience at the British music festival to a greatest hits set, with "I Just Called To Say I Love You" and "Superstition" receiving a rapturous response …

AFP

Basra oil exports partly recover from sandstorm

BAGHDAD: Oil exports from Iraq’s southern oil hub of Basra partly recovered on Monday to 1.08 million barrels per day after disruption by a sandstorm over the past two days, a shipper said. Exports had fallen to 720,000 barrels per day on Sunday from 1.68 million bpd on Friday as the sandstorm reduced visibility, said …

Reuters

Activists' trial adjourned to July 17

CAIRO: The case against three human rights activists was adjourned until July 17 on Saturday, after the judge approved defense lawyers’ request for an adjournment. Ahmed Seif El-Islam Hamad and Gamal Eid, directors of the Hisham Mubarak Law Center (HMLC) and Arab Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) respectively, have been charged with libel, blackmail …

Sarah Carr

EFG takes over Jordanian brokerage firm

CAIRO: EFG-Hermes announced Thursday that it had agreed to buy a Jordanian brokerage firm, Tadawol for Securities and Financial Services, for JD 3.85 million ($ 5.4 million). According to Reuters, EFG-Hermes said that it will assume management control of the business, which will be renamed EFG-Hermes Jordan. Waleed El Naasan, CEO of EFG Hermes Jordan, …

Daily News Egypt

Ministry of Solidarity to launch electronic ration cards

CAIRO: The Ministry of Social Solidarity will begin distributing electronic ration cards next week to families with monthly incomes below LE 1,000 and people receiving pensions under LE 750. Sources inside the ministry told Daily News Egypt on Thursday that they are working out the final details with the Ministry of Administrative Development and the …

Safaa Abdoun

Common myths about SME banking

In Egypt, like in all other developing and developed countries, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) constitute a large proportion of the nation’s economic activity — contributing to over 50 percent of GDP and almost two-thirds of employment. As such, this sector is increasingly being considered as an attractive commercial opportunity for banks. Some banks have …

Daily News Egypt

Religious scholar opposes Christian leadership

CAIRO: During her appearance on the talk show “Manchet” with Gaber Al-Qarmouty, Islamic studies scholar, Souad Saleh stirred controversy after she said it is against the Islamic Sharia for a Christian to assume the presidential role in Egypt, seeing as it is a Muslim-majority country. In Saleh’s opinion, Christians should be given the opportunity to …

Daily News Egypt

'Toy Story 3' finds big play time with $109 mln debut

Movie fans have not outgrown the "Toy Story 3" gang. The animated sequel about toys that come to life leaped to the No. 1 spot with a $109 million opening weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday. "Toy Story 3" became the third animated film to top $100 million in the first weekend, joining "Shrek the …

AP

Telecom Egypt approves LE 0.55 dividend

CAIRO: Telecom Egypt has approved a LE 0.55 ($0.10) interim dividend for 2009, after earlier distributing LE 0.75 pounds, a company source said on Sunday. Although it was distributed in two parts, the dividend matches the LE 1.30 dividend for 2008 and was in line with analysts’ expectations. The company had withheld part of the …

Yasmine Saleh

Death in Alexandria

By Rania Al Malky CAIRO: The iconic image of the disfigured face of Khaled Saeid will haunt you for a long time. So if you haven’t seen it already, think a hundred times before you do. In this newspaper, we unanimously agreed not to run the morgue photographs of the alleged victim of a police beating …

DNE

Egypt to restore free zone status to refineries

Egypt’s parliament has agreed to restore free zone status to oil refineries, newspapers reported on Wednesday, potentially removing a hurdle that had deterred foreign investment in the country’s energy sector. Egypt’s government had cancelled oil refiners’ free zone status, which gives them tax breaks and other advantages, as part of broader changes to its free …

Reuters

No more tomorrows for Orphan Annie comic strip

Little Orphan Annie, the plucky redheaded star of Broadway musical and comic strip fame, has run out of tomorrows — at least in print. The pop culture icon who sang and danced her way to international fame in the Broadway musical that gave us tunes such as "It’s The Hard-Knock Life," and "Tomorrow," ended her …

AFP

Tens of Copts demonstrate near parliament

CAIRO: Tens of Copts demonstrated Sunday in front of parliament, demanding the People’s Assembly pass a unified personal status law for Copts and another regulating the construction of houses of worship. The demonstration, which was organized by the Egyptian Union for Human Rights Organization, featured the participation of 11 groups representing Diaspora Copts from the …

Essam Fadl

Egypt inflation falls to 10.5 pct in May, nine-mth low

CAIRO: Egypt’s annual urban inflation rate, the most closely watched price indicator, fell to 10.5 percent in May, its lowest level since August and giving the central bank more latitude to keep key interest rates steady. Core annual inflation rose to 6.69 percent in the year to May from 6.62 percent in April, the central …

Sherine El Madany

Aguilera not her usual chart-topping self, yet

Over a synth-heavy dance track, Christina Aguilera sings on her new album: "Every day I see myself I love me even more. … Let us not forget who owns the throne." Then, her son Max’s voice pipes up: "You do, Mommy." Does she? Aguilera is returning to music after four years away from stadium tours …

Daily News Egypt

Leading Iran woman journalist gets 30-year ban from writing

TEHRAN: Iran has sentenced award-winning woman journalist Jila Baniyaghoob to jail for one year and banned her from writing for 30 years over post-election unrest, a newspaper reported on Wednesday. Baniyaghoob, 39, "has been sentenced to one year in jail and banned from journalistic work for 30 years," moderate daily Shargh said. Baniyaghoob, who had …

AFP

Bright sparks of Palestine

ABU DHABI: On our program we have a special segment called “Bright Sparks” that features the rising stars of the next generation, those that are coming up with bright ideas that create companies, jobs and fulfill dreams. The flotilla attack not only amounted to another real setback for long term peace, but also a major …

Daily News Egypt

Fire damage in Egypt's Lecico warehouse at $12.3 mln

Fire that engulfed an export warehouse belonging to Egyptian sanitary ware and ceramics maker Lecico last week caused damage worth LE 70 million ($12.3 million), the firm said in a statement on Monday. A significant portion of exports was destroyed along with the warehouse, it added. Higher sanitary ware volumes were the main driver behind …

Reuters

DR Congo police chief suspended, says minister

KINSHASA: The chief of police in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been suspended and several officers arrested in the probe into the death of leading human rights campaigner Floribert Chebeya, the interior minister said Sunday. Reading out a communique on national television, Adolphe Lumanu said President Joseph Kabila was "determined that all light be …

AFP

UN chief moving ahead with probe of Israeli raid

JERUSALEM: An Israeli official said Sunday that UN chief Ban Ki-moon is moving ahead with plans for an international commission to investigate Israel’s deadly raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla. Ban wants former New Zealand Prime Minister Geoffrey Palmer, a maritime law expert, to head the panel, which would include Israeli, Turkish and US representatives, …

Daily News Egypt

Egypt real estate market: Better than the rest?

CAIRO: The Egyptian property market is on course to outperform all other MENA countries in 2010, according to a recent report. Citing a Credit Suisse report, Dubai-based analyst Ahmed Badr explained that growth in the Egyptian real estate market will be spurred by “strong domestic housing demand recovery that should filter through developers’ sales figures …

Christopher Le Coq

Former CMA chairman on economic growth, reforms and the future

CAIRO: At a time when many world markets were in recession, Egypt’s economy consistently recorded positive growth figures, above both analysts’ forecasts and government expectations. Despite the better-than-expected numbers, projections for growth were higher before the onset of the crisis — around 7-8 percent for this period, and continuing over the next several years, Hani …

Christopher Le Coq

Helwan plans waste-generated power plant

Helwan governorate launched an $800 million power generation project to recycle waste into energy using Canadian technologies, reported AmCham Energy Sector Coverage. The project envisages the supply and establishment of two waste recycling and energy recovery units with a daily capacity to handle 2,400 tons of waste, which is almost 70 percent of the waste …


Al-Arish, 31 years later

CAIRO: Originally a Roman garrison town named Rhinocolorum ("Noses Cut Off") after the fate of dissidents exiled there, Al-Arish, the capital city of the North Sinai governorate, historically has experienced more than its fair share of invasions. After being briefly occupied by Israel in 1956, and again after the Six Day War of 1967, Al-Arish …

Daily News Egypt

Israel denounces NPT 'hypocrisy' as Iran hails accord

TORONTO: Israel Saturday denounced as "hypocritical" a resolution adopted by the Non-Proliferation Treaty’s 189 nations and said it would refuse to take part in a conference on a nuclear-weapons-free Middle East. Israel said the resolution adopted at the United Nations on Friday singles out the Jewish state and fails to mention arch-foe Iran’s nuclear ambitions. …

AFP

Oil hits two-week high above $75 as equities rally

LONDON: Oil hit a two-week high above $75 on Friday, heading for its first weekly gain in almost a month on rallying stock markets and expectations of rising US oil consumption. Oil prices have risen more than 7 percent this week with official data showing soaring fuel demand in top consumer the United States and …

Reuters

Tunisia launches its first Islamic Bank

The son-in-law of Tunisia’s president launched the country’s first Islamic bank on Friday to tap into growing demand for alternative finance and investment products in the secular-leaning country. North Africa has begun to embrace Islamic finance after years watching from the sidelines, partly to channel more Arab Gulf petrodollars into the region. Sharia-compliant finance bans …

Reuters

The city at the far end of the world: Part 2

Three weeks ago, I was invited by a South-African NGO called the Arterial Network on a “sponsored cultural tour [for African journalists] to the Harare International Festival of the Arts (Hifa).” During my five-day stay at the Zimbabwean capital, several truths about both the Arterial Network and the hosting country began to unfold, divulging a …

Joseph Fahim

Egypt move up FIFA ranking

CAIRO: Egypt moved up one place in the monthly FIFA ranking for national teams, taking 12th place in the table. Even though they gained no points during the past month, the African masters leapfrogged Greece to edge closer to the top 10. Of the top 20 teams, only Croatia (10), Russia (11) and Egypt will …

Omar AbdelAziz