FMC Group newsletter banner

Business News North Africa December 2023

Business

EGYPT – Indian plastic manufacturer Platinum Industries begins the construction of a factory in Egypt

India’s Platinum Industries has begun the construction of its PVC and CPVC stabilizers factory. Located in Ain Sokhna, near the Suez Canal, the project will span over an area of 10,000 square meters and has an investment budget of USD 20.0 mn, spread across two phases. The factory aims to produce 30,000 tonnes of stabilizers annually, 70% of which will be exported to international markets.

Nov. 1, 2023

EGYPT – UAE’s Dana Gas to drill 14 natural gas wells in northeastern Egypt

Emirati company Dana Gas has announced its plan to drill 14 new natural gas wells in northeastern Egypt, to boost its daily gas production by 30 million cubic feet. The company will invest around USD 43.0 mn in the project.

Nov. 29, 2023

EGYPT – China’s Befar Group to build a 2-billion-dollar industrial green complex in Egypt

Chinese corporation Befar Group has signed a letter of intent with the General Authority for the Suez Canal Economic Zone to establish an industrial green complex in the East Port Said Integrated Zone, dedicated to the production of specialized chemicals. The Chinese conglomerate will mobilize around USD 2.0 bn for the project, including USD 500 mn for the first phase, which is expected to generate 1,000 job opportunities.

Nov. 30, 2023

MOROCCO – Morocco allocates nearly EUR 1.5 bn to purchase 168 new trains

Morocco’s railway office ONCF has launched a call for bids to acquire 168 new trains, including 150 regular trains and 18 high-speed trains. The company has allocated a budget of MAD 16.0 bn (EUR 1.46 bn) for the acquisitions. The delivery date is set between 2027 and 2030, in preparation for the 2030 FIFA World Cup, hosted jointly by Morocco, Spain, and Portugal.

Nov. 13, 2023

MOROCCO – Korean and Singaporean companies partner up to build a lithium salt factory in Morocco

South Korean chemical manufacturer Duksan Electera has signed an agreement with Singaporean lithium salt manufacturer Visionary Energy to establish a lithium salt plant in Morocco. The project is set to become operational by 2026 and its annual production capacity is estimated at 30,000 tonnes.

Nov. 17, 2023

MOROCCO – TotalEnergies acquires a stake in Moroccan-British electricity connection project Xlinks

French company TotalEnergies has purchased a minority stake in the Xlinks project, set to build a submarine electricity link between Morocco and the United Kingdom. The deal is valued at GBP 20.0 mn (EUR 23.2 mn) and allows TotalEnergies to join investors Octopus Energy (France) and the Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (UAE) as stakeholders. The project aims to provide around 7 million British households with electricity produced from solar and wind energy in Morocco.

Nov. 29, 2023

TUNISIA – Indian-led consortium to build a water treatment plant in Tunisia

A consortium led by Indian multinational VA Tech Wabag has won a call for bids to design, build, and operate a water treatment plant in Bejaoua, northeastern Tunisia. The project will require a global budget of EUR 63.0 mn and is set to become operational in 30 months.

Nov. 2, 2023

TUNISIA – Italian company Medica opens a factory in Tunisia

Italian biomedical company Medica has inaugurated a new factory in Bizerte, northeastern Tunisia. The project, which specializes in the production of medical and paramedical supplies, employs 370 workers.

Nov. 7, 2023

ALGERIA – China’s Chery to launch a car assembly unit in Algeria

Chinese automotive manufacturer Chery has announced its intention to build a car assembly unit in Bordj Bou Arreridj, northeastern Algeria. The factory is set to produce 24,000 cars in its first year of operations, and gradually increase its production until it reaches a capacity of 100,000 units after the third year.

Nov. 9, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria renews its natural gas supply agreement with Turkey for 3 more years

Algeria’s national oil and gas company Sonatrach has signed a 3-year supply agreement with its Turkish counterpart Botaş. The agreement is an extension of a natural gas supply contract that has been in place since 1988.

Nov. 22, 2023

Politics

EGYPT – Egyptians living abroad begin voting for the 2024 presidential elections

Egyptians living abroad have cast their votes for the 2024 presidential elections during the weekend from December 1 to December 3. Egyptian embassies and consulates have opened a total of 137 polling stations in 121 countries around the world to receive the votes of Egyptian expats. Meanwhile, voting within Egypt is set to take place from December 10 to December 12. The final result of the presidential elections will be announced on December 18 if no run-off is required.

Dec. 1, 2023

MOROCCO – Education sector in Morocco faces tensions between teachers and the ministry

Morocco’s Ministry of Education has launched dialogue sessions with syndicates representing teachers to put an end to their strikes. Teachers have been organizing strikes every week since the beginning of the 2023-2024 school year to protest against a new framework law that regulates teaching careers. Teachers have been threatening to spend the entire year on strike if the ministry doesn’t respond to their demands, which mainly include an increase in salaries and more promotion opportunities.

Nov. 30, 2023

TUNISIA – Electoral campaign for local councils begins in Tunisia

The electoral campaign for local councils in Tunisia was launched on December 2 across 2,155 local communes and districts. The electoral campaign will take place until December 22, before citizens cast their votes on December 24. These local elections will allow the election of 2,434 members which will constitute 279 local councils across the country.

Dec. 2, 2023

ALGERIA – Algerian President nominates a new Prime Minister

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has dismissed Prime Minister Aïmene Benabderrahmane and appointed Nadir Larbaoui as his replacement. Before his appointment, Larbaoui served as Algeria’s permanent representative at the United Nations. The Algerian Presidency did not disclose the reason behind this decision.

Nov. 11, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria resumes its diplomatic relations with Spain

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has nominated a new Ambassador to Spain, ending the diplomatic crisis that has been ongoing between the two countries for around 19 months. The crisis began in March 2022 when Algeria decided to suspend its diplomatic relations with Spain, following the European country’s support for Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara.

Nov. 16, 2023

Economy

EGYPT – Egypt’s annual inflation rate declines to 35.8% in October 2023

The annual inflation rate in Egypt has decreased from its record-breaking 38.0% in September 2023 to 35.8% in October. The prices of food and beverages remain the most affected by inflation, with a year-on-year increase of 71.3%. The prices of cultural and entertainment services come second (52.6%), followed by restaurants and hotels (45.0%), and home appliances (40.2%).

Nov. 12, 2023

EGYPT – Egypt records a 7.1% unemployment rate in Q3-2023

Egypt’s unemployment rate has increased to 7.1% in the third quarter of 2023, up from 7.0% in the second quarter. The total Egyptian workforce has also increased from 30.97 million in the second quarter to 31.96 million in the third, including 13.93 million in urban areas and 18.03 million in rural areas.

Nov. 16, 2023

MOROCCO – Morocco records a 4.3% annual inflation rate in October 2023

Morocco’s annual inflation rate decreased to 4.3% in October 2023, down from 4.9% in the previous month. Food products are the most affected by inflation, with their prices increasing by 8.8% between October 2022 and 2023. Meanwhile, the prices of non-food products increased by 1.3%, with variations ranging from -0.6% for entertainment and cultural services to +4.9% for restaurants and hotels.

Nov. 22, 2023

TUNISIA – Tunisia’s annual inflation rate decreases to 8.6% in October 2023

The annual inflation rate in Tunisia has declined from 9.0% in September 2023 to 8.6% in October. The prices of food products, which are the most affected by inflation, increased by 13.1% year-on-year in October, compared to 13.9% in the previous month.

Nov. 5, 2023

TUNISIA – Unemployment rate in Tunisia increases to 15.8% in Q3-2023

Tunisia’s unemployment rate has increased to 15.8% in the third quarter of 2023, compared to 15.6% in the previous quarter. The figure varies between 13.4% among men and 21.7% among women. Youth aged between 15 and 24 and university graduates are the most affected demographics, with unemployment rates of 39.1% and 24.6% respectively.

Nov. 15, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria records an 8.2% annual inflation rate in October 2023

Algeria’s annual inflation rate has dropped from 10.3%[*] in September 2023 to 8.2% in October. Food products remain the most affected by inflation, with their prices increasing by 10.9% between October 2022 and 2023, followed by health and hygiene products (8.9%) and household items (6.9%). Meanwhile, the least affected products are transportation and communication (0.6%), real estate (1.9%), and education, culture and entertainment services (4.0%).

Nov. 27, 2023

[*] Algeria’s annual inflation rate in September 2023 was inaccurately reported in our previous newsletter (9.5%). The correct figure is 10.3%.

Key Economic Indicators

NA Dec 23