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North Africa News August 2023

Business

EGYPT – Norway’s Scatec to build a five-billion-dollar wind farm in Egypt
Norwegian energy operator Scatec has signed an agreement with Egypt’s New and Renewable Energy Authority to build a wind farm in Sohag, eastern Egypt, valued at USD 5.0 bn. The project is set to produce five gigawatts of electricity per year and generate 300 permanent jobs, in addition to 8,000 jobs during its construction.
July 5, 2023

EGYPT – France’s Alstom to build two railway vehicle factories in Alexandria
The Egyptian government has approved a plan presented by French company Alstom to build two factories in Egypt over the next three years with an investment budget of EUR 300 mn. The projects will be located in Alexandria, northern Egypt, and they will specialize in the production of vehicles for electric metro and monorail systems.
July 16, 2023

EGYPT – China’s Shanghai Xingda Fashion to build a clothing factory in the Suez Canal Economic Zone
Chinese company Shanghai Xingda Fashion has signed a contract with the General Authority for the Suez Canal Economic Zone to build a ready-to-wear clothing factory in the Abu Khalifa Industrial Zone. The production unit will cover a total area of 83,000 square meters and require an investment of USD 40.0 mn, including USD 28.5 mn in the first phase. The factory’s entire production, estimated at 43 million pieces of clothing per year, will be exported to the US market.
July 19, 2023

EGYPT – Japan’s Yazaki to build an automotive parts factory in northern Egypt
Japanese automotive parts manufacturer Yazaki has signed a land allocation contract with the Governorate of Fayoum, northern Egypt, to build a factory in the region. The land allocated for the project covers an area of 70,000 square meters. Yazaki will allocate around EUR 30.0 mn for the project, which is expected to generate 3,500 direct and indirect jobs.
July 24, 2023

MOROCCO – Ireland’s Smurfit Kappa inaugurates a packaging factory in Morocco
Irish packaging manufacturer Smurfit Kappa has inaugurated its first factory in Morocco, specializing in the production of boxes made of corrugated cardboard. Located in the Ain Aouda Industrial Zone, near Rabat, the project required an investment of EUR 35.0 mn. The factory covers an area of 25,000 square meters and has an annual production capacity of 150 million packaging. It is expected to generate 200 direct and 400 indirect jobs.
July 11, 2023

MOROCCO – Shell to supply Morocco with 6 billion cubic meters of LNG in a 12-year deal
Shell Group has signed a contract with Morocco’s National Electricity Office to supply it with 6 billion cubic meters of liquefied natural gas over 12 years, at a rate of 500 million cubic meters per year. The gas will be delivered to Spanish seaports and then to Morocco through the Maghreb-Europe pipeline.
July 14, 2023

MOROCCO – French automotive operator Forvia begins the construction of its fourth factory in Morocco
French automotive engineering company Forvia, previously known as Faurecia, has launched the construction of its newest Moroccan factory in Sale, near Rabat. The production unit, Forvia’s fourth in Morocco, will specialize in the production of textile and leather covers for car seats. The project has an investment budget of MAD 150 mn (EUR 13.8 mn) and is expected to generate 1,400 new jobs.
July 24, 2023

MOROCCO – India’s HCL Technologies launches its first African “Global Delivery Center” in Morocco
Indian IT company HCL Tech has inaugurated a “Global Delivery Center” in Rabat, the first of its kind in Africa. The center seeks to provide nearshore IT services to its clients. The project is expected to generate 3,000 new jobs.
July 25, 2023

MOROCCO – Israeli airline Arkia launches new flights between Tel Aviv and Morocco
Israeli airline Arkia has signed an agreement with the Moroccan National Tourism Office to launch a new weekly flight between Tel Aviv and Essaouira, 170 kilometers west of Marrakech, as well as increase its weekly flight frequency between Tel Aviv and Marrakech from one flight to two. Arkia is set to launch the new flights in September 2023 and operate them using an Airbus A321 aircraft.
July 28, 2023

TUNISIA – Tunisian airline Nouvelair launches two new flights between Tunis and northern Italy
Tunisian private airline Nouvelair has launched two new air routes between Tunisia and northern Italy. The first flight is between Tunis and Milan, while the second is between Tunis and Bologna. Both flights will operate twice per week: on Mondays and Thursdays for Tunis-Milan, and on Wednesdays and Sundays for Tunis-Bologna.
July 17, 2023

TUNISIA – Germany’s Kromberg & Schubert to expand its wire harness factory in Tunisia
German company Kromberg & Schubert has decided to expand its wire harness factory in Beja, northwestern Tunisia. The production unit will witness the construction of a new building over an area of 14,000 square meters. The expansion seeks to respond to the increasing demand in the global automotive industry. The project is expected to generate 2,500 new jobs.
July 22, 2023

ALGERIA – Air Algérie launches a new flight between Algiers and Saint Petersburg
Algeria’s national air carrier Air Algérie has launched a new air route between Algiers and Saint Petersburg, Russia. The flight will be operated three times per week on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. The flight was launched on the sidelines of the Russia-Africa Summit held in Saint Petersburg.
July 27, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria reduces its daily oil production by 20,000 barrels
Algeria has reduced its daily oil production from 960,000 barrels to 940,000. The reduction is in line with the decision of the OPEC+ alliance to reduce global production of oil to maintain the balance and stability of the global oil market.
Aug. 1, 2023

Politics

EGYPT – Egypt assists Greece in extinguishing wildfires
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi has ordered the Egyptian Armed Forces to participate in extinguishing the wildfires that swept through the island of Rhodes in Greece. The Egyptian military assisted the fire extinguishing efforts by sending three Boeing CH-47 Chinook helicopters.
July 23, 2023

MOROCCO – Israel officially recognizes Western Sahara as part of Morocco
Israel has officially recognized Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara region. The decision was announced by Morocco’s Royal Cabinet, quoting a letter from Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu. The official Israeli support for Morocco’s position in the Western Sahara dispute came almost three years after Morocco normalized its relations with Israel in the context of the US-led Abraham Accords.
July 17, 2023

MOROCCO – King Mohammed VI reinvites Algeria to resume relations with Morocco
King Mohammed VI of Morocco has once again expressed his country’s readiness to reestablish diplomatic relations with Algeria, which have been suspended by the latter since August 2021, and to reopen the land border between the two countries, which has been closed since 1994. The Monarch made the invitation during his 24th Throne Day speech
July 29, 2023

TUNISIA – Tunisian President Kaïs Saïed replaces the Prime Minister
Tunisian President Kaïs Saïed has dismissed Prime Minister Najla Bouden and nominated Ahmed Hachani as her replacement. The new Tunisian Prime Minister has never previously participated in the political sphere. He was a classmate of President Saïed at the university and he spent his entire career at the Central Bank of Tunisia until his retirement in 2018. According to local media, the reason behind the dismissal of Bouden is her inability to solve the bread shortage in the country.
Aug. 2, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria officially applies to join the BRICS Development Bank
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has announced his country’s official application to join the New Development Bank, formerly known as the BRICS Development Bank. The bank headquartered in China currently counts among its members the five BRICS members (Brazil, China, India, Russia, and South Africa), along with Bangladesh, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, and Uruguay. Algeria intends to become a member of the bank with a first financial contribution of USD 1.50 bn.
July 21, 2023

ALGERIA – Algerian President visits his Turkish counterpart in Istanbul
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has conducted a two-day state visit to Turkey. During the visit, President Tebboune was received by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Several ministerial meetings between Algerian and Turkish officials also took place to discuss cooperation in several sectors, notably energy, industry, trade, housing, and infrastructure.
July 23, 2023

Economy

EGYPT – Egypt’s annual inflation rate increases to 36.8% in June 2023
The annual inflation rate in Egypt has increased to 36.8% in June 2023, compared to 33.7% In May 2023 and 14.7% in June 2022. Food products are the most affected by inflation, followed by textile products.
July 10, 2023

EGYPT – Central Bank of Egypt increases interest rates by 100 basis points
The Central Bank of Egypt has decided to raise the country’s main interest rates by 100 basis points. The overnight rate increased to 19.25%, the discount rate and the lending rate to 19.75%, and the deposit rate to 20.25%. The decision is due to the continuing rise of inflation in Egypt.
Aug. 3, 2023

MOROCCO – Morocco records a 3.5% economic growth in Q1-2023
Economic activity in Morocco has recorded a 3.5% annual growth in the first quarter of 2023, up from 0.5% during the same period in 2022. The growth is attributed to a 6.9% growth in the agricultural sector and a 3.2% growth in non-agricultural activity. The added value of the primary sector has increased by 6.6% in the first quarter of 2023, up from an 11.3% recession in 2022. The secondary sector witnessed a 1.3% decline (up from  -2.1%) and the tertiary sector a 5.4% growth (up from 4.6%).
July 3, 2023

MOROCCO – Annual inflation in Morocco decreases to 5.5% in June 2023
Morocco’s annual inflation rate has maintained its downward trend to reach 5.5% in June 2023, down from 7.1% in May. The figure is attributed to a 12.7% increase in the prices of food products between June 2022 and 2023 and an increase of only 0.6% for non-food products, ranging from -5.6% for transportation to 6.0% for restaurants and hotels.
July 21, 2023

TUNISIA – Tunisian inflation rate declines to 9.3% in June 2023
The annual inflation rate in Tunisia has decreased from 9.6% in May 2023 to 9.3% in June. The figure is attributed to the rise in the prices of food products by 15.2% between June 2022 and 2023, notably sheep meat (36.3%), poultry (28.4%), eggs (27.5%), cooking oils (21.8%), and beef meat (21.3%). Meanwhile, the prices of manufactured goods increased by 8.0% and those of services by 6.4%.
July 5, 2023

ALGERIA – Yearly online payment limit in Algeria increases to EUR 3,350
The Bank of Algeria has decided to increase the yearly limit of online payments for Algerians to DZD 500,000 (EUR 3,350). The limit was previously set at DZD 300,000 (EUR 2,010).
July 15, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria’s inflation rate decreases to 9.6% in June 2023
The annual inflation rate in Algeria has slightly decreased from 9.8% in May 2023 to 9.6% in June. Education, culture, and entertainment services are the most affected by inflation, with their prices increasing by 15.4%, followed by food products (13.3%), health services (8.0%), household items (6.8%), and clothing (6.6%).
July 25, 2023

 

Key Economic Indicators

Key Economic Indicators August 23