FMC Group newsletter banner

North Africa News February 2023

Business

EGYPT – Egypt partners with 53 foreign companies to build a network of waste-to-energy plants
The Egyptian Ministry of Environment is set to invest USD 120 mn to build a network of waste-to-energy plants. The plants would treat municipal solid waste and convert it into electric energy. The project seeks to build plants with a total treatment capacity of at least 1,000 tonnes of waste per day. The Ministry of Environment has selected 53 foreign companies to partner with local ones and take part in the project, including eight companies from Germany, Austria, and the Netherlands who would take part in the first phase of the project.
Jan. 10, 2023

EGYPT – BMW resumes the local assembly of X model cars in Egypt
Global Auto Group, the official importer of BMW automobiles in Egypt, has announced the resumption of assembly operations in BMW’s Egyptian factory to produce cars locally. The assembly unit required an investment of USD 150 mn and is set to generate 600 jobs. Its production capacity is around 10,000 cars per year and it will specialize in the assembly of BMW X models, including X3, X4, X5, and X7.
Jan. 19, 2023

EGYPT – Egypt’s medical and pharmaceutical exports grow by 39% between 2021 and 2022
Egyptian exports of medical, pharmaceutical, and cosmetic products recorded an annual increase of 38.8% in 2022. Their value increased from USD 697 mn in 2021 to USD 968 mn in 2022, according to the Egyptian Exporting Council of Medical Industries. Egypt’s medical and pharmaceutical exports have been growing rapidly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, reaching a growth rate of 200% over the past three years.
Jan. 24, 2023

MOROCCO – China’s Qingdao Sentury Tire to build a USD 300 mn manufacturing unit in Morocco
Chinese tire manufacturer Qingdao Sentury Tire has announced its plan to build a factory in Tangier, northern Morocco. The project has an investment budget of around USD 297 mn and is set to become operational during the second quarter of 2024. The factory will have an annual production capacity of 3.6 million tires during its first year of operation, before increasing to 6 million tires in the second year.
Jan. 5, 2023

MOROCCO – France’s Figeac Aero launches expansion works on its assembly unit in Casablanca
French aeronautical operator Figeac Aero has launched expansion works on its factory in Casablanca. The expansion concerns the construction of a 4,000-square-meter building and the establishment of five new assembly lines. The project has an investment budget of MAD 132 mn (EUR 11.9 mn) and is expected to generate 55 new jobs.
Jan. 17, 2023

MOROCCO – Low-cost airline EasyJet to double its flights to Morocco over a five-year deal
British low-cost airline EasyJet has signed an agreement with Morocco’s National Tourism Office to double its flight capacity between Morocco and seven European countries over five years. The agreement, which concerns flights between Morocco and the United Kingdom, France, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, and Portugal, is set to increase the seats offered by EasyJet from 800,000 per season to 1.6 million per season by the start of 2028. The agreement also concerns the scheduling of flights to three new Moroccan destinations (Rabat, Fes, and Ouarzazate) in addition to the destinations already served (Marrakech, Agadir, Essaouira, and Tangier).
Jan. 26, 2023

TUNISIA – Jordanian pharmaceutical company Hikma to open a new manufacturing unit in Tunisia
Jordanian pharmaceutical company Hikma has announced the future opening of its fourth manufacturing plant in Tunisia. The factory is located in Sidi Thabet, 30 kilometers northwest of Tunis, and required an investment of TND 30 mn (EUR 9.02 mn). Hikma has been present in Tunisia since 1994. Its three already-operating factories employ around 250 workers.
Jan. 11, 2023

TUNISIA – Italian clothing company Calzedonia to launch four manufacturing units in Tunisia
Italian clothing company Calzedonia is set to launch four manufacturing units in Tunisia. The factories will be located in Zaghouan (north), Nabeul (northeast), and Monastir (east). The project is set to generate 1,500 new jobs. Its investment budget, however, is yet to be disclosed.
Jan. 26, 2023

TUNISIA – French IT company Sagemcom launches a new R&D office in Tunisia
French IT and telecommunications company Sagemcom has launched a new research and development office in Sousse, central Tunisia. The office will specialize in the research and development of solutions in the sectors of smart energy and telecommunication. It is set to initially employ around 50 engineers, before expanding in the future. Sagemcom has been present in Tunisia since 2003 and employs around 5,000 workers in total.
Jan. 27, 2023

ALGERIA – Qatar’s Retaj Hotels and Hospitality acquires the management rights of 73 hotels in Algeria
Qatari real estate and hotels operator Retaj has signed an agreement with Algerian public hotel chain HTT to manage all of its 73 hotels in Algeria. According to the agreement, Retaj Hotels and Hospitality will finance the necessary investments to upgrade the 73 hotels to international standards and put in place a new strategy to attract more visitors.
Jan. 2, 2023

ALGERIA – France’s Castel Group acquires Algerian glassmaker Alver
French industrial group Castel has acquired Algerian glassmaking company Alver. The company has a production unit in Oran, northwestern Algeria, specializing in the production of glassware. According to Castel Group, the acquisition seeks to expand the French conglomerate’s activity in North Africa, as well as support its transition towards more sustainable products and reduce its usage of plastic. The value of the deal was undisclosed.
Jan. 21, 2023

 

Politics

EGYPT – Russia adds the Egyptian Pound to its official list of foreign currencies
The Russian Central Bank added the Egyptian Pound to its official list of foreign currencies. According to the list, the exchange rate of the Russian Ruble against the Egyptian Pound is around EGP 0.43 (EUR 0.013).
Jan 19, 2023

MOROCCO – Morocco and Bahrain sign six cooperation agreements
Morocco and Bahrain signed six cooperation agreements during their 5th High-Level Meeting, held in the Bahraini capital Manama. The agreements concern industrial cooperation, standardization, commercial cooperation, consumer protection, handicrafts, and religious affairs. The agreements seek to encourage and facilitate partnerships between Moroccan and Bahraini businesses, as well as promote trade between the two countries.
Jan. 26, 2023

MOROCCO – Morocco reopens its Embassy in Baghdad after an 18-year closure
Morocco has reopened its embassy in the Iraqi capital Baghdad after an 18-year closure. The inauguration ceremony took place during an official visit of the Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nasser Bourita, to Baghdad. During the visit, Morocco and Iraq signed a joint declaration to “begin a new page” in political relations. The Moroccan Embassy in Baghdad has been closed since 2005 due to political instability in Iraq, as well as the country’s position challenging Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara. During the inauguration ceremony, the Iraqi Minister of Foreign Affairs, Fouad Hussein, affirmed his country’s “full support” for Morocco’s territorial integrity.
Jan. 28, 2023

TUNISIA – Tunisian President appoints a new Minister of Trade
Tunisian President Kaïs Saïed has appointed Kalthoum Ben Rejeb Kazah as the new Minister of Trade. Before her appointment, Kalthoum Ben Rejeb Kazah worked at the General Directorate for Taxes, within the Ministry of Finance. The appointment came one week after President Saïed dismissed the former Minister of Trade, Fadhila Rabhi, without specifying the reasons.
Jan. 12, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria and Italy sign four cooperation agreements
Algeria and Italy have signed a joint declaration and four cooperation agreements during the official visit of Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni to Algiers. Two agreements concern the improvement of direct energy links between Algeria and Italy and the increase of Algeria’s supply to Italy in natural gas. Meanwhile, the other two agreements concern cooperation in the fields of aerospace and economic planning.
Jan. 23, 2023

 

Economy

EGYPT – Egypt’s annual inflation climbs to 21.3% in December 2022
Egypt’s annual inflation rate increased to 21.3% in December 2022, up from 19.2% in November 2022 and 6.5% in December 2021. Food and beverages witnessed the highest annual increase in prices at 37.9%, followed by the catering sector (33.1%), transportation (17.3%), clothing (15.6%), alcohol and tobacco (14.2%), healthcare (13.6%), education (7.7%), and housing (6.7%).
Jan. 11, 2023

MOROCCO – Morocco records an estimated GDP growth of 1.3% and a 6.6% inflation in 2022
Morocco recorded an estimated GDP growth of 1.3% in 2022, down from 7.9% in 2021, according to the country’s High Commission for Planning (HCP). Morocco’s agricultural sector recorded an estimated 15.6% recession in 2022, down from a 17.6% growth in the previous year, while the added value of non-agricultural sectors grew by 3.4% in 2022, down from 6.6% in 2021. Morocco’s annual inflation rate has also reached a record level in 2022 at 6.6%, up from the average of 1.6% throughout 2015-2020. In 2023, the HCP expects Morocco’s annual GDP growth to climb to 3.3% while inflation should drop to 1.9%.
Jan. 12, 2023

TUNISIA – Tunisia’s annual inflation rate stands at 10.1% in 2022
Tunisia’s annual inflation rate stood at 10.1% in 2022, according to the country’s National Statistics Institute (INS). Food products witnessed the highest increase in prices, notably eggs (38.9%), lamb and sheep meat (26.3%), cooking oil (22.8%), beef meat (19.5%), and fresh vegetables (17.2%). Meanwhile, manufactured goods whose prices increased the most were household items (10.1%), clothing items (9.5%), and construction materials (9.4%). Finally, services that recorded the highest increase in prices were public transportation (11.7%), along with restaurants, coffee shops, and hotels (9.9%).
Jan. 5, 2023

ALGERIA – Algeria records a 9.7% annual inflation rate in 2022
Algeria’s annual inflation rate stood at 9.7% in 2022, according to the country’s National Statistics Office (ONS). The products and services that witnessed the highest increases in prices between 2021 and 2022 were education, culture, and entertainment (13.8%), food products (13.3%), and healthcare services (7.2%). Meanwhile, transportation and communication (1.1%) and accommodation (2.8%) witnessed the lowest increases in prices.
Jan. 27, 2023

 

Key Economic Indicators

north africa economy january 2023