EconSource: Central Bank of Tunisia says 2017 Will See Economic Revival

The Governor of the Central Bank of Tunisia Chedly Ayari said he expects Tunisia to witness an “economic revival” beginning in 2017.

“Tunisia will, from 2017, return to acceptable growth rates that will help come out of the crisis,” he said in the presence of International Monetary Fund (IMF) Resident Representative in Tunisia Giorgia Albertini. Ayari said he expects growth to reach 2.5 percent in 2016 and between 4.5-5 percent in 2017. The IMF predicts a 4.6 percent growth rate in 2017 for Tunisia. Ayari also emphasized the need to boost Tunisia exports by improving production in energy sectors and increasing demand for Tunisian products in the international markets. An IMF delegation is expected to visit Tunis on Wednesday to discuss a new cooperation program with Tunisia. Meanwhile, on Monday, Tunisia’s House of People’s Representatives approved a draft law for a loan agreement with the African Development Bank for EUR 183 million and a loan agreement with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development for EUR 455.5 million. [TAP, 12/7/2015]

Turkish growth seen at 3-3.5 percent this year
Turkey’s economy will register growth of 3-3.5 percent in 2015, Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek said Monday. He said there is a high chance that growth in 2016 will be at 4 percent or above. On Tuesday, Simsek said Turkey aims to bring inflation down to the low single digits through structural reforms. He also said Turkey’s government will continue to support the private pension system even though it is becoming costly. [Reuters, 12/7/2015]

Egypt expects $1.5 billion in aid by year-end, eyeing IMF
Egypt expects to receive $1.5 billion for budget support from the World Bank and African Development Bank (AfDB) by the end of the year, according to International Cooperation Minister Sahar Nasr. Egypt could also discuss potential financing from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) once Egypt’s new parliament convenes. Nasr said she had negotiated loans with the World Bank and AfDB worth $3 billion and $1.5 billion respectively, which will be disbursed over three years with the first tranche arriving “within days” of the deals being signed later this month. The economic reform program Egypt launched in June 2014 helped it secure the aid without a list of specific conditions. Nasr said the loan would bring much-needed foreign exchange into Egypt. Egypt also expects to receive EUR 370 million in budget support from the European Union over three years Nasr said, without elaborating. Meanwhile, Egypt signed a EUR 100 million loan agreement with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development on Tuesday to upgrade Cairo’s second metro line. On Sunday, Egypt signed a $600 million loan deal with the European Investment Bank to finance a new power plant in Beheira. [Reuters, 12/8/2015]

Russian airline to seek compensation from Egypt over Sinai crash
Russian airline Metrojet is planning to seek compensation from Egyptian authorities over the crash of its Airbus A321 passenger jet over Sinai on October 31, Russian news agency TASS reported. Forbes quoted the owner of Metrojet’s parent company Russian Tourist Holding TH&C Ismail Lepiyev as saying, “Since there is a clear cause for the disaster, then we [the company] have the right to receive compensation from the country where the attack occurred.” He added, “Egypt is Russia’s partner in many spheres, these are the relations that have been built over decades, and we respect this and will try to agree to the last on compensation without judicial steps.” [Ahram Online, DNE, 12/7/2015]

Kuwait studying plans to raise corporate tax, cut subsidies
Kuwait may raise the corporate tax rate to 10 percent for local firms and impose limits on energy subsidies, Minister of Commerce and Industry Yousuf al-Ali told a local newspaper on Tuesday. “Initial ideas being tossed around are that [the corporate tax rate] will be up to 10 percent. There are companies in the market now paying up to 4.5 percent that will see their taxes rise a little to 10 percent,” al-Ali said. Kuwaiti ministers have said previously they were studying proposals to harmonize tax rates for local and foreign firms, but have not provided figures or a timeline for implementation. There are currently no plans under consideration to introduce an income tax for individuals, al-Ali said. He also said a rationing system will be introduced to cut down on subsidies provided for energy consumption. “Support for citizens continues, but this support will be rationed…there will be cuts in the support for energy consumption, and if people exceed their rations then the price will change.” [Reuters, 12/8/2015]

Also of interest
Fitch: Low oil prices keep pressure on major sovereign exporters | Reuters
Saudi Arabia shipping more Nov-Dec crude to Asia to meet robust demand | Reuters
UAE sees 3-3.5 percent growth in 2015 and 2016 | Reuters
Oman Oil plans to boost production despite low prices | Reuters
Iraq PM says Turkey main conduit for Islamic State oil smuggling | Reuters
Erdogan’s son denies Russian allegations of Islamic State trade | Reuters
UAE’s Dana Gas says Kurdistan group has claims of more than $11 billion | Reuters
Egypt’s EGPC negotiating to delay dollar payments owed to banks | Reuters
Egypt’s external debt down to $46 billion in Q1 of 2015/16 | Ahram Online
Ministers of Investment, Industry launch second automotive summit in Egypt | DNE
Egypt to propose major ventures at Mega Projects conference | DNE
Egypt’s Petroleum Minister witnesses signing of deals for oil, gas exploration | SIS