Follow the latest in economic news and developments about the Arab transition countries. 

Momtaz al-Saeed, a member of the National Investment Bank, affirmed that the value of the second stimulus package has yet to be determined. There are two opinions about the second package, according to Saeed. The first is to make it worth EGP 30 billion, divided between EGP 20 billion as investment and EGP 10 billion to fund the minimum wage. The second opinion is to make the package worth EGP 20 billion, divided equally between investments and minimum wages. [Egypt Independent]
The Ministry of Finance announced that 4.83 million workers will benefit from the new minimum wage, including about 1.55 million teachers and 46,400 medical personnel. The implementation of minimum wages for all other employees will cost a total of EGP 10 billion per year, in addition to a further EGP 6.20 and 1.77 billion per year for public sector teachers and employees at Al-Azhar University respectively. So far, the minimum wage only applies to the public sector, with no agreement yet with the private sector. Public workers comprise less than a quarter of the workforce. [DNE]
Islamic law will soon become the law regulating the banking and economic system in Libya. Government officials hinted about the possible change after a sudden rise of Islamic banking in the country. Implementations of the plans are expected in 2015. The idea of transforming the country’s banking and economic system to comply it fully with Islamic law is part of efforts to attract foreign investment into the country. Libya has about 16 mostly conventional banks. [MedAfrica, Reuters]
Ministry of Finance reduced the state budget draft for the fiscal year 2014 generalized fund to 330.8 billion riyals ($1.5 billion) from 348.1 billion riyals ($1.6 billion) in 2013. The Yemen government reduced the oil derivatives fund for the 2014 year about 5 percent, due to the lack of financial resources and oil and gas installations attacks. IMF and the World Bank are pressing on the Yemen government to make a limited reduction in energy fund to about 10 to 15 percent per year. [National Yemen]
Also of Interest:
Egypt relaxes controls on forex transfers: official | Ahram
Trade deficit drops 33 percent in September 2013: CAPMAS | Ahram
Egypt economy starting to pick up: Survey | The Peninsula
Fitch revises Egypt’s outlook to stable; Affirms at ‘B-‘ | Reuters
Cooperation agreement signed to increase Saudi investment in Egypt | DNE
Egypt: Per capita income remains stable for 3 years, Araby | Cairo Post
Jordan: Public debt is estimated to hit 80 percent of GDP in 2014 | Al Arab Al Yawm [Arabic]
Morocco looks to West Africa for rising exports | Morocco Gazette
Tunisia: Regional finance revenue offices closed down due to riots | Tunis Times
Tunis: Increased tax on vehicles sparks anger across the county | Kapitalis [French]
Half of Yemenis live below poverty line | Al-Monitor