Egypt to start work on $2.4bn telecom network for first phase of new capital city

Construction machines and labourers work at the future headquarters of the Council of Ministers in the government district of the New Administrative Capital (NAC) east of Cairo, Egypt May 2, 2019. Picture taken May 2, 2019. (Reuters)
Updated 13 September 2019

Egypt to start work on $2.4bn telecom network for first phase of new capital city

  • The communications ministry signed a cooperation agreement to begin working on the network

CAIRO: Egypt’s communications ministry will begin work on a 40 billion Egyptian pound ($2.44 billion) telecommunications network in the first phase of a new capital city being built east of Cairo, a cabinet statement said on Wednesday.
The communications ministry signed a cooperation agreement with the Administrative Capital for Urban Development (ACUD,) the new capital’s owner and developer, to begin working on the network over a period of six months.
The new city, known for now as the New Administrative Capital, is eventually expected to cover about 700 square km.
The first phase, covering about 168 square km, will have ministries, residential neighborhoods, a diplomatic quarter and a financial district. A large mosque and cathedral, as well a hotel and conference center, have already been built.
Ahmed Zaki Abdeen, a retired general who heads the company building the new city, said that ACUD would provide the funding for the network.
Egypt’s government wants to start running the nation from the new capital in the desert from mid-2020.
($1 = 16.3700 Egyptian pounds)


Oil prices fall but losses limited by Brexit deal hopes

Updated 18 October 2019

Oil prices fall but losses limited by Brexit deal hopes

  • US retail sales in September fell for the first time in seven months adding to economy fears

LONDON: Oil prices fell on Thursday as industry data showed a larger than expected increase in US inventories but losses were limited after Britain and the EU announced they had reached a deal on Brexit.

Global benchmark Brent crude was down 37 cents at $59.05 in afternoon London trade while US WTI crude was also down 37 cents, at $52.99.

US crude inventories soared by 10.5 million barrels to 432.5 million barrels in the week to Oct. 11, the American Petroleum Institute’s weekly report showed, ahead of official government stocks data.

Analysts had estimated US crude inventories rose by 2.8 million barrels last week.

“US sanctions imposed on Chinese shipping company COSCO are seriously denting demand for imported crude ... This has a profound impact on US crude oil inventories as reflected in last night’s API report,” said Tamas Varga, an analyst at PVM Oil Associates.

“US refinery maintenance is not helping to reverse the current trend and further builds in US crude oil inventories can be expected in the next few weeks.”

The US imposed sanctions on COSCO Shipping Tanker (Dalian) and subsidiary COSCO Shipping Tanker (Dalian) Seaman & Ship Management for allegedly carrying Iranian oil.

Adding to concerns about the global economy — and therefore oil demand — data from the US showed retail sales in September fell for the first time in seven months. Earlier data showed a moderation in job growth and services sector activity.

Nevertheless, Brexit developments helped limit oil’s decline. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Britain and the EU had agreed a “great” new deal and urged lawmakers to approve it when they meet for a special session at the weekend.

Analysts have said any agreement that avoids a no-deal Brexit should boost economic growth and oil demand.

However, the Northern Irish party whose support Johnson needs to help ratify any agreement, has said that it refused to support the pact.

Hopes of a potential US-China trade deal also supported oil. The commerce ministry in Beijing said China hoped to reach a phased agreement with Washington as early as possible.

But the German government has lowered its 2020 forecast for economic growth to 1 percent from 1.5 percent, the economy ministry said. It said Germany, Europe’s largest economy, was not facing a crisis.