Emirates NBD quarterly profit slumps 58% as coronavirus pandemic provisions jump

Emirates NBD said its impairment allowances had increased to 4.2 billion dirhams by June-end from 2.6 billion dirhams in the first quarter. (Reuters
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Updated 20 July 2020

Emirates NBD quarterly profit slumps 58% as coronavirus pandemic provisions jump

  • Net profit slumped to 2 billion dirhams from 4.74 billion dirhams a year earlier
  • UAE banks have been hit by tough government measures to curb the spread of coronavirus

DUBAI: Dubai’s biggest bank Emirates NBD on Monday posted a 58 percent fall in second-quarter profit, having set aside over $1.1 billion so far this year to cover bad loans in anticipation that the impact of the coronavirus crisis will worsen.
Net profit slumped to 2 billion dirhams ($544.5 million) from 4.74 billion dirhams a year earlier, when it booked a gain of 2.1 billion dirhams from an asset sale.
Chief Financial Officer Patrick Sullivan said while the group was acting to manage costs to reflect softer economic activity, cost cuts would not entirely offset lower income.
Sources told Reuters in June that the bank had started a new round of job cuts, laying off hundreds of employees. One said the pandemic had accelerated a pre-planned process.
UAE Banks Federation Chairman Abdul Aziz Al-Ghurair said customers have moved more toward digital services.
“This will require more investment from the banking sector to improve their digital experience... then they will have to drop some of their services which used to be available manually,” Al-Ghurair said on Monday.
UAE banks have been hit by tough government measures to curb the spread of coronavirus, which forced many businesses to temporarily shutter.
Many restrictions have eased since May, though Dubai, which does not have the oil wealth of Abu Dhabi, remains vulnerable as its economy is heavily dependent on tourism, transport and trade.
Emirates NBD said its impairment allowances had increased to 4.2 billion dirhams by June-end from 2.6 billion in the first quarter, with an annualized net cost of risk of 172 basis points.
Its non-performing loan ratio was 5.8 percent at the end of the second quarter, and its total assets were 694.3 billion dirhams, up 29 percent from a year ago.
The bank’s underlying operating performance remained “good,” and the “robust” balance sheet would help it navigate the challenges of low interest rates, low oil prices and the impact of the pandemic, Sullivan said.


Egypt receives 1.4 million tourists in second half of 2020

Updated 23 January 2021

Egypt receives 1.4 million tourists in second half of 2020

  • Al-Anani said that 756 hotels and 1,039 tourist restaurants have obtained health and safety certificates since the start of the pandemic
  • Charges for trips to Luxor, Aswan, Sharm El Sheikh, Taba and Hurghada were reduced and ticket prices for all archaeological sites and museums were halved

CAIRO: As of December, Egypt received 1.4 million tourists since the resumption of the tourism activities at the beginning of July, bringing the total number of tourists during 2020 to 3.7 million.
Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Khaled Al-Anani revealed this during a meeting with the Egyptian Prime Minister, Mostafa Madbouly, to review the ministry’s plans to combat the coronavirus.
He said that 756 hotels and 1,039 tourist restaurants have obtained health and safety certificates since the start of the pandemic.
The minister also reviewed the domestic tourism initiative Winter in Egypt and the discounted prices in this initiative.
Charges for trips to Luxor, Aswan, Sharm El Sheikh, Taba and Hurghada were reduced and ticket prices for all archaeological sites and museums were halved.
The minister also reviewed the follow-up on the Cabinet’s decisions to support the tourism sector.
The minister discussed the support offered to the tourism sector, including the procedures to obtain credit facilities and to extend support though the Ministry of Social Solidarity to tourist guides until the end of December 2020.
On Friday, the Egyptian government cut the price of fuel for the aviation sector to support the tourism sector and stimulate aviation in Egypt. According to a statement, the reduction of 15 cents per gallon will continue until the end of this year.
Tourism revenues in Egypt have fallen by more than 69 percent over the past year, from $13.03 billion in 2019 to $4 billion in 2020, Al-Anani said.