Middle East and North Africa Top Business Stories – March 31

Dubai/Emirates Airline – “The Dubai government pledged support for Emirates, the world’s largest long-haul airline, as the coronavirus pandemic hits the global aviation industry, triggering a crescendo of pleas from carriers around the world for state aid,” The National reports.

Turkey Economy – “President Tayyip Erdogan is under growing pressure from unions and the opposition for a lockdown to slow the spread of coronavirus, but insists that Turkey should ‘keep wheels turning’ in the economy and that people continue going to work,” Reuters reports.

Iran Coronavirus – “Iran’s death toll from coronavirus has reached 2,898, with 141 deaths in the past 24 hours, Health Ministry spokesman Kianush Jahanpur told state TV on Tuesday, adding that the total number of infections has jumped to 44,606,” Reuters reports.

Iraq/Umm Qasr Port – “French container transportation and shipping company CMA CGM, has announced the first closing of its agreement with China Merchants Port (CMP), with the sale of its stakes in eight port terminals to Terminal Link. Among the facilities involved is the Umm Qasr Terminal in Iraq,” Iraq Business News reports.

Lebanon Banks – “Banks in cash-strapped Lebanon have suspended dollar withdrawals until the airport reopens, a banking source said on Monday, after authorities grounded flights to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus,” Jordan Times/AFP reports.

Egypt/Sawiris – “Businessman Naguib Sawiris warned Sunday against the continuation of the curfew after the two scheduled weeks, noting that the private sector is forced to cut salaries and cut out part of the employment,” Egypt Today reports.

Algeria/Sonatrach – “Sonatrach group intends to reduce by 50% its budget in 2020 and postpone non-urgent projects following the impact of the new coronavirus (Covid 19) on oil markets, said CEO Toufik Hakkar in an interview with “El-Khabar” daily released Sunday,” Algeria Press Service reports.



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