Chemical Sustainability in the Gulf Will Be Highlight of GPCA Forum in December

Proceedings of the GPCA in 2020. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
Proceedings of the GPCA in 2020. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
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Chemical Sustainability in the Gulf Will Be Highlight of GPCA Forum in December

Proceedings of the GPCA in 2020. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
Proceedings of the GPCA in 2020. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

The Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA) is set to discuss the challenges facing the sector and propose solutions for them at the 16th edition of the annual forum in December.

The forum, “Shaping a Sustainable Future with Chemicals”, will take place in Riyadh for the first time from December 6 to 8.

Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman will deliver the inaugural speech and chair a dialogue session with Gulf energy ministers.

GPCA Secretary General Dr. Abdulwahab Al-Sadoun said this year’s forum is being held amid extraordinary circumstances in the world.

The chemical industry is facing several challenges, most notably in regards to climate, food security and the economy, creating uncertainty over the future of the industry.

Al-Sadoun said he was looking forward to discussions that would provide solutions to global challenges and highlight how digitization and innovation can contribute to the industry.

Participants will also spotlight plans set in place by companies to commit to their obligations toward sustainability and decarbonization.

Welcome remarks will be delivered by Eng. Abdulrahman Al-Fageeh, Acting Chief Executive Officer of SABIC and Chairman of the GPCA.

It will be followed by an inaugural address by Prince Abdulaziz.

Energy ministers will hold a panel on “Balancing net-zero ambitions in the energy sector with growth – A policymaker’s balancing act.”

Keynote sessions on December 6 will feature Amin Nasser, President and CEO of Saudi Aramco, and Dr. Martin Brudermuller, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF.

Talks at the three-day event will focus on the most urgent issues affecting the sector, including the transformation to clean energy, changing the concepts of environmental and social practices, restructuring future supply chains of chemicals, and innovation in the agri-nutrients industry.

The GPCA annual forum was launched in 2006 and has become the key event in the chemicals industry regionally and globally.

More than 2,500 representatives of around 600 companies from 91 countries will participate in this year’s edition.



Egypt's Central Bank Leaves Key Interest Rates Unchanged

A general view of Dahab Island or Gold Island (Gezirit el-Dahab) in the middle of the Nile River in Cairo, Egypt, July 2, 2024. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh
A general view of Dahab Island or Gold Island (Gezirit el-Dahab) in the middle of the Nile River in Cairo, Egypt, July 2, 2024. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh
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Egypt's Central Bank Leaves Key Interest Rates Unchanged

A general view of Dahab Island or Gold Island (Gezirit el-Dahab) in the middle of the Nile River in Cairo, Egypt, July 2, 2024. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh
A general view of Dahab Island or Gold Island (Gezirit el-Dahab) in the middle of the Nile River in Cairo, Egypt, July 2, 2024. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

Egypt's central bank left its overnight interest rates unchanged on Thursday, as expected, saying economic growth remained slow but that inflation has been decreasing.
The bank's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) left the deposit rate at 27.25% and the lending rate at 28.25%.
All but one of 18 analysts in a Reuters poll had expected rates to remain unchanged, with the sole analyst forecasting a cut of 100 basis points (bps).
The decision keeps the overnight deposit rate below that of headline inflation, which was 27.5% in June. Real interest rates have been negative since January 2022. Inflation declined in June for a fourth straight month after soaring to a record 38% in September.
The MPC expects inflation to come down sharply in the first half of 2025.
"The gradual unwinding of food inflation along with the improvement of inflation expectations suggest that inflation is on a sustained downward trajectory," the MPC said.
Gross domestic product inched down to an annualized 2.2% in the first quarter from 2.3% in the final quarter of 2023, the MPC added.
"Leading indicators for Q2 2024 suggest that economic activity remains subdued. Consequently, real GDP growth is expected to slow down in FY 2023/24 compared to the previous fiscal year, before recovering in FY 2024/25," it said.
Egypt reported GDP of 3.8% in 2022/23.
The central bank raised interest rates by 600 bps on March 6 as part of an agreement with the IMF, bringing total increases since the beginning of the year to 800 bps. Egypt also sharply devalued its currency against the dollar under its IMF accord.