Author: Rania Hassan

Be it smartphones, automobiles, computers, laptops, smartwatches or white goods connected to the internet, artificial intelligence (AI) is all around. “AI touches almost every aspect of our lives,” said a 2017 PwC report titled Sizing the prize: What’s the real value of AI for your business and how can you capitalize. “And it’s only just getting started.” Companies should increasingly rely on it to improve their operations if they want to compete against established names at home and abroad. “While some markets, sectors and individual businesses are more advanced than others, AI is still at a very early stage of…

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This year has been a tiring one for companies in Egypt. Interest rates went from 8.25% to 13.25%, and the pound devalued twice from EGP 16 to the dollar in January to EGP 24.5 at press time. Meanwhile, bottlenecked global supply chains and the war in Ukraine have fueled global inflation as friction increases between the United States and China over trade and Taiwan. According to the World Economic Forum’s annual Global Risks Report published in July: “We have entered an era that will increasingly be defined by risk.” In today’s world, the nature of risks can be economic, environmental,…

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At the conclusion of last year’s U.N. Conference of the Parties (COP26), Alok Sharma, then COP president, praised the agreements reached. However, he stressed the next COP (COP27) must build on that work. “The Glasgow Climate Pact … emphasizes the need to act. It sets a clear way forward on the Global Goal on Adaptation and urges developed countries to at least double their collective climate finance for adaptation by 2025.” During that closing speech, Sharma stressed that a “gulf remains between short-term targets and what is needed” to limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above…

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Focusing on a company’s own emissions targets is proving insufficient to reach the U.N.’s 2030 and 2050 climate goals. “To reach net zero … supply chain emissions must be addressed by businesses globally,” said the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), a CEO-led organization, in a paper published in June. “Decarbonization within the supply chain plays a critical role in realizing net-zero ambitions.” In July, Siemens-sponsored content published in the Harvard Business Review estimated “up to 90% of a product’s emissions occur directly in the company’s supply chain rather than in its own operations.” In a May blog, Mike…

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With an expected growth rate of 30% this year, e-commerce in Egypt is outpacing almost all other economic activity. “E-commerce is the future of trade activity, and it is expected to expand in conjunction with opening more markets around the world,” Sherif Makhlouf, CEO of BOOST for Consultations, a local think tank, told Al Ahram in January. “Ready-made garments, food and electronic devices are the most prominent sectors likely to achieve a boom by the end of 2022.” According to a report by Shopify, a major e-commerce platform, that growth trend is everywhere. “There have never been as many opportunities,”…

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In the coming years, one of the biggest challenges facing low and middle-income nations will be finding enough funds to finance the increasing number of eco-friendly (green) projects to meet the UN’s 2030 climate ambitions. “With COP27 [the 27th Conference of the Parties] and COP28 both in the Arab world, support for sustainability projects will sharply increase in the region,” Salem Patel, head of asset management for GFH Finance Group, a GCC-based firm, wrote in an April blog post. “Now is an excellent time for investors to harness the opportunities available.” One potent tool used to finance green projects is…

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