Major stock markets in the Gulf ended higher on Monday, with financial shares boosting the Dubai index.
Saudi Arabia's benchmark index rose 0.5%, with Dr Sulaiman Al-Habib Medical Services rising 3.1% and Saudi Telecom Company gaining 1.8%.
The kingdom plans to resume tourist visas by early 2021 after months of suspension as part of efforts to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Saudi Arabia's tourism minister told Reuters.
Dubai's main share index rose 0.7%, buoyed by a 1.9% gain in Emirates NBD Bank and a 1.2% increase in sharia-compliant lender Dubai Islamic Bank.
Amongst others, Aramex closed up 2.1%, snapping two sessions of losses triggered after the logistics firm on Wednesday confirmed that a portion of its warehouse facility in Morocco had been damaged in a fire.
The Abu Dhabi index edged up 0.1%, supported by a 3% leap in aquaculture firm International Holding .
In Qatar, the index climbed 0.7%, as most of its member stocks ended in positive territory including Qatar Insurance Company , which surged 8.2%.
On Thursday, ratings agency Moody's affirmed the Gulf state's Aa3 rating, while maintaining a stable outlook.
Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index firmed 0.6%, with tobacco monopoly Eastern Company jumping 4.8%.
Egypt has hired banks ahead of a potential issuance of dollar-denominated green bonds, a document showed on Monday.
The bonds would enhance foreign investors' confidence in the Egyptian economy and attract those interested in environmental returns, Finance Minister Mohamed Maait said on Sunday.
(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru Editing by Tomasz Janowski) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))