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Tuesday, 12 July 2011

DB Group moves Company Law Board against Etisalat - The Economic Times

DB Group today said it has moved the Company Law Board (CLB) alleging failure on part of UAE-based telecom company Etisalat, its partner in the joint venture Etisalat DB Telecom, to perform certain obligations.

Etisalat, which had offered its experience and expertise to the Indian joint venture - Etisalat DB Telecom - has failed to perform certain obligations, DB Group said in a statement issued here today.

Etisalat, after conducting a detailed due diligence, had invested in the JV and offered experience and expertise as an international telecom operator by undertaking certain obligations under a Shareholders Agreement and a Management Services Agreement, DB spokesperson said in the statement.

MENA stock markets close - July 12, 2011

ExchangeStatus IndexChange
TASI (Saudi Stock Market)
DFM (Dubai Financial Market)
ADX (Abudhabi Securities Exchange)
KSE (Kuwait Stock Exchange)
BSE (Bahrain Stock Exchange)
MSM (Muscat Securities Market)
QE (Qatar Exchange)
LSE (Beirut Stock Exchange)
EGX 30 (Egypt Exchange)
ASE (Amman Stock Exchange)
TUNINDEX (Tunisia Stock Exchange)
CB (Casablanca Stock Exchange)
PSE (Palestine Securities Exchange)

International slump hits Dubai's market - The National

Dubai's measure slumped to new low today as traders tracked a slump across international markets prompted by increasing concern over Greece's debt crisis.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index slumped more than 1 per cent 1,532.92 points, the lowest level in a week, while the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index slumped 0.4 per cent to 2,713.30 points.

US lawmakers failed to agree on cutting the deficit amid rising concern that Greece's debt crisis may spread to other European nations.

Crude output growing, demand outlook unclear: OPEC - MarketWatch

OPEC's oil production increased by 0.5 million barrels a day in June as Saudi Arabia and other Arab members in the Gulf region raised output, but it remains short of expected demand later this summer, the group said in its monthly report Tuesday.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries also said medium-term oil demand looks more fragile and its growth rate will probably slow slightly next year. However, widespread economic uncertainty, particularly the 'wild card' of U.S. oil demand, makes the market difficult to predict, it warned.

The report, prepared in the month following a deep rupture within OPEC at its Vienna meeting over whether to increase production quotas, will give ammunition to both sides of the split.

Kuwait's NBK Q2 net profit falls 4.5 pct; misses view | Reuters

National Bank of Kuwait (NBKK.KW) (NBK), the country's biggest bank, posted a 4.5 percent drop in second-quarter net profit, missing analysts forecasts.

The lender reported net profit of 65.9 million dinars ($240.2 million) for the second quarter, compared with a net profit of 69 million dinars for the same period last year, it said in a bourse statement on Tuesday.

Analysts polled by Reuters expected NBK to post a net profit of 79.9 million dinars for the second-quarter.

OPEC Oil Production Rose in June as Saudi Output Climbs 5.1% - Bloomberg

OPEC crude oil production jumped last month as Saudi Arabia, the group’s biggest exporter, pumped the most since 2008.

The 11 members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries bound by quotas produced 26.9 million barrels a day in June, the group’s Vienna-based secretariat said today in its monthly oil market report. That’s up from 26.4 million in May.

“Saudi Arabia led the crude oil output increase, followed by the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Venezuela and Iraq,” the group said “Output from Angola, Nigeria and Libya experienced the largest declines.”

First Gulf Bank sets up new $3.5 bln sukuk programme | Reuters

Abu Dhabi's First Gulf Bank (FGB.AD) has set up a new $3.5 billion Islamic bond programme, a London Stock Exchange filing showed, paving the way for the lender's first sukuk sale.

FGB, 67-percent owned by Abu Dhabi's ruling family, picked Citi (C.N), Standard Chartered (STAN.L) and HSBC (HSBA.L) to arrange the program, a prospectus from the lender, dated July 11 showed.

The UAE's second largest lender by market value said in March that the bank was considering an Islamic bond as it planned to tap debt markets this year. Sukuk yields in the Gulf have narrowed significantly in recent months, a sign of returning confidence and demand for regional Islamic paper.

Bahrain financial woes worsened by Libya -

Bahrain's financial problems from political unrest are being made worse by investment links to embattled Libya, a widely known issue in the financial industry that came to the fore as Moody's downgraded Arab Banking Corp., the kingdom's banking giant.

Earlier this year Bahrain suffered downgrades of its sovereign debt ratings by in response to the government's violent crackdown on political activists.

The ABC downgrades could be more far-reaching, however, because of very large Libyan stake in the bank, analysts said.

Bahrain steps up spending in bid to revitalise economy: Times of Oman

As troubled quarter draws to a close, the Government of Bahrain has announced the initiation of talks with representatives of various opposition groups in order to move the national reconciliation process forward and to ensure that meaningful democratic reforms are agreed and the process of change initiated, according to a MarketView by CB Richard Ellis.

The government’s budgets for 2011 and 2012 have also now been agreed and suggest a vigorous programme of investment intended to reinvigorate a difficult domestic economic climate, says the survey.

The study further states that in 2011, government income is forecast to be 2.29 billion Bahraini dinars with expenditure forecast at 3.12 billion dinars — a deficit of 836 million dinars.

Egypt's Citadel appoints Citigroup as adviser | Reuters

Egyptian private equity firm Citadel Capital has appointed Citigroup Inc as a financial adviser, Citadel said in a letter to the stock exchange on Tuesday.

'Citadel Capital appointed (on Monday) Citigroup Global Markets Ltd. as financial adviser to look into all the strategic alternatives available to the firm and to provide guidance on any possible acquisition offers,' the letter said.

Citadel Capital said last month it was in possible buy-out talks with more than one potential strategic partner.

Engineer: Harmon in Vegas would collapse in quake |

The unfinished Harmon hotel tower at CityCenter on the Las Vegas Strip would likely collapse in a strong earthquake, a structural engineer told casino operator MGM Resorts International on Monday.

The report sent to the casino company by Weidlinger Associates of Marina del Rey, Calif., says it would take at least one year to figure out what kind of repairs would be required to save the tower.

'In a code-level earthquake, using either the permitted or current code specified loads, it is likely that critical structural members in the tower will fail and become incapable of supporting gravity loads, leading to a partial or complete collapse of the tower,' said Chukwuma G. Ekwueme, an associated principal of Weidlinger.

gulfnews : Bank of Sharjah funds university business studies chair

The American University of Sharjah (AUS) has established the Bank of Sharjah Chair in Finance and Business Administration with a contribution of Dh15 million by the bank.

A recent meeting of the university's Board of Trustees, held at its campus, passed a resolution appreciating the bank as a prominent member of the "Friend of the University" group for establishing the chair.

It said the establishment of the chair will contribute to the enrichment of teaching and research at AUS, as envisioned by His Highness Dr. Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qassimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, who is also the President of AUS.

gulfnews : Emirates superjumbos fully funded for next year

Emirates, investing in a wide-body jet fleet including 90 Airbus A380 superjumbos worth $34 billion (Dh124.8 billion) at list prices, said financing the planes isn't a concern and that it's fully funded through July 2012.

A $1 billion bond issue last month was "opportunistic" and Emirates would consider a further sale given "suitable" pricing, Gary Chapman, President of Dnata and Services, Emirates Group, said in an interview.

The world's biggest international airline would consider seeking a credit rating if such a move appeared advantageous, he said.

gulfnews : UAE bourses set for S&P upgrade

The UAE is under review for a possible upgrade to emerging market status in the country classification for the Standard & Poor's (S&P) Global Equity Index Series in 2012, according to an S&P document seen by Gulf News on Monday.

The move could open the floodgates to foreign capital inflows into the country's cash-strapped markets.

"By August 26, we will conclude the consultation process. Then we will review it with our index committee in New York. In the first quarter of of 2012, the announcement will be made, if there's an upgrade," Charbel S. Azzi, S&P Indices Head of Client Coverage (Middle East and Africa) told Gulf News in a telephone interview.

gulfnews : Regulatory climate helps Bahrain retain banking, finance industry

Banks and businesses are not leaving Bahrain despite protests in the kingdom. The latest Bahrain spotlight by property consultancy CBRE says that cheap office rents in Dubai, and upbeat economic outlook in Qatar, have not been enough to draw the country's banking and finance industry to new markets.

'It simply hasn't happened at all. Dubai and Qatar have been on about this for years but it is not about office space, it is about regulatory environment,' Mike Williams, the author of the report, told Gulf News.

He added that the presence of 435 financial institutions in Bahrain, as well as its history as a banking hub, remained attractive to banks and businesses despite the recent events in the country.

Oil partners look to future - The National

ExxonMobil hopes to see better incentives in any renewal of its concession to pump oil from Abu Dhabi, a senior executive says.

The world's largest oil company is one of four partners in Abu Dhabi's largest oil concession, which is due to expire in three years after a 75-year run.

The foreign partners - the others are BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Total - receive US$1 a barrel for oil they produce from the concession, which covers about half of the emirate's 2.8 million barrels per day (bpd) capacity.

Saudi Arabia leads MENA in assets under management |

The MENA funds industry registered $64.5 billion in assets under management (AUM) at the end of Q1 2011 for funds domiciled in the region, Zawya, a leading online provider of business intelligence, said in its new quarterly funds ranking results.

With a total of 243 domiciled funds, Saudi Arabia continues to lead the way with $23.7 billion in AUM followed by Morocco with $13.2 billion and Kuwait with $8.9 billion.

Compared to the previous quarter, only two- countries posted net funds inflow: Jordan ($1.6 million) and Oman ($1.3 million). All others showed net outflow.

Of the 12 sampled asset types, five posted net inflow, while the rest showed net outflow. Fixed Income funds had the largest net inflow with $139 million, while Trade Finance funds were the bigger losers with net outflow of $1.52 billion.

Greeks should take a leaf out of Dubai's book

At last, some sanity in the increasingly desperate Greek debt crisis.
EU leaders are now thinking the previously unthinkable, and considering a plan to let Greece default on some of its private-sector bonds.
If adopted - a full deal is still some way off - it would prepare the way for payment of life-saving financial injections from the EU and other international financial institutions, amounting to perhaps €200 billion (Dh1.03 trillion), to keep the country afloat for the next two years.

MIDEAST STOCKS-Global mkts weigh on Gulf, Saudi banks in focus | News by Country | Reuters

Gulf markets came under late selling pressure on Monday weighed down by worries about euro zone debt contagion and overshadowing robust earnings from a key Saudi petrochemicals producer.

European and U.S. stocks fell on Monday and the euro fell across the board on concerns that Italy could be the next debt victim. [MKTS/GLOB]

"You have fears from global markets, you have the seasonal affect of low volumes and Ramadan is coming up, which is a major factor because people are just waiting for the results to come out before they pack up," said a Riyadh-based fund manager who asked not to be identified.

Dubai raises $800 million to fund RTA projects

Dubai has completed an $800 million (over Dh2.9 billion) financing facility based on future revenues from Salik tolls that will be used to fund the emirate’s infrastructure projects.

This huge spending in infrastructure projects would create a lot of jobs and also contribute to the growth of Dubai significantly, according to financial experts.

“The deal was completed on July 5 and the response was strong enough to allow the government to reduce the margin to 325 basis points above the London interbank offered rate from 350 basis points,” Bloomberg said, quoting the MEED website.

UAE officials to discuss $3 bln package in Egypt | Reuters

Officials from the United Arab Emirates will visit Cairo in July to discuss a $3 billion package of support for Egypt's economy that has been hit by political turmoil, the Egyptian finance minister said on Monday.

The UAE is the latest wealthy Gulf Arab state to offer Egypt financial help. Saudi Arabia and Qatar have both offered cash, including help to finance the budget after revenues were hit from the slowdown in business and as tourists fled.

"We had a $3 billion package from the Emirates last week. They are coming to discuss the details in the third week of this month," Finance Minister Samir Radwan told Reuters.