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Friday, 16 September 2011

FT Alphaville » Gulf Keystone plots $200m fund raising

Earlier this week Gulf Keystone Petroleum – the next super major oil company – spelled out its plans for the future.

The highlights were a move to the main market of the London stock exchange from Aim and a plan to develop a pipeline capable of carrying 440,000 barrels a day north from its Shaikan field to the Kirkuk-Ceyhan export pipeline.

Chief executive Todd F Kozel said this would be funded by the sale of its 20 per cent stake in the Akri-Bijeel block, which is majority owned by partner MOL Hungarian Oil & Gas and could fetch as much as $300m-$350m.

Growth slump expected in protest-hit Arab states - Maktoob News

Growth rates in Arab countries are expected to slump in the wake of a wave of pro-democracy protests, the chairman of the Arab Monetary Fund told a meeting in Doha on Thursday.

Countries hit by protests which toppled autocratic leaders in Tunisia and Egypt earlier this year "will see a slump if not a contraction in growth rates," Jasem al-Manaie said at a meeting of governors of Arab central banks.

"The reluctance of foreign investment and continued pressure on reserves and currencies combined with the possibility of increased unemployment... will increase the financial burdens on these countries," he warned.

Qatar benefits as companies look beyond developed world - The National

The number of new companies licensed with Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) has doubled this year as it benefits from the country's spectacular growth as well as the unrest affecting neighbouring Bahrain.

QFC was receiving growing interest from Asia as banks in the developed world take stock amid slowing global growth.

"There's been an increase in interest," said Akshay Randeva, the head of strategic development at the Qatar Financial Centre Authority. "If we look at the outlook for QFC, we have a positive pipeline."

Libya seeks urgent release of $160bn - The National

Libya has called on governments to unlock faster US$160 billion (Dh587.66bn) of frozen assets linked to the former Qaddafi regime as it seeks to get its economy moving again.

The country has asked Arab central bank governors for financial assistance and technical support, said Abdulla Saudi, a representative of the Libyan central bank.

"There's been some good amounts [of assets unfrozen] to get things moving," he said. "Maybe we would like to see the speed at a better rate."

Qatar Airways postpones IPO amid economic jitters - MarketWatch

Qatar Airways postponed an initial public offering because of the uncertainty surrounding global economic growth, according to a Zawya Dow Jones report. The Middle East carrier had planned to launch its public offering later this year, and was mulling a dual listing in Doha and London. Airline stocks have declined sharply year to date, with the benchmark NYSE Arca Airline Index off by roughly 27% because of fears the global economy was headed to a recession. U.S. airlines said earlier this week they have yet to see any signs of slowing demand and were recently able to hike base ticket prices by about $10 a roundtrip ticket.

AFP: Kuwait's Global Investment seeks debt moratorium

Kuwait's Global Investment House requested its creditors Thursday to delay repayment of debt due in December citing ongoing challenges in the financial markets.

"Global requested the lending banks? support for the near-term deferral of principal repayments due in December 2011 and deferral of any increase in rate of interest from December 2011 onwards," the company said following a meeting with creditors.

Under a restructuring plan signed in December 2009, Global was expected to repay more than $340 million of debt plus interest.

All quiet on ADX as 66th company lists shares - The National

There was little fanfare for the latest listing on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange.

Just a handful of day traders watched yesterday as Eshraq Properties became the 66th company to list shares on an exchange where trading volume has fallen to a third of the average.

"Can you say we will make money from buying the shares of Eshraq?" an Emirati day trader asked company officials. "I've lost half my capital over the past year."

gulfnews : Trade creditors keen to sell Nakheel bonds

Trade creditors holding the recently issued first tranche of developer Nakheel's five-year Islamic bonds, or sukuk, are inviting bids for the paper, but buyers are so far limited, traders said.

The $1.03 billion (Dh3.78 billion) issue, the first instalment of a total $1.31 billion offered as part of a restructuring deal to repay trade creditors, was issued at the end of August, and offers a profit rate of 10 per cent.

Two market sources told Reuters that investment bank Morgan Stanley was holding an auction for Dh320 million of bonds offered by an undisclosed seller.

Gulf Times – Dubai’s Drydocks refinancing talks stall on guarantees

Dubai’s Drydocks has an outstanding loan of $2.2bn Talks between Drydocks, Dubai World’s shipyard arm, and its creditors about the refinancing of a $2.2bn loan have stalled over whether the Dubai government will guarantee the new loans, sources familiar with the situation said.

Drydocks is a ship-building and repair company based in Dubai and owned by Dubai World, which in turn is controlled by the government of Dubai. Earlier this year, Dubai World finalised a $25bn debt restructuring that didn’t include Drydocks.

At the heart of the ongoing negotiations between Drydocks and its lenders lies the government’s willingness to put a guarantee on the table, a key demand by bankers who have been seeking more explicit government support for large-scale restructurings, especially in the light of Dubai’s recent debt troubles.

Erdogan’s brand benefits Arabs and the west -


As Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s prime minister, continues his triumphal tour of Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, the countries that have successfully overthrown tyrannies in the unfoldingArab awakening, he can justly lay claim to be the most popular politician in the Arab world.

There are those who argue he is the non-Arab leader Arabs have most admired since Saladin – a Kurd from Mesopotamia – recaptured Jerusalem from the Crusaders in 1187.

In western capitals, Mr Erdogan is decried for his strident Israel-bashing, which is seen as cynical populism, a naked play for the Arab gallery. Yet the Turkish leader’s popularity is an invaluable asset – to the Arabs and to the west.