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Sunday, 20 May 2012

gulfnews : Fund to help boost growth of SMEs

Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development (KFED) and the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has announced plans to launch the Imtiyaz SME Development Fund.
The private equity fund is aimed at encouraging Emirati entrepreneurship and providing equity financing to promising new small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) or fast-growing existing SMEs.
The Group Chief Executive of NBAD Michael Tomalin, and the Chief Executive Officer of KFED Abdullah Al Darmaki have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the NBAD head office to jointly establish the fund.

MENA stock markets close - May 20, 2012

 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)

Dubai investor readies new oil refinery | BusinessWorld Online Edition

“There is a listed oil firm in Dubai and we have signed a memorandum of agreement with them to lease land for refinery. The lawyers are just finalizing the terms of a contract,” said Energy Secretary Jose Rene D. Almendras in an interview with reporters last week.

Mr. Almendras said the Philippine National Oil Co.-Alternative Fuels Corp. (PNOC-AFC) will be leasing out a 100-hectare property in Bataan to the firm.

The firm is not expected to partner with a local firm for its operations.

UAE government firms' debt refinancing 'a challenge' - IMF | Energy & Oil | Reuters

Refinancing the debts of the United Arab Emirates' government-related entities (GREs) remains a challenge made more difficult as European banks trim their activities in the region, the International Monetary Fund said on Sunday.

State-owned companies in the UAE, one of the world's top five oil exporters, face $30 billion of maturing debt this year with over $68 billion more in 2013-2015, the IMF report said.

"Refinancing this large amount of maturing debt remains a challenge," the IMF said. "The GREs' high dependence on foreign funding increases the vulnerability to roll-over and financing risk, especially in the current volatile external financial environment."

UPDATE 1-UAE to settle citizens' defaulted loans, up to $1.4 mln | Reuters

The United Arab Emirates will settle up to 5 million dirhams ($1.36 million) of defaulted loans for each indebted Emirati, state news agency WAM said on Sunday, in the second such move by the government this year.

The order from UAE president, Sheikh Khalifa al-Nahayan, will include people in jail, pending trial or convicted over their outstanding debt. Citizens who agreed instalment payments with the courts will also see their debt paid, though they will have to arrange a new payment schedule with the government.

"More than 350 UAE national will benefit from the aid," a government official said, noting that the debt will be paid by the citizens at a later stage according to a special formula based on each case.

STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-Qatar, Abu Dhabi at multi-month lows, Dubai dips - Yahoo! News UK

The Qatar and Abu Dhabi benchmarks slump to multi-month lows, while Dubai gives back almost all of
Thursday's gains to end just above last week's 15-week low as negative global sentiment weighs.
"There are no domestic drivers in either country (UAE and Qatar) so you have to look elsewhere for them and they are all negative right now," says Julian Bruce, EFG-Hermes' director of institutional equity sales.
In Qatar, large-caps weigh on the index, which slips 0.6 percent to 8,403 points, its lowest close since Jan. 24.
Doha Bank drops 2.6 percent and Masraf Al Rayan falls 0.8 percent.

Bahrain's GFH agrees $110 mln sukuk restructuring - Yahoo! News UK

Bahrain-based Islamic investment bank Gulf Finance House (GFH) has obtained approval to restructure a $110 million Islamic bond, extending repayment for six years, the company said in a statement on Sunday.
Sukukholders worth 92 percent of the issue agreed to the restructuring plan, which will push out the maturity to June 2018, the statement said.
GFH has been granted an initial two-year grace period for 2012 and 2013, meaning repayment will start in 2014, with the final instalment due in 2018.

STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-Dubai resumes slide as global worries weigh - Yahoo! News UK

Dubai's index slumps in early trade as gloomy global sentiment weighs on Gulf Arab markets. The Dubai benchmark falls 1 percent to 1,462 points, taking its losses to 16.7 percent since March 5's 16-month high.
Deyaar Development declines 2.3 percent, Union Properties falls 1.4 percent and National Central Cooling Co (Tabreed) dips 3.3 percent.
"It has nothing to do with local micro factors and it is all about the global macro economy," says
Marwan Shurrab, vice-president and chief trader at Gulfmena Investments, highlighting fears over Greece's debt crisis.

Fresh call to revise UAE market rules - The National

Fading investor confidence and declining trading volumes on the UAE's markets have prompted a fresh call for reform from a trade group that represents financial services firms here.

The country should overhaul its market rules to address these issues and retain the interest of institutional investors, said Arwa Hamdieh,a co-founder of the Financial Services Association (UAE).

"The capital markets framework in its current form is not as attractive as it could be to long-term international investors looking at the UAE," she said. "Now is the time to look at and address the framework as a whole."

Libya tries to calm wary investors over review - The National

Libya is seeking to reassure investors concerned about a major review of nearly 10,000 business contracts that were signed by the government of the late Muammar Qaddafi.

A group of 20 people appointed by the National Transitional Council (NTC), the temporary government, is scrutinising the contracts to ensure fairness and hunt for evidence of corruption.

"We respect all agreement[s] and the contracts which have been signed by the old regime," said Mustafa El Huni, the deputy chairman of the NTC.

New financial services watchdog for UAE - The National

A new agency will have daily oversight of financial services in the biggest shake-up of banking and finance in three decades. The change is part of a new banking law that aims to bolster regulation of the industry and reduce the risk of future banking crises.

"The Government has decided to move to a twin peaks regulation model. It will mean you have two regulators for the financial sector - a prudential regulator and a conduct-of-business regulator," said Mazen Boustany, head of banking and finance at Habib Al Mulla, the law firm advising the Ministry of Finance as sponsor of the law.

Responsibility for conduct of business will move from the Central Bank to a beefed-up Securities and Commodities Association, which will be renamed the Financial Services Authority.

Saudis Pass Russia as Largest Oil Producer in March, JODI Says - Bloomberg

Saudi Arabia boosted crude production close to a 31-year high in March, overtaking Russia as the world’s largest producer for the first time in six years, according to the Joint Organization Data Initiative.
Saudi Arabia increased daily output to 9.923 million barrels in March, up 0.7 percent and the second-highest level since at least 1980, according to data posted today on the website of the initiative, known as JODI. That topped Russian production, which hit 9.920 million barrels, for the first time since February 2006, according to the data.
Russia’s energy ministry estimated output at 10.36 million barrels a day in March. JODI said it calculated Russia’s barrels-per-day figures from data in metric tons the country submitted to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, and compared that with information from four other sources. The figures include crude and condensate, according to JODI, which is supervised by the Riyadh-based International Energy Forum.