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Sunday, 10 June 2012

South Africa, Saudi Arabia Plan $2.4 Billion Venture - Bloomberg

South Africa and Saudi Arabia will start a 20 billion rand holding company to improve business relationships between the two countries, South Africa’s trade and industry department said in an e-mailed statement today.

UAE swings into $11 bln fiscal surplus in 2011 -IMF | Reuters

The United Arab Emirates' public finances swung into a surplus of 2.9 percent of economic output in 2011 after two years of deficits as robust oil income offset an increase in government spending, a report by the International Monetary Fund showed.

The world's No. 3 oil exporter booked a consolidated fiscal surplus of 38.6 billion dirhams ($10.5 billion) compared with a deficit of 23.0 billion, or 2.1 percent of gross domestic product, in 2010, according to Reuters calculations based on IMF estimates and government data.

However, the 2011 surplus was only a fraction of fiscal surpluses enjoyed before the global financial crisis. They averaged 167 billion dirhams annually in 2006-2008.

MIDEAST STOCKS-Bank Nizwa jumps on Oman debut; Saudi, UAE up - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Bank Nizwa, Oman's first listed Islamic bank, surged on its market debut, although traders warn selling pressure from retail investors could curtail further gains in the coming days.
The stock ended 12.8 percent higher, with 87 million shares changing hands. The most shares traded on any day on the Muscat benchmark index in the last two years was 47.2 million. Bank Nizwa is not yet included in the index.
"It was very impressive. But there was huge selling pressure on the stock, with a lot of retail investors offloading today," said Adel Nasr, brokerage manager at United Securities. Institutions and high net worth investors are buying the stock, Nasr added, but the selling pressure is likely to result in a drop-off sooner rather than later.

MENA stock markets close - June 10, 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)

STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-Saudi rises to largest gain in 7 weeks - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Saudi Arabia's index makes its largest one-day gain in more than seven weeks as most stocks on the exchange trade up.
The exchange advances 1.3 percent to 6,749 points, its highest one-day gain since April 21.
Kingdom Holding leaps 5.5 percent to its highest close since May 15. Al Rajhi Bank, the kingdom's largest bank by market capitalisation, rises 2.4 percent.

Cross-border clout still denied to Islamic banks | Reuters

Established in 2007, Dubai-based Noor Islamic Bank said it planned to become the world's largest Islamic lender within five years, and would consider acquisitions to reach that goal.

But the global financial crisis dented those plans, and today Noor Islamic is focused on its domestic retail and takaful (Islamic insurance) businesses, with much of its overseas activity concentrated in Turkey and Tunisia.

"There are no plans to acquire any operations," chief executive Hussain Al Qemzi told Reuters in an interview. The priority is improving efficiency and cost-cutting, as part of efforts to strengthen the bank's financial position, he added.

UAE's Aldar, Sorouh in due diligence on potential merger | Reuters

Due diligence has begun on the potential state-backed merger of indebted Abu Dhabi developer Aldar Properties and smaller rival Sorouh Real Estate , the two firms said on Sunday.

The developers also named advisors to the two sides with Credit Suisse advising Aldar while Morgan Stanley is working with Sorouh. Goldman Sachs and National Bank of Abu Dhabi are advisors to the steering committee overseeing the proposed tie-up.

"A due diligence process is now underway to assess in detail the implications for all stakeholders and this process will take a number of months," a joint statement from the companies said.

Reuters reported in May that those banks had been appointed to the roles.

IMF: UAE may face risks from deepening euro crisis | Reuters

The United Arab Emirates and other Gulf countries could face major financial repercussions if the euro zone debt crisis spreads from the bloc's peripheral states to its core and infects global markets, the International Monetary Fund said.

Risks are particularly serious for economies that depend on foreign financing and have financial links to Europe, the IMF said in a report dated April 27, which it prepared for consultations with the UAE and released in June.

"While vulnerabilities have decreased since 2008, the results of this analysis nonetheless suggest that the (UAE) authorities need to remain vigilant to global shocks and continue to strengthen buffers."

Ominvest unit IPO delayed to Sept; shares slump - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Oman Arab Bank, the banking arm of Oman International Development and Investment Co (Ominvest), has delayed its initial public offering (IPO) until September, according to a report published by the Oman News
The bank sent a letter to the Capital Markets Authority informing the regulator of its decision to postpone the offering on the Muscat bourse, the report on the state-run news service said, although no reason for the move was cited.
Shares in Ominvest, which was planning to offload a significant portion of its stake in the IPO, fell 5.6 percent on
the Muscat Securities Market on Sunday.

Sunland says it will appeal Dubai fraud ruling - Real Estate -

Australia’s Sunland Group has said it will appeal its civil case against a Melbourne businessman who the property developer accused of deceiving it in a US$14m land transaction in Dubai.
The Gold Coast-based firm accused Matthew Joyce and Angus Reed of duping it into paying the multimillion dollar consultancy fee to release a plot in Nakheel’s cancelled Dubai Waterfront project, but a judge dismissed the case last week.
“[We] disagree in the strongest possible terms with the judgment handed down,” a Sunland Group spokesperson told the Sydney Morning Herald, adding it would appeal the decision.

Talks for $500 mln Gulf Marine sale collapse- sources | Reuters

A potential $500 million sale of a 79-percent stake in Gulf Marine Services (GMS) by its Abu Dhabi-based private equity owner has collapsed due to financing issues and differences over valuation, three sources said.

They said that talks between seller Gulf Capital, a regional private equity firm with around $1 billion in assets and two bidders shortlisted from over a dozen suitors had ended, in a fresh blow to private equity exits in the region.

"There was a buy-sell price gap and the buyers could not get the financing sorted out. American and European investors were the final bidders but talks are now back in ground zero," said one of the sources.

Abu Dhabi Shares Rise Most in 2 Months on Etisalat Ownership Bet - Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi’s stocks rallied the most in more than two months on bets the government may permit foreigners to buy shares of Emirates Telecommunications Corp. (ETISALAT), the largest publicly traded company in the United Arab Emirates.
Etisalat, as the phone company is known, advanced the most since January even after it said it’s not aware of any decision to change the law that governs foreign ownership. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC (ADCB), the U.A.E.’s third-biggest lender, gained 1.3 percent. The ADX General Index (ADSMI) rose 0.7 percent, the most in intraday trade since April 1, to 2,456.21 at 12:20 p.m. in Abu Dhabi. The Bloomberg GCC 200 Index (BGCC200) climbed 0.1 percent and Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul All Share Index (SASEIDX) rose less than 0.1 percent.

Bank Nizwa Jumps in Debut on Islamic Banks Demand: Muscat Mover - Bloomberg

Bank Nizwa surged as much as 17 percent as Oman’s first Islamic lender started trading in Muscat on investor speculation demand for Shariah-compliant services will grow.
The shares, which have a nominal value of 0.100 rial, jumped to as high as 0.119 rial before trimming gains to close at 0.115 rial. Oman’s benchmark MSM30 Index (MSM30) declined 0.5 percent, the most in a week.
Until Bank Nizwa’s formation, Oman was the only country in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council without dedicated Islamic banks. Bank Nizwa will start operations in the third quarter, according to its website.

REFILE-UAE's Dana Gas shuffles board amid debt talks | Reuters

Sharjah-based Dana Gas, the energy firm which has a $1 billion Islamic bond, or sukuk, due in October, has appointed a new chairman, it said in a bourse filing on Sunday.

Adel Khalid Al Sabeeh, previously deputy chairman, replaces Hamid Jafar as chairman, according to the results of an annual general meeting held on June 7. Jafar remains a board member, the company said.

Dana also named Tawfeeq Abdulrahman al Moayed as its new deputy chairman. No reason for the changes to the company's board were given in the bourse filing.

An authority needed to deal with insolvency |

THERE are a number of insolvent people. Some of them have become so because of circumstances and the passage of difficult times. Others have become insolvent as a result of debts that were caused by the mad plunge into the stock market. A third group became insolvent because of taking loans from various sources to meet pressing needs such as marriage, building a house or settling a debt.
There are other insolvents who incurred losses as a result of their working in various business fields they were not good at or because they co-signed on loans for people who did not honor their commitments before disappearing altogether, leaving them into unpleasant confrontations with the creditors. There are also those who took loans and spent them on un-Islamic practices. They are not worthy of compassion by virtue of their deeds.
These debts have led some good people to prison and turned their lives to one of misery.

Gulf Times – Qatari lenders’ Q1 bond issue substantial despite retreat of Europe banks

Qatari banks were able to issue substantial amounts of long-term bonds in the first quarter of the year despite challenges posed by European banks’ moves to reduce lending to the region, Standard & Poor’s said in the launch edition of its “Middle East Outlook”.
Qatar’s banking system operates with loan-to-deposit ratios of above 100%, the report said. GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) banks’ access to wholesale banking remains generally healthy, despite the European banking crisis, S&P said.