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Saturday, 6 October 2012

Business - Islamic banking industry has bright future in UAE

The Islamic banking sector has a bright future in the UAE as it has been playing a major role in financing infrastructure projects, residential properties and corporate expansion, a top official of Noor Islamic Bank said.
The Islamic lender, which was established with a vision to be recognised as the financial icon from Dubai, is developing its online and mobile banking products and services to expand its reach to the customers. The bank is all set to launch its latest product – A Bank in Your Hand — at Gitex Technology Week next week.
“Islamic financial instruments have the potential to become a key funding source for the nation’s infrastructure needs,” Hussain Al Qemzi, group chief executive officer of Noor Investment Group and CEO of Noor Islamic Bank, told Khaleej Times in an interview ahead of the World Islamic Retail Banking Conference, starting from October 9.

Saudi says IMF's 2016 deficit forecast is "doomsday scenario" - CNBC

International Monetary Fund forecasts that Saudi Arabia's budget surpluses will gradually decline before dropping into deficit by 2016 are a "doomsday scenario", the kingdom's Finance Minister Ibrahim Alassaf said on Saturday.

The world's top oil exporter has run large budget surpluses since 2009 but the IMF said in a report last month that falling energy prices would hurt the kingdom's fiscal position.

"They have been working on scenarios assuming, I would say, a doomsday scenario which I don't agree with. But we appreciate they are raising these issues in order to be ready," he told reporters after a meeting with IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde in Riyadh.

BBC News - Will Dubai's property bubble burst? Video click here

Kuwait wealth fund to sell Wataniya stake to Qtel -sources - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Qatar Telecom (Qtel) is set to control more than 90 percent of Kuwait's Wataniya after the Gulf state's sovereign wealth fund tendered its entire stake in the unit, two sources familiar with the situation said on Saturday.
Qtel, which operates in 16 countries across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, offered $2.2 billion in August for the 47.5 percent of Wataniya it does not already own.
The tender offer expired on October 4.

Betting the house -

CityCenter, the $9bn complex
that opened in 2009
There is a lot riding on the Sahara redevelopment, with SBE the first company to start a project of this magnitude since the 2008 crash. “We wanted to come in early [in the economic recovery] because construction costs are significantly cheaper than they were,” says Rob Oseland, president and chief operating officer of SLS Las Vegas, shortly before we walk through the empty casino. “As the market returns, real estate values and development projects will come back. It’s been rewarding to be the first ones out because Las Vegas has gone through so much doom and gloom that any sign of growth is celebrated.”

Saudi Stock Market close - October 6, 2012

General Index
Intraday  3 month  
 Daily Statistics
 General Index6887.97
 Change (%)0.01%
 T. Volume156296251
 T. Companies 158

STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-Saudi stocks end flat on Saturday - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Saudi shares close flat on Saturday as gains in banking stocks are offset by losses in the petrochemical index.
The all-share closes flat at 6,888 points. The banking index ends 0.1 percent higher at 15,153 points and the petrochemical index ends 0.2 percent at 5,972 points.
Shares in billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal's Kingdom Holding ended 0.7 percent lower, reversing earlier
gains, after it announced that it sold its interest in the Fairmont Hotel and Raffles Suites & Residences in Manila for $58.1 million.

Saudi Arabia to Lead $740 Billion Oil Spending Through 2017 - Bloomberg

Oil producers in the Middle East and North Africa plan to invest $740 billion on energy projects in the next five years, led by Saudi Arabia, according to Arab Petroleum Investments Corp.
High oil prices will allow them to resume projects that were delayed at the height of the financial crisis, the inter- governmental energy lender said.
Saudi Arabia tops the list with committed investments of $165 billion, mostly generated by Saudi Arabian Oil Co. and Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC), followed by the U.A.E. that plans to invest $107 billion in the period, the lender known as Apicorp said in an e-mailed report.

IMF's Lagarde praises GCC's management of oil prices - Yahoo! News Maktoob

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde on Saturday praised Gulf Arab countries' good management of oil prices and reserves.
Lagarde was speaking at a news conference after meeting with senior officials from the six oil exporters in the Gulf Cooperation Council.
She predicted "sustainable growth but at slightly reduced rates in the years to come" for the GCC countries, which are Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman.

Tehran's Grand Bazaar reopens after currency protests - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Tehran's Grand Bazaar reopened under close police supervision on Saturday, traders said, days after clashes between riot police and crowds protesting against the collapse of the Iranian currency shut down the market.
The resumption of trade suggested authorities had succeeded at least temporarily in containing public discontent over the plunge of the rial, which lost about a third of its value in 10 days.
But it remained unclear whether the government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would be able to stabilise the currency, which has been undermined by policy missteps by Iranian authorities and Western economic sanctions against Iran over its disputed nuclear programme.

Kuwait's Burgan closes in on Turkish bank deal - Banking & Finance -

Kuwait's Burgan Bank said on Saturday it has received central bank approval for a $355m deal to acquire EFG Eurobank's Turkish arm.
The bank said it is still awaiting final approval from Turkey's regulators to complete the deal.
Burgan, the commercial banking arm of Kuwait Projects (KIPCO), will absorb $280m of loans issued by EFG to the Turkish unit as part of the deal.