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Saturday, 21 September 2013

SAMA chief upbeat on Saudi growth path | Arab News

SAMA chief upbeat on Saudi growth path | Arab News — Saudi Arabia News, Middle East News, Opinion, Economy and more.:

"Saudi Arabia's banking sector registered a robust and steady growth over the past decade unruffled by the financial crisis elsewhere in the world, says a top official.
Fahd Al-Mubarak, governor of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA), said the assets of commercial banks tripled from SR508 billion in 2003 to SR1.73 trillion in 2012.
The liabilities of the banks grew five fold from SR206 billion to SR999 billion during the same period, Al-Mubarak said.
Al-Mubarak also said the AA- rating given by international credit rating agencies such as Fitch attested to the robust economic performance of the Kingdom."

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Dubai's DMCC becomes UAE's largest free zone - Property -

Dubai's DMCC becomes UAE's largest free zone - Property -

DMCC chief Ahmed Bin Sulayem.
The Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) has become the UAE's largest free zone, overtaking Jebel Ali, its executive chairman announced on Saturday.
DMCC now has more than 7,330 active registrations, with an average of 200 companies joinging each month and a 94 percent retention rate, said Ahmed Bin Sulayem in a statement.
He said DMCC also remains the UAE's fastest growing free zone, adding that it was targeting 10,000 firms by 2015.
Bin Sulayem said: "We are now the UAE's largest and fastest growing free zone with over 7,330 active member companies - we remain committed to further growth in order to cement Dubai as the global hub for commodities trade and enterprise."

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State Information Services Kuwait to deposit USD 2 billion in CBE this week

State Information Services Kuwait to deposit USD 2 billion in CBE this week:

"Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) Hisham Ramez said a Kuwaiti deposit worth USD 2 billion will be transferred to the Central Bank of Egypt this week, adding the foreign currencies reserve is assuring.

The reserve hits USD 18.9 billion late August, before giving back the Qatari USD 2 billion deposit two days ago.

CBE, early September pumped USD 1.3 billion to the local banks in a bid to finance their clients' demands.

This move led to narrowing the gap between the daily exchange rate announced by CBE and that of the black market."

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Investment transparency suits Qatar just fine |

Investment transparency suits Qatar just fine |

"The numbers related to the economic realities in Qatar are becoming increasingly sophisticated and detailed. A recent report by Qatar National Bank titled Qatar Economic Insight 2013 provides a significant set of details related to socio-economic developments.
The report suggests that Qatar’s population grew by 3.4 per cent in 2012 to 1.8 million. Undoubtedly, this is one of the highest population growth rates in the world, and stands out especially when compared to the near zero growth in many Western countries.
Interestingly enough, expatriates accounted for 86 per cent of the total population, a clear evidence of the level of openness the state embodies. It is believed that people from more than 100 countries live and work in Qatar and contribute towards its economic development and cultural diversity."

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Ukraine PM seeks to calm Russian fears over EU deals | Reuters

Ukraine PM seeks to calm Russian fears over EU deals | Reuters:

"Ukraine's prime minister sought on Saturday to calm Russian fears over Kiev's plans to sign a free trade pact with the European Union, saying in practice there would be no threat to Russia's home market.

Moody's Investor Service cut Ukraine's sovereign credit rating on Friday, partly on concern over relations with Russia.

Speaking at an international conference in the Black Sea resort of Yalta, Mykola Azarov also expressed frustration at Russia's refusal to reduce the price of its gas sales to the ex-Soviet republic and said Kiev may be obliged to reduce further the volume of its gas imports."

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Ukraine’s Ivano-Frankivsk region accepts shale agreement with Chevron

Ukraine’s Ivano-Frankivsk region accepts shale agreement with Chevron:

"The Ukraine’s Ivano-Frankivsk region voted in favour of an amended government draft for a production-sharing agreement with US energy-company Chevron, paving the way to a new shale gas deal in the East European country.

The Ivano-Frankivsk region had rejected a previous draft asking for guarantees at the end of August. Ukraine’s Minister of Energy and Coal Industry Eduard Stavytsky said last week that Cabinet Minister had taken into account requirements of the regional Council.

The government will be able to ink an agreement with Chevron after the approval of a second council in the neighbouring Lviv region.

Ukraine opened the doors to shale explorations last week. It signed a contract with Royal Dutch Shell, allowing the Netherland's energy company to explore the Yuviska block. Gas extraction activities are scheduled to start in 2015. Stavystkyi said that between 30% and 60% of extracted gas would belong to Ukraine, while the rest would be split between Royal Dutch Shell and Nadra Yuzivska. "

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Ukraine can cooperate both with Russia and EU Bill Clinton says in #Yalta2013

Ukraine can cooperate both with Russia and EU Bill Clinton says in Yalta:

"Ukraine can sign an association agreement with the EU and retain its partner’s relationship with Russia, the US ex-president, Bill Clinton said at the Yalta international forum Sept. 20.
 “I think, you can comfortably live beside Russia and be in association or member of the European Union. Your history gives us good examples of cooperation with your neighbors,” the US politician said.
Assessing Ukraine’s chances of becoming an EU member, UK’s former premier, Tony Blaire, said Ukraine stands a good chance of joining the EU in 25 years. He said Ukraine has an impressive potential and is Europe-oriented in its mind-set, Radio Svoboda reports Sept. 20."

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Credit Suisse, Qatar Venture to Start Foreign Operation - Bloomberg

Credit Suisse, Qatar Venture to Start Foreign Operation - Bloomberg:

"Aventicum Capital Management, the joint venture of Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN) and Qatar Holding LLC, plans to begin international operations by the end of the year after starting its first fund in July, according to a memo.
Aventicum’s Doha office is fully operational after receiving a license from the Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority, according to the memo seen by Bloomberg News. The international business will be based outside the Middle East, according to the memo. Sofia Rehman, a Credit Suisse spokeswoman in London, confirmed the contents of the memo.
Aventicum was started in November as Qatar and Credit Suisse boosted ties after the nation took a 6 percent stake in the bank and bought its London headquarters. The country, which has the world’s third-largest gas reserves, is buying assets across the globe as it seeks to reduce its energy dependency.
The venture’s Middle East and North Africa equity fund, managed by Hashem Montasser, will invest in regions such as the Middle East and Turkey, according to the memo."

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BUSINESS - Islamic bank looks to Turkey’s sukuk

BUSINESS - Islamic bank looks to Turkey’s sukuk:

"The President of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Ahmad Mohamed Al-Madani has urged Turkey to mobilize “sukuk” (Islamic bonds) to facilitate the flow of capital from Arab countries, while also suggesting that Turkey could arrange an investment conference in order to attract Arab capital.

Al-Madani, in an exclusive interview held on the occasion of the opening of Ankara’s branch of the (IDB) in the presence of of President Abdullah Gül, highlighted the full confidence that they had in Turkey, as he noted that he didn’t have any direct or unconfirmed information about claims that the Arab capital has been inclined to leave Turkish markets.

“It is very natural to have an office for IDB in Ankara to enhance this relationship,” Al-Madani said on Sept. 19 in Ankara, while pointing to Turkey’s “very constructive” cooperation with the IDB for the last 39 years as one of the “major founding members."

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UK investment in the Middle East

Shell satisfied with data obtained from first well in Ukraine

Shell satisfied with data obtained from first well in Ukraine:

"Shell is satisfied with the data obtained from drilling Biliayivska-400 well (Pervomaisk district, Kharkiv region) under the joint operations agreement with PJSC Ukrgazvydobuvannia, Company Head in Ukraine Graham Tiley has told Interfax-Ukraine.

"Now I cannot give the results – it's too early [we still need time for testing]. But from the point of view of the data obtained, the well is successful," he said on the sidelines of the tenth Yalta annual meeting on Friday.

Tiley noted that the drilling of the Biliayivska-400 well was completed on September 16, and at present the drilling equipment is being moved to perform work on the second well under the agreement – Novo-Mechebylivska-100 (Blyzniuky district, Kharkiv region).

As reported, the drilling of Biliayivska-400 well began in October 2012."

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Moody's cuts Ukraine sovereign credit rating, could cut more | Reuters

Moody's cuts Ukraine sovereign credit rating, could cut more | Reuters:

"Moody's Investors Service cut Ukraine's sovereign credit rating further into junk category on Friday and warned that more downgrades could come.

Moody's cut the rating by one notch to Caa1 from B3, with the outlook placed on review for downgrade, as it cited concerns over a drop in foreign currency reserves, new debt issuance and potentially worsening relations with Russia.

Ukraine is rated B with a negative outlook by both Standard & Poor's and Fitch Ratings.

"The country's foreign-exchange reserves are already at a very low level and pressure on reserves is likely to rise due to increased domestic demand for foreign currency in the autumn and significant foreign-currency-denominated debt repayments until end-2014," Moody's said in a statement."

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UAE bank Mashreq might lift foreigners’ share limit – again | The National

UAE bank Mashreq might lift foreigners’ share limit – again | The National:

"Mashreq might make a second increase in the percentage of its shares that foreigners can own, the bank’s chief executive said yesterday.

Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair’s comments came the day after Mashreq announced that it had increased the proportion of its shares that could be owned by non-Emirati investors to 20 per cent from 0.9 per cent following approval from the market regulator.

If the change lifts the shares, he said, the limit could be lifted further still.

“If it’s a success we can always consider it,” he said."

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