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Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Oman c.bank cuts interest cap on personal loans to 6 pct -ONA | Reuters

Oman c.bank cuts interest cap on personal loans to 6 pct -ONA | Reuters:

"Oman's central bank on Wednesday cut the ceiling on interest rates that commercial banks can charge on new personal loans to 6 percent from 7 percent, to ease the financial burden on borrowers in the sultanate, state news agency ONA reported.

"This decrease comes as part of a regular review that the bank does on personal loan rates through the continuous analysis and statistics of the sector indicators," ONA quoted the central bank board as saying.

"The board intends to make sure that the cost of debt in the local market is at levels that encourage savings and maintain stability in prices.""

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U.A.E Precious Metals Hub Seen Growing as Location Feeds Demand - Bloomberg

U.A.E Precious Metals Hub Seen Growing as Location Feeds Demand - Bloomberg:

"The United Arab Emirates will grow as a precious-metals trading hub as more overseas companies turn to the country because of its location near consuming nations, according to the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre.
Dubai accounts for about 25 percent of global physical gold trade, Gautam Sashittal, chief operating officer of government-owned DMCC, said in a Sept. 30 interview at the London Bullion Market Association’s annual conference in Rome. Gold trade in the country totaled $45 billion in the first half of this year, compared with $70 billion in all of 2012, he said.
The DMCC is the U.A.E.’s largest free zone offering more than 7,300 companies, a number of them in the precious metals industry, tax-free status, Sashittal said. While gold is heading for the first annual decline in 13 years as some investors lost faith in the metal as a store of value, the plunge to a 34-month low in June boosted purchases of jewelry, bars and coins in Asia. India and China are the biggest gold consumers."

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Ukraine International Airlines, Wizz Air Ukraine, UTair Ukraine help rise to challenge after AeroSvit's collapse | anna.aero

Ukraine International Airlines, Wizz Air Ukraine, UTair Ukraine help rise to challenge after AeroSvit's collapse | anna.aero:

"After a high profile year, during which the country co-hosted the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship (with Poland), Ukraine’s air transport industry suffered the potentially disastrous loss of one of its two main carriers, AeroSvit. Passenger numbers across the country’s main airports had passed the 13 million mark in 2012, with Kiev’s two airports (Borispol and Zhulyany) handling almost 9.4 million on their own. Since 2012, Kiev Zhulyany (the original airport serving Kiev) has been growing rapidly, and promoting itself as a more efficient alternative to Kiev Borispol. In the first half of 2013 its passenger numbers have more than doubled to over 800,000 passengers.

Source: ICAO and individual airports
Given that the country is bigger than Spain (but smaller than France) and has a population of well over 40 million people, there is clearly considerable scope for air traffic demand to grow, as the country’s economic prosperity rises thanks to its energy industries."

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Russia Grants Ukraine Extension on Loan | Business | The Moscow Times

Russia Grants Ukraine Extension on Loan | Business | The Moscow Times:

"Ukrainian state energy company Naftogaz Ukrainy said Tuesday that it had negotiated a new deadline for its repayment of a $2 billion loan to neighboring Russia's state-controlled Gazprombank.

The new agreement with Gazprombank "already has legal force," Ukrainian Deputy Energy Minister Andrei Bondarenko said.

The loan was issued by Gazprombank in 2012 at an 8.5 percent annual interest rate and was due to be repaid by June 24 this year. Gazprombank is 35.5 percent owned by state-owned gas giant Gazprom.

Last month the Ukrainian parliament passed in a first reading of a bill that would allow the state to guarantee Naftogaz Ukrainy's repayment, paving the way for the extension."

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XE.com - Ukraine seeks $4 bln loans in 2014 to repay foreign debt

XE.com - Ukraine seeks $4 bln loans in 2014 to repay foreign debt:

"Ukraine will seek to borrow $1.5 billion abroad this year and try to raise another $4 billion next year to help it service its foreign debt, the Finance Ministry said on Wednesday.

Galina Pakhachuk, director of the ministry's debt department, told journalists that the ex-Soviet republic's foreign debt repayments next year would be around $6.1 billion, including $2.9 billion of credit owed to the International Monetary Fund.

In September, Moody's cut Ukraine's eurobond rating while Standard & Poor's and Fitch expressed concern over the country's ability to refinance its debt, given its falling foreign exchange reserves and the size of its trade and budget deficits."

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▶ The world biggest container ship - YouTube

▶ The world biggest container ship - YouTube:

"Maersk, the Danish giant shipping line company, has just released the 'Majestic Maersk', the biggest container ship ever made.
Richard Milne, Baltic and Nordic correspondent for the Financial Times reports from Copenhagen harbour.

"

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Foreign Direct Investment in Russia Triples in H1 to $55Bln – Putin | Business | RIA Novosti

Foreign Direct Investment in Russia Triples in H1 to $55Bln – Putin | Business | RIA Novosti:

"Foreign direct investment in Russia’s economy in the first six months of this year reached nearly $55 billion, three times more than in the first half of last year, President Vladimir Putin told an investment forum Wednesday.
But while the president praised foreign interest in the national economy, he skimmed over the issues of capital flight and dwindling macroeconomic growth.
As a positive example of large-scale foreign collaboration, Putin highlighted a deal between the government’s Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and Abu Dhabi’s state-owned Mubadala Development Company to invest up to $5 billion in Russian infrastructure."

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Bahrain economy shrinks in Q2 as financial sector weighs | Reuters

Bahrain economy shrinks in Q2 as financial sector weighs | Reuters:

"* Real GDP falls 0.3 pct q/q vs +2.5 pct in Q1

* But economy grows 5.3 pct y/y, most since Q4 2010

* Hydrocarbon output up, financial sector drops

DUBAI, Oct 2 (Reuters) - Bahrain's economy shrank 0.3 percent from the previous quarter in the April-June period, its first quarterly drop in a year, largely because of weakness in the financial sector, official data showed.

Gross domestic product, adjusted for inflation, had expanded 2.5 percent quarter-on-quarter in the first three months of 2013. The small non-OPEC oil producer last experienced a quarter-on-quarter contraction in April-June 2012.

On a year-on-year basis, however, GDP growth quickened to 5.3 percent in the second quarter of 2013, the highest rate since the final quarter of 2010, from 4.2 percent in January-March, the data from the Central Informatics Organisation showed."

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Poland: steady on the rates as recovery begins | beyondbrics

Poland: steady on the rates as recovery begins | beyondbrics:

"
No surprise from the National Bank of Poland’s rate-setting Monetary Policy Council on Wednesday after it decided not to budge from the current record low benchmark of 2.5 per cent.

With signs that the economy hit bottom in the first quarter of this year and has since been slowly recovering, the chances of any action on the part of the MPC were fairly minimal.

The MPC said in a statement: “Given low inflation pressure and a moderate scale of the expected recovery, in the Council’s assessment interest rates should be kept unchanged at least until the end of 2013, which will support return of inflation to the target in the medium term.”"

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Middle East uprisings take more than 140 Twitter characters - FT.com

Middle East uprisings take more than 140 Twitter characters - FT.com:

"
Twitter played a main role during Egypt's uprising
Be wary of the hype. Twitter didn’t topple longstanding dictatorships in the Middle East and north Africa. Thousands of people risking their lives to head into the streets did.

Yet among activists in the region, Twitter played and continues to play an important role in keeping the conversation going, serving as a virtual town hall where they can fine-tune tactics, test ideas and call for street action.

“Twitter provides you a way to disseminate information,” said Mahmoud Salem, an Egyptian writer and journalist known as @Sandmonkey on Twitter, with more than 130,000 followers."

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MIDEAST STOCKS-Dubai Financial Market soars 15 pct on merger hopes | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Dubai Financial Market soars 15 pct on merger hopes | Reuters:

"* Reuters reports advisers hired for possible merger with ADX

* Retail investors welcome news though financial details unclear

* Dubai index jumps 2.7 pct, breaks technical barrier

* Investors in other regional markets more cautious

* Kuwait blue chips continue to outperform market

By Nadia Saleem

DUBAI, Oct 2 (Reuters) - Shares in Dubai Financial Market (DFM) soared on Wednesday, pulling up many other stocks in the emirate, after Reuters reported experts had been hired to advise on a possible merger between the Gulf's only listed bourse and the Abu Dhabi Exchange.

DFM, which had already seen its stock price double this year as Dubai's recovery from its 2009-2010 corporate debt crisis revived share trading, jumped its daily 15 percent limit to 2.34 dirhams, its highest level since November 2009. Turnover in the stock spiked to its heaviest since June 3 this year.

Reuters had previously reported that merger discussions were underway, and it is not certain that they will end in success. Financial details have not been revealed, so it is unclear whether investors in DFM would actually benefit."

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Dubai Stock Index Enters Bull Market Amid Bourse Merger Report - Bloomberg

Dubai Stock Index Enters Bull Market Amid Bourse Merger Report - Bloomberg:

"Dubai’s stock index climbed to the highest in almost five years, led by Dubai Financial Market (DFM) after Reuters reported that the emirate and Abu Dhabi hired banks for a possible merger of their bourses.
The DFM General Index (DFMGI) gained 2.7 percent to 2,829.53, the strongest close since November 2008. The measure has climbed 22 percent from a two-month low in September, entering a bull market. The shares of DFM, the only publicly traded exchange in the region, surged 15 percent, the most in four months. Dubai Investments PJSC (DIC), which holds stakes in more than 40 businesses, also soared 15 percent, the most since 2009.
Abu Dhabi and Dubai aim to reach an agreement on the merger of the exchanges by the end of the year, Reuters reported, citing people it didn’t identify. The DFM isn’t party to any merger talks, the company said in a statement posted on the bourse website. In April 2012, Abdullah Al Turaifi, chief executive officer of the Securities & Commodities Authority, said the owners of the bourses may “hopefully” decide by the end of that year on whether to consolidate their operations."

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Government plans to sign agreement with ExxonMobil in October| Ukrinform

Government plans to sign agreement with ExxonMobil in October| Ukrinform:

"The Ukrainian government is planning to sign in October 2013 a production sharing agreement with Exxon Mobil on the extraction of hydrocarbons within the Skifska area on the Black Sea shelf.
Ukrainian Energy and Coal Industry Minister Eduard Stavytsky said this at a briefing at the Cabinet of Ministers on Wednesday, a Ukrinform correspondent reported.
"The Ukrainian government has entered the final stage of signing a production sharing agreement on hydrocarbon production on the Black Sea shelf within the Skifska area, and the signing of this agreement will be completed this month," Stavytsky said.
The minister said that ExxonMobil is planning to begin land surveying work on this area by the end of the year.
"The company's ship is completing work in Romania in late November, and they hope to then enter our territory," he said"

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Oil Output Reaches Record High | Business | The Moscow Times

Oil Output Reaches Record High | Business | The Moscow Times:

"A recovery in LUKoil's crude production nudged up oil output in Russia, the world's largest producer, to 10.53 million barrels per day, or bpd, in September to match the post-Soviet record high, Energy Ministry data showed Wednesday.

That was up from 10.52 million bpd in August and matched the previous record reached in June. In tons, Russia's crude production was 43.08 million last month.

Output was above the 10.05 million bpd pumped last month by quota-bound Saudi Arabia which, unlike Russia, has spare capacity to increase its oil output significantly and which is still the world's No. 1 oil exporter.

Russia aims to keep oil output at least 10 million bpd this decade."

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Live chart: Managing millennials

The very different work traits of hoodies, old fogies, and everyone in between



Kazakhstan: an abrupt change of central bank governor | beyondbrics

Kazakhstan: an abrupt change of central bank governor | beyondbrics:

"
By Clare Nuttall of bne

Grigory Marchenko has been replaced by former deputy prime minister Kairat Kelimbetov as governor of the National Bank of Kazakhstan (NBK). The sudden move, announced on October 1, comes four years into the second term of the respected Marchenko, and just ahead of the central bank’s takeover of the country’s pension assets.

A statement from the presidential press office said Marchenko has been relieved of his post at the bank for “family reasons”. No further explanations were offered for the dismissal of Marchenko, who returned to the post for a second time in 2009 during the depths of the recent financial crisis.

President Nursultan Nazarbayev said in a statement published on the Akorda.kz website:"

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A $1.9tn opportunity

Peter Sondergaard, head of research at Gartner, speaks to Paul Taylor, Connected Business editor, about technological trends that will be essential for most companies and add up to $1.9tn to the economy



Exclusive: UAE bourse merger gathers steam as advisers hired - sources | Reuters

Exclusive: UAE bourse merger gathers steam as advisers hired - sources | Reuters:

"Abu Dhabi and Dubai have hired banks to advise on a possible merger of their two main stock exchanges, a state-backed deal that could energize financial markets in the United Arab Emirates, sources familiar with the plan said.

Any merger of the exchanges would be one of the biggest reforms in the country's financial industry in recent years; by making it easier for investors to operate across the markets, it could stimulate trade and attract more foreign investment.

Talks on a tie-up between the Dubai Financial Market DFM.DU (DFM) and the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) have occurred on and off since at least 2010, but they have been hindered by differences over valuations and Dubai's 2009-2010 corporate debt crisis."

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Prices per share of Ukrainian Agrarian Holdings on Foreign Stock Exchanges, 01.10.2013 — BlackSeaGrain

Prices per share of Ukrainian Agrarian Holdings on Foreign Stock Exchanges, 01.10.2013 — BlackSeaGrain:

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Deflation to drag down S&P 500

Russell Napier, stock market historian, predicted in 2009 that easy monetary policy would drive a long rally in stocks, followed by a crash taking the S&P 500 below its 2009 low. He tells John Authers he sticks by that, but now thinks it will be driven by deflation, not inflation



Qatar T-bill yields jump to year-highs

Qatar T-bill yields jump to year-highs:

"Yields at a Qatari Treasury bill auction jumped yesterday to their highest level in at least a year, signalling unusually tight money market liquidity which traders attributed to geopolitical tensions.

The yield on 182-day T-bills surged to 1.36%, the highest level since the Qatar Central Bank started to publish auction results in October 2012, from 1.15% last month.

“During the height of the Syrian issue there were a few investors who sold equities and they needed to buy dollars to get out,” said a bank trader who declined to be named under briefing rules. “Banks bought dollars from the central bank at the time and that took some liquidity away. That has not come back.”"

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Qatar: Perfecting The Art Of Scoring Own Goals - Analysis Eurasia Review

Qatar: Perfecting The Art Of Scoring Own Goals - Analysis Eurasia Review:

"
State-owned Qatari television network Al Jazeera prides itself on hard hitting, let-the chips-fall-where-they fall reporting. Yet, it has systematically avoided in recent days the one story that potentially could affect the very future, shape and security of the wealthy Gulf state: controversy over the timing of the 2022 World Cup and mounting criticism of living and working conditions of up to a million unskilled and semi-skilled workers expected to build infrastructure for the tournament.

That controversy could come to a head when the executive committee of world soccer body FIFA meets later this week to discuss the Qatari World Cup. Media reporting on and trade union agitation against often appalling conditions for foreign workers expected to be involved in the construction of tens of billions of dollars of infrastructure related to the tournament in a country in which local nationals constitute at best 15 percent of the total population and six percent of the workforce is likely to force FIFA to go beyond its initial focus: whether to move the competition from summer to winter because of Qatar’s searing summer temperatures that exceed 40 degrees Celsius."

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Blessed by Geography, Fujairah Flexes New Clout - NYTimes.com

Blessed by Geography, Fujairah Flexes New Clout - NYTimes.com:

"
Karim Sahib/Agence France-Presse - Getty Images
A grand mosque was under construction in May 2012 in Fujairah, a tiny emirate that has been developing into an export hub for oil from the United Arab Emirates.
When the first McDonald’s opened in 2010 in Fujairah, the main traffic circle nearby was jammed as locals lined up to sample the first international restaurant in their neighborhood.

“The police had to be called to regulate traffic, and sandwiches were flowing like a river,” says Saron T., the assistant manager of the 24-hour drive-through restaurant who declined to give his full last name.

Since then other chains, like Pizza Hut and KFC, have put down flags. And McDonald’s is planning another outlet or two in the tiny emirate sandwiched between a mountain range and the Gulf of Oman."

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After Years of Unrest, Egypt’s Startup Ecosystem Is Booming

After Years of Unrest, Egypt’s Startup Ecosystem Is Booming:

"

As clashes between Egyptian soldiers and protesters left dozens dead in October 2011, Ahmed Zahran was betting his savings on converting the water pumps used by farmers from running on diesel to solar energy.

The 33-year-old spent 65,000 Egyptian pounds ($9,400) starting KarmSolar with three friends and landed the first client last year in Egypt’s Western Desert as fuel shortages worsened. Almost 9,000 other companies were set up in the 12 months to June this year, the most since Egypt began publishing statistics on startups in 2004.

“A lot of people like us, young people, became risk takers after the revolution because they realized they had nothing to lose,” Zahran said in an interview in Cairo."

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Too tight deadline for transfer fee hike risks stalling the new Dubai property boom « ArabianMoney

Too tight deadline for transfer fee hike risks stalling the new Dubai property boom « ArabianMoney:

"
The second Dubai property boom looks to be over this week before it has hardly started with a doubling of real estate transfer fees by the Dubai Land Department. The sector has only had one week’s notice of the rise meaning that many transactions involving mortages may now fail entirely, stalling the whole market.

Estate agents say that one or two months’ notice would have been far less dramatic in impact. Housing markets tend to take a long time to build up speed but can be brought to a halt overnight as Dubai discovered in late 2008. In the year that followed prices dived by 65 per cent."

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Barclays shuts down UAE bank accounts - Culture & Society - ArabianBusiness.com

Barclays shuts down UAE bank accounts - Culture & Society - ArabianBusiness.com:

"Barclays has started closing the accounts of some of its retail customers in the UAE, just weeks after the lender announced that it was selling off its local retail arm.
Arabian Business understands that around 500 accounts have now been frozen.
Business and personal banking customers said that they had been telephoned by the lender on Tuesday morning, and informed that their accounts were being frozen."

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UAE youngsters who have grown up in the country say they don’t always get a share of the golden opportunities | 7 Days Dubai

UAE youngsters who have grown up in the country say they don’t always get a share of the golden opportunities | 7 Days Dubai:

"Although the UAE has a reputation for being a jobs goldmine that attracts thousands of expats every year, youngsters who have grown up in the country say they don't always get a share.

A study conducted by the International Labour Organisation last year reported that youth unemployment rates in the Middle East are the highest in the world, at 28.3 per cent, writes Reem Buhazza. While the job market in the UAE is arguably healthier than the rest of region, many graduates are reporting that it is still difficult to find entry-level work.

“Competition in the UAE job market is fierce, and graduates in the UAE are facing a hard time finding employment,” says Alpa Katakoria, career services assistant at Middlesex University in Dubai. “The main reason is that not many organisations focus on attracting fresh talent. They are more focused on recruiting candidates with experience in a similar role.”"

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Kazakhstan: Waiting For Change Eurasia Review

Kazakhstan: Waiting For Change Eurasia Review:

"
ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN
Resource-led economic growth cannot mask the need for reforms in Kazakhstan as labour unrest, social divisions and a growing Islamist movement threaten the country’s stability, according to the International Crisis Group.

In its latest report, Kazakhstan: Waiting for Change, the International Crisis Group examines the prospects for stability as the era of President Nursultan Nazarbayev, 73, who has ruled for more than twenty years, comes to a close. His government has spurred the country’s role in the global energy sector but left it with weak political institutions, corruption, censored media and frequent infringement of human rights. Popular resentment is slowly growing. Consolidating the state’s stability, in particular through a smooth succession, is urgent in a situation of internal but also external challenges. The 2014 pullout of international forces from Afghanistan could well further weaken stability in Central Asia as a whole. Young Kazakhs, like their peers in neighbouring states, have been drawn to the jihadi struggle and may be tempted to bring it back home."

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Complications for Cyprus as appraisal drills point to significantly reduced amounts of gas

Complications for Cyprus as appraisal drills point to significantly reduced amounts of gas:

"
image: eoimages.gsfc.nasa.gov
Cyprus is facing a dilemma with regards to its natural gas strategy, as highly credible information has been leaked over the past few days to local media suggesting a significantly reduced amount of gas for Aphrodite Block 12. This would effectively terminate the chances of establishing an LNG terminal and cooperation with Israel looks like the only way out.

The findings of the first appraisal drilling by Noble Energy point to less than 5 tcf in Block 12, which greatly diminishes the prospects of constructing an LNG terminal that requires 5.5 tcf in order to be economically viable.

Moreover, local sources are putting numbers closer to 3 tcf of gas in place, making the whole investment perilous when considering the high depths involved and the capital needed to create necessary infrastructure. Furthermore, the Cypriot government through its energy authorities has made known that a second appraisal drilling will take place, no sooner than March 2014 and it could be delayed up to a year from now."

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Russia and Ukraine try to find a solution to standoff

Russia and Ukraine try to find a solution to standoff:

"Gazprom management met a Ukrainian official on Monday.  Bilateral cooperation in the gas sector between Russia and Kiev was addressed.

‘Particularly, the parties discussed Ukrainian gas transmission system readiness for uninterrupted transit of Russian natural gas to Europe during the upcoming winter period. In this regard, special attention was paid to the progress with gas injection into underground storage facilities by Naftogaz Ukrainy,' reads a note released by Gazprom on Monday.

Alexey Miller, Chairman of Gazprom’s Management Committee, met Yury Boiko, Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine, at a moment when Moscow is concerned about a flood of European goods entering the country if Kiev signs a free trade agreement with the EU."

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Saudi Gazette - Gulf Islamic banks outgrowing conventional peers

Saudi Gazette - Gulf Islamic banks outgrowing conventional peers:

"Islamic banks in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are likely to grow faster than their conventional counterparts and increase their share of GCC banking system assets for the foreseeable future, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services said in a report published Tuesday on RatingsDirect titled “Gulf Islamic Banks Continue To Grow Faster Than Their Conventional Peers, But Profitability Rates Are Converging.”

However, profitability rates for the two banking models are converging as Islamic banks are taking a more pronounced hit from lower interest rates and non-core banking revenues than their conventional peers because they traditionally operate with larger bases of non-interest bearing liabilities.

“We think Islamic banking will continue to increase its market share in the Gulf, and we expect the operating environment over the next two years to remain supportive for Islamic banks’ credit quality,” said Standard & Poor’s credit analyst Timucin Engin. That said, low interest rates and lower capital market-related gains than 2008 pre-crisis levels are impairing revenue growth for most Islamic banks in the region, leading to profitability convergence with their conventional peers."

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Saudi Gazette - Aramco’s Al-Madi set to be new Saudi OPEC governor

Saudi Gazette - Aramco’s Al-Madi set to be new Saudi OPEC governor:

"Saudi Arabian Oil Co.’s (Saudi Aramco) Mohammed Al-Madi is set to replace Yasser Mufti as the Kingdom’s OPEC governor, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.

Al-Madi, who heads the Korean unit of Saudi Aramco will probably take up the position next year as Mufti plans to step down by the end of 2013, the person said Monday, declining to be identified because the appointment hasn’t been announced publicly.

Media officials at the Ministry of Petroleum & Mineral Resources in Riyadh declined to comment when contacted by phone."

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Greece cracks down on Golden Dawn

Greece is cracking down on the far-right Golden Dawn party after several members were arrested following the killing of an anti-fascist rapper. Public opinion seems to be turning against Golden Dawn but what will it take for its support to truly diminish? Daniel Garrahan reports.



EM weakness hurts Unilever

Unilever shares suffered their worst drop in two years after the consumer goods group warned that sales growth slowed in the third quarter on weakness in emerging markets. Lex's Vincent Boland and Julia Grindell discuss what this means for the maker of Dove soap.



No cold calls or face fines, Dubai regulator warns property brokers | The National

No cold calls or face fines, Dubai regulator warns property brokers | The National:

"Dubai’s property brokers who are looking to make a quick deal have been warned against cold-calling potential clients as property prices in the city surge.

The Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera) of the Dubai Land Department yesterday issued an official letter to all of the city’s registered real estate brokers, reminding them that direct telemarketing violates its rules.

Rera’s Real Estate Inspection division said it had been inundated with complaints from homeowners in recent months as property prices in Dubai continue to rise steadily.

The warning comes as the property broker Asteco reported that average apartment prices in Dubai rose 42 per cent over the 12 months to the end of September and villa prices rose 26 per cent."

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US$9 billion US fraud charge dropped in Saudi’s long-running feud between Al Gosaibi and Al Sanea | The National

US$9 billion US fraud charge dropped in Saudi’s long-running feud between Al Gosaibi and Al Sanea | The National:

"The international cold war between Saudi Arabia’s Al Gosaibi family and fellow Saudi businessman Maan Al Sanea took an unexpected turn on Monday after the Gosaibis dropped their US$9 billion claim against Glenn Stewart, often described as Mr Al Sanea’s right-hand man.

Ahmed Hamad Al Gosaibi & Brothers (Ahab), the family’s partnership, filed the action against Mr Stewart in California in March 2011, which alleged aiding and abetting fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud and fraud conspiracy, and unjust enrichment while he was chief executive of The International Banking Corporation (TIBC), a Bahraini bank.

However, in a dramatic turn of events a settlement was agreed by both parties on Monday, after Ahab’s legal team approached Mr Stewart’s defence lawyers during the summer about drawing the case to a close."

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Indian regulator approves Jet Airways stake sale to Abu Dhabi’s Etihad | The National

Indian regulator approves Jet Airways stake sale to Abu Dhabi’s Etihad | The National:

"Etihad Airways’ plan to buy a 24 per cent stake in Jet Airways as part of a US$600 million deal has reportedly been approved by India’s markets regulator.

The Securities Exchange Board of India (Sebi) approved the purchase after the two airlines made revisions to the deal to meet conditions set by the regulator, the Press Trust of India reported yesterday.

Etihad and Jet both declined to comment on the report. Sebi could not be reached for comment.

The stake sale, which was announced in April, has been repeatedly delayed as the airlines have awaited regulatory clearances in India, following objections from Sebi and the Competition Commission of India."

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Oil rights to be auctioned at Iraq’s oldest producing field | The National

Oil rights to be auctioned at Iraq’s oldest producing field | The National:

"North Oil Company (NOC), the operating company of Kirkuk, Iraq’s oldest-producing field, hopes to auction oil rights within two years as it seeks more than US$18 billion in investment to update the site to bring it to full potential.

BP is due to complete a preliminary study of Kirkuk, where NOC is the federally controlled operator, in 18 months, following a $100 million deal signed last month.

The study’s outcome, which is likely to include recommendations to either inject water or gas into wells to push oil out, paves the way for a special licensing round in Iraq. The world’s biggest oil companies are keeping a close watch on the outcome."

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