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Monday, 21 October 2013

UAE's Etihad sets stage for $50 billion of jet deals from Gulf | Reuters

UAE's Etihad sets stage for $50 billion of jet deals from Gulf | Reuters:

"Etihad Airways is close to placing an order that could kick off a $50 billion (30.9 billion pounds) jet-buying spree from the Gulf as the region's carriers flex their muscles in an industry hit by weak margins and high fuel prices.

Taking advantage of deep pockets and a geographically strategic position between East and West, Gulf airlines are expanding rapidly and diverting long-haul traffic from airlines in Europe, the United States and parts of Asia.

Abu Dhabi-based airline Etihad is expected to buy dozens of Boeing Co (BA.N) jets, including the revamped 777X mini-jumbo and a repeat order for its 787 Dreamliner, sources familiar with the matter said on Monday."

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Times of Oman | News :: Oman Oil to take 40% stake in BP’s Block 61 tight gas fields

Times of Oman | News :: Oman Oil to take 40% stake in BP’s Block 61 tight gas fields:

"The state-owned Oman Oil Company (OOC) will take a 40 per cent stake in BP's Block 61 tight gas fields in north-central Oman, once the latter declares commerciality, said Dr Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhy, the minister of oil and gas.

The minister said BP would declare commerciality of the block once all full-field development agreements are signed between Oman government and the British oil giant.

Both parties have signed a provisional pact called heads-on agreement a few months ago.

The total investment for developing block 61 will be in the range of $15 billion-$20 billion
over a 30 year concession period, added the minister on the sidelines of the first Gulf
Intelligence Oman Energy Forum here yesterday. "At the moment, we are focusing on the first phase, but it will have more than two phases.""

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Dubai property boom: how not to deal with a crisis | GulfNews.com

Dubai property boom: how not to deal with a crisis | GulfNews.com:

"The biggest speculation related to Dubai’s new property boom is on the speculation itself. There is a range of differing perceptions about the sustainability of the boom, although the majority view is that the new project launches are characterised by moderation rather than frenzy, the type of which drove the market to unsustainable dizzy heights in 2008.
Unlike in the past, much of the current pick-up in Dubai’s property sector is attributed to the flow of funds from areas of political turbulence such as Syria and Egypt, and mostly in the form of cash transactions. There is some concern that this is leaving out a huge potential segment of buyers who would want to own their homes using mortgages, which lends depth to any property market.
Recent reports by Standard Chartered Bank and Jones Lang LaSalle represent two contrasting views, with the former forecasting a moderate pick-up and the latter questioning the sustainability of the current rates. Interestingly, there is a clear change in the perception of the western media about the new boom taking hold in Dubai’s property market."

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Rosneft-CNPC: getting cosy | beyondbrics

Rosneft-CNPC: getting cosy | beyondbrics:

"
Rosneft has agreed to allow CNPC to help develop east Siberian oil resources in a move that underscores deepening energy ties between Russia and China. Coming on the eve of an official visit by Dmitry Medvedev to Beijing, the deal provides a positive backdrop for talks about a long delayed contract for Gazprom to supply gas by pipeline to China.

Rosneft and CNPC signed a memorandum on Friday calling for the creation of a joint venture to explore and produce oil in east Siberia. Development of Srednebotuobinsk, a world class oilfield sitting close to the East Siberia Pacific Oil export pipeline (Espo), will serve as the foundation of the future venture, Rosneft said in a statement.

“The memorandum is another step in developing the strategic partnership between Rosneft and CNPC in various areas of co-operation,” said Igor Sechin, president of Rosneft. “Our balanced strategic position will enable us to jointly develop and produce hydrocarbons, execute long-term supplies, jointly construct refining capacity and manage various assets.”"

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Iran’s new government considers slashing cash handouts - FT.com

Iran’s new government considers slashing cash handouts - FT.com:

"Iran’s cash-strapped government is looking to slash monthly handouts given to almost all Iranians in a move that could provoke popular anger as the country struggles with high inflation and unemployment.
When the government of Hassan Rouhani, the president, took office in August he promised to ease economic hardship. But a priority, officials say, is to reduce the deficit – unofficially estimated to be as high as $28bn – caused by the policies of the previous government and international sanctions over the nuclear programme.
To do this, officials are rethinking the payment mechanism by which 76m Iranians have been receiving cash each month over the past three years to help with the cost of energy and basic commodities."

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African oil towns: getting very pricey | beyondbrics

African oil towns: getting very pricey | beyondbrics:

"
Luanda: up go the costs
If you thought that London / HK / Mumbai / [enter your city here] was a bit on the expensive side, spare a thought for those in Luanda and Juba.

The capitals of Angola and South Sudan are the 1st and 3rd most pricey oil and gas towns in the world for expats, according to hydrocarbons news provider Rigzone. Sifting through the latest cost of living data produced by ECA and Mercer International, Rigzone reckons both capitals now beat Perth and Moscow, and are separated only by Norway’s Stavanger, when it comes to their power to lighten your wallet.

Prices in Luanda, Angola’s capital, are the stuff of legend. At its peak two years ago, there were rumours that watermelons reached $100. That sounds a bit farfetched – it’s hard to imagine a watermelon tasting that good, even on a hot day in southern Africa – but you can certainly still expect to pay $200 for a pair of jeans, $50 for a hotel hamburger, and prices in supermarkets are ‘absurd’, says one local lawyer."

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Integration of Abu Dhabi, Dubai markets will create Gulf’s strongest stock market | GulfNews.com

Integration of Abu Dhabi, Dubai markets will create Gulf’s strongest stock market | GulfNews.com:

"Mohammad Al Hashemi, President of the UAE Financial Markets Association, has said that the integration of the markets of Abu Dhabi and Dubai will create one of the strongest stock markets operating in the Gulf region, the Middle East and North Africa.
Al Hashemi said in an interview with Emirates News Agency, WAM, today, that since the UAE has expanded the scope of its securities markets to a global level, which in turn has led to greater competition, requiring it to have a broader securities market with sophisticated products to market locally and internationally.
Al Hashemi pointed out that the integration of the markets of Abu Dhabi and Dubai will lead to the establishment of a securities market leader with a variety of products to attract more investors and big opportunities to promote the UAE capital market, which would have significant benefits for both shareholders and participants in the market and thus the national economy."

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Qatar's Ooredoo eyes listing in London or other mkts-CEO | Reuters

Qatar's Ooredoo eyes listing in London or other mkts-CEO | Reuters:

"* Co wants to expand investor base, boost share liquidity

* Just 21 pct of stock is in free float

* Qatar listing trades 70,779 shares daily on average

* Indosat unit may sell 5 pct stake in PT Tower Bersama

By Matt Smith

DUBAI, Oct 21 (Reuters) - Ooredoo, Qatar's No.1 telecom operator, may list on the London Stock Exchange or another major bourse as it seeks to attract more liquidity to its shares, its CEO said.

A listing outside the Gulf would also complement the company's push for a bigger international profile, having changed its name from Qatar Telecom in February.

"We have been looking at (a further listing) for some time because one of the issues is the liquidity of the shares - it's not only us, it's most of the companies in the region," Chief Executive Nasser Marafih told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference in Dubai."

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Russia: the 37th most tech-savvy country in Europe… | beyondbrics

Russia: the 37th most tech-savvy country in Europe… | beyondbrics:

"Why invest in Russian web companies? Look at the country’s web usage figures, and there are plenty of reasons to be downbeat.

At the most recent international tally in 2012, 47 per cent of Russians had no access to the internet. Internet penetration as a share of the population was the 37th highest in Europe. Bosnia and Herzegovina was more connected than the Russian behemoth.

By these standards, Russia is a digital laggard. But investors would be wise not to shun the country. Its consumer base – 72m web surfers – is bigger than that of any other European country. Internet usage is the second fastest growing in Europe, after Italy. What’s more, the local cyber industry is abuzz."

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Big Western beer brewers in decline on Russia’s market | Russia Beyond The Headlines

Big Western beer brewers in decline on Russia’s market | Russia Beyond The Headlines:

"
The reduction of the beer market in Russia did not begin yesterday. The new anti-alcohol
campaign is just one of the causes of this phenomenon, and it is certainly
not the main one. Source: RIA Novosti
“Foreign beer in Russia is, for some reason, quickly becoming like local beer,” says Investcafe analyst Igor Arnautov. This metamorphosis should not come as a surprise, however: Major foreign producers bought out Russia’s main breweries a long time ago and are now producing the most popular foreign brands in Russia. Real imports account for only 2.5 percent of the market (8.4 billion ounces per year).
Beer giants are complaining about the sharp decline in sales in Russia this year—by 10 percent in the first nine months of the year. The Union of Russian Brewers expects the market to continue to contract, at least until the end of 2014. The fact is that, as of January 1, 2014, they are planning to abandon the production of beer in plastic bottles of more than 2.5 liters and of strong beer (more than 6 percent alcohol content) in bottles larger than two liters."

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Oman's Renaissance says unit plans $350m, five-year bond - Bonds - ArabianBusiness.com

Oman's Renaissance says unit plans $350m, five-year bond - Bonds - ArabianBusiness.com:

"Oman's Renaissance Services said on Monday its subsidiary Topaz Marine had started marketing a five-year $350 million senior notes offering.
The proceeds from the bond will be used to refinance certain existing loans, fund capital expenditure and increase cash on balance sheet, it said in a statement. The notes will be guaranteed on an unsecured basis by certain of Topaz's subsidiaries, Renaissance said.
"The company will decide whether or not to proceed with an issue of notes, based on investor feedback received during the marketing process," it said.
In 2011, Renaissance pulled a $500 million initial public offering (IPO) of Topaz Energy in London, amid valuation concerns and growing regional unrest at the time."

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Daily chart: Unlikely results | The Economist

Daily chart: Unlikely results | The Economist:

"Why most published scientific research is probably false

" 'via Blog this'

Last week ended with Ukrainian stocks up in Kyiv, Warsaw and London - Business - News - Ukraine Business Online

Last week ended with Ukrainian stocks up in Kyiv, Warsaw and London - Business - News - Ukraine Business Online:

"Ukrainian stocks trading Friday

Concorde Capital provides more information on Friday trading in its market comment:

“Ukrainian equities ended the week with a mixed result in trading on Friday, October 18. The WIG Ukraine Index of Warsaw-traded stocks improved 0.3%, led by sugar maker Astarta (AST PW +3.6%), which has risen 6.0% in two sessions; Coal Energy (CLE PW +3.5%), which has gained 5.5% in two sessions; and dairy producer Milkiland (MLK PW +1.6%), which has increased 9.2% in two sessions. The WIG Ukraine Index finished the week at a 1.5% loss. Outside the Index, investors dumped their shares of Serinus Energy (SEN PW -9.3%). In London, egg producer Avangard (AVGR LI +2.7%) has advanced 8.7% in three straight positive sessions to its highest price in 17 months. The Ukrainian Exchange (UX) Index of Kyiv-traded stocks rose 0.4%, pulled up by Azovstal (AZST UK +4.1%), which has improved 6.8% in two sessions. The UX Index has gained 2.9% in four straight positive sessions.”"

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MIDEAST STOCKS-Regional shares mixed amid marginal profit-taking; Saudi up | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Regional shares mixed amid marginal profit-taking; Saudi up | Reuters:

"Gulf shares were mixed on Monday as some investors booked profits from the previous session but an upbeat outlook remains intact for the third-quarter earnings season in most markets.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark gained 0.1 percent to a near two-month high. Earnings boosted the market on Sunday, while an optimistic global backdrop supported a rally across the region.

Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co climbed 2.3 percent, extending Sunday's 9.6 percent jump after the company swung to a third-quarter profit. The stock was the most traded on the bourse.

"Petchems have been on the buying side by local and foreign investors," said John Sfakianakis, chief investment strategist at Saudi investment firm MASIC. "International investors have been looking at Chinese petchem prices which hit four-year highs. The better pricing and margins trends have been there since the summer and have solidified further with some more pricing momentum in early October - boosted by better demand and tight supply.""

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*UPDATE* Australian businessman Matthew Joyce faces two-week wait for appeal in Dubai corruption case - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Australian businessman Matthew Joyce faces two-week wait for appeal in Dubai corruption case - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation):

"Australian businessman Matthew Joyce faces a two-week wait to see whether a Dubai court will agree to his request to have key witnesses recalled in a bid to overturn his corruption conviction.

Joyce was found guilty in May over a controversial property deal in 2007.

It involved the sale of waterfront land in the United Arab Emirates by the Dubai-based firm Joyce worked for to Gold Coast developer The Sunland Group.

Another Australian caught in the scandal, Marcus Lee, was found not guilty, but the Dubai prosecutor immediately appealed the verdict."

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Ukraine: energy deals may weaken Gazprom’s grip | beyondbrics

Ukraine: energy deals may weaken Gazprom’s grip | beyondbrics:

"
The Kremlin, and Russian gas giant Gazprom, must be watching events in Ukraine with a bit of concern.

Not only is Kiev calmly defying Russia’s bullying, steadily moving closer to breaking free of its eastwards geopolitical pull by looking to sign historic free trade and association agreements with the EU in late November, but it is also pushing two new energy deals which could cut sharply the reliance on imports of Gazprom’s gas.

As the FT has reported, Ukraine’s government is weeks away from signing a shale gas production-sharing agreement with Chevron of the US, and bringing in Italy’s Eni and France’s EDF as partners for a Black Sea hydrocarbon exploration project.

Government and business industry sources said the landmark agreements would be signed next month, stepping up efforts by Kiev to diversify away from costly Gazprom imports."

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Banking on Africa - ft business - companies - FT.com

Banking on Africa - ft business - companies - FT.com:


" Oct 20, 2013 : Sim Tshabalala, co-chief executive of Standard Bank, Africa's largest bank by assets, talks to the FT’s Andrew England about the group’s refocus on the continent, where he expects fastest growth and South Africa’s recent lacklustre economic performance" 'via Blog this'

Stocks: from hope to expectation - authers note - markets - FT.com

Stocks: from hope to expectation - authers note - markets - FT.com:

" Oct 21, 2013 : Europe’s equity cycle is moving out of the ‘hope’ phase and into a slower but longer ‘growth’ period, says Peter Oppenheimer, Goldman Sachs’ chief global equity strategist. He explains to John Authers the opportunities – and risks – that this offers." 'via Blog this'

Dubai court rejects Australian businessman Matthew Joyce s appeal - Yahoo!7

Dubai court rejects Australian businessman Matthew Joyce s appeal - Yahoo!7:

"Dubai's Court of Appeal has rejected Australian businessman Matthew Joyce's application for key witnesses to be recalled in a bid to overturn a corruption conviction.

Joyce was found guilty by the Dubai court in May this year over a controversial property deal in 2007.

Another Australian caught in the scandal, Marcus Lee, was found not guilty, but the Dubai prosecutor immediately appealed the verdict.

Last month Mr Joyce's lawyers applied to the Dubai court for Sunland executive David Brown and Sunland chairman Soheil Abedian to be recalled to allow for a re-examination of their allegations, which had formed the bedrock of the case against Joyce and another Australian businessman, Angus Reed.

Joyce's lawyers argued that because these same allegations of fraud were found to be entirely without merit in a parallel case by Sunland in the Victorian Supreme Court, the pair should return to Dubai.

Now that the Dubai Court has rejected this, the case is closed."

'via Blog this'

Why China’s Credit Growth is the World’s Largest Ponzi Scheme

Why China’s Credit Growth is the World’s Largest Ponzi Scheme:

"In the US on Friday, the S&P500 surged to a new record high, presumably because there's not a lot to worry about. The Fed looks like maintaining its US$85 billion per month liquidity pump and the US government is without debt limit for a few more months at least. It's party time.

Oh, and let's not forget China's contribution to the latest price melt-up. On Friday afternoon it released better than expected economic growth numbers. The economy grew 7.8% in the three months to September 30, reversing a mid-year slowdown that had China's leadership completely freaked out.

So how did this reversal come about? By reverting to the old tried and true growth model of infrastructure lead investment. According to the Financial Times, fixed asset investment accounted for a whopping 56% of GDP growth in the third quarter:"

'via Blog this'

Kuwait gives Egypt 5 years to repay $2 billion deposit: Egyptian PM | Reuters

Kuwait gives Egypt 5 years to repay $2 billion deposit: Egyptian PM | Reuters:

"The Gulf Arab state of Kuwait will allow Egypt to repay a $2 billion central bank deposit over five years instead of the current one-year timeframe, Egypt's interim prime minister said on Sunday.

Kuwait agreed to give Egypt the extended repayment period for the deposit, Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi said in an interview aired late Sunday night on a private television channel.

Egypt's central bank received the $2 billion deposit from Kuwait on Sept. 26. It was part of a $4 billion aid package pledged by Kuwait after the Egyptian army overthrew Islamist President Mohamed Mursi on July 3."

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Kuwait sees huge budget surplus | Arab News

Kuwait sees huge budget surplus | Arab News — Saudi Arabia News, Middle East News, Opinion, Economy and more.:

"Kuwait is expecting a budget surplus between KD12 billion ($42.4 billion) and KD14 billion in the 2013-2014 financial year.
The expectation hinges largely on the oil price fluctuating between $104 and $106 barrels-per-day (bpd) during the year.
The KD13 billion surplus recorded last year, according to published reports, adds to the positive outlook.
Citing a report from National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), Tradearabia.com said the crude oil prices fell back through September, reversing the gains made in August, partly driven by geopolitical events, including the receding prospect of US military intervention in Syria. "

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Russian Budget to Lack $94Bln in Next 3 Years - Ex-Minister | Business | RIA Novosti

Russian Budget to Lack $94Bln in Next 3 Years - Ex-Minister | Business | RIA Novosti:

"Russia’s ex-Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said the country’s budget income is likely to be short of three trillion rubles ($94 billion) in the next three years due to the slowdown in the economy’s growth.
“The risk zone is over three trillion rubles taking three years [2014-2016] on the aggregate,” Kudrin, who attended the World Economic Forum in Moscow on Sunday, said.
The former finance minister also said that this year’s economic growth will be below the earlier forecasted 1.8 percent and will stand at 1.6 percent.
“Our growth potential for 2014 is around 2 percent, but may be even lower,” Kudrin said adding that in the next five years the annual economy’s growth will not be exceeding the mark of three percent."

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Saudi Gazette - Saudi bank profits head for record year

Saudi Gazette - Saudi bank profits head for record year:

"Saudi Arabia’s 12 banks boosted net profits by around eight percent in the first nine months of 2013 as they head for a record fiscal year due to lower provisions and strong corporate performance, according to bank balance sheets collated by a Saudi Arabic language daily.

The 12 banks netted nearly SR29.1 billion in the first nine months of 2013 compared with SR27 billion in the first nine months of 2012.

The profit growth was higher at around 10 percent without the earnings of the non-listed National Commercial Bank (NCB), the largest bank in the Kingdom."

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Stock markets could be hit by Dubai being awarded Expo 2020 | The National

Stock markets could be hit by Dubai being awarded Expo 2020 | The National:

"Dubai stocks hit a five-year high yesterday as regional markets that were closed for Eid played catch up to the US Congress move to pass a bill to reopen the government and raise the debt limit.

Shares listed on the Dubai Financial Market General Index (DFM) jumped 2.7 per cent yesterday, the biggest one-day price increase since September 15, amid a global market rally. They closed at 2,909.91 points, the highest level traded since September 2008.

The DFM was closed for trading last week in observance of the Eid holiday. Bourses from New York to Shanghai rallied last week after a deal was struck in the United States, the world’s largest economy, that ended a government shutdown, averted a default and raised its debt ceiling until February 7."

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Two tough years follow the heady plans of Dubai’s Gulf Navigation | The National

Two tough years follow the heady plans of Dubai’s Gulf Navigation | The National:

"
Gulf Navigation Holding
Two years ago, Abdullah Al Shuraim,the chairman of the Dubai shipping company Gulf Navigation, announced his company’s latest achievement – buying up so much tanker capacity that its fleet could transport the daily output of the world’s top crude exporter.

But today the company is now in a fight to regain control of two supertankers, currently held in foreign ports, that it bought to transport the largest of crude cargoes.

“We have multiplied our crude-carrying capacity four times to equal the crude export of Saudi Arabia for one day,” Mr Al Shuraim said two years ago. “Our five-year plan reflects a forward-thinking strategy that will take Gulf Navigation Holding to a heightened level of global competitiveness.”"

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Profile: NBAD Securities boss says 2014 could be Egypt’s year | The National

Profile: NBAD Securities boss says 2014 could be Egypt’s year | The National:

"What is the asset class and geography you are focused on?

Mainly equities, and to a lesser extents UAE listed bonds and sukuks. We’re focused mainly on the UAE and Egypt, and also the rest of the GCC markets.

What is the outlook for the month ahead?

The equity markets in the UAE will be anticipating the third-quarter results of publicly listed companies, which should start being announced after the Eid holidays, and we are at the end of October. With the current risks and uncertainties also from the US market, I believe we will be continuing to be in side way range consolidating close to the current index ranges. This is true provided geopolitical pressures from around us continue at their current levels and no unforeseen events take place during the month."

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Saudi Arabia digs what it sees in shale options | GulfNews.com

Saudi Arabia digs what it sees in shale options | GulfNews.com:

"A statement issued at the World Energy Congress in Daegu, South Korea, last week said that Saudi Arabia “is preparing to be among the first countries outside North America to use shale gas for power generation”.
The Saudi Aramco chief executive Khalid Al Falih said at the Congress: “We are ready to start producing our own shale gas and unconventional resources in various types in the next few years and deliver them to consumers.”
Saudi Arabia must have been encouraged by the success of the shale gas revolution in the US and been busy since 2011 in exploring such resources in the northern part of the country. Al Falih added: “Only two years after launching our own unconventional gas programme, in the northern region of Saudi Arabia, we are ready to commit gas for the development of a 1,000 MW power plant which will feed a massive phosphate mining and manufacturing sector.”"

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Gulf economies poised for sustained growth | GulfNews.com

Gulf economies poised for sustained growth | GulfNews.com:

"Hydrocarbon-based Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) economies are using their fiscal strength to drive near-term growth and diversify their economies to reduce long-term risks, Standard Chartered economists said in mid-year outlook for the region’s economies.
“In the Middle East, the growth outlook for the oil-rich GCC is positive, despite ongoing tensions in other parts of the region,” said Marios Maratheftis, global head of macro research at Standard Chartered Bank.
While the UAE’s real gross domestic product is projected to grow 3.4 per cent and 3.6 per cent respectively in 2013 and 2014, Saudi Arabia’s GDP is expected to grow 4.8 per cent and 4.2 per cent respectively in the same period."

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Saudi Heartland Dictates Pace of Modernization for King Abdullah - Bloomberg

Saudi Heartland Dictates Pace of Modernization for King Abdullah - Bloomberg:

"Abdulrahman al-Moshaigeh remembers leaving his mud-brick house and walking on unpaved roads to what was then the only elementary school serving Buraidah.
“There’s no comparison,” said the former member of King Abdullah’s advisory Shoura Council, born in 1945, as he contemplates the changes that have swept his hometown, the capital of Qassim province in Saudi Arabia’s conservative heartland. “Now we have more than 150 elementary schools for boys, and it’s difficult to find a girl not in school,” al-Moshaigeh said as he sat at a banquet where two roasted lambs were served with local dishes in a villa in the city.
Even by the standards of a country where women are barred from driving cars and shops close at prayer-time, Qassim has the reputation for being conservative, strictly adhering to the austere interpretation of Wahhabi Islam practiced in the Arab world’s biggest economy. That makes it an important testing ground for King Abdullah’s drive to modernize the country and draw women into the workforce."

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Ukraine close to shale gas deal - FT.com

Ukraine close to shale gas deal - FT.com:

"Ukraine’s government is weeks away from signing a shale gas production-sharing agreement with Chevron, of the US, and bringing in Italy’s Eni and France’s EDF as partners for a Black Sea hydrocarbon exploration project.
Government and business industry sources said the landmark agreements would be signed next month, as Kiev steps up efforts to find alternatives to costly imports from Russia’s Gazprom."

'via Blog this'