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Monday, 16 June 2014

William Hague to announce closer ties with Iran - FT.com

William Hague to announce closer ties with Iran - FT.com:



"Britain will take a step towards establishing full diplomatic relations with Iran, William Hague will announce on Tuesday, as the two countries are pushed together by the crisis in Iraq.



The foreign secretary told MPs on Monday that he was ready to announce the next stage in the long process of normalising relations between the two states after they were cut off following a 2011 attack on the British embassy in Tehran.



Mr Hague said: “We do have, over many decades including, now, important common interests with Iran. That includes stability in Iraq and in Afghanistan.”
"



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UPDATE 2-Wizz Air postpones float over valuation-sources | Reuters

UPDATE 2-Wizz Air postpones float over valuation-sources | Reuters:



"Wizz Air, central eastern Europe's largest airline, has postponed plans to list its shares on the London Stock Exchange because it was unlikely to get the valuation it wanted, sources close to the deal told Reuters on Monday.



In a statement posted on its web site, Wizz cited market volatility in the airline business for the decision, without giving further detail. The sources said recent turbulence in the airline market meant it would not have been valued at around 500 million pounds ($839.6 million) as it had hoped, one source said.



The budget carrier said last month it aimed to raise 200 million euros ($272 million) via the listing to strengthen its balance sheet as it seeks to fund more growth."



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Rosneft signs deals for Mozambique and Vietnam

Rosneft signs deals for Mozambique and Vietnam:



"Rosneft signed agreements with companies from Mozambique, Japan and Russia during the 21st World Petroleum Congress in Moscow. The flurry of deals seems to back the Russian hard line on Ukraine, adding further pressure on Europe, which is trying to cement its ties with Azerbaijan.  



Rosneft President Igor Sechin signed a Memorandum of Understanding with JSC Zarubezhneft in the field of geological exploration in Vietnamese shelf. 



“The signing of this Memorandum by Rosneft, Zarubezhneft and PetroVietnam is an evidence of strategic mutually beneficial cooperation between the Russian oil and gas companies and Vietnamese partners,” commented Sechin."



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Bahrain fights unrest, competition to remain business hub | Reuters

Bahrain fights unrest, competition to remain business hub | Reuters:



"When Bahrain announced plans last December to cut fuel subsidies, it was a rare step towards economic reform in a region where lavish cradle-to-grave welfare systems are the norm.



The National Oil and Gas Authority said it would gradually raise the domestic selling price for diesel fuel, almost doubling it by 2017. But the plan soon got bogged down in domestic politics.



Some members of parliament boycotted their weekly meeting to protest the price hikes. Prime Minister Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman al-Khalifa visited parliament to say the plan should be reviewed. Six months later, it is not clear if it will go ahead."



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Dubai Stocks Extend Declines Led by Arabtec Amid Iraq Violence - Bloomberg

Dubai Stocks Extend Declines Led by Arabtec Amid Iraq Violence - Bloomberg:



"Dubai’s shares fell to the lowest level in more than two months as Arabtec Holding Co. (ARTC) tumbled and unrest in Iraq escalated.



The DFM General Index (DFMGI) dropped 3.1 percent to 4,468.67, the lowest since March 31, at the close. The gauge, which retreated as much as 5.2 percent during the day, was the the worst performer among more than 90 tracked globally by Bloomberg. Arabtec slid 10 percent, the maximum allowed, and Emaar Properties PJSC (EMAAR), the stock with the biggest weighting on the measure, retreated 3.2 percent.



Arabtec shares sank to 4.05 dirhams, the lowest since March 25 and a 45 percent decline from a record 7.40 dirhams on May 14. The shares closed 10 percent lower yesterday as the Dubai Financial Market website showed Abu Dhabi-controlled Aabar Investments PJSC had reduced its holding in the company to 14.32 percent from 18.85 percent. The website later updated the stake to 18.94 percent and blamed a “temporary system glitch” for the error. Aabar last week cut its ownership from 21.57 percent."



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Abu Dhabi’s Al Jaber Group Signs Debt Restructuring Agreement - Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi’s Al Jaber Group Signs Debt Restructuring Agreement - Bloomberg:



"Al Jaber Group, a family-owned industrial business in Abu Dhabi, signed a final agreement with banks to restructure debt.



The company, whose business spans construction, engineering and shipping, signed all the documents to complete the deal, according to an e-mailed statement today. Total debt was estimated at about 15 billion dirhams ($4 billion), which includes about 7.5 billion dirhams of loans and overdrafts, a person with knowledge of the matter said in March 2013, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.



Al Jaber is one of several businesses in the United Arab Emirates that sought to restructure loans after the global credit crisis in 2008 led to a crash in property prices. The Abu Dhabi-based company reached a preliminary agreement with its main lenders in March 2013 that included a five-year repayment plan, two people familiar with the matter said at the time."



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Gazprom Says #Ukraine Failed to Meet Gas Payment Deadline | News | The Moscow Times

Gazprom Says Ukraine Failed to Meet Gas Payment Deadline | News | The Moscow Times:



"Russia's Gazprom said on Monday Ukraine had failed to pay at least part of its gas debts by a 10 a.m. deadline and would now have to pay up front for deliveries.



It said in a statement that Ukraine's state-controlled Naftogaz had also failed to pay for June deliveries, suggesting supplies could now be cut.



"Today, from 10 a.m. Moscow time, Gazprom, according to the existing contract, moved Naftogaz to prepayment for gas supplies ... Starting today, the Ukrainian company will only get the Russian gas it has paid for," it said."



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Crunch time for gas-rich Mozambique - YouTube

Crunch time for gas-rich Mozambique - YouTube: ""



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Africa's telecoms frontier - YouTube

Africa's telecoms frontier - YouTube: ""



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$150-200 oil if Iraq supplies are halted warns hedge fund giant T. Boone Pickens « ArabianMoney

$150-200 oil if Iraq supplies are halted warns hedge fund giant T. Boone Pickens « ArabianMoney:

If Iraq’s oil supply goes offline, crude prices could hit $150-$200 a barrel, T. Boone Pickens, founder of BP Capital Management, told CNBC.
‘That’s where you have to kill demand with price. That’s the only way you can do it, because oil won’t be there,’ he said. Brent crude continued higher in Asian trading on Monday, closing in on $114 a barrel…
Posted on 16 June 2014
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Qatar SWF Drops Flashy Deals as Foreign Policy Shifts, Report Says - Middle East Real Time - WSJ

Qatar SWF Drops Flashy Deals as Foreign Policy Shifts, Report Says - Middle East Real Time - WSJ:



"The Qatar Investment Authority, Qatar’s main sovereign wealth fund, appears to be shunning the flashy deal-making of its past in favor of a more conservative approach, in line with a shift in the country’s foreign policy away from high-visibility regional diplomacy, according to a recent report by GeoEconomica, a Geneva-based political risk advisory firm.



Estimated to have about $175 billion under management, the QIA has long been one of the Middle East’s biggest and most aggressive investment pools.




GeoEconomica



Guided by former deputy head Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani, the QIA and an investment arm called Qatar Holding helped rescue Barclays BARC.LN -0.48% PLC and Credit Suisse after the financial crisis and snapped up stakes in car-maker Volkswagen, U.K. supermarket chain Sainsbury’s and luxury retailer Tiffany & Co., among other high-profile assets."



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Alitalia board OK’d Etihad tie-up plan | Economy | Saudi Gazette

Alitalia board OK’d Etihad tie-up plan | Economy | Saudi Gazette:



"The board of struggling Italian airline Alitalia has approved a tie-up proposal with the Emirati carrier Etihad Airways, a company statement said over the weekend. 




Alitalia chairman Roberto Colaninno and chief executive Gabriele Del Torchio are charged with negotiating details of the deal with the Abu Dhabi airline, said the statement issued after a marathon meeting.



Etihad has for months been negotiating to buy up to 49 percent of the stricken Italian flag carrier, which is facing bankruptcy."



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BBC News - #Ukraine crisis: Kiev faces halt to gas supply

BBC News - Ukraine crisis: Kiev faces halt to gas supply:



"Gazprom has reaffirmed its Monday deadline for Ukraine to pay its debts after talks between Moscow and Kiev ended without agreement.



The Russian gas giant said it will cut Ukraine's supply if Kiev fails to pay $1.95bn (£1.15bn) by 06:00 GMT.



"We reached no agreement. The chances that we meet again are slim," Gazprom spokesman Sergei Kuprianov said."



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Selloff in regional markets stoked by fears over Iraq | The National

Selloff in regional markets stoked by fears over Iraq | The National:



"Fears of escalating tensions in Iraq sparked a selloff across the region yesterday. 




Regional losses were led by the Dubai Financial Market, which fell by 4.71 per cent, its second-largest drop of the year. The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange lost 2 per cent. Every measure across the Middle East retreated, driven by investor uncertainty over the Iraqi crisis.



“We were expecting a continuity of the positive momentum that we’d seen on Thursday,” said Mohammed Ali Yasin, managing director at NBAD Securities. “The only big news from the weekend was the escalation of the political crisis in Iraq. Initially it was some GCC investors selling and then it spread across the board.”"



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Alitalia jobs would be cut in deal, Etihad chief says | The National

Alitalia jobs would be cut in deal, Etihad chief says | The National:



"As the Etihad Airways and Alitalia chiefs reached the final stages of negotiations over a potential tie-up, Etihad’s James Hogan warned that his company would place a strong emphasis on cost-cutting.



The Abu Dhabi airline is engaged in final talks with Alitalia management in exchange for taking a stake of up to 49 per cent in the Italian airline after Alitalia announced on Friday that its board of directors had given its backing to a deal.



A deal is expected to be complete by July 15."



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Dana Gas says no impact on Iraqi Kurdistan ops from fighting | GulfNews.com

Dana Gas says no impact on Iraqi Kurdistan ops from fighting | GulfNews.com:



"Abu Dhabi-listed energy firm Dana Gas, one of the largest oil and gas investors in Iraqi Kurdistan, said on Sunday its operations there had not been affected by fighting elsewhere in the country in recent days.



The insurgent offensive that has threatened to dismember Iraq spread to the northwest of the country on Sunday, after fighters belonging to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant and other Sunni Muslim armed groups seized Mosul and stormed several towns on the road to Baghdad last week.



Shares in Dana Gas dropped 4.8 per cent on Sunday as part of a wider rout in Gulf stock exchanges that was partly due to the news from Iraq. Abu Dhabi’s bourse slumped 2 per cent."



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Russia Seen Leaving Main Rate Unchanged as Ruble Rebounds - Bloomberg

Russia Seen Leaving Main Rate Unchanged as Ruble Rebounds - Bloomberg:



"Russia’s central bank, which has raised borrowing costs twice in 2014, will probably leave its main interest rate unchanged with inflation set to peak this month and the ruble recovering from a five-year low.



Policy makers will leave the benchmark one-week auction rate at 7.50 percent today, according to all 27 economists in a Bloomberg survey. The bank is due to announce the decision at about 1:30 p.m. in Moscow, to be followed by a news conference.



Russia’s central bank, led by Chairman Elvira Nabiullina, has raised the benchmark by 200 basis points since February as a standoff with the U.S. and its allies over Ukraine intensified. The effort has stemmed declines in the ruble triggered by the threat of wider economic sanctions, making the currency the best performer in emerging markets since the April 25 rate move."



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Dubai’s Only REIT Sees Hidden Gems in City’s Underrated Offices - Bloomberg

Dubai’s Only REIT Sees Hidden Gems in City’s Underrated Offices - Bloomberg:



"Dubai’s only real estate investment trust may spend about 675 million dirhams ($184 million) on Dubai office buildings, betting on a part of the market that missed out on the city’s property rebound.



Emirates REIT (CEIC) Ltd. will only consider buildings with a single owner after properties with multiple landlords contributed to the office market’s stagnation, Executive Deputy Chairman Sylvain Vieujot said in an interview in Dubai.



“We won’t look at a tower that has been sold to 200 people,” Vieujot said. “This is what gave the office market a bad reputation, but it also gives us an opportunity because we think it’s mispriced.”"



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Oil Topping $116 Seen Possible as Iraq Conflict Widens - Bloomberg

Oil Topping $116 Seen Possible as Iraq Conflict Widens - Bloomberg:



"Brent crude was projected by Wall Street analysts to average as much as $116 a barrel by the end of the year. Now, with violence escalating in Iraq, how far the price will rise has become anyone’s guess.



 The international benchmark surged above $114 on June 13 for the first time in nine months as militants routed the Iraqi army in the north and advanced toward Baghdad, threatening to ignite a civil war. The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, known as ISIL, has halted repairs to the pipeline from the Kirkuk oil field to the Mediterranean port of Ceyhan in Turkey. 




The conflict threatens output in OPEC’s second-biggest crude producer. The Persian Gulf country is forecast to provide 60 percent of the group’s growth for the rest of this decade, the International Energy Agency said June 13. Global consumption will “increase sharply” in the last quarter of this year and OPEC will need to pump more oil to help meet the demand, according to forecasts from the Paris-based IEA."



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