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Sunday, 19 February 2017

Saudi Binladin obtains fresh payments from government -sources | Reuters

Saudi Binladin obtains fresh payments from government -sources | Reuters:

"Saudi Binladin Group (SBG) has received substantial payments from the Saudi Arabian government to settle debts since the start of this year, a boost to the struggling construction conglomerate and to the kingdom's economy, banking sources said. SBG has received 2.4 billion riyals ($640 million) so far this year for its work on state projects including the King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah, one banker said, declining to be named because the matter is not public. A second banker, whose institution has direct exposure to SBG, put the figure for payments to the group since the beginning of 2017 at 3.1 billion riyals. Details of banks' financial information on SBG can vary because they are involved in different loans to it."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks support Saudi, Qatar; Egypt falls as currency strengthens | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks support Saudi, Qatar; Egypt falls as currency strengthens | Reuters:

"Stock markets in the Middle East were mixed in modest trading volumes on Sunday with Saudi Arabia and Qatar outperforming because of support from the banking sector, while Egypt fell as the currency hit a three-month high.

Two-thirds of the 12 listed banks on Saudi Arabia's bourse gained, lifting the index 0.1 percent. Alawwal Bank added 2.7 percent, with most activity occurring in the last hour of the session.

Reuters reported on Sunday, citing banking sources, that builder Saudi Binladin Group had received hundreds of millions of dollars from the government to settle debts since the start of this year - good news for the company and its bank creditors."



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Abu Dhabi Awards China's CNPC Stake in Main Onshore Oil Deposits - Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi Awards China's CNPC Stake in Main Onshore Oil Deposits - Bloomberg:

"Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. awarded a stake in its largest oil concession to China National Petroleum Corp. as the Middle East emirate brings in more foreign investors to raise crude production capacity.

CNPC will take an 8 percent stake in the oil-production joint venture in return for paying a $1.8 billion signing bonus, Adnoc said in a statement Sunday. BP Plc joined the project in December for a 10 percent stake after Total SA took the same share in January 2015."



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JP Morgan confident of retaining share of Middle East investment bank fees | The National

JP Morgan confident of retaining share of Middle East investment bank fees | The National:

"JP Morgan said it expects to keep its market share of investment bank fees in the Middle East steady in 2017 after doubling it last year, topping the rankings on the back of a boom in international bond sales from the region as governments plugged low oil price created deficits with borrowed cash.

The American bank’s bumper year in the Middle East also came with an upsurge in fees from mergers and acquisitions including those from advising on Saudi Arabia’s US$3.5 billion investment in Uber and Qatar National Bank’s €2.7bn (Dh10.52bn) purchase of Finansbank of Turkey from National Bank of Greece.


"The Middle East was always a modest borrower in the world of emerging markets and it’s now taking its fair share because these deficits are there," said Sjoerd Leenart, the chief executive of the Middle East, Turkey and Africa for JP Morgan."



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GCC needs further deficit cuts to stabilise public finance | GulfNews.com

GCC needs further deficit cuts to stabilise public finance | GulfNews.com:

"The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) governments have been working hard to address the rising fiscal gap following the sustained decline in oil prices, but the problems persist and further reduction in deficits and revenue diversification are required to sustain economic growth and job creation, according to economists and multilateral agencies. GCC fiscal deficits are forecast to narrow in 2017 to an aggregate of 6.5 per cent of GDP in 2017 on higher oil revenues. The narrower deficits and ongoing foreign borrowings are expected to result in banking sector liquidity easing in 2017. But as a result of the fiscal tightening, support to growth is expected to moderate, potentially impacting GDP and employment growth. Speaking at the recent Arab Fiscal Forum, Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) called on regional governments to deepen and broaden government revenues while rationalising spending."



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TABLE-UAE bank lending growth in January weakest since 2014 | Reuters

TABLE-UAE bank lending growth in January weakest since 2014 | Reuters:

"Annual growth in bank lending in the
United Arab Emirates slowed in January to its weakest since
March 2014, central bank data showed on Sunday.
"



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Iran pushes for dialogue with Gulf Arab states | Reuters

Iran pushes for dialogue with Gulf Arab states | Reuters:

"Iran's foreign minister on Sunday stepped up efforts to improve ties with Gulf Arab Sunni states urging them to work with their Shi'ite rival to address "anxieties" and violence across the region. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani last week traveled to Oman and Kuwait to try improve ties, his first visit to the Gulf states since taking power in 2013. The six Arab members of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), especially Saudi Arabia, accuse Iran of using sectarianism to interfere in Arab countries and build its own sphere of influence in the Middle East. Iran denies the accusations."



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Saudi Stock Exchange Gets Its First Female Head - Bloomberg

Saudi Stock Exchange Gets Its First Female Head - Bloomberg:

"NCB Capital Co. Chief Executive Officer Sarah Al Suhaimi will become the first woman to chair Saudi Arabia’s stock exchange, the largest bourse in the Middle East.

Al Suhaimi was appointed chairwoman of the Tadawul, replacing Khalid Al Rabiah, the exchange said in a statement on Thursday. She is expected to keep her position at NCB Capital, the investment banking unit of National Commercial Bank, a person familiar with the appointment said. Al Suhaimi was the first female head of a Saudi investment bank when she assumed the role in 2014."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks support Saudi, Qatar while profit-taking weighs on UAE | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks support Saudi, Qatar while profit-taking weighs on UAE | Reuters:

"Stock markets in the Gulf were mixed in early, quiet trade on Sunday with Saudi Arabia and Qatar outperforming because of support from the banking sector as United Arab Emirates bourses succumbed to profit-taking. Nine of the 12 listed banks on Saudi Arabia's bourse gained in the first 45 minutes of trade, lifting the index 0.4 percent. The largest Islamic lender, Al Rajhi Bank, added 1.5 percent after its chief executive told Reuters that the bank gained market share in corporate banking last year for the first time in four years, and would continue to expand in that area by focusing on healthcare services, affordable housing, transportation and energy."



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