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Thursday, 15 February 2018

Russian sovereign fund eyes investor consortium for Saudi Aramco IPO

Russian sovereign fund eyes investor consortium for Saudi Aramco IPO:

"The Russian Direct Investment Fund, a $10bn sovereign fund, said on Thursday it could set up a “significant consortium” of investors for the planned initial public offering of Saudi Arabia’s state energy giant Saudi Aramco.

Kirill Dmitriev, the head of the fund, said he expects widespread interest from Russian financial groups for the public offering tipped to be the world’s biggest ever.

“We see significant interest from Russian banks, from Russian investment banks and a number of other Russian investors, so we believe that we will be able to create a fairly significant consortium for these investments,” he told reporters at a conference in Sochi.

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Saudi Arabia's equity market is trading at attractive valuations, says BofAML - The National

Saudi Arabia's equity market is trading at attractive valuations, says BofAML - The National:

"Saudi Arabia's stock market, the Arab worlds’ largest, is attractive thanks to its current cheap valuation compared to other emerging markets equities as well as the government’s economic reforms and possible inclusion in two-widely tracked indices, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch. The kingdom's equities are trading at a 3 per cent premium to global emerging markets (Gems), compared with a historical premium of more than 30 per cent, the bank said in a new report. The Tadawul market is also trading at an 11 per cent discount to its longer term average. The kingdom's stock exchange, is benefiting from government reforms that will help lift non-oil growth and higher oil prices that will buoy the economy overall, the report said."



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Exclusive: Plans in the works for super group of oil producing countries  - The National

Exclusive: Plans in the works for super group of oil producing countries  - The National:

"Plans for a super group of oil producing countries could be in place before the end of this year as Opec works to institutionalise the ongoing collaboration between 24 member and non-member nations that has helped crude prices to recover. Suhail Al Mazrouei, the Minister of Energy and Industry of the UAE, which currently holds the Opec presidency, said that a draft framework for a long-term alliance will be finalised in 2018. The aim is “together with the secretary general [of Opec, Mohammad Barkindo], to put together a draft agreement for this group [of 24] to stay together for a longer time”, he said."



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Russians, Saudis May Go Beyond Oil Alliance With LNG Project - Bloomberg

Russians, Saudis May Go Beyond Oil Alliance With LNG Project - Bloomberg:

"Russia and Saudi Arabia are seeking ways to amplify the success they’ve had working together to manage the oil market by reaching new energy deals, including one on liquefied natural gas.

Signing a memorandum, Russian gas producer Novatek PJSC and Saudi oil giant Aramco agreed to consider teaming up on Novatek’s Arctic LNG-2 project, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak told reporters in Sochi on Thursday. Specifics may be prepared ahead of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum in May, he said.

President Vladimir Putin made a priority of expanding Russia’s LNG industry last year, and the country is seeking partners for projects to catch up with top producers Qatar and Australia. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia is looking from Russia to East Africa and the U.S. for gas assets as state-held Aramco, known formally as Saudi Arabian Oil Co., hunts for ways to meet soaring domestic demand."



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Brent pares losses, U.S. crude rises on weak dollar

Brent pares losses, U.S. crude rises on weak dollar:

"Oil prices were mixed on Thursday with Brent paring losses and U.S. crude turning positive as a weak dollar and Saudi Arabia’s comments that OPEC and other producers were committed to their pact on cutting supplies outweighed record U.S. production and rising inventories.

Brent futures LCOc1 were down 25 cents, or 0.4 percent, at $64.11 a barrel by 2:10 p.m. EST (1910 GMT), while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude CLc1 were up 48 cents, or 0.8 percent, at $61.08.

The premium of Brent over WTI WTCLc1-LCOc1 was near its lowest in six months."



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Oil producers to draft long-term alliance deal by end-2018: UAE minister

Oil producers to draft long-term alliance deal by end-2018: UAE minister:

"Oil producers led by Saudi Arabia and Russia aim to draft an agreement on a long-term alliance by the end of this year, United Arab Emirates energy minister Suhail al-Mazroui told the local National newspaper on Thursday.

The newspaper also quoted him as saying OPEC was urging its members to build oil capacity buffers to temper any wild upswings in price due to the weak U.S. dollar this year.

 OPEC and non-OPEC producers are restraining production to prop up prices under a deal that is to expire at the end of 2018. Saudi Arabia said last month that the producers aimed to continue cooperating beyond the end of this year."



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Citigroup Hired for First Saudi Arabia Deal After Reopening - Bloomberg

Citigroup Hired for First Saudi Arabia Deal After Reopening - Bloomberg:

"Citigroup Inc. won its first local mandate in Saudi Arabia as the U.S. lender returns to the kingdom after a 13-year absence.

The bank is advising budget carrier FlyNas LLC on its initial public offering along with Morgan Stanley and NCB Capital, people familiar with the matter said. The airline, partly owned by Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal’s Kingdom Holding Co., plans to sell shares by the end of the year or early 2019, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

Citigroup is rebuilding its operations in Saudi Arabia after exiting in 2004. The lender lost its license in the country when it sold its stake in Samba Financial Group. While the bank has played key roles on the kingdom’s record-breaking $17.5 billion bond sale in 2016 and $9 billion Islamic bond offering last year, it faced restrictions working on deals that were signed in Saudi Arabia or takeovers in which the target company was based there.

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Iran raising deposit rates to control rial's depreciation, TV reports | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Iran raising deposit rates to control rial's depreciation, TV reports | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Iran's central bank will raise deposit rates to bolster the value of the Iranian rial after it dropped to record lows, the head of the central bank said, according to a report by state television on Thursday.

Iran's national currency reached a record low around 50,000 in the free market this week, compared with 47,800 last week and 35,570 in mid-September.

"From Saturday for a period of two weeks, banks will be allowed to give interest rates of up to 20 percent on fixed one-year deposits," state TV quoted central bank Governor Valiollah Seif as saying. One-year deposit rates are now capped at 15 percent."



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Dana Gas $700mln sukuk holders say they expect full repayment after court ruling | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Dana Gas $700mln sukuk holders say they expect full repayment after court ruling | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Holders of $700 million of Islamic bonds issued by United Arab Emirates-based Dana Gas DANA.AD expect to recover all the money owed to them under the bonds' original documentation, a committee representing the holders said on Thursday.

The committee issued its statement after a London High Court judge again ruled in favour of holders on Feb. 1, rejecting an attempt by Dana to overturn his decision last November that the purchase undertaking behind the sukuk was valid and enforceable.

Dana shocked the global Islamic finance industry last June by refusing to redeem its sukuk on the grounds that they were no longer sharia-compliant and therefore unlawful in the UAE. That has led to a protracted legal battle in British and UAE courts."



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Aster DM Healthcare $153mln IPO subscribed 1.3 times | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Aster DM Healthcare $153mln IPO subscribed 1.3 times | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"United Arab Emirates-based Aster DM Healthcare Ltd's initial public offering (IPO) of shares on the Indian exchanges to raise 9.80 billion rupees ($153.34 million) was subscribed 1.3 times on the last day of the sale on Thursday.

Investors bid for 48.5 million shares, of the 37.4 million shares on offer, stock exchange data as of 1233 GMT showed. The company, which operates hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies in the Gulf and India, will use the proceeds to pay off some debt, and also finance its business development. 

Kotak Mahindra Capital, Axis Capital and Goldman Sachs (India) Securities acted as global co-ordinators and were among the book running lead managers to the IPO."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi far outperforms Gulf, rate hopes boost Egypt

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi far outperforms Gulf, rate hopes boost Egypt:

"Saudi Arabia’s stock market rose on Thursday, encouraged by strong global bourses and a slight rebound in oil prices, while hopes for an interest rate cut boosted Egypt. But much of the Gulf was sluggish because of mediocre corporate earnings.

The Saudi index gained 1.2 percent in a broad rally; gainers outnumbered losers by 140 to 39. Al Rajhi Bank added 2.9 percent in its second heaviest trading volume this year.

Saudi Investment Bank rose 2.9 percent after saying it would pay an annual dividend of 0.6 riyal per share, up from 0.5 riyal for 2016."



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Russian fund builds investors pool for Saudi Aramco IPO | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Russian fund builds investors pool for Saudi Aramco IPO | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) has pledged to set up a "significant" pool of investors for the potential $100 billion initial public offering (IPO) by Saudi Arabian state oil major Aramco, it said on Thursday.

The sovereign wealth fund's head, Kirill Dmitriev, who has previously said that Russian pension funds were considering participation in the Saudi Aramco IPO, said he expects widespread interest from the Russian financial sector.

"We see a great interest from the Russian banks, from Russian investment banks and other Russian investors," he said on the sidelines of a conference in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi."



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US set to become swing oil supplier

US set to become swing oil supplier:

"US runaway crude oil production and total oil export growth is having dramatic impacts on global oil markets, positioning the US to be the major oil export hub in the world.

No doubt there is much brouhaha over the US overtaking Saudi Arabia and Russia sometime this year as the largest crude oil producing country in the world.

But the fact is that it is already the world’s largest total producer of liquids, now marketing close to 15.5m barrels a day including crude oil, bio fuels and natural gas liquids. By year-end, total US oil liquids output should be well over 50 per cent higher than either Russia or Saudi Arabia."



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Qatar to boost LNG production to 100mtpa - The Peninsula Qatar

Qatar to boost LNG production to 100mtpa - The Peninsula Qatar:

"Qatar Petroleum (QP) has rolled out its new Corporate Strategy signaling to further boost Qatar’s leading global position by raising its LNG production from 77 million to 100 milllion tonnes per year (mtpa).
The new corporate strategy and core values were designed to firmly place QP on the road to realizing its vision “to become one of the best national oil and Gas companies, with roots in Qatar and a strong international presence. The rollout signals a new era of growth for Qatar Petroleum, led by the planned expansion of North Field production, which will further boost Qatar’s leading global position by raising its LNG production from 77 million to 100 million tonnes per year,” the energy icon said in a statement yesterday.
The roll out of new strategy also comes amidst an increasing international upstream activity, which saw Qatar Petroleum’s footprint expand to include promising offshore areas spanning Latin America, Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East."



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Think Dubai Is More Expensive Than Cairo? Look at Stocks - Bloomberg

Think Dubai Is More Expensive Than Cairo? Look at Stocks - Bloomberg:

"Visitors to Dubai and Cairo will agree that buying most things on the streets of the Egyptian capital is a lot cheaper than in the Middle East’s business hub. Not stocks though.

Since turning cheaper than peers in the EGX 30 Index in November, equities on the Dubai Financial Markets General Index are showing the biggest discount in almost three years. A rally in Egyptian stocks since the country’s 2016 currency float made its benchmark the best performer in the Middle East last year, while a lack of positive catalysts has weighed on shares in Dubai."



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UAE telco du Q4 net profit rises 14.9 pct

UAE telco du Q4 net profit rises 14.9 pct:

"Du, the United Arab Emirates’ No.2 telecom operator, reported a 14.9 percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit on Thursday, boosted by a rise in revenue, improvement in gross margin and cost savings.

The company, which ended rival Etisalat’s domestic monopoly in 2007, made a net profit after royalty of 425 million dirhams ($115.7 million) in the three months to Dec. 31, up from 370 million dirhams in the year-earlier period.

SICO Bahrain forecast du would make a quarterly profit of 430.2 million dirhams."



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Oil rises towards $65 on Saudi commitment to curb output, weak dollar

Oil rises towards $65 on Saudi commitment to curb output, weak dollar:

"Oil rose towards $65 barrel on Thursday, supported by Saudi Arabia’s comment that it would rather see an undersupplied market than end an OPEC-led deal to withhold production too soon, and by a weak U.S. dollar.

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Wednesday the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would do better to leave the market tight than end the deal on cutting output too early. Saudi Arabia is OPEC’s top producer.

Brent crude LCOc1, the global benchmark, rose 32 cents to$64.68 as of 0943 GMT, extending the previous session’s gain of $1.64. U.S. crude CLc1 was up 58 cents at $61.18.

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UAE's Aldar plans $1.47bln capex over two years, 2017 profit falls -CFO | ZAWYA MENA Edition

UAE's Aldar plans $1.47bln capex over two years, 2017 profit falls -CFO | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Aldar Properties , the state-linked builder of Abu Dhabi's Formula One circuit, said it plans to spend 5.4 billion dirhams ($1.47 billion) over the next two years after reporting an 80 percent drop in fourth quarter profit.

The results come against a backdrop of a slowing economy and property market in the oil-rich capital of the United Arab Emirates.

Aldar made a net profit attributable to owners of 141.0 million dirhams ($38.4 million) in the three months to Dec. 31, compared with 727.9 million dirhams a year earlier, CFO Greg Fewer said on a conference call on Thursday."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi rises in early trade, most of Gulf sluggish | ZAWYA MENA Edition

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi rises in early trade, most of Gulf sluggish | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Saudi Arabia's stock market rose in early trade on Thursday, encouraged by strong global bourses and a slight rebound in oil prices, but most of the Gulf was sluggish because of mediocre corporate earnings.

The Saudi index gained 0.7 percent in the first 45 minutes in a broad-based rise. Gainers outnumbered losers by 147 to 20. The cement sector was particularly strong with 12 of its 13 members rising.

Saudi Investment Bank added 2.5 percent after saying it would pay an annual dividend of 0.6 riyal per share, up from 0.5 riyal for 2016."



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