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Saturday, 7 April 2018

Russia open to a long-term formal alliance with Opec

Russia open to a long-term formal alliance with Opec:

"The alliance between Opec and Russia that co-ordinated historic oil-output cuts could last “indefinitely” and be formalised by setting up a new organisation including other major producers, said Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak.
The production limits agreed by Opec, Russia and allies including Mexico and Kazakhstan have efficiently relieved a global oversupply, Novak told reporters in Moscow on Thursday. This mechanism could be used again to offset future imbalances in the oil market, he said.
“If we keep co-operating, we are giving a signal that we can take joint actions at any time to improve the market,” Novak said. While no decision has been taken yet, ministers from the 24 nations that participate in the current oil-output pact – which expires at the end of the year – will discuss the outline of the plan later this month, he said."



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Eni, Qatar Hold Talks for Deal on Giant Mexico Field - Bloomberg

Eni, Qatar Hold Talks for Deal on Giant Mexico Field - Bloomberg:

"Eni SpA is in talks to sell a stake in its giant oil discovery in Mexico to Qatar Petroleum International, according to people with knowledge of the plans.

The Italian oil major, which currently holds 100 percent of the offshore find in Campeche Bay and expects to start production in early 2019, would sell 20 percent to 35 percent to Qatar Petroleum, the people said, asking not to be named because the negotiations aren’t public. Eni is also in talks with other potential suitors, the people said.

Eni declined to comment, and Qatar Petroleum didn’t respond to calls and emails seeking comment after business hours. Eni shares fell 0.1 percent at 11:30 a.m. in Milan, trading at 14.9 euros."



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Saudi Arabia's Rating Affirmed by S&P - Bloomberg

Saudi Arabia's Rating Affirmed by S&P - Bloomberg:

"Saudi Arabia’s credit rating was affirmed by S&P Global Ratings as its heir to the throne, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is on a three-week tour of the U.S. in search of deals that would diversify his country’s oil-dependent economy.

S&P affirmed Saudi Arabia’s rating at A- and kept the outlook stable. “We expect Saudi Arabia will experience modest economic growth from 2018, supported by rising government investment and, later in our forecast period, a gradual increase in oil production,” the agency said in a statement Friday.

Saudi Arabia’s economy contracted 0.5 percent last year after lower oil prices led to a ballooning budget deficit and shrinking reserves. The Crown Prince’s ambitious development plan -- Vision 2030 -- seeks to wean the country off oil while privatizing state-owned companies, including the sale of a stake of up to 5 percent in oil giant Aramco."



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Aramco Plans Study for Chemical Complex in Texas - Bloomberg

Aramco Plans Study for Chemical Complex in Texas - Bloomberg:

"Saudi Arabia’s state oil company will sign an agreement this weekend with a British oilfield services firm to explore building chemical facilities in Texas, according to people familiar with the matter. The agreement with TechnipFMC Plc involves a study for a potential chemical unit on the U.S. Gulf Coast that would be able to produce materials used in gasoline and as industrial solvents, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter isn’t public. There will also be a study on a facility that can make ethylene, a key compound for making plastics. Saudi Aramco, through its Motiva Enterprises LLC subsidiary, owns North America’s largest refinery, in Port Arthur, Texas. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, heir to the throne of the world’s largest oil exporter, is wrapping up a three-week tour of the U.S. to promote his effort to open up the Saudi economy through his “Vision 2030” and has announced several development projects. While in New York in late March, he signed a memorandum of understanding with Softbank Group Corp. to build at $200 billion solar power development."



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Sovereign funds take part in record $42bln of deals in Q1 | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Sovereign funds take part in record $42bln of deals in Q1 | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Sovereign investors participated in deals worth a record $42 billion in the first quarter, led by Singapore fund GIC's involvement in the two biggest transactions, which accounted for $29.6 billion combined. GIC and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) are investing alongside U.S. private equity firm Blackstone BX.N in its $17 billion acquisition of a majority stake in the Financial and Risk business of Thomson Reuters Corp - the quarter's largest deal.  GIC also partnered with Carlyle Group, another private equity firm, to acquire Akzo Nobel's Specialty Chemicals business for $12.6 billion."



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UAE banks maintain robust performance | ZAWYA MENA Edition

UAE banks maintain robust performance | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Banks in the UAE recorded a healthy profit growth of 4.6 per cent in 2017 while maintaining a close to zero revenue growth for the second year in a row, latest annual banking data shows. The revenue growth stagnation for the UAE banks stems from a tighter risk appetite as well as portfolio optimisation initiatives of banks which seek to enhance risk-adjusted returns, according to Dr Reinhold Leichtfuss, senior partner and managing director at Boston Consulting Group's Middle East office. In the GCC, while only 18 per cent of banks were able to achieve double-digit revenue growth in 2017, twice as many experienced double-digit profit growth, BCG's annual banking index shows."



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Muhammad Bin Salman to focus on renewable energy investment in France | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Muhammad Bin Salman to focus on renewable energy investment in France | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Crown prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense will pay an official visit next week to France, expected to focus on investment but also the war in Yemen, French officials confirmed Thursday. The Crown Prince is expected to arrive Sunday for a two-day official visit starting Monday — the latest stop in an international tour that has already taken him to the US and Britain. On Tuesday, he will have dinner with President Emmanuel Macron to discuss "a new strategic partnership", with a particular focus on investment in renewable energy and the digital economy, Macron's office said."



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