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Latest from the Middle East

Halliburton's president and CEO Jeff Miller and Aramco's senior vice president of upstream Nasir Al-Naimi arrive for a ceremony to inaugurate the first Halliburton Chemical Reaction Plant in Saudi Arabia

Energy giant Halliburton expects Middle East to fuel growth

US energy firm Halliburton predicts its international activity will grow at least in the “mid-teens” this year, driven by upcoming works in the Middle East and Latin America. During its latest earnings call the oilfield services company revealed $5.6 billion in total revenue for the third quarter of 2022, up 18 percent from $5.4 billion […]

Oilfield, Construction, Outdoors

QatarEnergy to join Lebanon offshore oil and gas exploration

QatarEnergy will join TotalEnergies and Eni in a three-way consortium to explore oil and gas in two maritime blocks off the coast of Lebanon, the Lebanese energy ministry said on Thursday. The announcement said agreements would be signed on Sunday. “This will be a major positive development,” Lebanon’s energy minister Walid Fayad told Reuters, adding […]

Technology is believed to be the No1 disruptor this year

Technology is ‘biggest disruptor’ for regional CEOs this year

Two-thirds of chief executives in the Middle East view technology as having the biggest potential to disrupt their businesses in 2023 and beyond, above supply chain, regulations, energy and other issues. For its latest annual CEO Survey, PwC asked 4,410 chief executives across 64 countries the extent to which a range of potential disruptions would […]

Iraqi dinar’s slide triggers price rise in imported goods

Hundreds of people demonstrated near central bank headquarters in Baghdad on Wednesday to protest at the recent slide of the Iraqi dinar against the dollar that has triggered a rise in prices of imported consumer goods. Masses from different regions across the country waved Iraqi flags or carried banners demanding government intervention to stop the […]

Head, Person, Face

Bargain buys and law reforms tipped to drive deal-making

When Oman Qatar Insurance and Vision Insurance signed a merger pact in December, it rounded off a busy year of M&A activity in the Middle East. The proposal, which is still subject to approval from regulators and shareholders, was one of hundreds of deals struck across the region.  Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright predicts […]

Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, minister of state for foreign trade of the UAE

Economic success for Menap hinges on greater regional trade

Many countries in the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan and Pakistan (Menap) region are enjoying growth, but new research has found that intra-regional exports account for only 2.9 percent of total gross domestic product.  This compares to a global average of 7.9 percent, and 22 percent across the European Union (EU), Norway, Switzerland and the […]

Qatari sovereign fund ups stake in Credit Suisse to just under 7%

Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund has increased its stake in Credit Suisse to just under seven percent, becoming the Swiss bank’s second-largest shareholder after Saudi National Bank, in a sign that its Gulf investor base is growing in importance. The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) bought 139.03 million shares in the Swiss lender, Refinitiv data shows based […]

Oman’s drilling services firm plans March listing on Muscat exchange

Oman’s oil and gas drilling services firm Abraj Energy Services plans to list up to 49 percent of its shares on the Muscat stock exchange in March through an initial public offering (IPO), a company statement said. The IPO forms part of an exit plan recently announced by sovereign wealth fund, the Oman Investment Authority […]

Topics:

Saudi Arabia latest

EV maker Lucid surges on report Saudi PIF to buy remaining stake

Lucid Group’s shares surged 43 percent on Friday, paring gains after doubling on market speculation that Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) wanted to buy out the electric vehicle maker. The speculation originated from an “uncooked” alert attributed to deals website Betaville, using its term for market gossip. Lucid was the sixth-most traded stock on […]

Horacio Pagani, Argentine-Italian founder, CEO and chief design officer at his supercar company

Cars, property and superjets: Pagani plots future with PIF

Horacio Pagani, founder of the supercar that bears his name, is open to further partnerships with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund as his company expands into luxury real estate and private jet design. PIF acquired a 30 percent stake in the Italian business in 2021. Pagani, who acts as its CEO and chief design officer, […]

Canoo EV

Olayan and Canoo sign deal for electric vehicles in Saudi

Saudi Arabian general contracting company GCC Olayan has signed a deal with US electric vehicles maker Canoo for the sale, service and distribution in the kingdom of its EVs. Part of Saudi conglomerate The Olayan Group, GCC Olayan said the partnership was the first step in plans to expand beyond the initial dealership agreement, with […]

Ecolodges Saudi

Nature calls as Dubai ecolodge startup spreads its wings

While hospitality businesses were suffering during the coronavirus pandemic, a Dubai-based startup was plotting ambitious expansion. Envi, a luxury experiential ecolodge brand and management company, was launched in 2021, just as the tourism industry had lost $935 billion in revenue, according to figures from the World Travel and Tourism Council. “We saw how many hotels […]

Red Sea Saudi

Saudi outpaces neighbours as prime tourist destination

In the space of only three years, Saudi Arabia has been transformed into the biggest Arab market for international tourists. Religious tourism has traditionally been one of the few ways visitors could enter the kingdom, with 2019 records revealing 9.5 million pilgrims visited the holy cities of Mecca and Medina between the Hajj and Umrah. […]

UAE Latest

Coca-Cola’s UAE bottling facility to be powered by clean energy

Emerge, a joint venture between the UAE’s Masdar and France’s EDF, has signed an agreement with Coca-Cola Al Ahlia Beverages, Coca-Cola’s bottler and distributor in the UAE, to develop a 1.8-megawatt (MWp) solar photovoltaic (PV) plant for its Al Ain facility. The commercial and industrial (C&I) project will combine ground-mounted, rooftop, and car park installations, […]

Wizz Air Abu Dhabi to accelerate and expand operations in 2023

Low-cost airline Wizz Air Abu Dhabi is ready to accelerate and expand operations further in 2023. It currently flies to 36 destinations to 25 different countries from Abu Dhabi, the UAE state-owned WAM news agency reported. The airline operated more than 6,000 flights and transported more than 1.2 million travellers in 2022. It carried over […]

shop, jewellery

Indians buy homemade jewellery for less in Dubai

Indians are travelling to Dubai to purchase jewellery made in their home country as it costs less in the emirates. Import duties, previously at 5 percent, were waived for jewellery exported from India to the UAE under the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (Cepa) signed between the two nations last year. “The prices are better,” said […]

Global Partners BTR property Dubai

UAE fund manager raises $212m to target build-to-rent market

Global Partners, a Dubai-based institutional fund manager, has raised $212 million from global investors through its debut property fund, and intends to build two residential projects near Dubai Water Canal.  Based in the emirate’s financial free zone Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), Global Partners specialises in alternative investments and aims to tap the UAE’s growing […]

HyperSpace

Dubai startup aims to disrupt Mena theme park sector

Traditional, ride-based theme parks are being challenged by Dubai-based startup HyperSpace’s “physical parks for a digital world”, including AYA and House of Hype.  HyperSpace opened the 40,000sq ft AYA, a digitally immersive experience park with interactive gardens, observatories and other spaces in Dubai’s Wafi Mall in December, bringing a metaverse dimension to the emirate’s entertainment […]

Around the world

UK regional airline Flybe ceases trading and cancels all flights

British regional airline Flybe on Saturday ceased trading for the second time in three years, with all flights cancelled and 276 workers made redundant. A statement on Flybe’s website said the airline, which operated scheduled services from Belfast, Birmingham and Heathrow across the UK and to Amsterdam and Geneva, had entered administration, a form of […]

Costcutter owner Bestway buys stake in Qatar-backed Sainsbury’s

Retail group Bestway, the owner of Costcutter, has built a 3.45 percent stake in Sainsbury’s, describing the move as an investment and not a step towards making a takeover offer for Britain’s second largest supermarket group. Sainsbury’s shares were up 4.5 percent on Friday, hitting their highest since April and leading gainers on the FTSE […]

Thailand holds 2023 GDP growth outlook on tourism rebound

Thailand’s finance ministry on Friday maintained its economic growth outlook for 2023 at 3.8 percent, helped by a rebound in tourism and domestic demand, but an official said exports would slow down this year. For 2022, Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy is expected to have expanded three percent, down from a previous forecast of 3.4 percent, […]

Renault Nissan

Nissan and Renault close in on overhaul of alliance

Nissan and Renault are closing in on a sweeping overhaul of their globe-spanning automaking alliance as top executives meet on Thursday for talks to reset the two-decade-old partnership and chart a course for an uncertain electric future. Leaders of Nissan Motor Co Ltd and Renault SA are meeting via video link for an alliance board […]

Hindenburg says holds short positions in India’s Adani

Short-seller Hindenburg Research said on Wednesday it holds short positions in India’s Adani Group companies through US-traded bonds and non-Indian-traded derivative instruments. The seven listed companies of the Adani Group, which is controlled by the world’s third richest man Gautam Adani, have an 85 percent downside on a fundamental basis due to sky-high valuations, Hindenburg […]

Tesla to invest $3.6bn to produce electric trucks and battery cells

Tesla Inc. has said it would invest more than $3.6 billion to expand its Nevada gigafactory complex with two new factories, one to mass produce its long-delayed Semi electric truck and the other to make its new 4680 battery cell. The cell plant would be able to make enough batteries for two million light-duty vehicles […]

Opec+ panel unlikely to tweak oil policy at February 1 meeting

An Opec+ panel is likely to endorse the producer group’s current oil output policy when it meets next week, five Opec+ sources have said, as hopes that improved Chinese demand would drive an oil price rally were balanced by economic concerns. Ministers from Opec and allies led by Russia, known collectively as Opec+, meet virtually […]

Sri Lanka expects to complete debt restructuring in six months

Sri Lanka is committed to meeting all its debt repayments and is hoping to complete debt restructuring negotiations in the next six months, the country’s central bank chief P. Nandalal Weerasinghe said on Tuesday. “There has been good progress this month with India already pledging financing assurances. We expect assurances from China and Japan soon,” […]

Turkey Latest

Flag, Turkey Flag

Turkey received highest EBRD funding of $1.7bn in 2022

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) invested €1.63 billion ($1.7 billion) in Turkey in 2022, the highest volume of annual investment in all the economies where the bank operates. EBRD’s cumulative investment in the country amounted to almost €17 billion, 85 percent of which has been in the private sector, the bank said […]

Sahap Kavcioglu said the central bank was prioritising steps aimed at removing structural causes of high inflation

Turkey’s central bank sticks to forecast for inflation plunge

Turkey’s central bank stuck to its forecasts for a sharp drop in inflation on Thursday, saying the increasing predictability of the lira’s exchange rate plus financing support meant there was no longer the basis for large price rises. Presenting a quarterly economic report, the bank’s governor Sahap Kavcioglu stood by previous year-end annual inflation forecasts […]

Money, Person, Baby

Turkey to provide 2% forex conversion support to firms

Turkey’s central bank said on Thursday it will provide two percent foreign exchange conversion support to companies that bring forex into the country from abroad, sell it to the central bank and pledge not to buy forex for a period determined by the bank. After selling 40 percent of the forex they bring into the […]

Turkey’s Tosyali and AD Ports eye investments in new port facilities

Abu Dhabi’s AD Ports Group has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Tosyali Holding Company, which could see joint investment in new port facilities to support Turkey’s largest private steel producer’s export operations. The MoU will “establish the framework on a broad range of shipping, logistics, ports, and freight forwarding services”, AD Ports said in a […]

Tie, Accessories, Accessory

Turkey plans draft law for debt restructuring

Turkey’s ruling AK Party is preparing a draft law to let people and companies restructure debt to public institutions, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday, one of a string of eye-catching measures promised ahead of elections. The changes would waive late payment fees incurred over unpaid tax bills, social security debt and other liabilities, Erdogan […]

Egypt Latest

Egypt to announce listing of state-owned companies shortly

Egypt’s cabinet will announce the country’s plans to list state-owned companies on the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) during 2023, Ahram Online reported, citing Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly. “In less than two weeks, the cabinet will fully announce the plan to offer all [mandated] companies on the Egyptian exchange in 2023,” he stated. The step follows the recently […]

Esports and gaming is big business across the world

Egyptian gaming startup acquires Tunisian rival Galactech

Egyptian startup GBarena, an esports platform operating across the Middle East, has acquired Tunisian rival Galactech in a share swap valued at $15 million. The deal comes as GBarena prepares to close its Series A funding later this year, with participation from investors in the US, Singapore and the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) […]

Worker at an oil shale power plant. The white paper calls on the UAE and UK to help oil and gas workers transfer their skills to renewable industries

Egyptian banks to support local SMEs with $120m funding

Saudi-based Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), an affiliate of the Islamic Development Bank, is planning to provide financing worth $120 million to local Egyptian banks, including Banque Misr and the National Bank of Egypt (NBE), Egypt Today newspaper reported. Funds will help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and provide integrated […]

Rishi Sunak, the UK's prime minister, greets President Abdel Fattah El Sisi of Egypt at Cop27 in Sharm el-Sheikh. Trade between the two countries rose by a third last year

UK seeks North Africa trade boost after Cairo deal

The British export credit agency has signed a deal with Egyptian engineering and construction company Hassan Allam Holding to increase cooperation on projects across the Middle East and North Africa. The agreement, signed at the British embassy in Cairo, aims to secure inward investment into the UK and promote cooperation on financing projects and encourage […]

Egypt’s Sisi defends mega-projects while economy is under strain

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi on Monday defended mega-projects undertaken since he took power, saying they were not to blame for economic turmoil that has seen the currency plummet and inflation accelerate. Since Sisi became president in 2014, Egypt has embarked on an infrastructure splurge spearheaded by the military that has included the expansion of […]

Features

Glove, Clothing, Portrait

Diamonds (from a lab) are the Gulf’s best friend

Basma Chaieri began her business after watching the season two finale of Netflix’s hit series Explained. The November 2019 episode, which explored the growing popularity of lab-grown diamonds, prompted the Dubai resident to quit her travel job and enrol in gemology school to study the trade. “I thought why would anyone buy a real diamond […]

Perihan Abouzeid, founder of PeriCare

Perihan Abouzeid set up PeriCare, a Dubai-based company focused on building products that serve the needs of working mothers and mothers on the go. It became a revenue-generating startup within the first month of operations and has featured at major events like Gitex and Dubai Design Week. What does your company do? Our flagship product […]

Saudi Arabia’s bid to be the next global fashion powerhouse

It will not be long before Saudi Arabia produces a global fashion powerhouse brand to rival Louis Vuitton and Chanel, according to the man tasked with fulfilling the kingdom’s catwalk ambitions. “I have no doubt about that, the sky is the limit,” Burak Cakmak, CEO of the Saudi Fashion Commission told AGBI as designers from […]

Investors are increasingly interested in startups aiming to improve, expand and optimise the agricultural and food industries

Agtech startups and Egypt are hot prospects for Mena funding

Startups across the Middle East and North Africa region raised $125 million in funding in December last year, with Egyptian companies leading the pack, ahead of regional powerhouses the UAE and Saudi Arabia. A joint report by Wamda and Digital Digest showed that Egyptian startups secured $45.7 million across 11 deals in December, more than […]

Lifestyle & People

Akio Toyoda set to remain a force at Toyota as he bows out

Toyota Motor Corp chief Akio Toyoda is set to remain a dominant force inside the world’s largest automaker for years to come, and will continue to influence the agenda after stepping down in April, experts and people familiar with the firm said. The 66-year-old Toyoda on Thursday announced he would step aside as leader of […]

Dubai hotel Radisson Red Silicon Oasis is partnering with cloud kitchen firm Krush Brands to offer food variety to both guests and the local community

Gulf hotels and cloud kitchens join forces to cook up extra profit

Partnership between hotels with spare capacity and fast-growing cloud kitchens is a “no brainer”, say industry experts. Radisson Hotel Group in Dubai recently announced a partnership with food technology company Krush Brands, with the first cloud kitchen location at Radisson Red Silicon Oasis. Cloud kitchens are companies that prepare food solely for home delivery without […]

Treasure, Gold, Finger

Gold set to sparkle as global recession looms

Gold may have underperformed last year but it is expected to shine in 2023 and could rise as high as $3,000, analysts have said. The World Gold Council said in its 2023 market outlook that the precious metal is set to record a stable performance next year despite a mix of competing challenges. “Economists and […]

Movie star Leonardo DiCaprio has largely focused on films about the environment for the past decade

Di Caprio-backed fintech to set up offices in Abu Dhabi

California-based fintech company Aspiration Inc. will be setting up offices at Abu Dhabi Global Market. Aspiration is supported by Access Abu Dhabi, the business expansion program by Maven Global Access and Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO), which serves as a conduit to fast-track entry to the UAE capital, the company said in a statement.  The […]