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Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s non-oil business activity jumps on higher output

Growth in Saudi Arabia’s non-oil business activity accelerated in January, having hit a three-month low the previous month, a survey showed on Sunday, supported by an increase in new orders and output. The seasonally adjusted Riyad Bank Saudi Arabia Purchasing Managers’ Index increased to 58.2 in January, from 56.9 in the previous month and well […]

Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, the Saudi energy minister

Saudi Arabia warns sanctions could result in energy shortages

Saudi energy minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman warned on Saturday Western sanctions against Russia could result in a shortage of energy supplies in future. In answer to a question over how trade measures would affect the energy market, Prince Abdulaziz told an industry conference in Riyadh: “All of those so-called sanctions, embargoes, lack of investments, […]

People, cafe, Man

Saudi Arabia sees cashless payments up 25% in January

Saudi Arabia saw the number of digital point-of-sale (Pos) transactions increase by nearly a quarter year-on-year during January, as the kingdom’s drive towards becoming a cashless economy takes hold. Figures from the Saudi Central Bank showed there were 598,861 transactions last month for both ATM cash withdrawals and credit card transactions at retail outlets and […]

King Salman names new Saudi central bank governor

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman appointed Ayman Al-Sayari as central bank governor replacing Fahad Al-Mubarak, a decree carried on the state media said. Al-Sayari was vice-governor for investment and research at the central bank and is a member of the board of directors of Saudi Arabia’s National Debt Management Center. Al-Mubarak would now become an adviser […]

HSBC embarks on Saudi hiring spree amid deals boom

HSBC is hiring dealmakers “as fast as it can” in Saudi Arabia to capitalise on a wave of financing activity in the country, the global head of its investment bank told Reuters. The lender aims to increase headcount in its global banking and markets business in Saudi Arabia by 10-15 percent this year, Greg Guyett, […]

PIF and AeroFarms to build indoor vertical farms across Mena

The Public Investment Fund (PIF) has signed a joint venture agreement with AeroFarms, a US-based sustainable indoor agriculture company, to build and operate indoor vertical farms across the wider Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region through a newly-established company in Riyadh. The agreement will optimise the utilisation of natural resources, including water and agricultural […]

Saudi mortgage refinance firm eyes $500m sukuk in Q2 2023

Saudi Real Estate Refinance Co (SRC), the kingdom’s equivalent of US mortgage finance business Fannie Mae, plans to issue debut dollar-denominated sukuk between the end of the first and second quarters of this year, its chief executive said. The company, a regular issuer of local currency Islamic bonds, initially aimed to issue its inaugural dollar […]

hydrogen, tank

Licence issued for world’s largest green hydrogen plant in Saudi

The first industrial operating licence has been issued for Neom Green Hydrogen Company (NGHC), which aims to run the world’s largest production facility of its kind. Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources announced on Wednesday that the licence has been granted to NGHC, a joint venture between Neom, Acwa Power and Air Products. […]

IMF cuts Saudi 2023 growth forecast to 2.6%

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised its 2023 growth forecast for Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, significantly downwards on the back of lower expected output. Growth in the Arab world’s biggest economy is now forecast at 2.6 percent in 2023, underperforming the wider region, and 1.1 percentage points below the IMF’s October […]

Stuart Deeson is the new VP of operations for the Middle East and Africa at Hyatt Hotels

‘Constantly evolving’ Mena key to Hyatt growth plan, says new VP

Hyatt Hotels, the US-based hospitality giant, is placing emphasis on the Middle East and Africa for its global growth strategy. Stuart Deeson, newly appointed vice president of operations for the region at Hyatt, told AGBI that Saudi Arabia in particular was witnessing a “significant point in history”. He also believes Qatar, Kuwait and Morocco offer […]

The stopover visa helps tourists visit destinations such as Al-Turaif district in Diriyah, one of Saudi’s six UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Saudi Arabia launches stopover visa as airlines ramp up capacity

Saudi Arabia has announced the launch of a new stopover visa for tourists as airlines are expected to significantly increase capacity on routes to the kingdom. The free-of-charge visa is open to a wider number of countries than the tourism e-visa and is Saudi Arabia’s latest move to make the destination more accessible. The launch […]

S&P says rapid credit growth hits Saudi banks’ liquidity

S&P Global Ratings said on Monday that rapid credit growth in Saudi Arabia has reduced banking liquidity and it was unclear whether the government would boost deposits with the banking system to lessen pressure. While corporate lending is seen picking up due to projects linked to the “Vision 2030” agenda to diversify away from oil, […]

China to set up Gulf free trade zone ‘as soon as possible’

China’s new foreign minister Qin Gang wants to build stronger ties with Saudi Arabia and set up a China-Gulf free trade zone “as soon as possible”, according to a ministry statement published late on Monday. Qin, who was just recently named to the position, made the suggestion in a telephone conversation with his Saudi Arabian […]

digger, mine

Luxembourg firm commits $50m investment to Saudi mining

A Luxembourg-based natural resources group is set to enter Saudi Arabia with an initial $50 million investment as the kingdom looks to attract more foreign companies to its burgeoning mining sector. Eurasian Resources Group (Erg) said there is potential to grow its Saudi investment year-on-year, adding that it will prioritise large scale, early-stage exploration for […]

Subway Saudi

Cenomi rolls out Subway sandwich chain in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia-based Cenomi Retail has announced plans to sell 26 of its “non-strategic” brands, as it refocuses on what it classes as “coveted, winning brands” such as Subway. In a posting to the Saudi Tadawul exchange Cenomi Retail – the new rebranded name for Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair Company – said the brands affected are expected […]

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. […]

Person, Human, Chair

Saudi Arabia sees borrowing at $12bn in 2023

Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, expects its financing needs to be around SAR45 billion ($12 billion) this year after pre-funding a larger amount in 2022, the National Debt Management Centre (NDMC) said. Saudi finance minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan approved the 2023 annual borrowing plan as well as a domestic sukuk issuance calendar, NDMC said […]