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Banking & Finance

Coin, Money, Nickel

Egypt’s Central Bank says foreign treasury bills exodus continues

A foreign exodus from Egyptian treasury bills continued into May, Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) data showed on Monday, after the Ukraine crisis and concerns about US interest rate hikes prompted foreign investors to cash out their holdings. T-bills held by foreign customers dropped in the month by 30 billion Egyptian pounds, at the time […]

Saudi Arabia plans to renew $3bn deposit to Pakistan

Saudi Arabia is planning to renew its $3 billion (656 billion Pakistani rupee) deposit with the State Bank of Pakistan, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter. The kingdom also plans to provide $100 million a month for 10 months in petroleum products that will be granted as additional support, the news agency reported, expecting the […]

BlackRock may spur wealthy to make crypto leap

Institutional investors and high net worth individuals have traditionally shunned cryptocurrencies as volatile and untrustworthy. The ongoing turbulence in the market, with the value of bitcoin dropping by nearly half so far this year, has not helped sentiment but there are signs this is changing. BlackRock, which has $8.49 trillion of assets under management, yesterday […]

Saudi Arabia’s Maaden’s Q2 profit triples to $1.1bn

Saudi Arabian Mining Co. (Maaden) reported Q2 2022 net profit more than tripled to SAR 4.03 billion ($1.07 billion) from SAR 1.10 billion in the year-earlier period on higher sales prices and increased production. Sales revenue stood at SAR 11.87 billion in Q2 2022 compared to SAR 6.10 billion in the prior period, the mining […]

Traditional UAE banks must snap up neobanks to survive

The UAE’s growing army of digital-only banks could soon be snapped up by traditional banks as digitisation continues apace, experts have told AGBI. A global survey published on Tuesday by UK-based comparison platform, Finder, said 19 percent of adults in the UAE have a neobank account, up from 17 percent last year – and that […]

Kuwait central bank raises discount rate by 25 bps

The Central Bank of Kuwait raised its discount rate by 25 basis points to 2.75 percent effective from Thursday, it said in a statement on Wednesday. The decision was in response to inflationary pressures, bank Governor Basel Al-Haroon said in the statement. The bank had also increased the rate by 25 bps on July 27, […]

Boat, Transportation, Vehicle

Saudi Arabia invests $1.3bn in four Egyptian firms

The Saudi Egyptian Investment Co (SEIC), owned by Saudi Arabia’s state-owned Public Investment Fund (PIF), has bought minority stakes in four Egyptian companies for $1.3 billion, Egypt’s planning ministry said on Wednesday. The companies are Abu Qir Fertizilers and Chemical Industries, Misr Fertilizers Production Company , Alexandria Container and Cargo Handling, and payments firm E-Finance […]

Person, Human, Building

UAE lifts prison term for American convicted of money laundering

A United Arab Emirates court has lifted a prison sentence but upheld a conviction on money laundering charges for US citizen and civil rights attorney Asim Ghafoor, who was detained while transiting through Dubai last month, the Judicial Department and a lawyer for Ghafoor said on Wednesday. The court ordered Ghafoor to pay AED 5 […]

Reforms draw North American investors to the Gulf

North America-based entities were the most active investors in Middle East and North Africa merger and acquisition (M&A) deals in the first half of 2022. Attracted by ongoing economic reforms in the region, US and Canadian firms took part in 30 percent of inbound M&A activity, with a particular focus on technology-related investments. The latest […]

SoftBank slump not a ‘total disaster’ for Gulf wealth funds

The $23.1 billion quarterly loss announced by Japan’s SoftBank Vision Fund this week may not represent a “total disaster” for its Gulf investors, according to US-based experts. Announced during President Donald Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia in 2017, the Vision Fund is heavily backed by GCC sovereign wealth funds (SWFs). Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund […]

Text, Word, Number

Iran makes first import order using cryptocurrency

Iran made its first official import order using cryptocurrency this week, the semi-official Tasnim agency reported on Tuesday, a move that could enable the Islamic Republic to circumvent US sanctions that have crippled the economy. The order, worth $10 million, was a first step towards allowing the country to trade through digital assets that bypass […]

High Rise, City, Urban

Abu Dhabi’s Chimera buys 55.9% stake in Egyptian financial firm

Abu Dhabi investment firm Chimera Investment LLC said on Tuesday it has acquired a controlling stake in Egypt’s Beltone Financial Holding, part of a strategy to expand in the Middle East and North Africa region. Chimera bought 55.9 percent of Beltone at 1.485 Egyptian pounds a share, valuing the company at 661.8 million pounds ($34.6 […]

Person, Human, Airport

Dubai’s biggest bank gives staff a pay rise to combat inflation

Dubai’s biggest bank Emirates NBD has given most employees a pay rise of up to 8 percent to help cushion against rising costs of living driven by inflation, two sources familiar with the matter said. The increases varied according to seniority and were part of a mid-cycle salary adjustment for inflation, with top executives receiving […]

Person, Human, Monitor

UAE businesses to boost investment in cyber insurance

Revenue from the cyber security insurance sector is forecast to grow by 10 percent per annum to $10.6 billion in 2025, with Gulf companies set to be part of this investment push. “The Russia-Ukraine war has increased the likelihood of state-sponsored cyber attacks that target critical infrastructure, military operations, and businesses,” said Amrit Dhami, a London-based […]

London finance firm sees GCC as Europe-Asia bridge

London-based DKK Partners, an emerging markets foreign exchange liquidity provider, has announced a major expansion into the Middle East. Four new offices will open in the MENA region as it sees the GCC developing into a “financial hub that bridges Europe with Asia”. The company, which has its headquarters in Mayfair, has seen its revenues […]

Clothing, Apparel, Bonnet

How the new Saudi Companies Law could affect your business

Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministers recently approved a new Companies Law, which aims to enhance the growth of the kingdom’s commercial ecosystem.  According to the Ministry of Commerce, the law aims to increase business sustainability and encourage investment in SMEs by facilitating procedures and regulatory requirements.  It introduces new corporate entities, increasing the level of […]

German insurer Allianz weighs stake sale in Saudi subsidiary

German insurer Allianz SE is weighing a sale of its Saudi Arabian unit, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter. The German insurer is working with an adviser on the potential disposal of its controlling stake in Allianz Saudi Fransi Cooperative Insurance Co. Other insurers have expressed preliminary interest in acquiring the business. Deliberations […]

UAE’s Mubadala Capital to acquire Canadian logistics firm

Mubadala Capital, the asset management subsidiary of Mubadala Investment Company, entered into an agreement to acquire Canada Cartage, a short-haul trucking and logistics firm, WAM, the UAE state news agency, reported. Canada Cartage currently operates through a network of 33 facilities across Canada. It has two business segments: dedicated transportation and logistics. Scotiabank is acting […]

Saudi’s cashless revolution well underway as investments soar

Saudi Arabia’s digital payments revolution is gathering pace with point-of-sale transactions surpassing ATM cash withdrawals for the first time in the second quarter of 2022. The kingdom’s transformation into a cashless economy resulted in point-of-sale (PoS) transactions rising 16.6 percent annually in Q2 to $36.7 billion, described by the Saudi Ministry of Investment (MISA) as […]

Car, Automobile, Vehicle

Abu Dhabi wealth funds may invest in planned Porshe IPO

Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth funds – Mubadala Investment Co. and ADQ – are likely to become anchor investors for the possible initial public offering (IPO) of Volkswagen-owned luxury carmaker Porsche, Bloomberg reported, citing informed sources. State-owned entities in other Gulf markets, including Saudi Arabia, are also being considered as potential investors in one of Europe’s […]

Kuwait’s Agility signs $1.4bn credit facility with banks

Kuwait’s Agility, one of the largest Gulf logistics companies, said on Sunday it had signed a new credit facility of 1.4 billion euros ($1.06 billion). The transaction is part of a financing round that is expected to total about $3.2 billion, it said. The company said the money will pay for the company’s growth plans, […]

Person, Human, Archaeology

Saudi’s PIF sets up company to invest in Egyptian sectors

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) has set up a company to invest in promising Egyptian sectors, extending a policy of pumping money into the Egyptian economy. The $620 billion sovereign wealth fund said on Friday sectors in Egypt it would target through its new Saudi Egyptian Investment Co (SEIC) included infrastructure, real estate, health […]