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Industry business news from the Middle East. All the important stories, exclusive interviews, plus authoritative opinion and analysis

An Airbus 320 under construction. The Morocco plant is expected to produce parts for 75 planes a month

Airbus to expand production in Morocco as orders grow

European aircraft manufacturer Airbus is expanding its production capacity in Morocco to meet growing demand for its aircraft. The Airbus Atlantic Morocco Composites plant in Nouaceur aims to build parts for 75 A320 family aircraft per month by 2026. The 30,000 square metres plant, with 17,000 square metres dedicated to workshops, “specialises in producing composite […]

Matthias Ziegler: looking to claim a 5 percent share of new SUV sales in the Middle East region for VW within three to five years

Qatar-backed Volkswagen targets Middle East SUV market

Volkswagen Middle East aims to nearly double its share of sport utility vehicle (SUV) sales in the Gulf and Jordan, its regional chief, Matthias Ziegler, told AGBI. The German company, the world’s number two automaker by vehicle sales, and 10 percent owned by the government of Qatar, has numerous sub-brands, including Porsche, Audi, Bentley and […]

A worker at Veggitech, a start-up farm in Sharjah, UAE. Agtech startups are looking beyond VC entities for funding

Agriculture startups failing to cultivate VC interest

Agriculture technology founders in the Gulf are having to resort to alternative sources of funding, as interest from venture capital entities dries up. The region is following a global trend. Startups in so-called “agtech” cumulatively raised $1.2 billion across 161 deals in the first quarter of this year, down almost 26 percent and 20 percent […]

The EV factory in Morocco is expected to create thousands of jobs and begin with a 20 gigawatt capacity

Morocco signs Chinese deal to build EV battery factory

China has announced a second large-scale investment in Morocco’s electric vehicle sector with plans for an EV battery factory to take advantage of access to the European market and a burgeoning automotive sector. A $1.3 billion deal has been signed between the Moroccan government and the Chinese-European group Gotion High Tech to build a gigafactory […]

Citrus fruits were Egypt's largest agricultural export, and its orange exports are predicted to reach 2 million tonnes

Citrus produce helps Egypt agricultural exports rise

The value of Egypt’s agricultural exports in the first five months of 2024 rose 24 percent year on year, following greater land allocation for produce such as oranges and potatoes. The minister of agriculture and land reclamation, Mohamed Al Sayed Al Quseir, told reporters on Thursday that more than 4.5 million tonnes of agricultural produce, […]

Workers at a semiconductor factory. Saudi Arabia wants global semiconductor design companies to set up in the kingdom

Saudi Arabia campaign aims to attract chipmakers

Saudi Arabia has launched a National Semiconductor Hub in a bid to attract international chipmakers. The kingdom is targeting at least 50 semiconductor design companies to set up business by 2030, aiming to cut its reliance on imported computer chips. The global semiconductor industry, once plagued by shortages, is now showing signs of recovery and […]

A Tata Motors car plant in Sanand, Gujarat. Zulfiquar Ghadiyali called on Indian manufacturers to 'show us you aren’t just here to take money away, you’re here to give it back and employ people'

Indian manufacturers urged to set up shop in UAE

The future of the UAE’s economic partnership with India hinges on more manufacturing taking place in the Gulf state, a senior executive from a royal family office has said. Zulfiquar Ghadiyali, managing director of Royal Arab Holdings, the business arm of the private office of Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan, said Indian businesses were […]

A worker at a foundry in Istanbul. Turkey's manufacturers reported drops in both domestic and foreign orders in the May 2024 PMI

Slump in orders and exports cools Turkish PMI sentiment

Turkish manufacturers are finding their operational environment increasingly difficult, a new survey has revealed. Tighter economic conditions led expectations to fall in May, although some relief came from the slight easing of inflationary pressures. The monthly Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) survey, conducted by the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce and S&P Global, fell further into negative […]

Firefighters from Istanbul municipality and volunteers plan how to extinguish a wildfire near Ikizce, a village in Turkey

Turkey and World Bank unite to combat wildfires

Turkey has launched a $400 million project with the World Bank to protect the country from wildfires. The Turkey Climate Resilient Forests Project will strengthen the country’s ability to protect people and property from the fires.  Almost 230,000 hectares of Turkey’s forests were damaged or destroyed completely between 2012 and 2021, with more than 61 […]

PIF space unit

PIF launches space unit, despite Saudi funding constraints

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund has launched a space unit to develop off-planet commercial activities, despite challenges the sovereign wealth fund faces funding Saudi Arabia’s giga-projects.  The PIF-owned Neo Space Group will invest in satellite navigation and communications, Earth observation and remote sensing. It will also include a venture capital fund to help Saudi startups […]

The UAE subsidiary of India's UltraTech Cement will hold 61 percent in RAK Cement if the offer is successful

India’s UltraTech offers to boost stake in RAK Cement

India’s UltraTech Cement has offered to acquire a 31.6 percent stake in Abu Dhabi-listed RAK Cement Co for White Cement and Construction Materials (RAKWCT). The Indian cement producer’s wholly owned subsidiary in the UAE, UltraTech Cement Middle East Investments, bought a 29.4 percent stake in RAKWCT in April 2022 for $101 million. The UAE subsidiary […]

A welder at work in Ras Al Kaimah. The northern emirates will benefit from lower electricity tariffs under a new scheme for local manufacturers in the UAE

UAE to direct additional $6bn to local manufacturers

The UAE is to direct an additional AED23 billion ($6.3 billion) to local manufacturers as it strives to develop its homegrown sectors and diversify its economy away from a reliance on hydrocarbons. Abu Dhabi state oil company Adnoc will expand its local manufacturing procurement programme for critical industrial products by AED20 billion to AED90 billion […]

Photography, Clothing, Glove Qatari origin urea will be supplied to the agricultural sectors of the US and other international markets

Qatar signs 15-year urea supply pact with US company

Qatar, the world’s second-largest exporter of urea, has signed a long-term urea supply agreement with US-based Koch Fertilizer.  The 15-year agreement, starting in July, will lead to the supply of up to 0.74 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of urea, state-backed QatarEnergy said in a statement. Locally manufactured urea will be supplied to the agricultural […]

Saudi arabia water

$4bn set aside for Saudi water projects

Saudi Arabia will spend $4 billion by the end of the decade on recycling over 2 billion cubic metres of water, about 70 percent of the country’s renewable water sources, an official said this week.  Speaking at the World Water Forum in Indonesia, Mohammed bin Zaid Abuhid, head of the General Authority for Irrigation, outlined […]

John Kirby, the White House national security communications adviser, said Saudi Arabia and the US were 'closer than we’ve ever been' to a deal

Saudi Arabia ‘close’ to US defence pact and arms deal

Saudi Arabia could be close to a security pact with the United States that would enable the kingdom to buy arms, potentially including the sought-after F-35 fighter jet, and obtain some form of US defence guarantee, White House officials said this week.  John Kirby, the president’s national security spokesperson, said on May 20 that the […]

An orange vendor in Cairo. The country will export 2 million tonnes of oranges this year

Egyptian agricultural exports hit record levels

Egypt exported a record 7.5 million tonnes of agricultural produce last year, compared with 6.4 million tonnes in 2022 and 5.6 million in 2021. The total value of agricultural exports in 2023 was $8.8 billion, according to minister of agriculture and land reclamation Al Sayed Al Quseir. Egypt’s total number of export partners has increased […]

Italy won't let the Fiat Topolino fly the Italian flag because Stellantis makes it in Morocco

Stellantis to remove Italian flag from Fiats made in Morocco

The automobile giant Stellantis will remove the Italian flag from its Fiat Topolino model after being accused of breaking Made In Italy laws because the car – technically a quadricycle – was produced in Morocco. Dozens of the vehicles were seized at the port of Livorno for violations of the law, which insists on strict […]

Beekeepers in Mannouba, Tunisia. The country has 305,000 hives

Tunisia’s honey production hit by global warming

Almost three-quarters of beekeepers in Tunisia have seen their honey production curtailed by climate change. The North African country has 305,000 hives tended by 13,000 beekeepers, according to Hassene Ben Salem, chief engineer at the Office of Livestock and Pastures. But he said extreme weather conditions have almost halved honey production, from an average of […]

Abu Dhabi crown prince Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan at the signing ceremony for the joint venture between Edge and Fincantieri

UAE-Italian venture wins $434m deal for naval vessels

A joint venture between UAE’s state-owned defence company Edge Group and Italy’s Fincantieri will build a shipbuilding facility for advanced naval vessels in Abu Dhabi. The new venture, Maestral, has secured a large order from the UAE Coast Guard Forces for 10 advanced 51-metre offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) worth €400 million ($434 million). Edge owns 51 […]

EV charger network UAE

UAE to roll out countrywide EV fast charger network

The UAE is speeding up the expansion of its electric vehicle charger infrastructure in support of the energy transition, the shift from fossil-based systems of energy production. UAEV, a joint venture between the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure and Etihad Water and Electricity that was announced on Monday, intends to build a network of high-performance […]

A Geely Galaxy E8 electric vehicle at Auto China 2024. Geely is one of the most popular Chinese car brands in the Gulf

Chinese carmakers ‘taking Gulf by storm’

Chinese carmakers now claim a sizeable chunk of new car sales in the Gulf and it is likely they will increase their market share further by wooing regional consumers through their vehicles’ innovative designs and perceived value for money. That is the prediction of Amir Khurshid, CEO of Saudi Arabia’s ThinkDirect Automotive Consulting and an […]

Saudi aluminium producer Talco is offering 12 million shares

Aluminium producer Talco announces Saudi IPO

Aluminium producer Al Taiseer Group Talco Industrial Company (Talco) is the latest entity to reveal initial public offering (IPO) plans in Saudi Arabia. The Riyadh-based company, which was set up in 2009, is offering 12 million shares, a 30 percent stake, on the Saudi Exchange (Tadawul) at a nominal value of SAR10 ($2.67) per share. […]