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Farming tech startup moves HQ from Europe to UAE

A Finnish tech startup is swapping the green countryside of Northern Europe for the Arabian desert as it looks to grow its urban farming business. iFarm was invited in November to join the incentive programme of Abu Dhabi’s Hub71, the technology project led by Mubadala Investment Company and backed by the Government of Abu Dhabi.  […]

Blacklane operates in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Dammam, Doha, Jeddah, Mecca, Muscat and Riyadh

Chauffeur firm gains UAE investor for premium Gulf service

Chauffeur operator Blacklane has attracted investment from Dubai conglomerate Gargash Group, as it aims to offer Gulf passengers a more luxurious alternative to ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Careem. Founded in Berlin in 2011, Blacklane is active in around 50 countries. It launched in the Gulf in 2016 and currently operates in Dubai, Abu […]

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 […]

Chinese shoppers at a mall in Sanya, Hainan province, on January 25. Analysts expect China's economy to recover quickly after the lifting of Covid restrictions

Beijing and Brussels ‘go head to head in fight for Mena oil and gas’

The Middle East and North Africa will be one of the main beneficiaries of China’s decision to drop its zero-Covid policy, as Beijing competes with Europe for limited energy resources, according to analysts at Bank of America. “From a macro-perspective, it’s very easy to be bullish on the Mena region,” said Jean-Michel Saliba, a director […]

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 […]

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, […]

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 […]

Swiss UAE exports

Swiss Group opens Zurich office to boost trade with UAE

Swiss Group, the Dubai-based business consultancy, is opening an office in Zurich this month to help Swiss companies and entrepreneurs do business in the UAE.  The UAE’s $8.74 billion of exports to Switzerland in 2021 make it the European country’s ninth largest import partner, according to data from the International Monetary Fund. The UAE is […]

Rolls-Royce's design for its small modular reactor

Rolls-Royce plans to bring its factory-built nuclear plants to Gulf

Rolls-Royce is eyeing opportunities to bring its nuclear reactors to the Middle East as part of the region’s efforts to combat climate change. The UK industrial company is developing a small modular reactor (SMR) that uses pressurised water reactor technology, with the reactor components built in factory conditions and assembled on site. Nine-tenths of a […]

Manchester City's Erling Haaland celebrates his second goal against Wolves at the Etihad stadium on January 22

Middle East continues to dominate football’s rich list

Nine of the top 20 clubs in football’s rich list have investment links to the Middle East – and analysts are predicting that Gulf ties will increase in the next few years. Abu Dhabi’s Manchester City retained the No 1 spot in the latest edition of the Deloitte Football Money League, with revenue of €731 […]

Simon Penney has been the UK's trade commissioner for the Middle East since 2018

UK-GCC trade talks based on ‘substance over speed’

Negotiations between the UK and GCC over a free trade agreement are focused on “substance over speed”, Simon Penney, Britain’s trade commissioner for the Middle East, says. The third round of talks are due to take place by the end of the first quarter, with previous rounds of discussions having concluded in September and December […]

Global oil demand to reach record high this year, IEA says

Global oil demand is forecast to hit an all-time high in 2023 as China relaxes its Covid restrictions, potentially pushing up prices in the second half of this year, according to the latest report from the International Energy Agency (IEA).  The IEA said global oil demand is set to rise by 1.9 million barrels per […]

Foundations UAE

Rise of UAE foundations as wealth management sector matures

The UAE’s richest people are increasingly setting up foundations to structure and preserve their wealth for the future. Regional wealth managers told AGBI they have noticed a “significant increase” in the number of foundations being established in the UAE, and in the volume of enquiries they are receiving about setting one up. Bradley Moran, an […]

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

UAE-UK Business Council unveils blueprint for energy transition

The UAE and UK must step up co-operation on clean energy if they are to meet their national decarbonisation targets, the UAE-UK Business Council has said. The council’s energy transition white paper, published on Tuesday, said there was “an untapped commercial opportunity to be exploited from closer collaboration between both countries in terms of developing […]

WEF says global recession and high inflation likely in 2023

Two-thirds of private and public sector chief economists surveyed by the World Economic Forum (WEF) expect a global recession in 2023, the Davos-organiser said on Monday as business and government leaders gathered for its annual meeting. Some 18 percent considered a world recession “extremely likely” – more than twice as many as in the previous survey conducted in September […]

Manchester United set up shop with luxury lounge in Swiss Alps

Manchester United set out a dazzling Davos shop front this week, but insisted its lounge was to entertain clients and partners rather than to attract buyers for the English soccer club. United said in November it was looking at options to either get new investment or explore a potential sale, 17 years after the Glazer […]

Solar panels power the International Space Station. Governments and space agencies are now studying the feasibility of providing Earth with clean energy from space

UK and Saudi eye investments in space-based solar power

The UK and Saudi governments are exploring closer collaboration to invest in what could be the next era of renewable energy: space-based solar power. Grant Shapps, Britain’s business and energy secretary, met Abdullah Al Swaha, chairman of the Saudi Space Commission and minister of communications and information technology, for talks last week. A potential collaboration […]

Qatar's energy minister Saad Al Kaabi (left) took part in an open-panel discussion with his UAE counterpart Suhail Al Mazrouei at the Atlantic Council Global Energy Forum

EU will return to Russian gas, Qatari minister predicts

Europe will eventually return to imports of Russian gas but with reduced dependence, Qatar’s energy boss has predicted. The European Union imposed sanctions on Russian oil imports in March last year in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, pledging to wean itself off Russian energy. The sanctions were intended to limit Russia’s financing ability for […]