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A worker at Nahr Bin Umar oil field, north of Basra. Iraq has about 8% of global oil reserves

145 billion barrels of oil, but patience is running dry in Iraq

Iraq has vast reserves of crude oil – 145 billion barrels as of 2022 and more than 8 percent of the global total – but economists and analysts have warned that Baghdad will struggle to meet its output targets unless it offers better operating terms to Western oil majors. The country remains hugely reliant on […]

Customers line up outside of the Silicon Valley Bank headquarters,

SVB collapse likely to bring down Gulf interest rates

The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) and continuing concerns over the broader financial stability of the market could help to bring down interest rates across the Gulf. Following SVB’s demise, US interest rates fell sharply from 5.05 percent to 4.10 percent in just three days – a scale of drop only matched by events […]

UAE financial crime

UAE remains on Financial Action Task Force grey list – for now

Last month the Financial Action Task Force upheld the decision to keep the UAE on the grey list, a status it had assigned to it in March 2022.  In its February ruling, the international watchdog dedicated to fighting financial crime said the UAE had made “significant progress” on three of seven recommendations to get off […]

Naqvi Abraaj

Abraaj Capital founder loses extradition appeal to the US

Arif Naqvi, the founder of what was once the largest private equity firm in the Middle East, has lost a bid to challenge his extradition from London to the US to face fraud charges.  US prosecutors allege that the Pakistan-born businessman defrauded investors, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, by concealing a liquidity crisis […]

Boat, Vehicle, Transportation

US space balloon pioneer seeks Middle East partners

A company planning to launch commercial balloon flights to the edge of outer space in late 2024 is seeking partners in the Middle East. Space Perspective, which is headquartered at the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, is looking to build “strong, longer-term, strategic partnerships” with regional tech firms and investors, according to Jane Poynter, founder […]

Tech industries are growing swiftly across the Gulf, so coders and programmers are in high demand

Mena tech firms can plug skills gap by scooping up global talent

Technology companies in the Middle East are in prime position to attract top talent from around the world as some of Silicon Valley’s biggest names make massive job cuts, according to recruitment consultants. Google’s parent company Alphabet, Microsoft and Amazon have all unveiled large-scale redundancy programmes since the start of January. About 40,000 jobs will […]

Sheikh Hamdan, Crown Prince of Dubai and chairman of Investment Corporation of Dubai, arrives for an ICD meeting. The fund is valued at $300bn by Global SWF

Gulf wealth funds look to snap up ‘cheap’ assets in West

Sovereign wealth funds across the Middle East are forecast to take advantage of “limited competition” from global peers this year to pursue “cheap” assets in Europe, the US and other western markets. A sharp drop in stock and bond markets over the past year has resulted in the combined value of the world’s sovereign wealth […]

Dubai Creek Harbour

Mena investment banking fees surge past $1bn for year so far

JP Morgan and HSBC remain the top fee-earning investment banks in the Middle East and North Africa, a new report has found, although a further slowdown in mergers and acquisitions could help regional banks boost their share.  Total investment banking fees in the Mena amounted to $1.05 billion in the first nine months of 2022, […]

US robotics specialist Gecko to set up shop in UAE

Gecko Robotics, a US firm that makes wall-climbing robots to inspect oil, gas and power infrastructure, is setting up an international HQ in the UAE. The move, announced today, is part of the UAE Ministry of Economy’s NextGen FDI programme, which aims to attract 300 digital companies over the next year. “Our industrial base is […]

Mir payment cards

Arab banks shun Russian Mir payments system after pressure

Along with losing ground on the battlefield in recent weeks, Moscow’s foothold in the Arab world’s financial system has also hit setbacks. Turkey’s finance minister Nureddin Nebati last Thursday announced that three state banks – Vakifbank, Ziraat Bank and Halkbank – had suspended the use of the Russian Mir payment system which is the country’s […]

Tie, Accessories, Accessory

US special envoy for Yemen travels to the Middle East

The US special envoy for Yemen will visit Saudi and Jordan this week, as part of diplomatic efforts in support of the United Nations-mediated truce in Yemen. The US State Department reported on Monday. Tim Lenderking’s “engagements will focus on expanding, extending, and renewing the current truce agreement that will further the tangible benefits already […]

President Joe Biden in Jeddah

Biden boosts relations but fails to move the dial

The president hoped to reset Washington’s relationship with the Middle East last weekend. In this in-depth analysis, AGBI explores how he performed on Israel, Iran, human rights and oil President Joe Biden’s whirlwind tour of the Middle East sought to reinforce America’s commitment to the region after several years of disengagement. In a speech to […]

Biden brings Palestinians aid but no new peace plan

US President Joe Biden will not come with a plan to restart the stalled Israel-Palestinian peace process when he visits the West Bank on Friday, at the end of the first leg of his Middle East trip, a senior administration official said. Biden will restate his backing for a two-state solution to the decades-long conflict […]

Biden to travel to Saudi Arabia, Israel next month

US President Joe Biden will travel to Saudi Arabia and Israel next month and the White House is planning to announce the trip this week, a source familiar with the planning said on Sunday. Biden’s trip, which is expected to take place around mid-July, could include a meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, […]

Smize Cream: ADIO initiative is helping US companies led by women and minority entrepreneurs expand in emirate

Supermodel Tyra Banks to launch ice cream brand in Abu Dhabi

Californian supermodel Tyra Banks has picked Abu Dhabi as the first international market outside the US to launch her global ice cream brand, Smize Cream, as part of a partnership with the Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO). The 48-year-old entrepreneur made the announcement at the Access Granted talk series on Thursday, adding that she was […]

Person, Human, Crowd

Biden in talks to meet Saudi Crown Prince for first time

US President Joe Biden and Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman could meet for the first time as soon as next month, CNN reported on Thursday, citing multiple sources. Biden administration officials are in talks with the Saudis about arranging a potential in-person meeting while Biden is overseas next month, the report added. The […]

US private equity group buys UK power plant giant for £1.75bn

ContourGlobal, the UK power plant owner, has agreed to be taken over by KKR, the New York-based private equity giant, for £1.75 billion after an underwhelming four-and-a-half-year stint on the public markets. The FTSE 250 company said its board intended to recommend the “fair and reasonable” all-cash acquisition at 263.6p a share, a 36 percent […]

Person, Human, Face

Timeline: Elon Musk hits pause on Twitter deal

Elon Musk on Friday put his $44-billion Twitter offer on temporary hold, sending the shares of the social media company into a tailspin. And on Saturday, Musk tweeted that the Twitter legal team told him he violated a nondisclosure agreement by revealing that the sample size for the social media platform’s checks on automated users […]

Biden sends all-star team to UAE to repair frayed ties

President Joe Biden is sending an all-star US delegation to the United Arab Emirates on Monday to offer condolences after the death of its ruler, in an apparent bid to step up efforts to repair frayed ties with Gulf Arab allies. Washington’s desire to improve ties with Gulf monarchies has gained renewed urgency following Russia’s […]