Foreign investors capture 5% Saudi shares worth SR108bn

Updated 13 June 2015
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Foreign investors capture 5% Saudi shares worth SR108bn

RIYADH: Foreign investors in the Saudi stock market are holding 5.1 percent of the market shares, or SR108.9 billion compared to its market capitalization of SR2.12 trillion, according to a financial report.
Shares of the foreign investors were distributed between “strategic founders” in the Saudi companies valued at SR83.7 billion (3.94 percent of the market capitalization of Saudi stock market) and foreign investments through mid-swap deals worth SR25 billion (1.18 percent of the market), the report filed and analyzed by Al-Eqtisadiah daily said.
According to the report, foreign investors have shares in 166 listed companies whereas they are banned from investment in four companies, namely Taibah Holding Company, Makkah Construction and Development Company, Jabal Omar, and Knowledge Economic City, complying with foreign investment law, which bans real estate investment in the holy cities (Makkah and Madinah).
GCC investments in the Saudi stock market are not considered foreign investments while Arab investments fall within foreign investments category, the report said.
Four Saudi banks captured the biggest portion of foreign investments in the Saudi companies in terms of value topped by Saudi British Bank (SABB) at SR23.1 billion, followed by Banque Saudi Fransi (BSF) at SR14.7 billion, Arab National Bank (ANB) at SR13.9 billion, Saudi Holland Bank (SHB) at SR11.3 billion, PetroRabigh at SR7.8 billion, Samba Financial Group (SFG) at SR3.7 billion, Bupa Arabia at SR3.3 billion, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) at SR2.2 billion, and Jarir at SR1.8 billion, the report said.
In terms of foreign share ownerships in the Saudi companies, there are four companies in which foreign investors have more than 40 percent of the total shares as follows: SHB at 41.8 percent, SABB (41.6 percent), ANB (40.9 percent), and Arabia Insurance Company (40.3 percent).
Meanwhile, foreigners retain more than 30 percent of shares in eight companies: PetroRabigh (38.6 percent), Bupa Arabia (33.4 percent), SABB Takaful (33.3 percent), Allianz SF (33.2 percent), Arabian Insurance (32.4 percent), BSF (31.9 percent), ACE Arabia Cooperative Insurance Company (30.7 percent), and Alinma Tokio Marine Company (30.1 percent), the report said.
As regards mega companies, foreign investors retain 0.7 percent of shares in SABIC (SR2.2 billion), 1.2 percent in Al-Rajhi Bank and National Commercial Bank (SR1.6 billion and SR1.3 billion respectively), 0.2 percent in Saudi Telecom Company (SR273 million), and 0.1 percent in Saudi Electricity Company (SR79 million), the report said.


Germany sees ‘most difficult part’ in EU-US trade talks ahead

Updated 32 min 9 sec ago
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Germany sees ‘most difficult part’ in EU-US trade talks ahead

  • ‘For some weeks and months now, we’re observing with concern that the US is tightening its trade policies, that tensions are increasing’
  • ‘The impact can already be seen in the world economy, global growth has slowed’

BERLIN: The most difficult part in trade negotiations between Europe and the United States is starting now and talks should focus on reducing tariffs on industrial goods to increase the chances of a deal, German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said on Tuesday.
A confidential US Commerce Department report sent to President Donald Trump over the weekend is widely expected to clear the way for him to threaten tariffs of up to 25 percent on imported autos and auto parts by designating the imports a national security threat.
“For some weeks and months now, we’re observing with concern that the US is tightening its trade policies, that tensions are increasing,” Altmaier told Deutschlandfunk radio.
“The impact can already be seen in the world economy, global growth has slowed,” Altmaier said.
Asked about the risk of higher US car tariffs, Altmaier said he did not buy the argument that imported cars would threaten the national security of the United States.
Altmaier, a confidant of Chancellor Angela Merkel, said that reducing tariffs on cars and other manufactured goods should be the main focus of the ongoing trade talks.
“We are not yet where we want to be. We might have made one-third of the way and the most difficult part will be now,” Altmaier said.
Altmaier added that he was in favor of reducing import tariffs for cars to the same level in the US and Europe, “ideally to zero percent.”
The trade talks will also be high on the agenda during a meeting of Altmaier with his French counterpart Bruno Le Maire in Berlin later on Tuesday.
Both ministers are expected to narrow differences on how far the negotiation mandate of the European Commission in the talks with the US should go and which areas should be excluded.
France is reluctant to open up its agriculture sector to US imports and Altmaier said he was fine with excluding the issue in the trade talks.
“Agriculture is a very sensitive topic, so we don’t want to talk about this in the current situation,” Altmaier said.
Altmaier and Le Maire are expected to hold a news conference after the talks.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told a German newspaper that Trump had promised him he would not impose additional import tariffs on European cars for the time being.
If Trump imposed tariffs on European cars, however, the EU would react immediately and not feel obliged to stick to its promise to buy more soybeans and liquefied gas from the United States, Juncker added.