Wealth fund urged to tackle oil-price slide

Updated 05 November 2014
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Wealth fund urged to tackle oil-price slide

The fall of crude oil prices points to the need for Saudi Arabia to have an active sovereign wealth fund, said Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, chairman of Kingdom Holding Co.
This will be similar to the sovereign funds in Kuwait, Abu Dhabi and Norway, he said.
“Clearly the income from our sovereign wealth fund would not cover all our budget, but at least should cover a good size of it,” said the prince.
Addressing reporters in Jeddah, he also said that the fall of oil below $80 a barrel proves that Saudi Arabia’s reliance on petroleum revenue is “dangerous”.
Prince Alwaleed said: “Saudi Arabia depends 90 percent on oil, which is not right, it’s wrong and it’s dangerous, actually.”
The prince spoke as oil prices sank to multi-year lows on Tuesday. Brent crude oil futures sank more than $2 a barrel to a four-year low of $82.32.
Shale oil is already putting pressure on oil producers, he pointed out.
Explaining his position on sovereign wealth funds, Prince Alwaleed said: “The Norway fund is our role model because they have around over $850 billion sovereign fund and they make out of this around $40 billion to $50 billion. And that amount covers almost all the requirements of the budget in Norway.”
The prince made the remarks during a visit to the location of the Kingdom Tower and The Kingdom City in Obhur, north of Jeddah.
The tower, now under construction, is projected to cost SR4.6 billion and be the world’s tallest skyscraper at over 1,000 meters (3,280 feet).


Saudi Arabia’s SABIC and NCB sign deal to finance small businesses

The National Commercial Bank struck the agreement with SABIC. (Reuters)
Updated 25 min 32 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia’s SABIC and NCB sign deal to finance small businesses

  • The move will help develop local industries through financing and refinancing entrepreneurs

LONDON: The National Commercial Bank (NCB) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) to help boost the financing of small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

The move will help develop local industries through financing and refinancing entrepreneurs, Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper reported.

The agreement will enable entrepreneurs and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to obtain support and funding from NCB at preferential rates.

In addition, NCB will provide other services, including training and educational and awareness courses.

NCB, also known as Al-Ahli Bank, recently organized three workshops geared toward SMEs, covering areas such as credit approvals, financing and trade.