Maaden eyes finance for $ 7 bn plant by year-end

Updated 29 January 2013
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Maaden eyes finance for $ 7 bn plant by year-end

DUBAI: Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Maaden) aims to complete the financing for a $ 7 billion phosphate project by the end of the year, a senior executive at the firm said.
The cash will be used to fund the Umm Wual development at Waad Al-Shimal City in the north of the country, as well as connected infrastructure at Ras Al Khair on the eastern coast of the kingdom, Khalid Al-Rowais, vice president of finance at Maaden, told a conference in Dubai.
While the amount of money to be raised from the market has yet to be finalized, Rowais said government funds, banks — both local and international — as well as export credit agencies (ECAs) would be involved. Issuing an Islamic bond was also a possibility.
“A sukuk is an option but the most important thing is to have the right balance to suit the project,” Rowais said, adding talks were ongoing with its financial adviser on funding plans.
HSBC was financial adviser, with Baker & McKenzie its legal adviser, Rowais said on the sidelines of the event.
Two government funds, the Public Investment Fund and the Saudi Industrial Development Fund, as well as ECAs, would be approached in April about funding the project, Rowais said, with invitations to commercial banks expected in July.
The scheme will have a production capacity of 16 million tons per year of phosphate concentrate, sulphuric acid, phosphoric acid, as well as plants to produce calcium monophosphate and calcium diphosphate, Maaden said previously, with phosphate production expected to start in late 2016.

In December, Maaden signed deals worth SR 977 million ($ 260.5 million) with US firms Fluor Corp. and Bechtel to help develop Waad Al-Shimal City.
Maaden recently warned a diammonium phosphate (DAP) fertilizer plant in Ras Al-Khair, controlled by a subsidiary, would shut for three weeks, although this would have no impact on its ability to meet its customer obligations.
This news came days after Maaden posted a forecast-beating 45 percent increase in its fourth-quarter net profit after it began production of ammonia and DAP.


EU could compensate firms hit by US sanctions over Iran — French minister

Updated 58 min 47 sec ago
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EU could compensate firms hit by US sanctions over Iran — French minister

  • In 1996, when the United States tried to penalize foreign companies trading with Cuba, the EU forced Washington to back down by threatening retaliatory sanctions

PARIS: France is looking to see if the European Union could compensate European companies that might be facing sanctions by the United States for doing business with Iran, said French finance minister Bruno Le Maire on Sunday.
Le Maire referred to EU rules going back to 1996 which he said could allow the EU to intervene in this manner to protect European companies against any US sanctions, adding that France wanted the EU to toughen its stance in this area.
In 1996, when the United States tried to penalize foreign companies trading with Cuba, the EU forced Washington to back down by threatening retaliatory sanctions.
European firms doing business in Iran face sanctions from the United States after President Donald Trump withdrew from a 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.
“Are we going to allow the United States to be the economic policeman of the world? The answer is no,” Le Maire told C News TV and Europe 1 radio on Sunday.
Le Maire added it was important Italy kept its EU budget commitments, in light of plans by Italy’s new coalition government to ramp up spending — which could put Rome at odds with the EU.