Kingdom investing $77bn in infrastructure projects

Updated 02 October 2013
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Kingdom investing $77bn in infrastructure projects

Saudi Arabia is undertaking infrastructural improvement projects valued at $77 billion that include roads, bridges and rail.
According to the most recent figures, the ongoing roads and bridges developments across the GCC are currently valued at $109 billion.
The UAE, second worldwide for roads quality in the latest Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, has investments worth $58 billion in the pipeline for roads and bridges alone.
According to figures from business advisory and research firm, Ventures Middle East, Qatar has allocated $20 billion for roads and highways and $35 billion for rail network. The combined share of roads and bridges projects in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar, meanwhile, represent more than 75 percent of the total $109 billion projects in the region.
Oman is securing $14.8 billion on roads, rail and bridges infrastructure in the coming few years, while the Kuwaiti budget for infrastructure works is estimated at $13 billion. Bahrain, meanwhile, declared earlier in 2013 that it will spend more than $2.5 billion on major road, bridge, and tunnel networks.
“The Gulf region has been at the forefront of transport infrastructure developments for several years now, and 2013 marks another big year where dozens of new projects have been announced across the six Gulf states,” says Richard Pavitt, exhibition director for Gulf Traffic. The Gulf Traffic exhibition and conference, taking place from Dec. 9 to 11 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, will discuss more about road, rail, public transport and related projects,” he added.
“More than 3,000 transport industry professionals and government agencies from across the Middle East will attend the event,” he added.


Saudi Aramco aims to buy controlling stake in SABIC: Sources

Updated 26 min 37 sec ago
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Saudi Aramco aims to buy controlling stake in SABIC: Sources

  • Riyadh-listed SABIC, the world’s fourth-biggest petrochemicals firm, has a market capitalization of 385.2 billion Saudi riyals
  • The potential acquisition would affect the time frame of Aramco’s planned initial public offering set for later this year

DUBAI: Saudi Aramco aims to buy a controlling stake in petrochemical maker SABIC, possibly taking the entire 70 percent stake owned by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
Late last week Aramco confirmed a Reuters report that it was working on a possible purchase of a “strategic stake” in Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC) from the Public Investment Fund, the kingdom’s top sovereign wealth fund.
Aramco’s initial thinking is to buy the full stake owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF), but if that fails to materialize Aramco could end up with a stake in SABIC of more than 50 percent, making it a majority owner, the sources said.
No final decision has been made on the size of the stake as the discussions are still at a very early stage, they added.
Aramco declined to comment. The PIF did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.
Riyadh-listed SABIC, the world’s fourth-biggest petrochemicals firm, has a market capitalization of 385.2 billion Saudi riyals ($103 billion).
The potential acquisition would affect the time frame of Aramco’s planned initial public offering set for later this year, the state oil giant’s chief executive, Amin Nasser, said in a TV interview on Friday.
Aramco plans to boost investments in refining and petrochemicals to secure new markets and sees growth in chemicals as central to its downstream strategy to cut the risk of an oil demand slowdown.
Aramco plans to raise its refining capacity to between 8 million and 10 million barrels per day, from around 5 million bpd now, and double its petrochemicals production by 2030.
Aramco, the world’s largest oil producer, pumps around 10 million bpd of crude oil.