KSA firm to invest $100m in Maldives

Updated 11 March 2014
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KSA firm to invest $100m in Maldives

A Riyadh-based real estate investment and development firm announced on Monday its plans to develop a tourist property worth $100 million, which promises to offer lucrative investment opportunities for Saudi investors.
The Best Choice Real Estate Development plans to develop a tourist resort in Vadinolhu Island, located in Laamu Atoll in the Maldives, which will be ready in 2017.
The company plans to develop Vadinolhu Island’s seven-hectare area as an eco-friendly five-star resort based on the Maldivian Resort Island concept. The premium resort will feature 100 beach villas, including water bungalows and luxury suites and will offer world-class dining services, wellness facilities, and leisure activities. The site is being developed as a perfect getaway for tourists, while offering significant returns on investment to financiers.
Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, is currently visiting the Maldives on an official visit, as part of his Asia tour.
“The Maldives offers tremendous investment opportunities, especially in the hospitality sector, as it has rapidly emerged as a destination of choice for international tourists. Our aim is to develop Vadinolhu Island as a high-end resort with world-class facilities to promote it as a complete family destination,” Mohamad Rabih Itani, CEO of Best Choice Real Estate, said.
“We have already designed a business proposal targeting potential investors to collaborate with us in the operation and management of the resort. We are confident of achieving an operating profit in the second year with the cash payback period at six years,” he added.
The Maldives is one of the most recent investment destinations in South Asia; its tourist rate has been on the rise since 2012 and it is expected to attract 1.2 million visitors by the end of 2014. Its exotic beauty, panoramic view and clear waters have made it one of the most popular tourist destinations in the past few years.
Due to its investment-friendly policies, the Southeast Asian Island offers attractive opportunities to keen investors, especially those interested in resort management.
Vadinolhu Island is an unexplored isle in close proximity to the domestic airport and offers immense potential for investors.
Best Choice is emerging as a property solutions provider of choice via its strategic mix of high-end developments, market research, and professional staff.
With headquarters in Bahrain and branches in Turkey and Maldives, the firm offers end-to-end real estate investment and development solutions focusing on international markets and major regional destinations.


Oil slips to around $63 as Iran concerns fade for now

Updated 19 min 59 sec ago
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Oil slips to around $63 as Iran concerns fade for now

  • US crude inventories expected to fall for 6th week
  • Goldman cuts 2019 oil demand forecast

LONDON: Oil slipped to around $63 a barrel on Tuesday as concerns faded for now that rising tensions in the Middle East would escalate and hit oil supplies, compounding the impact of a weaker demand outlook.
Iran’s capture of a British oil tanker last week sparked worries about supply disruptions in the Strait of Hormuz, through which about a fifth of the world’s oil flows, prompting crude to rally on Monday.
But oil prices have since pared some gains. Brent crude fell 31 cents to $62.95 a barrel by 1227 GMT on Tuesday. US West Texas Intermediate crude slipped 23 cents to $55.99.
“The response of oil prices to the seizure of a British oil tanker by armed Iranian forces near the Strait of Hormuz has been amazingly muted so far,” said Carsten Fritsch, analyst at Commerzbank.
“It appears that the majority of market participants are convinced that there will be no open conflict between the West and Iran,” he said.
The tensions come as the United States aims to cut off Iran’s oil exports and against the backdrop of supply cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries since the start of the year to prop up prices.
As part of US efforts, Washington has imposed sanctions on Chinese state-run energy company Zhuhai Zhenrong Co. Ltd. for allegedly violating restrictions imposed on Iran’s oil sector.
Despite lower Iranian exports and OPEC’s voluntary supply curbs, oil supply is exceeding demand due to strong growth in output from the United States and other non-OPEC producers, according to the International Energy Agency.
A weaker outlook for oil demand because of slowing economic growth has weighed on prices, which are still up by 18% in 2019 helped by the OPEC-led supply pact.
“Although prices had been driven by supply developments in the first half of the year economic considerations are making oil bulls careful this month,” said Tamas Varga of oil broker PVM.
Goldman Sachs lowered its 2019 oil demand projection on Sunday, joining other forecasters such as the IEA and OPEC in trimming its outlook for fuel use.
Oil may gain further support from expectations of another drop in US crude inventories in weekly reports due later on Tuesday and on Wednesday. Analysts expect a 3.4 million-barrel drop in crude stocks.
The American Petroleum Institute, an industry group, releases its inventory report at 2030 GMT.