ITFC finances $100m to boost Maldives energy sector

Officials pose for a photo at the agreement signing ceremony.
Updated 07 January 2018
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ITFC finances $100m to boost Maldives energy sector

The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), member of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), signed with the State Trading Organization (STO), a government owned company in the Maldives, a syndicated Murabaha financing agreement for $100 million.
The Murabaha financing will secure more than 75 percent of the purchase of petroleum product requirements of the Maldives to help boost the economy.
The agreement was signed by Nazeem Noordali, ITFC COO, and Ahmed Shaheer, managing director, STO, in the presence of Mohamed Mihad, Chief Financial Officer, STO, under the auspices of Maldives Finance Minister Ahmed Munawar.
Highlighting the importance of this partnership, Noordali highlighted the importance of maintaining oil price stability in the Maldives
“Securing the energy sector is not only critical for the economic growth of the Maldives, but it is essential for households and public administration that would serve all economic sectors,” he said.
Praising the level of cooperation between STO and ITFC, Shaheer said: “With the government embarking on infrastructure development projects aiming to strengthen and diversify its economy, this financing will serve as the building block for the future growth of the Maldives.”
This deal comes in line with ITFC’s strategy of focusing on key sectors for member countries and supporting intra-OIC trade. Also, leveraging IsDB Group and external partnership.
ITFC has provided $145 million of financing in the Maldives since its inception in 2008.


STC wins Ookla award for fastest network in KSA

A man passes the Saudi Telecom STC office in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia February 6, 2018. (REUTERS)
Updated 20 January 2019
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STC wins Ookla award for fastest network in KSA

Ookla, the company behind Speedtest for internet testing and analysis, has recognized Saudi Telecom Company (STC) as the “fastest mobile network” in Saudi Arabia. STC achieved a speed score of 29.99 Mbps, with an average download speed of 32.95 Mbps.
The award is an outcome of millions of tests actively initiated by customers across the network to check internet speeds using various applications, and web and mobile platforms.
The Speedtest awards for top providers are determined using a “Speed Score” that incorporates a measure of each provider’s network speeds (download and upload) to rank network speed performance. The STC network was determined as the fastest in the Kingdom.
The telecom giant plans to increase this speed dramatically in the next couple of years to provide “impressive speeds and incorporate future services with KPIs (key performance indicators) targeting higher data rates, very low latency, massive device connectivity, IoT and energy efficiency services.” To achieve this, STC is transforming its existing network, upgrading its 4G-LTE network and rolling out the 5G network.
Haithem Al-Faraj, senior vice president, tech and ops, STC, said: “Our mission has always been to enrich society by providing second-to-none experience with the network. We are continuously improving our network speeds and rolling out new network technologies and services. STC 4G network is transforming all the time to provide remarkably faster speeds.”
He added: “We are also commercially rolling out the 5G network to introduce innovative services to our deserving customers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and across the region. This esteemed Ookla award is a true manifestation of STC efforts to continually improve the network and get the network ready for the digital era, and to meet the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.”
We are very proud of this award and look forward to many similar awards and successes in the near future.”
STC is playing a pivotal role in the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 as an enabler for digital transformation in the public and private sectors and in the development of telecommunications and ICT infrastructure.