Saudi Aramco’s bond will probably be in 10 billion range: energy minister

Saudi Aramco will issue the bonds in the second quarter of this year, Saudi Arabia’s energy minister Khalid Al-Falih said. (Reuters)
Updated 13 January 2019
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Saudi Aramco’s bond will probably be in 10 billion range: energy minister

  • Saudi energy minister Khalid Al-Falih did not specify the currency of the planned debt issuance
  • The Saudi oil giant will issue the bonds in the second quarter of this year

ABU DHABI: Saudi Aramco will issue bonds which will probably be in the 10 billion range, Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said on Sunday.
Khalid Al-Falih, speaking at a conference in Abu Dhabi, did not specify the currency of the planned debt issuance but last week he said at an event in Riyadh that the bonds — which would be Aramco’s debut in the international debt markets — are likely to be denominated in US dollars.
The Saudi oil giant will issue the bonds in the second quarter of this year, he said last week.


India suspends Kashmir border trade with Pakistan

Updated 19 April 2019
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India suspends Kashmir border trade with Pakistan

  • Kashmir has been on edge since a February suicide attack that killed 40 Indian paramilitaries
  • India said it had reports that trade on the border was being “misused by Pakistan-based elements for funnelling illegal weapons, narcotics and fake currency”

NEW DELHI: India has suspended trade across its disputed Kashmir border with Pakistan, alleging that weapons and drugs are being smuggled across the route, as tensions simmer between the nuclear-armed neighbors.
Kashmir has been on edge since a February suicide attack that killed 40 Indian paramilitaries and brought the two countries to the brink of war with cross-border air strikes.
On Thursday, India’s government, which is in the middle of a tough national election, said it had reports that trade on the border was being “misused by Pakistan-based elements for funnelling illegal weapons, narcotics and fake currency.”
It also said many of those trading across the Line of Control, which divides Kashmir into zones under Indian and Pakistani control, had links to militant organizations.
The home ministry said trade would be suspended until a stricter inspection mechanism is in place.
The cross-border trade is based on a barter system, with traders exchanging goods including chillies, cumin, mango and dried fruit.
It began in 2008 as a way to improve strained relations between New Delhi and Islamabad, who have fought two of their three wars over the disputed region.
The Indian Express newspaper said Friday that 35 trucks carrying fruit traveling from the Indian side of the border had been stopped after the government order.
Trade on the border has been suspended before, including in 2015, when India accused a Pakistani driver of drug trafficking.
The latest move comes after India withdrew “Most Favoured Nation Status” — covering trade links — from Pakistan after the February attack, which was claimed by the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed Islamist group.
Islamabad has denied any involvement in the attack.
India’s Hindu nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made national security a key plank of his re-election campaign, pointing to the recent flare-up of violence as he battles the center-left opposition Congress party.
He is seeking a second term from the country’s 900 million voters in the mammoth election which kicked off on April 11 and runs till May 19. The results will be out on May 23.