Saudi financial conference to attract hundreds of regional and international experts

A press conference at the Ministry of Finance in Riyadh gave details of the Financial Sector Conference to be held this month. (Supplied)
Updated 17 April 2019

Saudi financial conference to attract hundreds of regional and international experts

JEDDAH: A major conference taking place in Saudi Arabia this month will attract 2,000 business and financial leaders from the Kingdom, the region and across the world.

The Financial Sector Conference (FSC) is to be held on 24 and 25 April at the King Abdul Aziz International Conference Center in Riyadh.

The event is being organized by the Ministry of Finance, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority  (SAMA) and the Capital Market Authority (CMA). It is the latest high-profile conference hosted in the Kingdom as part of an effort to attract investment, share expertise and develop Saudi Arabia’s financial sector.

Khalid Al-Homoud, member of the CMA Board of Directors and the FSC Supervision Committee, said the event was among the most prominent financial conferences in the world and will be attended by “international corporations, international rating agencies, experts and specialists in finance, investment, banking and insurance.”

“The FSC highlights the Kingdom’s position as the largest financial market in the Middle East, as it provides a single platform for all Saudi financial sector stakeholders to engage in fruitful dialogue,” Al-Homoud, said during a press conference at the Ministry of Finance Monday.

Fahad Al-Saif, Head of the Debt Management Office, Advisor to the Finance Minister and chairman of the FSC technical committee, said sessions at the conference will cover the Saudi financial sector, Islamic finance and FinTech.

“We envision the FSC being the largest platform for financial dialogue in the Middle East and among the top financial sector events in the world, serving as a key catalyst for innovation, forging partnerships and building relationships between financial institutions and investors,” Al-Saif said.

The conference will be held under the patronage of King Salman and attended by Finance Minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan, SAMA governor, Ahmed Al-Kholifey, and Energy Minister Khalid Al Falih, among others.


Saudi Arabia: All options open to OPEC+ as China virus weighs on price

Saudi Arabia’s minister of energy, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman Al-Saud, pictured here at the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland, warned it was too early for OPEC+ to make a decision on oil supply. (Reuters)
Updated 11 sec ago

Saudi Arabia: All options open to OPEC+ as China virus weighs on price

  • Group will meet in Vienna in March to set policy, with the possibility of further oil production cuts firmly on the table

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman Al-Saud said all options were open at an OPEC+ meeting in early March, including further cuts in oil production, Al Arabiya reported. But he added it was too early to make a call on the need for more cuts.
“I can’t judge now if the market needs additional cuts because I haven’t seen the balances for January and February,” he said.
He added that when the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies led by Russia convened for an emergency meeting in March, the grouping would study where the market is and “objectively decide” if more cuts are needed.
OPEC+ agreed in December to widen supply cuts by 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 1.7 million bpd until the end of March.
Prince Abdul Aziz said the aim of OPEC+ was to reduce the size of the seasonal inventory build that takes place in the first half of the year.
OPEC+ is due to meet in Vienna on March 5 and 6 to set their policy. A ministerial monitoring committee for the deal will meet in Vienna on March 4.
Oil slipped below $62 a barrel on Friday and was heading for a weekly decline as concern that a virus in China may spread, curbing travel and oil demand, overshadowed supply cuts.

Saudi Arabia’s Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman Al-Saud. (Reuters)

The virus has prompted the suspension of public transport in 10 Chinese cities. Health authorities fear the infection rate could accelerate over the Lunar New Year holiday this weekend, when millions of Chinese travel.
Global benchmark Brent is down almost 5 percent this week, its third consecutive weekly drop. US crude was also on course for a weekly decline.

FASTFACT

2nd - China is the world’s second largest oil consumer.

“One should be prepared for negative surprises when it comes to Chinese demand,” said Eugen Weinberg, analyst at Commerzbank. “The impact of this is all the greater because the restrictions are being imposed during the busiest travel season for the Chinese.”
China is the world’s second-largest oil consumer so any slowdown in travel would show up on demand forecasts.
Offering some support for prices was the US Energy Information Administration’s latest weekly supply report, which showed crude inventories fell 405,000 barrels in the week to Jan. 17.
Nonetheless, the upside for prices was limited. Oil inventories in the wider industrialized world are above the five-year average according to OPEC figures, which analysts say is limiting the impact on prices of supply losses.
“Such is the bearish pressure that a raft of ongoing crude supply outages are not gaining much traction,” said analysts at JBC Energy in a report.