Saudis boost bank balances despite pandemic

The Saudi banking sector reported an average increase of 41.4 percent in expected credit losses. (FILE/Shutterstock)
Short Url
Updated 02 September 2020

Saudis boost bank balances despite pandemic

  • Deposits rose 3 percent to $496.5 billion compared to the year-earlier period despite mounting pandemic-related pressures elsewhere in the banking system
  • The Saudi banking sector reported an average increase of 41.4 percent in expected credit losses

LONDON: Saudi bank deposits edged up in the second quarter compared to a year earlier according to a report from KPMG.
Deposits rose 3 percent to $496.5 billion compared to the year-earlier period despite mounting pandemic-related pressures elsewhere in the banking system.
The Saudi banking sector reported an average increase of 41.4 percent in expected credit losses for the three-month period ended June 30, 2020, to $2.293 billion, KPMG said.
Still, the injection of $19.467 billion into the Kingdom's banks by the regulator helped to improve the financial position of lenders in Saudi Arabia.
“It has not been all ‘doom-and-gloom’, and as a silver lining, we have seen success stories of the proactive role played by governments, central banks and regulators," said Khalil Ibrahim Al-Sedais, office managing partner for Riyadh at KPMG.
Overall bank profits fell 7.4 percent in the second quarter to $5.504 billion compared to a year earlier.


Emirati consortium studies implementing wind energy project in Egypt

Updated 29 September 2020

Emirati consortium studies implementing wind energy project in Egypt

  • The coalition has submitted a request to the New and Renewable Energy Authority to allocate land for the purpose

CAIRO: Official sources at the Egyptian Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy revealed that an Emirati consortium is currently studying the implementation of a wind farm, with investments of about EGP 8 billion ($500 million).

The coalition has submitted a request to the New and Renewable Energy Authority (NREA) to allocate land for the purpose, and the authority has already agreed to it. The total capacity of the station is about 500 megawatts.

The consortium is carrying out studies that will take two years and that include measuring wind speed, monitoring bird migration and studying the soil for the project, which will take place in the Gulf of Suez region as it has a strong wind force, an important factor.

The station is expected to implement the BOO system (Build, Own, Operate), provided that the coalition sells the energy produced to the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company, the operator of the national grid, entrusted with the purchase of energy.

The area of land allocated for the establishment of the project — in cooperation with the private sector under the usufructuary right system — is 7,872 km, according to data from the NREA.

The sources pointed out that the average selling price of renewable energy is currently declining, ranging between $0.02 to $0.025 per kilowatt hour. Land is allocated for 2 percent of the energy produced or its equivalent and throughout the project’s duration; then, the authority will recover it.

Egypt is rich in natural resources, including wind and solar energy, which makes it one of the largest producers of renewable energy. The total installed capacity of renewable energies is close to 20 percent of the maximum load.

Egypt plans to increase its total production of renewable energy to about 20 percent of the total electricity generated by 2022, of which 12 percent from wind, 6 percent from hydroelectricity, and 2 percent from solar.