Former envoy praises ‘synergy between Riyadh, New Delhi’

Former envoy praises ‘synergy between Riyadh, New Delhi’
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Updated 11 November 2020

Former envoy praises ‘synergy between Riyadh, New Delhi’

Former envoy praises ‘synergy between Riyadh, New Delhi’
  • ‘This mutual bond underpins peace, stability and security in the Southwest Asian region’

NEW DELHI: The growing synergy between India and Saudi Arabia sets an example of cooperation for other countries in the G20, said former ambassador Mahesh Sachdeva ahead of the G20 summit that is taking place in Saudi Arabia on Nov. 21.

“The Kingdom and India are important members of the G20 group,” said Sachdeva, who has spent over a decade of his diplomatic career dealing with the Middle East. 

“The mutual bond between Riyadh and New Delhi also underpins peace, stability and security in the Southwest Asian region, which has often been buffeted with turbulence,” said Sachdeva, who is currently the president of Economic Diplomacy and Strategies, a New Delhi-based consultancy.

On March 26, Riyadh organized an emergency summit to discuss this global pandemic which Sachdeva said demonstrates “the Kingdom’s impressive maturity to lead a global economic organization.”

New Delhi is hosting the 2022 G20 summit and “India would naturally leverage the Saudi experience,” he added.

He said that the event this year will be dominated by “pandemic related issues” and stressed the importance of collaboration between Riyadh and New Delhi in fighting the virus.

“Given extensive people-to-people connections between the Kingdom and India, a strong collaboration to combat COVID-19 pandemic is both necessary and desirable,” he said. “As the world’s largest producer of vaccines, India will be an important source of this vital supply to Saudi Arabia in future.”

Bilateral trade between India and Saudi Arabia is worth about $33 billion, with the Kingdom being the largest source of crude for India. In turn, Saudi Arabia relies on India for important items such as rice, vehicles, refined petroleum products, meat, electrical machinery and equipment.

“There has been growth in mutual investments: As of March 2020, there are 476 Indian companies in the Kingdom worth $1.5 billion. While Saudi investments in India stood at $315 million in April 2020,” he said.


Remittances from Egyptians abroad hit an all-time high despite the pandemic

Remittances from Egyptians abroad hit an all-time high despite the pandemic
Updated 20 sec ago

Remittances from Egyptians abroad hit an all-time high despite the pandemic

Remittances from Egyptians abroad hit an all-time high despite the pandemic

The Central Bank of Egypt announced that remittances from Egyptians abroad rose to their highest ever annual level last year even as the pandemic weighed on economic activities worldwide.

The bank’s data revealed that money from Egyptians working abroad during the fiscal year 2020-2021 saw a 13.2 percent rise — or about $3.7 billion — compared to the 2019-2020.

The Central Bank of Egypt added that the payments amounted to about $31.4 billion, compared to about $27.8 billion dollars in the previous 12 months.

During June, money from Egyptians abroad also witnessed an annual increase of 15.5 percent, about $2.9 billion, compared to about $2.6 billion in June 2020.

Minister of Planning and Economic Development Hala Al-Saeed said one of the objectives of his government's economic development plan include increasing money from Egyptians working abroad to about $30 billion, compared to $25.2 billion in 2018-2019, according to data issued by the Ministry of Planning.


New Saudi committee tasked to regulate foreign investments as Kingdom opens up

New Saudi committee tasked to regulate foreign investments as Kingdom opens up
Updated 8 min 7 sec ago

New Saudi committee tasked to regulate foreign investments as Kingdom opens up

New Saudi committee tasked to regulate foreign investments as Kingdom opens up
  • Chaired by the investment minister, the new committee will also set the limit for foreign ownership in local companies

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has formed a new committee to regulate foreign investments and protect the Kingdom's critical sectors such as utilities.

The committee is tasked to create and implement a criterion for foreign investors, identifying a list of companies, individuals, and activities excluded from foreign investment, Argaam reported, citing a cabinet's decision.

Chaired by the investment minister, the new committee will also set the limit for foreign ownership in local companies.

“The setup of this committee is a sagacious decision which reflects the fast pace of change in the economic structure with the participation from foreign investors,” Mohammed Al-Suwayed, chief of Razeen Capital, said.

The committee comes as more foreign entities take an interest in entering the Saudi market as part of the government’s push to modernize its economy.

Saudi analyst Al-Suwayed said: “The committee is made to deal with the implications of national security and national resources including natural and critical types of resources.”

He said the decision to create the committee will protect the Kingdom from “broader political risk” if critical services such as utilities are controlled by foreign businessmen.

“Businessmen in Saudi have more access to public policymaking than any other stakeholders, and after allowing foreign businessmen to join the boards of Commercial Chambers, they're expecting to enjoy the same access and influence policymaking as well,” he explained.

Ministers of commerce, economy, planning, communications and information technology, heads of the Local Content Authority and the Capital Market Authority will also be part of the committee. 


Wind power systems project to contribute 15% to Al Yamamah Steel’s revenue, its president says

Wind power systems project to contribute 15% to Al Yamamah Steel’s revenue, its president says
Updated 14 min 30 sec ago

Wind power systems project to contribute 15% to Al Yamamah Steel’s revenue, its president says

Wind power systems project to contribute 15% to Al Yamamah Steel’s revenue, its president says
  • he project was announced last February, with an investment of around SR300 million, and is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2023

The new wind energy systems project of Al Yamamah Steel is expected to generate 15 percent of its total revenue, the company’s president Youssef Bazaid said.

The project was announced last February, with an investment of around SR300 million, and is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2023.

It is part of the company’s renewable energy transition, following the creation of a solar energy system in 2019, Bazaid told Al-Arabiya in an interview.

The new project will have a capacity of 520 megawatts (MW) per year, which only covers 35 percent of its 1600 (MW) target in the coming years.

It will only initially serve domestic demand, Bazaid said.


Institutional part of ACWA Power IPO oversubscribed within minutes

Institutional part of ACWA Power IPO oversubscribed within minutes
Updated 17 min 37 sec ago

Institutional part of ACWA Power IPO oversubscribed within minutes

Institutional part of ACWA Power IPO oversubscribed within minutes
  • Less than 10 minutes into the offering, which will end on Sept. 27, requests from private institutions exceeded some 81.2 million shares

The public offering of Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power drew strong demand from local and international institutional investors  just minutes after the bidding started, CNBC reported, citing banking sources.

Less than 10 minutes into the offering, which will end on Sept. 27, requests from private institutions exceeded some 81.2 million shares, the source added

The Saudi utility company earlier announced the price range for the offering, as it aims to raise $1.2 billion.

Half-owned by the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund, the company is selling 81.2 million shares in a range of SR51-SR56 per share or an 11.1 percent stake.

The listing will value ACWA at up to $11 billion – making it the biggest offering in Riyadh since Saudi Aramco’s listing.

Its chairman, Mohammed Abunayyan, earlier said investors, including Americans and Europeans, expressed strong interest in investing ACWA Power.


IPO will cement ‘solutions by stc’ position as region’s top digital enabler: CEO

IPO will cement ‘solutions by stc’ position as region’s top digital enabler: CEO
Updated 21 min 38 sec ago

IPO will cement ‘solutions by stc’ position as region’s top digital enabler: CEO

IPO will cement ‘solutions by stc’ position as region’s top digital enabler: CEO
  • Solutions by STC recently announced it will go public, offering 20 percent of the company’s shares

DUBAI: The planned initial public offering of Saudi Arabia’s Solutions by STC will cement the company’s position as a top digital enabler in the region, its Chief Executive Officer Omar Al-Noamani said.

A unit of the Saudi Telecom Company, Solutions by STC recently announced it will go public, offering 20 percent of the company’s shares.

The move is expected to increase the company’s capital, Al-Noamani said in an interview with CNBC Arabia, and to explore expansion opportunities in other markets.

“We are in a very good financial standing,” the CEO said, noting the 31 percent increase of the company’s cumulative average of net revenue in the last three years.

Net profit also increased by 13 percent in the same period, he added.

He said this strong financial solvency will allow the company to distribute IPO proceeds directly as divided to shareholders.

The dividend policy, which is yet to be announced, will depend on performance evaluation and growth rates, Al-Noamani said.