Saudi real estate firm cancels management deals with two Madinah hotels

Saudi real estate firm cancels management deals with two Madinah hotels
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Updated 24 February 2021

Saudi real estate firm cancels management deals with two Madinah hotels

Saudi real estate firm cancels management deals with two Madinah hotels
  • Taiba Investments said operation of the two hotels would continue under the direct management of Al-Aqeeq Real Estate Development Co.

RIYADH: A Saudi real estate company on Tuesday announced it had cancelled a six-year-old management deal with two Madinah hotels.

Taiba Investments Co. told the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) that its fully owned subsidiary Al-Aqeeq Real Estate Development Co. had terminated agreements signed on Nov. 30, 2014 with Millennium and Copthorne Middle East Holdings Ltd. for the management of the Al-Aqeeq Millennium and Taiba Millennium hotels located in the central area of the holy city.

Taiba Investments said operation of the two hotels would continue under the direct management of Al-Aqeeq Real Estate Development Co., adding that the financial implications of the contract cancellations were yet to be determined.


PIF’s Noon to create hundreds of customer service jobs in KSA

PIF’s Noon to create hundreds of customer service jobs  in KSA
Noon was launched in the UAE and Saudi Arabia in December 2017, and in Egypt in February 2019. (Supplied)
Updated 3 min 5 sec ago

PIF’s Noon to create hundreds of customer service jobs in KSA

PIF’s Noon to create hundreds of customer service jobs  in KSA
  • In February, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development announced the Saudization of all remote customer service roles in the Kingdom as part of a goal to create around 20,000 job opportunities for citizens

RIYADH: Noon, an online platform backed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) and Dubai businessman Mohamed Alabbar, is to expand its customer service operations in the Kingdom, creating hundreds of jobs for young Saudis.
“I am incredibly proud of the work done by Noon to drive this next chapter of innovation in the region,” said Ahmed Gadouri, the platform’s general manager for Saudi Arabia.
“Boosting our on-the-ground resources with local hires will amplify our customer excellence mission in the Kingdom.”
The customer service roles will mainly be hired in Riyadh, with others working remotely across the Kingdom.
In February, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development announced the Saudization of all remote customer service roles in the Kingdom as part of a goal to create around 20,000 job opportunities for citizens.
Noon was launched in the UAE and Saudi Arabia in December 2017, and in Egypt in February 2019.

FASTFACTS

• With an initial investment of $1 billion and working from headquarters in Riyadh, Noon said in 2016 that it aims to expand online sales in the region from 2 percent of the total retail market ($3 billion) to 15 percent ($70 billion) within a decade.

• The e-commerce market in Saudi Arabia was valued at approximately $4.9billion in 2019.

With an initial investment of $1 billion and working from headquarters in Riyadh, Noon said in 2016 that it aims to expand online sales in the region from 2 percent of the total retail market ($3 billion) to 15 percent ($70 billion) within a decade.
According to the Statista website, the e-commerce market in Saudi Arabia was valued at approximately $4.9 billion in 2019 and forecast to reach $8 billion by 2024.
In a bid to boost its market share, Noon launched a rewards program in Saudi Arabia in March.
The VIP package aims to attract more customers through cashback discounts, speedier deliveries and prioritized customer service.


OPEC+ said to discuss further easing of oil cuts from August

OPEC+ said to discuss further easing of oil cuts from August
Crude oil prices retreated on Tuesday, after Brent rose above $75 a barrel for the first time since April 2019 and as OPEC+ begins discussions on raising oil production. (AFP)
Updated 12 min 5 sec ago

OPEC+ said to discuss further easing of oil cuts from August

OPEC+ said to discuss further easing of oil cuts from August
  • Group is aiming to gradually unwind last year’s record oil output curbs

DUBAI: OPEC+ is discussing a further easing of oil output cuts from August as oil prices rise on demand recovery, but no decision had been taken yet on the exact volume to bring back to the market, two OPEC+ sources said on Tuesday.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, known as OPEC+, is returning 2.1 million barrels per day (bpd) to the market from May through July as part of a plan to gradually unwind last year’s record oil output curbs. OPEC+ meets next on July 1.
“It is highly possible to increase gradually from August,” said one of the sources, adding that no final decision had been made and the exact volumes are yet to be agreed on.

HIGHLIGHTS

• OPEC+, is returning 2.1 million bpd to the market from May through July as part of a plan to gradually unwind last year’s record oil output curbs.

• The talks mean that OPEC and Russia are likely to find common ground again on oil production policy.

• Moscow has been insisting on raising output further to avoid prices spiking.

The talks mean that OPEC and Russia are likely to find common ground again on oil production policy. Moscow has been insisting on raising output further to avoid prices spiking, while key OPEC producers have given no signals on the next step until now.
Russian producers see August as a good time to further ease oil output cuts despite the expected return of Iranian barrels as the market is in deficit, an industry source told Reuters on Tuesday.
“Limping” US production also supports the case for easing the curbs, the Russian source said.
Crude oil prices retreated on Tuesday, after Brent rose above $75 a barrel for the first time since April 2019 and as OPEC+ begins discussions on raising oil production, but a strong demand outlook underpinned prices.


Saudi finance minister issues license for STC bank and Saudi digital bank, both under establishment: cabinet statement

Saudi finance minister issues license for STC bank and Saudi digital bank, both under establishment: cabinet statement
Updated 23 June 2021

Saudi finance minister issues license for STC bank and Saudi digital bank, both under establishment: cabinet statement

Saudi finance minister issues license for STC bank and Saudi digital bank, both under establishment: cabinet statement

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s finance minister has issued the necessary license for STC bank and Saudi digital bank, both under establishment, the Saudi cabinet said in a statement on Tuesday.

Developing...


Saudi Central Bank extends SME deferred payment program another 3 months

Saudi Central Bank extends SME deferred payment program another 3 months
Updated 22 June 2021

Saudi Central Bank extends SME deferred payment program another 3 months

Saudi Central Bank extends SME deferred payment program another 3 months
  • Program aims to support small and medium-sized enterprises still struggling due to the pandemic
  • More than 106,000 contracts have benefited since it was launched in March 2020 with a value of approximately SR167 billion

RIYADH: The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) announced on Tuesday that it is extending a deferred payment program for a second time to help support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that are still struggling during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
SAMA said the program — one of the bank’s initiatives to support private sector financing — will be extended for another three months from July 1 through Sept. 30.
The move is part of SAMA’s role in maintaining the stability of the financial sector, enabling it to promote economic growth and maintain employment levels in the private sector, especially within micro enterprises and other SMEs.
More than 106,000 contracts have benefited from the program since it was launched in March 2020 while the value of the deferred payments for those contracts has amounted to approximately SR167 billion ($44.5 billion).
SAMA has also offered a secured financing program for SMEs as more than 5,282 contracts have benefited from that program with a total financing value of more than SR10 billion, the bank said in a statement.
These programs are meant to support the private sector and the levels of liquidity in the financial sector. They enable financing agencies to provide support while mitigating the economic and financial effects on the SME sector, the bank said.
This is the second time SAMA has extended the two programs to support SMEs. It renewed the deferred payment program for three months last March, while it also extended the guaranteed financing program for an additional year until March 14, 2022.


Beirut is the world’s third most expensive city for expats

Beirut is the world’s third most expensive city for expats
Updated 22 June 2021

Beirut is the world’s third most expensive city for expats

Beirut is the world’s third most expensive city for expats
  • Living in the Lebanese capital as an expat has now become more expensive than living in Tokyo, Zurich, or Shanghai

DUBAI: Beirut has become the most expensive city for expats in the Middle East and North Africa region, and the third globally, based on the latest “Cost of Living” survey by consultancy Mercer.
Jumping 42 places in global rankings, Beirut has been at the center of Lebanon’s economic and political collapse, aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the port explosion last year.
Living in the Lebanese capital as an expat has now become more expensive than living in Tokyo, Zurich, or Shanghai. Turkmenistan’s Ashgabat ranked first, in the list of most expensive cities for expatriates, followed by Hong Kong.
Mercer comes up with the annual list by comparing the cost of more than 200 items in each city, including housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment.
Riyadh has become the most expensive city in the Gulf at 29th globally. Jeddah ranked 94th, the report showed.
Dubai dropped to 42nd in the list, down from 23rd last year, and Abu Dhabi ranked 56th from 39th a year earlier.
Other cities in the Gulf also became more affordable this year, the report revealed, with Bahrain dropping to 71st from 52nd, while Muscat fell to 108th from 96th. Kuwait City dropped two places to 115th and Qatar at 21 places to 130th.