Global shipping industry rakes in huge profits

Global shipping industry rakes in huge profits
Short Url
Updated 13 September 2021

Global shipping industry rakes in huge profits

Global shipping industry rakes in huge profits
  • Jump in earnings has been caused due to a 333%hike in shipping cost

JEDDAH: The global shipping industry is raking in huge revenues daily at a level not seen since 2008.

The sudden jump in earnings has been caused due to a 333 percent hike in shipping cost in the aftermath of the coronavirus outbreak, which disrupted the global supply chains, according to a Bloomberg report.

The hike in cargo charges, however, has raised the specter of inflation around the globe. An increase in transportation cost has a cascading effect on the overall economy and the end-user is affected the most.

Eighty percent of global trade takes place through the sea, which means the impact of the higher shipping cost will not be confined to one economic sector.

Currently, a 40-foot container from China to Europe costs $14,287, which is up more than 500 percent from a year earlier. The impact of the shipping cost does not stay here; it affects the prices of almost everything transported through such containers.

With the global economy reopening and rebounding from the pandemic, the containers sector is set for huge profits due to a rise in demand for raw materials and other items.

Logistics companies are making huge profits, for example, Maersk posted an estimated $5billion in earnings last month.

The spree is likely to continue for the shipping industry, as the demand for raw materials and other items is not expected to decline any time soon.


IMF likely to lower its global economic growth estimates due to omicron threat

IMF likely to lower its global economic growth estimates due to omicron threat
Updated 05 December 2021

IMF likely to lower its global economic growth estimates due to omicron threat

IMF likely to lower its global economic growth estimates due to omicron threat



WASHINGTON: The International Monetary Fund is likely to lower its global economic growth estimates due to the new omicron variant of the coronavirus, the global lender’s chief said at the Reuters Next conference on Friday in another sign of the turmoil unleashed by the ever-changing pandemic.
Omicron has spread rapidly to at least 40 countries since it was first reported in South Africa last week, officials say, and many governments have tightened travel rules to try to keep it out.
“A new variant that may spread very rapidly can dent confidence, and in that sense, we are likely to see some downgrades of our October projections for global growth,” IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva told the conference.
Much remains unknown about omicron. Researchers said it could have picked up genetic material from another virus, perhaps one that causes the common cold, which would allow it to more easily evade human immune system defenses.
Georgieva said the fund is also looking at all of its research processes in order to ensure the its data integrity in the wake of a data-rigging scandal at the World Bank.
“Is there something more that can be done, and we are looking at all the processes — are they sufficiently up to date with what others are doing?” Georgieva said.


Startup of the Week: YouGotaGift — region’s first marketplace for digital gift cards

Startup of the Week: YouGotaGift — region’s first marketplace for digital gift cards
Updated 05 December 2021

Startup of the Week: YouGotaGift — region’s first marketplace for digital gift cards

Startup of the Week: YouGotaGift — region’s first marketplace for digital gift cards

YouGotaGift is the region’s first marketplace for digital gift cards. It is an end-to-end digital platform that connects prepaid cards from top retail brands to consumers and businesses. 
Its prepaid cards are completely digital, meaning customers can buy them online and have them delivered instantly by email or SMS. 
It works with over 700 retail brands, reaches over 5 million users and serves over 2,000 corporates.  
YouGotaGift was originally founded in 2013 in the UAE by CEO, Husain Makiya, Marketeer Abed Bibi, and Honeybee Tech Ventures (incubator), and further backed by a major regional VC, namely MEVP (Middle East Venture Partners).
It began operating in Saudi Arabia in 2014, with its first significant banking client in the Kingdom. It is now operating across the Gulf Cooperation Council and beyond with multiple offices across the region. “Our consumer business offers our global users the convenience to send personalized e-gift cards to celebrate friends, family, and colleagues,” Makiya told Arab News. “As a fully registered Saudi company, we have massively expanded our business in the Kingdom and greatly scaled up our team on the ground over the last 18 months, spearheaded by Fawziah Al-Hoshan, as general manager,” he added.
Al-Hoshan is a Saudi woman with a decade-long career in business and HR with Saudi corporates and multinationals, including Olayan Group and Pepsico. Makiya said the Kingdom is witnessing tremendous economic growth and the emerging talent pool is highly energized to engage in new roles and career opportunities offered by such companies as YouGotaGift. 
He said YouGotAGift is the first to bring this category of gift cards to the Kingdom. “Our collection of gift cards were first incorporated by National Commercial Bank for their loyalty program LAK,” he said. “It was a pivotal move toward adding a digital redemption process for customers who were used to traditional physical products or gift cards as a reward for their loyalty toward a program.” Since then, it has integrated with over 800 businesses in the Kingdom to digitize their rewards and incentives programs for both employees and customers.
“With Saudi Vision 2030 well on its way, tremendous efforts from the government to push digitization in every aspect of life has also contributed to a ‘never-before’ level of interest for e-gift cards amongst consumers,” he said. He said corporates and individual customers have both identified various ways to use these cards over the last 18 months; from traditional incentives and rewards to sending Eidiya or just helping the ones in need during the pandemic. “It’s a clear sign that they’re here to stay,” he said. Makiya said the global gift card business is expected to cross $2 trillion by 2027. 
“In our part of the world, we expect the this market alone to reach $1.2 billion by 2024, of which at least $700 million
will be attributed by the Kingdom,” he said. “For businesses and government entities, e-gift cards are the No.1 most in-demand method to reward their employees and customers, and the adoption rate of these cards in the Kingdom outweighs that of the entire region driven by the digital transformation of Vision 2030,”
he added.
YouGotAGift is actively recruiting marketeers, business developers and product managers to join their team ([email protected]).


Logistics sector key pillar of economic diversification plan, says Saudi minister

Logistics sector key pillar of economic diversification plan, says Saudi minister
Updated 05 December 2021

Logistics sector key pillar of economic diversification plan, says Saudi minister

Logistics sector key pillar of economic diversification plan, says Saudi minister

RIYADH: The transport and logistics sector represents one of the key pillars of the Kingdom’s economic diversification strategy, said Saudi Minister of Transport and Logistics Saleh Al-Jasser.
The minister highlighted the opportunities available in this sector in the Kingdom at the recent International Investment Summit held in Dhaka.
Al-Jasser said the Kingdom’s transport and logistics sector is undergoing rapid transformation. He highlighted the Kingdom’s National Transport and Logistics Strategy at the event, which was attended by investment companies and experts in the field.
Saudi Arabia expects its new transport and logistics strategy to generate SR550 billion ($150 billion) in investments by 2030 in areas such as public transport, railways, and airports expansion and development.
The government would provide 35 percent of the needed investments, and the rest would come from private investors. The strategy would have multiple benefits on economic activities because it would connect many sectors, such as Hajj and tourism, as well as industries.
A host of projects are planned to help achieve the strategy’s economic and social goals, including the launch of a second national airline, along with improved governance to enhance the work of the organizations involved. The new strategy also seeks to improve the capabilities of the Kingdom’s air cargo sector by doubling its capacity to more than 4.5 million tons. It includes a land bridge project that will span more than 1,300 km and connect the Kingdom’s ports on the coast of the Arabian Gulf with those on the Red Sea coast. It will have the capacity to transport more than 3 million passengers and 50 million tons of freight annually, opening up new opportunities in the areas it passes through.
Al-Jasser also visited the Chittagong Port, Bangladesh’s largest port, and held meetings with key officials to discuss ways to enhance cooperation in the sector.
Saudi investment
Saudi company Engineering Dimensions will invest $1.75 billion in Bangladesh, a Bangladesh official was quoted as saying by the local media.
Sirajul Islam, chairman of Bangladesh Investment Development Authority, said the Saudi company will jointly invest in two companies in the country.
Engineering Dimension has already invested in power generator production and a large scale cement factory.
Local media quoted Al-Jasser as saying many public and private companies of Saudi Arabia were keen to invest in Bangladesh in infrastructure development, power, port, energy and renewable energy sectors.


Aramco announces collaboration with French companies including hydrogen cars deal with Gaussin

Aramco announces collaboration with French companies including hydrogen cars deal with Gaussin
Updated 04 December 2021

Aramco announces collaboration with French companies including hydrogen cars deal with Gaussin

Aramco announces collaboration with French companies including hydrogen cars deal with Gaussin
  • Gaussin to explore manufacturing of hydrogen vehicles in Saudi Arabia
  • Aramco sponsors first hydrogen-fueled truck to compete in Dakar Rally

JEDDAH: Saudi Aramco on Saturday signed five agreements with leading French companies including an agreement to explore a hydrogen-powered vehicle business with Gaussin, said a statement.

The signing was held during an event in Jeddah, organized by the Ministry of Investment to explore investment opportunities for French companies in Saudi Arabia. 

Commenting on the deal with Gaussin, a pioneer in clean and intelligent transport solutions, Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser said: “It represents an opportunity to promote hydrogen as a low-carbon solution, not just for motorsport, but eventually for mass transportation as well. Such collaboration helps us to advance economic growth in the Kingdom as part of the Namaat industrial investment program and takes us a step closer to our shared vision of a more sustainable future.”

The agreement aims to establish a modern manufacturing facility for on-road and off-road hydrogen powered vehicles in the Kingdom. The two companies will study the feasibility of a manufacturing facility and a hydrogen distribution business to serve the Middle East region.

The two companies also agreed that Aramco’s Advanced Innovation Center (LAB7) will be closely involved in Gaussin’s development of hydrogen-powered vehicles and the development of a remote controlled/autonomous hydrogen racing truck. LAB7 aims to integrate Aramco’s composite materials into Gaussin’s existing range of products to reduce the weight, energy consumption and cost of these vehicles.

Aramco will also be sponsoring the world’s first hydrogen-fueled racing truck, which has been developed by Gaussin and which will compete in the 2022 Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia. Aramco’s sponsorship of Gaussin’s participation in the Dakar Rally continues to promote low-emission transportation technology developments.

Additional MoU’s

Other agreements announced on Saturday seek to further Aramco’s research and development in the areas of carbon capture technology, artificial intelligence and local manufacturing. The MoUs include:

  • Air Liquide – Non-binding MoU to evaluate low Carbon hydrogen and ammonia production, logistics, and backcracking technology and an additional non-binding MoU to evaluate Carbon Capture and Sequestration opportunities.
  • Alteia – Non-binding MoU to develop advanced artificial intelligence driven geospatial imagery interpretation and processing capabilities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
  • Axens – non-binding MoU to explore the local manufacturing and maintenance services of furnaces and fired heaters.

SAMI launches JV with French firm to build aerostructure components in Kingdom

SAMI launches JV with French firm to build aerostructure components in Kingdom
Updated 04 December 2021

SAMI launches JV with French firm to build aerostructure components in Kingdom

SAMI launches JV with French firm to build aerostructure components in Kingdom

JEDDAH: The Saudi Arabian Military Industries, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund, on Saturday launched a joint venture with French company Figeac Aero and the Saudi Arabian Industrial Investments Co., Dussur, to build a high-precision manufacturing facility in the Kingdom to produce aerostructure components, SAMI said on Saturday.

The company said that the joint venture’s revenue would reach $200 million by 2030 and the ownership would be divided among the two countries. Fifty-one percent would be owned by Saudi Arabia and 49 percent by France.

SAMI also signed an agreement with Airbus to form a joint project specialized in military aviation services and maintenance, the statement said. As per the deal, the Kingdom would own 51 percent of the joint venture with the European planemaker holding the other 49 percent.

 

Aviation deals

Saudi Arabian Airlines signed an agreement with CFM International worth $8.5 billion at list prices, the carrier said in a statement.

The state-owned carrier, also known as Saudia, said “it has ordered CFM International LEAP-1A engines to power its new fleet of 35 Airbus A321neo and 30 A320neo aircraft.”

Low-cost Saudi airline flynas also signed an agreement with CFM International to maintain LEAP-1A engines in a deal valued at $4 billion, the Saudi Arabian budget carrier said.