Crypto coins prices seesaw amid growing debate on digital currencies: Market wrap

Crypto coins prices seesaw amid growing debate on digital currencies: Market wrap
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Updated 29 September 2021

Crypto coins prices seesaw amid growing debate on digital currencies: Market wrap

Crypto coins prices seesaw amid growing debate on digital currencies: Market wrap

RIYADH: Bitcoin traded lower on Wednesday morning, by 1.49 percent at $41,846.86, while Ether went down by 2.54 percent to $2,866.96, according to data from CoinDesk.

Crypto exchanges are increasingly running into resistance from local regulators, who want to be able to monitor their operations better.

Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, said on Monday that users in Singapore would no longer be allowed to buy and trade cryptocurrencies on its main platform, to comply with local regulation.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore this month warned Binance.com that it could be in breach of local laws and should stop providing payment services to the city-state's residents.

From Oct. 26, users in Singapore will no longer be able to deposit fiat currencies, or buy or spot-trade cryptocurrencies on the platform.

In recent months, regulators in Britain, Italy and Hong Kong have said Binance units are not authorized to carry out some activities in their markets, and Malaysia’s financial regulator reprimanded the exchange for operating illegally there

Deposit

While cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase said its customers in the US will be able to use the direct deposit service for any percentage of their salary. They can also hold their dollars in dollars or instantly convert them into cryptocurrencies without fees.

“With direct deposit, customers can more easily access our crypto-first financial services and be ready for any trade or purchase,” Max Branzburg, vice president of product at Coinbase, said in a blog post.

“We’re determined to deliver the most trusted full suite of crypto-first financial services to our 68 million users.”

Extreme views

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon has spoken out about his stance on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, stating that anyone who borrows money to buy bitcoin is, in his opinion, a fool.

However, Dimon also acknowledged that there is a potential for the crypto sector to increase its value tenfold in the next years.

"I am not personally interested in bitcoin and am not a buyer. This does not mean that the price of Bitcoin cannot reach 10 times its price today in the next five years,” Dimon said in an interview with the Times of India.

Long road ahead

Anthony Scaramucci, CEO of Skybridge Capital, believes that there is still a long way to go for institutional investors to embrace bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general.

He stated in an interview with Bloomberg that according to his experience, most institutions are still not interested in cryptocurrency as an investment and only 10 percent are actively investing in cryptocurrency. While this may be a minority, it is a minority that has some influence.

“The institutions are not there. Anybody who’s telling you there’s institutional adoption into this space is not being totally honest or they’re seeing something that I’m not seeing,” Scaramucci said.


Lebanon’s negotiations with IMF likely to start in November: minister

Lebanon’s negotiations with IMF likely to start in November: minister
Updated 52 min 23 sec ago

Lebanon’s negotiations with IMF likely to start in November: minister

Lebanon’s negotiations with IMF likely to start in November: minister
  • Foreign Minister Bou Habib also spoke about the maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel

BEIRUT: Lebanon’s foreign minister said on Sunday negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) were likely to start in November, Lebanon’s Al Jadeed TV reported.
Economy Minister Amin Salam had said on Friday, in an interview with Reuters, that the new government aimed to make progress toward starting full negotiations for an IMF deal by the end of this year or early next, but was not expecting funds to be dispersed before elections in March.
Foreign Minister Bou Habib also spoke about the maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel, telling Al Jadeed that he was “optimistic about reaching an agreement.”
Lebanon and Israel are in dispute over the delineation of their territorial waters and negotiations between the old foes could lead to Lebanon being able to unlock valuable gas reserves amid its worst-ever financial crisis.
The two countries have been holding on-off US mediated talks since October to try to resolve the issue. 


Jubail Commercial Port handles more than 53,000 containers in September 


Jubail Commercial Port handles more than 53,000 containers in September 

Updated 24 October 2021

Jubail Commercial Port handles more than 53,000 containers in September 


Jubail Commercial Port handles more than 53,000 containers in September 


RIYADH: Jubail Commercial Port’s containers handling increased to 27 percent by more than 53,000 containers during September 2021 as compared to the same period in 2020.

The port also achieved a record in handling container ships by clearing procedures within five minutes.
The speedy and efficient handling is part of the Saudi Ports Authority strategy to attract international shipping lines and expand the Kingdom’s ports capacity and operations to transform the country into a logistics hub.


Saudi EXIM Bank signs MoU with Omani banks to boost cooperation

Saudi EXIM Bank signs MoU with Omani banks to boost cooperation
Updated 24 October 2021

Saudi EXIM Bank signs MoU with Omani banks to boost cooperation

Saudi EXIM Bank signs MoU with Omani banks to boost cooperation

RIYADH: Saudi EXIM Bank on Sunday signed memorandums of understanding with three major Omani banks to boost financing ties and exchange expertise.

The MoUs were signed with the National Bank of Oman, Muscat Bank and Sohar International Bank.The banks also discussed cooperation in extending credit financing and securing financing guarantees for Saudi exporters’ Omani clients.

The banks agreed to develop training programs in financial trade, risk analysis, loan management, Saad Al-Khallab, CEO of the Saudi bank said. 


MODON signs deal for 1st factory to manufacture prosthetic limbs in Kingdom

MODON signs deal for 1st factory to manufacture prosthetic limbs in Kingdom
Reuters/File
Updated 24 October 2021

MODON signs deal for 1st factory to manufacture prosthetic limbs in Kingdom

MODON signs deal for 1st factory to manufacture prosthetic limbs in Kingdom

RIYADH: The Saudi Authority for Industrial and Technology Zones, known as MODON, signed on Sunday a contract with a company to manufacture prosthetics in the Kingdom.

The first factory to manufacture prosthetics in Saudi Arabia will be established in Asir Industrial City, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

Qusai Al-Abdulkarim, a spokesman for MODON, said the establishment of the facility is a valuable addition to Saudi Arabia and it is in line with Vision 2030.

The factory, to be established with an investment of SR40 million, aims to localize manufacture of prosthetics in the Kingdom. It seeks to meet 20 percent of the local demand in the first phase of its operations. It aims to expand its operation to export Saudi products to other countries.


MGI: Charting a regional road map for sustainable living

MGI: Charting a regional road map for sustainable living
Updated 24 October 2021

MGI: Charting a regional road map for sustainable living

MGI: Charting a regional road map for sustainable living
  • Saudi initiatives demonstrate Kingdom’s willingness to address environmental challenges

RIYADH: The final event of the Saudi Green Initiative, the Middle East Green Initiative, is taking place today to create a sustainable road map for the region and highlight green transition, green policy solutions, the finance sector’s contribution to the goals of the SGI as well as insight from an international perspective. 

It will be attended by several heads of state, with key speakers including Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry, UN Deputy Secretary Amina Mohammed,  BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, HSBC Group Chief Executive Noel Quinn, and André Esteves, senior partner, BTG Pactual, Brazil.

Earlier this year, the crown prince highlighted that the Saudi and the Middle East green initiatives are a continuation of the environmental efforts in the Kingdom over the past few years in line with Saudi Vision 2030. 

The two initiatives demonstrate the Kingdom’s strong willingness to address the environmental challenges it has faced, from increase in temperatures and dust waves to low levels of rain and desertification.

The SGI and MGI are also aiming to collectively plant 50 billion trees as well as propel the Middle East region toward achieving more than 10 percent of global carbon emissions reduction targets.

The SGI aims to reach net zero emissions of greenhouse gases, mostly produced by burning fossil fuels, by 2060.

Saudi Arabia said the transition to net zero carbon emissions “will be delivered in a manner that preserves the Kingdom’s leading role in enhancing the security and stability of global energy markets.”

Announcing a plan to reach net zero in carbon by 2060, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Saturday said the move was in line with the Kingdom’s development plans, “while preserving and reinforcing its leading role in the security and stability of global energy markets.”

The Kingdom has pledged to double the amount of carbon it will cut in its domestic economy, removing 278 million tons of the pollutant pr year by 2030.

“As a region, we have always had to live with harsh climate conditions and we will have to continue to innovate in both mitigation and adaptation,” said Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al-Jaber, at a forum on COP26 in Riyadh. 

“The UAE highly commends the leadership and the people of Saudi Arabia, particularly the youth, for such a landmark, bold and long-term strategic initiative. It represents a paradigm shift in ambition for this region,” the minister said.

The SGI aims to raise vegetation cover, reduce carbon emissions, combat pollution and land degradation, and preserve marine ecosystems.