Saudi Arabia signs four agreements to localize production of medical products

Saudi Arabia signs four agreements to localize production of medical products
The agreements aim to cover the government demand for the health sector in light of the ongoing developments of the pandemic. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 09 December 2021

Saudi Arabia signs four agreements to localize production of medical products

Saudi Arabia signs four agreements to localize production of medical products
  • The deals are expected to cover about 70 percent of the government health authorities’ need for these products

RIYADH: Four agreements were signed to localize the manufacture of medical personal protection products, SPA reported citing the Local Content and Government Procurement Authority.

The 3-5-year agreements were signed between the National Unified Procurement Company for Medical Supplies and a group of private investors, to localize medical masks, eyeglasses, and medical isolation uniforms.

The deals are expected to cover about 70 percent of the government health authorities’ need for these products, in addition to contributing to the gross domestic product with approximately SR180 million ($47,98 million), LCGPA CEO, Abdulrahman Al Samari said.

The agreements aim to cover the government demand for the health sector in light of the ongoing developments of the pandemic, maximize the development benefit of the national purchasing power, and increase local content in the private sector. 

They also aim to encourage local factories to go to export markets, and transfer new technologies to the Kingdom, SPA said.


French power company EDF to produce lowest amount of nuclear energy in 30 years: NRG matters

French power company EDF to produce lowest amount of nuclear energy in 30 years: NRG matters
Updated 13 sec ago

French power company EDF to produce lowest amount of nuclear energy in 30 years: NRG matters

French power company EDF to produce lowest amount of nuclear energy in 30 years: NRG matters

RIYADH: Germany’s concerns over the EU’s nuclear power plans are causing uncertainty in the sector, while initiatives by businesses such as Lamborghini, Fortescue, and Kufpec show some companies are taking green concerns on board.

Looking at the bigger picture:

  • The German government has formally vocalized its objection — in a letter to Brussels — regarding the EU taxonomy plan which aims to recognize nuclear power plants as a green energy source, Reuters reported. The planned move is considered perilous, costly, and lacks safety requirements in the eyes of the German government.

Through a micro lens:

  • Italian manufacturer of luxury sports cars and SUVs, Lamborghini has devoted 1.5 billion euros ($1.7 billion) to shift its lineup from pure combustion vehicles to plug-in hybrids as of 2023, Bloomberg reported. The sports car manufacturer aims to introduce its initial plug-in hybrid car in 2023 amid efforts to fully convert its lineup to battery powered models by 2024.
  • Australian iron ore firm Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. has acquired $223 million of the technology and engineering business service Williams Advanced Engineering Ltd., allowing it to access battery technology, Bloomberg reported.The fourth largest iron producer worldwide will use the acquisition to propel the advance of net zero emissions as well as having electric haul trucks instead of diesel models.
  • Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co., better known as Kufpec, has announced its first discovery in an offshore block of natural gas and a light form of oil — known as condensate — in Indonesia, Bloomberg reported. This comes after triumphant drilling in 88 meters of water in the Anambas-2X well.
  • Nuclear electric power generation company Electricite de France SA will generate the least amount of atomic power in 30 years due to technical issues in its plants, Bloomberg reported. This will diminish neighboring countries' access to French power exports, posing a great risk for energy security across the European continent.

Saudi TASI edges higher but investors remain cautious on earnings: Opening bell

Saudi TASI edges higher but investors remain cautious on earnings: Opening bell
Image: Shutterstock
Updated 5 min 30 sec ago

Saudi TASI edges higher but investors remain cautious on earnings: Opening bell

Saudi TASI edges higher but investors remain cautious on earnings: Opening bell

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s main stock index, TASI, started Monday’s session higher amid positive market news that elevated investors who remain cautious on earnings.

TASI traded 0.3 percent higher at 12,172 points, and the parallel market Nomu was almost flat at 25,700 points as of 10:15 a.m. Saudi time.

Oil giant Saudi Aramco and the Kingdom’s largest lender, the Saudi National Bank, SNB, both recorded losses amounting to 0.14 percent.

Shares in Alinma Bank added 0.6 percent amid trading of over 300,000 shares.

Arabian Centres Co., known as Almrakez, recorded the highest gains in early trading of 2.6 percent. 

Almrakez earlier said it will distribute cash dividends at SR0.75 ($0.2) per share for the first half of the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2021.

A major producer of electrical power in the Kingdom, Saudi Electricity Co., saw a 2 percent hike in its share price, followed by utility provider ACWA POWER Co., up 0.7 percent.

Shares in Methanol Chemical Co. were up 0.4 percent after it obtained the Ministry of Energy’s approval to allocate the required feedstock and expand its methanol plant by increasing output to 331,000 tons per year.

In energy trading, Brent crude oil reached $88.4 per barrel, and US benchmark WTI crude oil was up to $85.6 per barrel as of 10:15 a.m. Saudi time.


Oil prices rise on supply fears amid tensions in Eastern Europe, Middle East

Oil prices rise on supply fears amid tensions in Eastern Europe, Middle East
Image: Shutterstock
Updated 42 min 40 sec ago

Oil prices rise on supply fears amid tensions in Eastern Europe, Middle East

Oil prices rise on supply fears amid tensions in Eastern Europe, Middle East
  • OPEC+ compliance with long-installed oil production cuts rose to about 122 percent in December

Oil prices rose on Monday on worries about supply disruption amid rising tensions in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, which could make an already tight market even tighter, while OPEC and its allies continued to struggle to raise output.


Brent crude futures rose 81 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $88.70 a barrel by 0344 GMT, reversing a 0.6 percent loss on Friday.


US West Texas Intermediate crude futures gained 72 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $85.86 a barrel, having fallen 0.5 percent on Friday.


Both benchmarks rose for a fifth week in a row last week, gaining around 2 percent to hit their highest since October 2014. Prices are already up more than 10  percent. 
"Investors remained bullish due to geopolitical risk between Russia and Ukraine as well as in the Middle East, while OPEC+ continued to fail to reach its output target," said Kazuhiko Saito, chief analyst at Fujitomi Securities Co Ltd.


"An expectation for higher heating oil demand in the United States amid cold weather also added to pressure," he said.


Fuelling fears of supply disruption in Eastern Europe, the United States on Sunday ordered the departure of family members of staff at its embassy in Ukraine, citing the continuing threat of military action from Russia.


The New York Times reported late Sunday that US President Joe Biden was considering deploying several thousand US troops to NATO allies in Eastern Europe and the Baltics.


Russia will face severe economic sanctions if it installs a puppet regime in Ukraine, a senior British government minister said on Sunday, after Britain accused the Kremlin of seeking to place a pro-Russian leader in power there.


In the Middle East, the United Arab Emirates' defence ministry said it destroyed two Houthi ballistic missiles targeting the Gulf country on Monday, with no casualties, the state news agency (WAM) reported.


The OPEC+, which groups the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries with Russia and other producers, is struggling to hit its monthly output increase target of 400,000 barrels per day.


OPEC+ compliance with long-installed oil production cuts rose to about 122 percent in December, two sources from the producer group told Reuters, indicating that some members continue to struggle to raise their output.


"Expectations that OPEC+ members such as Saudi Arabia and Russia are likely to keep the current policy of gradual increase of output to maintain Brent oil prices between $85 and $90 a barrel are providing support to an overall sentiment," said Tetsu Emori, CEO of Emori Fund Management Inc.


Money managers raised their net long US crude futures and options positions in the week to Jan. 18, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission said on Friday.


In the United States, petroleum inventories have continued to slide over the last month, while energy firms cut oil rigs this week for the first time in 13 weeks.

Analysts expect cold weather to boost heating demand over the next few weeks.


Saudi Arabia to refinance $11.5bn of debt in 2022, NDMC says

Saudi Arabia to refinance $11.5bn of debt in 2022, NDMC says
Updated 24 January 2022

Saudi Arabia to refinance $11.5bn of debt in 2022, NDMC says

Saudi Arabia to refinance $11.5bn of debt in 2022, NDMC says

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia's funding requirement for 2022 will mainly focus on debt refinancing which amounts to approximately SR43 billion ($11.5 billion), the Kingdom's National Debt Management Center said in a statement.

NDMC Board of Directors, chaired by the Minister of Finance, Mohammed Al-Jadaan, endorsed the 2022 annual borrowing plan during its last meeting according to the statement.

The plan highlighted that the NDMC will continue to proactively monitor the market taking into consideration interest rate movements and will be seizing opportunities that will enhance the characteristics of the Kingdom's debt portfolio.

As per 2022 official budget statement, public debt is estimated to remain at approximately SR938 billion by 2022 year-end.

"Based on market conditions throughout 2022 and while maintaining the current debt strategy, the government might consider additional tactical funding activities through the available funding channels, either domestically or internationally including   debt capital markets and/or government alternative financing to fund opportunities that will promote economic growth such as capital expenditures and infrastructure financing," the statement added.

​Last December, the NDMC announced the completion of the 2021 borrowing plan, with total financing of SR125 billion. 60.5 percent of the debt raised in 2021 was from local sources, while the remaining 39.5 percent was made up of international borrowing.

The borrowing plan last year included several funding channels, of which the issuance of €1.5 billion of Euro denominated bonds, the largest negative yield issuance ever to be executed out of EU with 3.3 times coverage ratio, according to NDMC. 

A negative yield is when an investor receives less money at the bond’s maturity than the original purchase price for the bond. In other words, instead of receiving a return from the issuer, the depositors are paying the lender a net amount at maturity.

Additionally, the NDMC executed an exchange transaction of Sukuk and bonds maturing in 2022, with total size exceeding SR33 billion.

Last July, Fitch Ratings decided to revise the Kingdom’s outlook to stable from negative and affirmed its rating at ‘A’, reflecting “prospects for a smaller deterioration in key sovereign balance-sheet metrics,” a report on their website said.

Moody’s, another ratings agency, also followed suit, raising the country’s outlook to stable from negative in November. It said on its website that “the government will reverse most of the 2020 increase in its debt burden while also preserving its fiscal buffers.”


Here’s what you need to know before opening bell on Tadawul

Here’s what you need to know before opening bell on Tadawul
Updated 24 January 2022

Here’s what you need to know before opening bell on Tadawul

Here’s what you need to know before opening bell on Tadawul

RIYADH: Saudi stocks fell on Sunday as weak earnings data weighed on investor sentiment and losses hit some of the Kingdom’s major stocks.

TASI dropped 1.2 percent, snapping its ten-day winning streak, to close at 12,140 points, and the parallel Nomu market slipped 1.4 percent, reaching 25,707 points.

In line with Saudi Arabia, most GCC bourses were down on Sunday, except for Bahrain’s BAX which edged up by 0.1 percent.

Stock exchanges of Qatar, Oman, and Kuwait all registered losses between 0.2 and 0.3 percent.

Elsewhere in the Middle East, the Egyptian index EGX30 closed 0.6 percent lower.

In energy trading, Brent crude oil reached $88.7 per barrel, and US benchmark WTI crude oil was up to $85.8 per barrel as of 8:49 a.m. Saudi time.

Stock news

  • Saudi Real Estate Co., also known as Alakria, has completed the purchase of raw land in Riyadh worth SR727 million ($194 million)
  • Arabian Centres Co. is to distribute cash dividends at SR0.75 per share for the first have of the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2021
  • The National Co. for Glass Industries, known as Zoujaj, has signed an initial agreement with the Saudi Investment Recycling Co. to establish a JV specialized in producing raw material for glass manufacturing
  • Etihad Atheeb Telecom Co. got its board’s approval to decrease capital by 61 percent to amortize accumulated losses
  • Riyadh-based Saudi Public Transport Co., also known as SAPTCO, has signed a SR150 million deal for a public bus transport project in the Eastern Province
  • Logistics and transportation services provider Bahri has started trial commissioning of the first floating station under its SR760 million deal with Saline Water Conversion Corp.
  • The Saudi Arabian Mining Co., or Ma’aden, has appointed Robert Wilt as its new chief executive officer
  • Al Moammar Information Systems Co. has inked SR84.5 million worth of contracts with its subsidiary Edarat Communications and Information Technology Co. for cloud hosting and data center services
  • Al Dawaa Medical Services Co. has announced its intention to debut 25.5 million shares, representing 30 percent of capital, on the main stock index TASI

Calendar

Jan. 24, 2022

  • Start of East Pipes Integrated Co.’s initial public offering subscription

Jan. 25, 2022

  • End of East Pipes Integrated Co.’s initial public offering subscription
  • Saudia Dairy and Foodstuff Co., SADAFCO, to pay cash dividends at SR3 per share for the first half of its fiscal year

Jan. 27, 2022

  • End of Gas Arabian Services’ IPO book-building
  • End of Scientific and Medical Equipment House’s IPO book-building

Jan. 28, 2022

  • End of Elm Co.’s IPO book-building