China In-Focus: Investments in solar power projects surged 200%; blockchain infrastructure project to expand internationally

China’s investments in solar power projects surged 200 percent in the period between January and April 2022 to stand at 29 billion yuan ($4.3 billion), Bloomberg reported, citing a statement from the National Energy Administration.
China’s investments in solar power projects surged 200 percent in the period between January and April 2022 to stand at 29 billion yuan ($4.3 billion), Bloomberg reported, citing a statement from the National Energy Administration.
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Updated 23 May 2022

China In-Focus: Investments in solar power projects surged 200%; blockchain infrastructure project to expand internationally

China In-Focus: Investments in solar power projects surged 200%; blockchain infrastructure project to expand internationally

RIYADH: China’s investments in solar power projects tripled in the first four months of 2022. On the other hand, the state-backed Blockchain-based Service Network is set to launch its first major international expansion. In another development, US President Joe Biden has left it up to the 13 countries which are part of his new scheme regarding economic engagement in Asia to decide whether China will be part of the plan. Meanwhile, stocks have slipped amid surging COVID-19 cases.

·      China’s investments in solar power projects surged 200 percent in the period between January and April 2022 to stand at 29 billion yuan ($4.3 billion), Bloomberg reported, citing a statement from the National Energy Administration. The figure compares to 51.3 billion yuan invested in solar over the first 11 months of 2021.

·      China’s state-sanctioned blockchain infrastructure project Blockchain-based Service Network is set to launch its first-ever major international expansion, CNBC reported. The firm intends to make the international version of its product — also referred to as Spartan Network — open source for people to examine. The product is projected to be made up of six public blockchains that do not operate with cryptocurrencies.  

·      US President Joe Biden has launched a scheme — referred to as Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity — concerning US economic engagement in Asia as of Monday, leaving it up to the 13 founding countries to decide if China will ever get to join and how to implement the agreements, Reuters reported. 

·      After two consecutive weeks of gains, China’s stocks slipped on Monday as a result of new Covid-19 cases were reported in capital Beijing, Reuters reported. While the blue chip CSI300 index dropped 0.6 percent to stand at 4,053.98 points, the Shanghai Composite index SSEC remained almost flat standing at 3.146.86 points. 

 


China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant

China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant
Updated 18 sec ago

China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant

China In-Focus — Stocks end lower; Toyota suspends operations at Sichuan plant

RIYADH: China’s blue-chip index edged lower on Tuesday on worries about COVID-19 flare-ups and slowing economic growth, although property stocks jumped on news of policy support.

The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 0.2 percent, while the Shanghai Composite Index .SSEC gained 0.1 percent.

The Hang Seng index fell 1.1 percent, while the China Enterprises Index lost 1.3 percent.

Toyota suspends operations

Toyota Motor Corp. suspended operations at its Sichuan plant in China because of a power shortage, the Kyodo News reported on Tuesday.

The local authority has ordered the automaker to suspend operations, the report said.

Tsingshan mulls selling Indonesian assets 

China’s stainless steel and nickel giant, Tsingshan Holding Group is considering selling some of its assets in Indonesia to China Baowu Steel Group, the world’s top steel producer, sources said.

Tsingshan has in recent years been investing heavily in Indonesia, turning the nickel-rich Southeast Asian nation into a hub of stainless steel and nickel production, and a possible top supplier of electric vehicle battery chemicals.

“(It’s) still under discussion,” a Tsingshan official said, referring to the possible sale, without elaborating.

Two other sources at Baowu confirmed the talks, with one saying that the acquisition would be part of the Chinese state-controlled steel firm’s long-term goal to expand in the stainless steel sector, especially in Southeast Asia.

It would also be in Baowu’s interests to expand into nickel, most of which is used in making stainless steel.

“Our layout in the nickel industry is quite limited, and it is now too late to buy resources and invest a large amount of money to build factories,” said a second source at Baowu.

 

(With input from Reuters) 

 


Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; 10X SPAC and Prime Blockchain complete $1.25bn merger deal

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; 10X SPAC and Prime Blockchain complete $1.25bn merger deal
Updated 22 min 56 sec ago

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; 10X SPAC and Prime Blockchain complete $1.25bn merger deal

Crypto Moves – Bitcoin and Ethereum fall; 10X SPAC and Prime Blockchain complete $1.25bn merger deal

RIYADH: Bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency internationally, traded lower on Tuesday, falling by 3.44 percent to $24,008 as of 7:57 a.m. Riyadh time.

Ethereum, the second most traded cryptocurrency, was priced at $1,874 falling by 5.51 percent, according to data from Coindesk.

10X SPAC and Prime Blockchain complete $1.25bn merger deal

Prime Blockchain and blank-check vehicle 10X Capital Venture Acquisition Corp. II have ended their $1.25 billion merger deal, Reuters reported.

It demonstrates waning enthusiasm for special purpose acquisition companies that were startups’ preferred route to initial public offerings.

As a result of sky-high inflation and recession fears this year, several companies have canceled their SPAC mergers, which were announced in April.

Despite some hope last week, analysts have cautioned against over-optimism, arguing that before slowing rate hikes, the Federal Reserve will seek more solid evidence that inflation is declining.

Hodlnaut seeks judicial management for reorganization

As part of its efforts to restructure its business, Hodlnaut, a Singapore-based crypto currency lender and borrower, filed an application to be placed under judicial management on Tuesday, Reuters said.

In a petition filed with the Singapore High Court, the crypto company said it suspended withdrawals, swaps, and deposits last week.

The collapse of two paired tokens, Luna and TerraUSD, in May sparked a selloff in crypto assets.

Dragonfly Ventures buys hedge fund and rebrands

Venture capital firm Dragonfly announced it acquired cryptocurrency fund MetaStable Capital and rebranded, according to Bloomberg.

Haseeb Qureshi, the managing partner at Dragonfly, said the acquisition coincides with consolidation in the digital asset industry, Bloomberg added.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed. Under a new logo, Bloomberg said that Dragonfly has dropped “Capital” from its name.

Qureshi, a former partner at MetaStable, said in a Telegram message: “The bear market has caused a lot of traditional funds and crossover funds to exit the crypto market.”

“We’re the opposite: we’re going deeper, and committing to our crypto-native roots,” he added.

With tightening monetary policy, the crypto market suffered a painful rout resulting in spectacular leveraged losses., Bloomberg added. This shakeout is resulting in a rise in mergers and acquisitions.

Leon Li, the founder of crypto exchange Huobi, is interested in selling his majority stake. Crypto.com, a digital currency platform, also announced acquisitions in South Korea recently.

As of July 31, MetaStable had over $400 million in assets under management, co-founded by Naval Ravikant, according to Bloomberg. Many well-known digital-asset projects, such as Ethereum, were invested in by the fund early on. Venture capital firms including Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia, Union Square Ventures, and Founders Fund backed the company.

“Dragonfly has grown a lot since it launched, and so has the crypto industry," Qureshi said.

He added: “The traditional VCs will be back eventually, but the space will have moved on even further by then, and so will we.” 

According to public records, Dragonfly manages regulatory assets worth more than $3 billion, said Bloomberg. In a statement, general partner Tom Schmidt said the new brand represents the firm’s “cyberpunk, hacker-first roots.”

(With inputs from Reuters)


Saudi Arabia’s Dar Al Arkan plans residential project in Abu Dhabi

Saudi Arabia’s Dar Al Arkan plans residential project in Abu Dhabi
Updated 37 min 6 sec ago

Saudi Arabia’s Dar Al Arkan plans residential project in Abu Dhabi

Saudi Arabia’s Dar Al Arkan plans residential project in Abu Dhabi

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s property developer Dar Al Arkan is planning a new residential project in Abu Dhabi as the property market in the UAE is steadily rebounding after the pandemic, a local newspaper of the UAE reported quoting the firm’s vice chairman Ziad El Chaar. 

El Chaar revealed that the new project will be Dar Al Arkan’s fourth in the UAE and the first in Abu Dhabi. Currently, the property developer has three ongoing projects in Dubai. 

“Abu Dhabi is a promising market. We are in discussions with many parties to acquire some key plots to enter the market soon,” said El Chaar. 

The development work on the new residential project is expected to begin by the first quarter of 2023. 

El Chaar, however, did not reveal the total cost of the Abu Dhabi project but said the company’s projects are “sizeable,” with each project valuing about $262 million. 


India In-Focus — Shares rise; India buys discounted Venezuelan petcoke; Volkswagen, Mahindra deepen EV cooperation 

India In-Focus — Shares rise; India buys discounted Venezuelan petcoke; Volkswagen, Mahindra deepen EV cooperation 
Updated 40 min 46 sec ago

India In-Focus — Shares rise; India buys discounted Venezuelan petcoke; Volkswagen, Mahindra deepen EV cooperation 

India In-Focus — Shares rise; India buys discounted Venezuelan petcoke; Volkswagen, Mahindra deepen EV cooperation 

RIYADH: Indian shares traded higher on Tuesday, with the NSE Nifty 50 index trading above 17,800 for the first time since April 8, helped by softening consumer inflation that eased for a third straight month in July.

The NSE Nifty 50 index was up 0.7 percent at 17,827.25, as of 0500 GMT, while the S&P BSE Sensex was 0.7 percent higher at 59,888.24. Indian markets were closed on Monday for a holiday.

India’s consumer inflation dipped to 6.71 percent in July, aided by a slower increase in food and fuel prices and adding to expectations that the central bank may rein in the pace of its policy rate hikes from next month.

Auto stocks were up, and the Nifty Auto index hit a record high with its 1.8 percent gain.

Shares of Hero MotoCorp. rose as much as 3 percent after strong June-quarter results.

Life Insurance Corporation of India rose 2.5 percent after the country’s biggest insurer posted a 20 percent jump in June-quarter premium income on Friday.

India buys discounted Venezuelan petcoke to replace coal

Indian companies are importing significant volumes of petroleum coke from Venezuela for the first time, trade sources and shipping data showed.

India’s growing appetite for Venezuela’s petcoke – a byproduct from oil upgrading and an alternative to coal — is being driven by a scramble for inexpensive fuel to power industries as global coal prices have surged.

This could boost cash flow for the South American producer, where state and private companies have increased exports of petrochemicals and oil byproducts, and the more competitively-priced Venezuelan supplies could displace cargoes from traditional suppliers.

Indian cement companies imported at least four cargoes carrying 160,000 tons of petroleum coke from April to June, according to three trade sources, Refinitiv ship-tracking data and Venezuelan shipping schedules.

Another 50,000-ton cargo is expected to reach the port of Mangalore on India’s southwestern coast in the coming days while a 30,000-ton shipment is scheduled to depart later in August, the data showed.

Volkswagen, Mahindra deepen electric vehicle component cooperation

Volkswagen and Mahindra & Mahindra on Monday expanded their cooperation and signed a term sheet under which the German carmaker will supply electric components to its Indian peer.

The agreement covers components of Volkswagen’s open platform for electric vehicles, called MEB, to be supplied to Mahindra’s new electric platform INGLO, the companies said.

The INGLO platform, which will power all of Mahindra’s EVs, offers options ranging from 60-80 kilowatt-hour battery capacity and fast-charging of up to 80 percent in less than 30 minutes, Mahindra said, without specifying the range of the EVs.

The cooperation aims for a volume of more than 1 million vehicles by 2030 and includes the equipment of five electric sports utility vehicles based on INGLO, the companies said.

“The partnership not only demonstrates that our platform business is highly competitive, but also that the MEB is well on track to become one of the leading open platforms for e-mobility,” Volkswagen management board member Thomas Schmall said.

(With input from Reuters) 


KPMG joins Saudi Arabia’s Digital Cooperation Organization as observer

KPMG joins Saudi Arabia’s Digital Cooperation Organization as observer
Updated 50 min 14 sec ago

KPMG joins Saudi Arabia’s Digital Cooperation Organization as observer

KPMG joins Saudi Arabia’s Digital Cooperation Organization as observer

RIYADH: KPMG has become the first professional services organization to join Saudi Arabia’s Digital Cooperation Organization as an official observer.

DCO is an intergovernmental organization established to enable digital prosperity. In a tweet, DCO wrote that KPMG will work together with the organization to inclusive digital economy growth and ensure digital prosperity for all.

A report published in ITP noted that KPMG’s association with DCO will involve operations in digital taxation, cross-border data flows, digital transformation and e-governance.

“KPMG is the first professional services observer of the DCO, with international expertise and a vital knowledge partner as we continue our mission to enable digital prosperity for all,” said Hassan Nasser, DCO vice president of international affairs.