Saudi Arabia, Egypt sign $7.7bn investment deals: Minister

Saudi Arabia, Egypt sign $7.7bn investment deals: Minister
Saudi Arabia's investment ministry said the deal highlights the common goals between the Kingdom and Egypt (@MISA)
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Updated 22 June 2022

Saudi Arabia, Egypt sign $7.7bn investment deals: Minister

Saudi Arabia, Egypt sign $7.7bn investment deals: Minister

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and Egypt have signed 14 investment deals worth $7.7 billion, the Saudi Minister of Trade, Majid Al-Qasabi announced.

The two countries have also agreed three Memorandums of Understanding, Al-Qasabi revealed during a meeting of the Egyptian-Saudi Business Council.

The deals include a cooperation agreement to build Egypt Center for Petroleum and Petroleum Products Storage, between the Saudi Ajlan & Bros Holding Co. and the Egyptian Arab Supply Chain Group Co., at a value of SR12.25 billion ($3.26 billion).

A spokesperson for Ajlan & Bros Holding told Al-Arabiya the firm signed six agreements with the Egyptian side, worth $5.5 billion, in the fields of tourism, food and ports.

The volume of Saudi companies’ investments in Egypt is $30 billion, while 574 Egyptian companies operate in the Kingdom with a capital of $1.3 billion, Al-Qasabi said.

The visit of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to Egypt continues on Tuesday June 21, as part of his tour that will also include Jordan and Turkey.

The volume of trade exchange between both countries hit its highest value in history, at about SR54 billion in 2021, with an 87 percent jump compared to the year 2020, the Federation of Saudi Chambers said.

 

 

Saudi Arabia and Egypt have more than 160 bilateral agreements that support the growth of economic relations, the Federation report showed, according to the Saudi Press Agency.

Saudi exports to the Egyptian market in 2021 amounted to SR38.6 billion and Egyptian imports to the Saudi market SR15.7 billion, with a record growth of 60 percent.

Saudi investments in Egypt amounted to over SR120 billion, through more than 6,800 Saudi companies. These investments are mainly in industry, construction, tourism, finance, services, agriculture, communications and information technology.

Egyptian investments in the Kingdom reached $5 billion through over 802 Egyptian companies, focusing on industry, construction, communications, information technology, wholesale and retail trade, and technical, scientific and professional services.


Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa

Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa
Updated 16 sec ago

Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa

Uber appoints regional general manager for Middle East and Africa

RIYADH: Uber has appointed Frans Hiemstra as the new regional general manager for the Middle East and Africa region.

Based in Dubai, Frans will hold the responsibility to lead the next phase of growth for Uber’s ride-sharing business across the region, which spans 15 countries, according to a statement.

He will aid in identifying areas of growth, lay down regional priorities, and drive operational excellence to fuel the Uber business, it added. 

Having been with Uber since 2015, most recently Hiemstra was the general manager of the Sub-Saharan Africa region. 

“I’m honored to be tasked with leading the Middle East & Africa region as we focus our efforts on growing our shared mobility business, committing to our sustainability goals, and creating more earnings opportunities for drivers and couriers who use the Uber app,” Hiemstra said.


UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth

UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth
Updated 59 min 14 sec ago

UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth

UAE In-Focus: Peninsula acquires 17 leased warehouse buildings; Dubai sees rental growth

DUBAI: Peninsula Real Estate Management Limited has acquired 17 leased warehouse buildings at the AL MARKAZ Industrial Development from Waha Capital, through its wholly owned subsidiary, Waha Land, for 555 million dirhams ($151 million), according to a statement.

AL MARKAZ is a mixed-use industrial development developed by Waha Land in Al Dhafra, 35 km west of Abu Dhabi. It features Grade “A” industrial and logistic facilities and first-class infrastructure, the statement said.

Under the terms of the agreement, the two parties are expected to close the all-cash deal by the end of 2022.

Peninsula CEO James Gallon said in a statement: “This acquisition is one of a number of transactions that Peninsula will be announcing in the months ahead, as we continue to build a portfolio with diversified and highly visible cash flows.”

Along with the five plots that make up 362,000 sq. m, Peninsula has also agreed to purchase an additional 136,000 sq. m of industrial properties currently under development by Waha Land, with leasing expected to begin in the third quarter of 2023 after construction is completed.

Waha Land will continue to develop its remaining land bank assets following the sale. AL MARKAZ’s land and built assets will also continue to be developed, leased, and monetized through Waha Land’s comprehensive asset development and management capabilities.

Aleph Hospitality enters Congo and creates job opportunities

Dubai-based Aleph Hospitality signed a management contract with Congo-based Sokerico Group to operate Kertel Suites in Kinshasa, according to a statement.

The boutique property is set to open in the first quarter of 2023, setting a new benchmark for the hospitality sector in Kinshasa. Across eight African countries, Aleph Hospitality now operates 12 properties, the statement said.

Founder and Managing Director of Aleph Hospitality, Bani Haddad, said: “It’s an interesting time to secure a presence in the heart of Africa, as the Democratic Republic of the Congo is currently investing in the hospitality sector, restoring historical sites and strengthening sustainability within their ecosystem.”

According to Ritesh Hemnani and Kenny Rawtani, owners of Sokerico Group and developers of the project, Kertel Suites will create vast employment opportunities for Congolese residents as part of Aleph’s rapidly growing hospitality group.

Dubai’s rental growth, highest level since May 2014: CBRE 

CBRE’s August 2022 Dubai Residential Market Snapshot shows that Dubai’s residential market recorded 6,524 transactions in July 2022, up 58 percent.

Off-plan sales increased by 59 percent and secondary market sales by 57.1 percent during this period. While the total volume of transactions reached 45,793, a record high since 2009, the report said.

In the year to July 2022, the average price increased by 9.9 percent. During this period, average apartment prices increased by 8.7 percent and average villa prices increased by 17.8 percent, the report added.

In July 2022, the average apartment price in Dubai was 1,114 dirhams ($303) per square foot, while the average villa price was 1,335 dirhams per square foot.

In comparison to late 2014 highs, these rates per square foot are 25.1 percent and 7.6 percent lower, respectively.


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 16 August 2022

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 16 August 2022

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 16 August 2022

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.