Retail operator Almrakez posts higher profit despite fire outbreak losses

Retail operator Almrakez posts higher profit despite fire outbreak losses
The Saudi retail operator revenue grew by 10.2 percent year-over-year to book SR563 million. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 17 August 2022

Retail operator Almrakez posts higher profit despite fire outbreak losses

Retail operator Almrakez posts higher profit despite fire outbreak losses

RIYADH: Arabian Centres Co. announced a higher second-quarter profit of SR128 million ($34 million), despite incurring an impairment loss on investment properties following the partial fire at Mall of Dhahran.

The impairment loss on investment properties reached SR25 million, the company which trades in the name of Almarkez said in a bourse filing.

The Saudi retail operator revenue grew by 10.2 percent year-over-year to book SR563 million, primarily due to an increase in net rental earnings.


Goldman cuts 2023 oil price forecast due to weakening demand outlook

Goldman cuts 2023 oil price forecast due to weakening demand outlook
Updated 15 sec ago

Goldman cuts 2023 oil price forecast due to weakening demand outlook

Goldman cuts 2023 oil price forecast due to weakening demand outlook

RIYADH: Goldman Sachs on Tuesday cut its 2023 oil price forecast due to expectations of weaker demand and a stronger US dollar, but said the ongoing global supply disappointments only reinforced its long-term bullish outlook.

Goldman’s commodities research division lowered the forecast for next year by $17.5 per barrel on average, even as it saw a seasonally adjusted global oil market deficit in the fourth quarter of 2022 and in 2023.

It revised its oil price forecast lower by $19 per barrel on average for the period stretching from the fourth quarter of 2022 to the fourth quarter of 2023 and sees global oil demand growing in 2023 by 2.0 million barrels per day at current prices, versus a previous forecast of 2.5 million bpd, according to a research note issued by the investment bank.

“Even with a cautious growth outlook ... the oil market remains critically tight, with still near-record low inventories and OPEC spare capacity and with supply soon set to turn supportive once again between the end of the US Strategic Petroleum Reserve sale and the expected decline in Russian production later this year,” the note said.

The short-term path for oil prices is likely to remain volatile, Goldman said, adding that a sharply appreciating dollar and lower demand expectations will continue to put downward pressure on oil for the rest of this year. 

“While it may be surprising that oil is pricing such low growth expectations, this reflects the outsized exodus of investors, forced away by the extreme price volatility this spring,” it said.

It would take an economic hard landing and a contraction in global gross domestic product growth to justify sustained lower prices, the note said.

Oil prices, which touched a nine-month low on Monday, were up more than 2 percent on the back of supply curbs in the US Gulf of Mexico due to Hurricane Ian and a slightly weaker dollar.

Goldman does not expect the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to increase its production quotas this year and sees the oil exporting group stabilizing output near current levels through 2023.


Third Jordan-Gulf Economic Forum begins in Amman

Third Jordan-Gulf Economic Forum begins in Amman
Updated 28 September 2022

Third Jordan-Gulf Economic Forum begins in Amman

Third Jordan-Gulf Economic Forum begins in Amman
  • Jordanian minister said value of trade between his country and Gulf Cooperation Council member states reached $6.6 billion in 2021

AMMAN: The third session of the Jordan-Gulf Cooperation Council Economic Forum began in Amman on Tuesday. It brings together officials and business representatives from Jordan and GCC member states to discuss opportunities for the expansion and development of economic relations, the Jordan News Agency reported.

The forum, which is taking place under the title New Horizons for Economic and Investment Cooperation, aims to advance the strategic objectives and interests of all participating nations, according to the Jordanian Ministry of Industry, Trade and Supply.

The delegates at the two-day event include businessmen, investors, the heads of trade federations and chambers of commerce, and representatives of Gulf and Jordanian government stakeholders, according to the ministry.

In his opening remarks, Youssef Shamali, the Jordanian minister of industry, trade and supply, said that the value of trade between his country and GCC member nations reached $6.6 billion in 2021. Jordanian exports to the GCC were worth $1.7 billion of that total, while Jordan’s imports accounted for $4.9 billion.

The minister added that Gulf nations are responsible for the most significant foreign investments in Jordan, and capital from the region has benefited the nation’s economy and created jobs for the Jordanian people.

He added that if Arab nations were to unite to form a powerful economic bloc, it would allow them to boost exports, increase production, create new job opportunities for young people, and achieve greater integration into the global economy.
 


Oil up $2 per barrel from multi-month low

Oil up $2 per barrel from multi-month low
Updated 27 September 2022

Oil up $2 per barrel from multi-month low

Oil up $2 per barrel from multi-month low

NEW YORK: Oil rose by $2 a barrel on Tuesday from a nine-month low a day earlier, supported by supply curbs in the US Gulf of Mexico ahead of Hurricane Ian and a slight softening in the US dollar.
Prices also drew support from analyst expectations of possible supply cuts from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, which meets to set policy on Oct. 5.
Brent crude was up $2.35, or 2.8 percent, to $86.41 a barrel at 10:52 a.m. EDT (1452 GMT). On Monday it fell as low as $83.65, the lowest since January. US West Texas Intermediate  crude was up $2.04, or 2.7 percent, at $78.74.
Crude soared after Russia invaded Ukraine in February, with Brent coming close to its all-time high of $147 in March. Recently, worries about recession, high interest rates and dollar strength have weighed.
“Oil is currently under the influence of financial forces,” said Tamas Varga of oil broker PVM. “In the meantime, relief rallies, like the one this morning caused by Hurricane Ian in the US Gulf, are viewed as temporary phenomena.”
The dollar edged back from a 20-year high, which also supported oil. A strong dollar makes crude more expensive for buyers using other currencies.
Supply cuts also lent support. BP and Chevron said on Monday they had shut production at offshore platforms in the Gulf of Mexico as Hurricane Ian approached.
The outages may only provide a momentary reprieve for oil prices, Jim Ritterbusch, of Ritterbusch and Associates, said in a note.
“Outages are apt to prove brief,” Ritterbusch said, adding that the Gulf of Mexico represents “only about 15 percent of total US production amid this shale age” so the effect “is apt to be minimal.”
The oil price drop has raised speculation that OPEC+ could intervene. Iraq’s oil minister on Monday said the group was monitoring prices and did not want a sharp increase or a collapse.


Moody’s assigns stable outlook to PIF-owned firm’s EMTN program

Moody’s assigns stable outlook to PIF-owned firm’s EMTN program
Updated 27 September 2022

Moody’s assigns stable outlook to PIF-owned firm’s EMTN program

Moody’s assigns stable outlook to PIF-owned firm’s EMTN program

RIYADH: Global rating agency Moody’s has assigned the Public Investment Fund-owned GACI First Investment Co.’s EMTN program  a (P) A1 rating.

The euro medium-term note program has been established under the special purpose company incorporated in the Cayman Islands.

The firm has been assigned a stable outlook in line with the stable outlook on existing ratings of PIF.

The rating decision reflects Moody’s view that note holders will effectively be exposed to PIF’s senior unsecured credit risk.

In February, Moody’s Investors Service assigned an A1 long-term issuer rating to the PIF. As one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds, PIF is one of the main vehicles to grow the Kingdom’s non-oil economy and reduce its reliance on the hydrocarbon sector.


UAE In-Focus — Hospitality market to expand by 25% by 2030; Dubai to announce hydrogen strategy soon

UAE In-Focus —  Hospitality market to expand by 25% by 2030; Dubai to announce hydrogen strategy soon
Updated 27 September 2022

UAE In-Focus — Hospitality market to expand by 25% by 2030; Dubai to announce hydrogen strategy soon

UAE In-Focus —  Hospitality market to expand by 25% by 2030; Dubai to announce hydrogen strategy soon

DUBAI: The UAE’s hospitality market is set to expand by 25 percent by 2030, with a further 48,000 rooms adding to the nation’s extensive 200,000 key portfolio, according to a study conducted by Knight Frank.

The global property consultancy said in its report that Dubai will account for the lion’s share of these new rooms, with 76 percent coming to the emirate, which already boasts more than 130,000 rooms.

“The emirate has cemented its status as a city with universal appeal, in large part to the world-leading government response to the pandemic and some of the world’s most visited and incredible attractions,” Faisal Durrani, partner and head of Middle East Research at Knight Frank said.

It is estimated that the hotel room supply will cost approximately 117.5 billion dirhams ($32 billion).

Dubai develops hydrogen strategy

Dubai will soon unveil its green hydrogen strategy, MEED reported quoting the managing director of the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority as saying.

Saeed Mohammed Al-Tayer made the revelation at a press conference held to announce the World Green Economy Summit on Sept. 28-29.

Rental market

The Dubai Land Department has signed a memorandum of understanding with Dubai Chambers to enhance the emirate’s rental market’s investment environment, according to Dubai Media Office.

As a result of the MoU, Dubai Chambers will be able to offer real estate and office space to business councils and groups.

It will also facilitate market research and joint training workshops related to the rental sector in Dubai.

In a statement, Abdul Aziz Al-Ghurair, chairman of Dubai Chambers, said the partnership complements Dubai Chambers’ 2022-2024 strategy and the ongoing efforts to boost confidence in the real estate sector, which remains a key contributor to the emirate’s economy.

A constructive dialogue between the public and private sectors is essential to Dubai’s sustainable economic growth and development, he said.