Saudi Arabia issues over 36,000 certificates of origin in August

The initiative is seen as a part of the ministry’s efforts to boost exports across various sectors. File
The initiative is seen as a part of the ministry’s efforts to boost exports across various sectors. File
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Updated 11 September 2023
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Saudi Arabia issues over 36,000 certificates of origin in August

Saudi Arabia issues over 36,000 certificates of origin in August

RIYADH: In a move to bolster the export sector, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources issued 36,293 certificates of origin in the month of August, up from 34,926 in July, according to the ministry’s monthly bulletin.

The initiative is seen as a part of the ministry’s efforts to boost exports across various sectors.

Certificates of origin serve as a pivotal document in international trade, validating that the exported goods are of a national origin or have met the criteria to be deemed so.   

The latest data reveals this service is not limited to large corporations or industrial conglomerates but encompasses a broad array of economic actors, including but not limited to farmers, fishermen, individual entrepreneurs, and local craftsmen.

Furthermore, the ministry’s issuance system offers four distinct models of the certificate of origin, catering to a wide range of export scenarios.   

The models include a specific version for products being exported to Gulf Cooperation Council countries and another for goods headed to other Arab countries.   

A preferential standard model is also available for GCC exports to countries and economic blocs with which free trade agreements are in place.

For countries that do not offer preferential treatment, a certificate in both English and Arabic languages is also provided by the ministry.


Egypt’s foreign debt increases by $3.5bn, official figures show 

Egypt’s foreign debt increases by $3.5bn, official figures show 
Updated 7 sec ago
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Egypt’s foreign debt increases by $3.5bn, official figures show 

Egypt’s foreign debt increases by $3.5bn, official figures show 

RIYADH: Egypt’s foreign debt increased by $3.5 billion in the fourth quarter of 2023, reaching a total of $168 billion, as reported by the nation’s planning ministry.  

This marks a climb from the $164.5 billion recorded at the end of September, representing 42.4 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product. Notably, 81 percent of this debt is categorized as long-term. 

This uptick in foreign borrowing is part of a broader trend over the last decade, during which Egypt has significantly increased its external debt, investing heavily in state-driven projects.  

This financial strategy was underscored last month by an $8 billion economic support package secured from the International Monetary Fund. 

Amid these monetary maneuvers, Egypt’s Finance Minister Mohamed Maait recently projected that the country’s GDP would grow by 2.8 percent in the fiscal year ending in June 2024, with expectations of an acceleration to 4.2 percent in the following year.  

These figures are closely aligned with the IMF’s more conservative forecast of 3 percent GDP growth for the calendar year 2024, indicating optimism about Egypt’s economic trajectory despite its growing debt burden. 

Earlier in April, Maait highlighted that despite the harsh impacts of global and regional economic crises, Egypt has seen financial indicators surpass budget estimates and targets over the past nine months of the fiscal year 2023-2024.  

The minister noted that this success reflects the international recognition of the North African country’s economy for achieving better-than-expected performance metrics.   

Further emphasizing the economic strategies, Maait pointed out the significant improvements in non-tax revenues, which increased by 122.9 percent, and tax revenues, which surpassed 1 trillion Egyptian pounds ($20.6 billion), marking a growth of 41.2 percent annually.    

He noted these gains were achieved without imposing new burdens on citizens or investors, thanks to expanded mechanization intended to broaden the tax base and integrate the informal economy into the formal sector.    

Maait pointed out that the country’s ongoing effort to boost its economy is evident in the Ministry of Finance’s dialogues with over 2,000 investment institutions annually.    

The ministry’s Investor Relations Unit plays a crucial role in these engagements, maintaining open dialogue throughout the year and issuing monthly performance data.  

These documents provide foreign investors with precise, up-to-date economic data, including details about debt levels, deficits, and primary surpluses, the state-owned newspaper reported.   

They also offer a simplified guide on the various incentives, including tax advantages available to investors, aiming to alleviate any concerns and accurately address potential economic risks.   

Meanwhile, data released earlier this month by Egypt’s Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics showed a slowdown in the country’s urban consumer price inflation rate to 33.1 percent in March from 36 percent in February.   

Additionally, month-on-month prices rose by 10 percent in the third month of 2024, down from an 11.4 percent increase in the previous period.  

This development follows the central bank’s announcement in early March of a 600 basis points hike in interest rates at an unscheduled meeting, along with a shift to an inflation-targeting regime, allowing the exchange rate to be determined by market forces.  


NEOM subsidiary Topian boosts Saudi food security drive with new Tadco partnership 

NEOM subsidiary Topian boosts Saudi food security drive with new Tadco partnership 
Updated 20 min 50 sec ago
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NEOM subsidiary Topian boosts Saudi food security drive with new Tadco partnership 

NEOM subsidiary Topian boosts Saudi food security drive with new Tadco partnership 

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s food security drive is set to receive a boost as NEOM subsidiary Topian has partnered with Tabuk Agricultural Development Co., also known as Tadco, to innovate fruit and vegetable production. 

A memorandum of understanding aimed at leveraging advanced agricultural technologies and practices to enhance domestic food production was signed. The agreement includes setting up a hydroponic greenhouse facility at the company’s site in Tabuk, located in northwestern Saudi Arabia. 

Hydroponics is the method of cultivating plants without soil and utilizing minimal water resources. 

Hydroponic gardens, designed for space efficiency, can grow fruits, vegetables, and flowers in half the time of traditional agriculture, while using 90 percent less water. This will support the Kingdom’s efforts toward sustainable food production practices. 

Under the terms of the MoU, Topian will bring its expertise to the table, handling key responsibilities including the design, installation, and operation of the hydroponic greenhouse facility.  

Additionally, the NEOM subsidiary will oversee all aspects of greenhouse management, from production planning to workforce training and customer relations, as stated in a release on the Saudi Stock Exchange. 


Saudi Arabia issues over 37k certificates of origin in March

Saudi Arabia issues over 37k certificates of origin in March
Updated 48 min 32 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia issues over 37k certificates of origin in March

Saudi Arabia issues over 37k certificates of origin in March

RIYADH: Saudi exporters were issued 37,188 certificates of origin in March by the Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources, marking an annual increase of 0.5 percent.

The document confirms that the products are of national origin or have acquired that status. It is part of the ministry’s effort to support and facilitate the service for exporters in various sectors.

This initiative is part of the Kingdom’s goal under the Vision 2030 economic transformation plan to increase the share of non-oil exports to Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product from 16 percent to 50 percent by the decade’s end.

 

 


Spanish investments in Saudi Arabia exceed $3bn, boosting bilateral relations and vital sectors

Spanish investments in Saudi Arabia exceed $3bn, boosting bilateral relations and vital sectors
Updated 53 min 1 sec ago
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Spanish investments in Saudi Arabia exceed $3bn, boosting bilateral relations and vital sectors

Spanish investments in Saudi Arabia exceed $3bn, boosting bilateral relations and vital sectors

RIYADH: Spanish investments in Saudi Arabia have surpassed $3 billion in the last 10 years, with bilateral relations contributing to the development of vital sectors, according to a top official.

The Kingdom’s Minister of Municipal, Rural Affairs, and Housing, Majed Al-Hogail, witnessed the start of the Saudi-Spanish Business Forum on April 17, which was organized by the Council of Saudi Chambers and the Saudi-Spanish Business Council.

Al-Hogail highlighted in his opening address that the bilateral relations between the Kingdom and the European country over the last 70 years have resulted in favorable outcomes, fostering development, investment, and advancements in various sectors such as construction, civil engineering, finance, energy, and water desalination, as reported by the Saudi Press Agency.

He explained that bilateral investments are booming, with Spanish finding into the Kingdom surpassing $3 billion in the last decade, 40 percent of which is in real estate.

The forum, held in Madrid, highlighted Saudi-Spanish financial opportunities and enhancing partnerships in areas of construction technologies, smart cities, and urban planning. 

The minister underscored the forum’s role in exploring investment prospects and enhancing cooperation and effective partnerships, particularly in municipal and housing sectors.

He emphasized that Saudi Arabia and Spain are experiencing rapid developmental advancements, making investment and trade exchanges increasingly attractive.

Al-Hogail stressed the importance of ongoing cooperation and expertise exchange in this crucial sector, stating that the Kingdom welcomes collaboration with successful international partners and leveraging their expertise.

He also announced the signing of a real estate development agreement with a Spanish development company to implement residential units within integrated communities and suburbs, aiming to raise the homeownership rate to 70 percent by 2030. 

He expressed the ministry’s eagerness to strengthen partnerships with developers and investors in the construction, roads, recycling, engineering, and consulting sectors.

Following the forum, attended by Princess Haifa bint Abdulaziz Al-Mogrin, the ambassador to Spain, and Khalid Al-Hogail, president of the Saudi-Spanish Business Council, the minister convened with Teresa Ribera, Spain’s deputy prime minister and minister of ecological transition and demographic challenge.

They discussed cooperation in urban development, urbanization, and the utilization of artificial intelligence technology in sustainable  city building, as reported by SPA.

Al-Hogail highlighted Saudi Arabia’s efforts to improve standards in municipal and housing undertakings, including the “Bahja” project, which aims to enhance the quality of life in Saudi cities, and the “Green Suburbs” initiative, which strives to plant more than 1.3 million trees in 50 residential areas.

Al-Hogail also met with the President of the Spanish Association of Infrastructure Contractors and Concessionaires, Julian Nunez, to review prominent investment opportunities in the Saudi real estate sector.

During a three-day visit prior to the forum, minister Al-Hogail met with executives from leading Spanish companies to explore collaboration opportunities.   

The tour is part of the Kingdom’s broader initiative to foster international partnerships that enhance its urban and infrastructure capabilities, SPA reported.


Oil Updates – crude stabilizes after sharp drop on demand concerns, easing of Middle East tension

Oil Updates – crude stabilizes after sharp drop on demand concerns, easing of Middle East tension
Updated 18 April 2024
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Oil Updates – crude stabilizes after sharp drop on demand concerns, easing of Middle East tension

Oil Updates – crude stabilizes after sharp drop on demand concerns, easing of Middle East tension

NEW DELHI: Oil prices were little changed after a 3 percent drop in the previous session as the market remains concerned about demand this year and on signs that a wider conflict in the key Middle East producing region could be avoided, according to Reuters.

Brent futures were up 13 cents, or 0.15 percent, at $87.42 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate crude futures traded 6 cents higher, up 0.07 percent, at $82.75 a barrel at 9:36 a.m. Saudi time. 

The two benchmarks slid 3 percent in the previous session on signs that fuel demand this year is lower than expected amid flagging economic growth in China and as oil inventories in the US, the world’s biggest crude consumer, rose.

Analysts at JP Morgan highlighted in a note late on Tuesday that worldwide oil consumption so far in April has been 200,000 barrels per day below its forecast, averaging 101 million bpd. From the start of the year, demand has risen by 1.7 million bpd, down from its forecast in November of 2 million bpd.

At the same time, investors are discounting the chance that Israel will strongly retaliate against Iran’s missile and drone attack on April 13, which was prompted by Israel’s alleged killing of Iranian military leaders at a Syrian diplomatic site on April 1.

Iran is the third-largest producer in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, according to Reuters data, and an easing of its conflict with Israel would reduce the potential for supply disruptions in the Middle East.

“Brent is now back to levels before the April 1 attack on the Iranian consulate, suggesting that the latest bout of risk premium from heightened Israel-Iran tensions has eroded,” said Vandana Hari, founder of oil market analysis provider Vanda Insights.

Surging US crude inventories also kept a lid on prices. Oil inventories rose by 2.7 million barrels to 460 million barrels in the week ending April 12, the Energy Information Administration said, nearly double analysts’ expectations in a Reuters poll for a 1.4 million-barrel build.

Stockpiles built as refinery utilization declined at a time when processing typically rises ahead of summer driving demand in the US

Gasoline stocks fell by 1.2 million barrels in the week to 227.4 million barrels, the EIA said.

Distillate stockpiles, which include diesel and heating oil, fell by 2.8 million barrels to 115 million barrels, versus expectations for a 300,000-barrel drop, the EIA data showed.

“A bearish EIA inventory report appears to have been the perfect opportunity for investors to lock in profits after the recent gains,” Daniel Hynes, the senior commodity strategist at ANZ, said in a note on Thursday.