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The Lootah Group is one of the oldest merchant families in the UAE and joins a string of investors that have recently signed agreements in Somalia and its neighbouring countries. Despite a brutal civil war between Islamic insurgents and Ethiopian military forces, some areas of the fractured state remain relatively sheltered and are seen as ‘virgin territories’ ripe for exploration and investment.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Issue 841 - 21 November 2008

MBR: Busy as usual

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Dubai Ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum (MBR) has had his usual round of meetings in the first half of November

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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Qatar-headquartered Al-Khalij Commercial Bank, which offers Islamic and conventional banking services, has bought the French branch of Lebanon's Banque Libanaise pour le Commerce (BLC). In 2007, Al-Khalij announced it was in advanced negotiations to buy the assets of BLC bank in the UAE, which has branches in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ras Al-Khaimah and Sharjah. The final deal however, has been extended to include all of the bank's operations, including its business in Paris. The value of the deal has not been revealed. The

United Arab Emirates (UAE) | Qatar
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According to the latest Moody’s Investors Service report, Islamic finance is enjoying soaring demand, but requires more sophistication. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank chief executive Tirad Mahmoud has said that Islamic finance will continue to grow despite the current global financial crisis. Jeddah-based Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) has announced plans to establish an Islamic bank. The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) has agreed to lend Tunisia a $195m to build two gas turbines.

United Arab Emirates (UAE) | Saudi Arabia | Tunisia
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An increasingly assertive Abu Dhabi is looking to draw in international partners and assets, to consolidate its traditional position as the UAE’s federal capital and engineering hub, and to emerge as the Gulf city that uses its wealth to plan development with respect for social traditions and environmental constraints while emerging as a significant new international player. GSN examines the oil-rich emirate’s growth strategy and attitudes towards spending money – at home and on less wealthy emirates.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Free

International Petroleum Investment Company chairman and serial entrepreneur Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan has again hit the headlines with his investment of some £3.5bn ($5.5bn) in Barclays Bank

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Issue 840 - 07 November 2008

France looks to export sales

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The UAE is traditionally a critical partner for the French defence aerospace industry. In a noteworthy step, the French Armée de l’Air (ALA – air force) deployed three of Dassault Aviation’s Mirage 2000-5F combat aircraft and a Boeing C-135FR aerial tanker/transport aircraft to the UAE as part of Paris’ plans to establish a permanent presence in the emirates.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Subscriber

Addax Dubai office to tap Middle East market. Crescent Petroleum/Dana Gas launch ‘City’ projects.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Issue 840 - 07 November 2008

UAE banks may be forced to consolidate

Subscriber

Despite good asset quality, profitability, and capital positions, the strained liquidity positions are clearly visible,JP Morgan Securities said of the outlook for UAE banks in a report published on 29 October (visit the Subscriber Reference Library). Analysing the financials of Emirates-National Bank of Dubai (ENBD), National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD)

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Subscriber

While the Abu Dhabi economy diversifies, with an expanded private sector role, the traditionally critical role of government remains centre stage when it comes to development strategy and the senior emirate’s undisguised ambition to present itself as a model for environmentally aware development in the Middle East. The Urban Structure Framework Plan – called Plan Abu Dhabi 2030 – is spectacularly ambitious, and also a significant turning point in its attempt to shift the balance of development away from the present coastal waterfront.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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Adnoc signs E&P agreement with Shell; Bahrain invites IOCs for deep onshore gas exploration and signs a memorandum of understanding with Iran for gas supply. Iran state company offers 14 fields for development

Iran | United Arab Emirates (UAE) | Bahrain
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New structures are required, and participating bank numbers may be reduced, but the GCC’s syndicated loan market should hit its stride again in 2009, according to project financiers canvassed by GSN.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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Gulf financial institutions have been exposed to US defaults, but on a relatively small scale. Worst-affected have been Dubai and Bahrain, with Qatar and Saudi Arabia apparently the least-affected. Foreign banks have slowed down their lending dramatically and local banks are having their international credit lines pulled, causing them to freeze inter-bank lending.

Saudi Arabia | United Arab Emirates (UAE) | Qatar
Issue 839 - 25 October 2008

Dubai Inc confronts the crunch

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Dubai has been exceptionally aggressive in opening up to foreign investment. With little oil wealth, and now evidently in a lot of debt, it has developed real estate, tourism and financial services to drive the boom. Observers have long noted this model is vulnerable to anything that might cause foreign investors to run away, perhaps a terrorist attack.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Issue 839 - 25 October 2008

CORPORATE WATCH

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Dubai Investments (DI), a Dubai Financial Market-listed investment vehicle in which the government has an 11% stake, has acquired a 5% stake in …. Geneva and Riyadh-based investment bank Swicorp has agreed to provide funding to a privately-owned Algerian oil products marketer, Petroser, through its $250m private equity vehicle Intaj Capital.

Saudi Arabia | United Arab Emirates (UAE)