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THE ECONOMY - BUSINESS

Dubai clears Dh2.4bn debt

Posted on 27/11/2008

Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group yesterday said it has repaid Dh2.4 billion of maturing bonds and loans this month, in a move economists say will reassure investors about Dubai's ability to meet its debt commitments. DHCOG, the holding company of Dubai Holding's real estate, tourism, infrastructure and telecommunications subsidiaries, said it settled a Dh1bn Eurobond after also repaying Dh1.4bn in bank loans earlier this month. The money was originally raised in January 2007 and the ...  >>MORE

Pearl Dubai awards Dh8.85 billion construction contract to Al Habtoor-Leighton Group

Posted on 27/11/2008

Pearl Dubai FZ LLC, one of the UAE's leading real estate developers, has awarded an Dh8.85 billion (US$2.4 billion) main contract for the construction of its iconic Dubai Pearl project, to the Al Habtoor- Leighton Group, the UAE's largest construction group. The deal is the largest single contract of its kind in the region and arguably one of the largest in the world for a real estate project. Construction is due to begin in January 2009. With a built up area of more than 15 million square ...  >>MORE

Dubai can meet all its debt obligations, says Mohammed Alabbar

Posted on 25/11/2008

Mohammed Alabbar, Chairman of the Advisory Council, Government of Dubai and Chairman of Emaar Properties, put rest to speculation about Dubai's debt obligations by saying that the Government of Dubai is fully capable of fulfilling them. He was speaking at the DIFC Forum, the second major business conference that forms part of DIFC Week, the Dubai International Financial Centre's (DIFC) prestigious annual series of business events. In his first major public address as the head of the Advisory ...  >>MORE

Amlak Finance and Tamweel to merge under UAE Real Estate Bank

Posted on 23/11/2008

The UAE Ministry of Finance has announced that it started the official procedures to merge Amlak Finance PJSC and Tamweel PJSC, two leading Sharia-compliant real estate finance providers in the UAE, under the UAE Real Estate Bank to create the largest real estate finance institution in the country under the umbrella of the Federal Government. The Sharia-compliant entity will also leverage the strengths of Amlak Finance and Tamweel. An official from ministry of finance, said: "The merger of ...  >>MORE

UAE personal loan growth likely to slow down after Dh64bn surge in H1

Posted on 23/11/2008

Strong domestic demand boosted personal loans extended by UAE banks by nearly Dh64 billion in the first half of this year but experts expect their growth to have slowed down in the second half. From Dh137.31bn at the end of 2007, the total personal loans provided by the country's 24 national banks and 28 foreign units surged to a record Dh201.65bn at the end of June, an increase of about Dh64.34bn, according to the Central Bank. The figure at the end of June includes around Dh147.63bn as ...  >>MORE

Dubai World cleared to up Mirage stake

Posted on 23/11/2008

Dubai World's intentions to increase its investment in MGM Mirage have been given a green signal, according to an official at Dubai World. However, the executive added that it won't happen in near future, "or at least until market conditions warrant such a move". Dubai World took over 9.4 per cent of MGM Mirage last year with an investment of US$6 billion (Dh22bn) and a 50 per cent interest in the US$9.1 billion City Center development, which is now under construction. Dubai World will ...  >>MORE

Dh3bn Zayed varsity deal awarded

Posted on 18/11/2008

The Al Habtoor-Murray and Roberts joint venture has been awarded a Dh3 billion contract for the design and construction of the new Zayed University campus in Abu Dhabi for Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala). The Al Habtoor Leighton Group's share is Dh1.5bn. Work on the project will commence immediately and be completed in July 2011. The project involves the design and construction of a new university campus on a plot of about 75 hectares and a built-up area of 200,000 sqm to provide ...  >>MORE

Construction machinery sector in UAE to grow despite crunch

Posted on 16/11/2008

Construction machinery industry in the UAE will continue to grow despite the global credit crisis, according to Kanoo Machinery. Senior company officials said they plan to go ahead with the pre-planned expansion programme and build two new purpose-built office, warehouse and product support facilities in Dubai's Jebel Ali Free Zone and Mussaffah, Abu Dhabi. The UAE-based Kanoo Machinery recently opened new branches in Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah to cater to the growing economic activity in the ...  >>MORE

ADX and Citi sign custody agreement

Posted on 12/11/2008

Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) and Citi have signed a custody agreement whereby Citi will provide custody of ADX-listed shares to institutional investor clients. This will encourage and facilitate further international investment in Abu Dhabi, which will lead to a broadening of the Exchange's investor base. Tom Healy, Chief Executive of ADX, welcomed the agreement and explained the benefits to the exchange of having more long-term international institutional investors, saying: "Abu Dhabi ...  >>MORE

Bahrain lands craft contract for Abu Dhabi Ship Building

Posted on 12/11/2008

Abu Dhabi Ship Building has been awarded a contract to build four landing craft for the Bahrain Naval Forces. The multi-million dollar contract was won in the face of stiff competition from international shipyards. This is the second Bahraini order for Abu Dhabi Ship Building (ADSB), the only dedicated naval shipbuilding and repair facility in the Arabian Gulf. The new contract, awarded by the Kingdom of Bahrain Defence Force, is for the construction of two 42-metre steel landing craft and ...  >>MORE

UAE Ranks 4th for Doing Business in the Arab World

Posted on 11/11/2008

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and World Bank have issued a joint report on ‘Doing Business in the Arab World 2008, and their findings has established that the UAE is ranked fourth in the Arab world and 46th globally for the ease of doing business. The joint report has also analysed the reform process-taking place in the Arab world on the improving business climate. The report has ranked nations recognising their efforts in easing tight regulatory controls, where UAE has fared ...  >>MORE

Dubai Mercantile Exchange to List Products with CME Group

Posted on 11/11/2008

CME Group, the world's largest and most diverse exchange, and the Dubai Mercantile Exchange (DME), the premier international energy futures and commodities exchange based in the Middle East, announced yesterday that DME's contracts will exclusively trade electronically on the CME Globex platform in the first quarter of 2009, subject to final DME board approval of the definitive agreement. The CME Globex platform offers virtually around the clock access to the broadest array of derivatives ...  >>MORE

Mubadala Infrastructure Partners announces first closing of regional fund

Posted on 11/11/2008

Mubadala Infrastructure Partners Ltd (MIP), a joint venture between Mubadala Development Company PJSC (Mubadala), GE and Credit Suisse announced yesterday the first closing of its regional infrastructure fund, Mubadala Infrastructure Partners ("the Fund") in the amount of US$ 300 million. MIP, as the manager of the Fund, will invest in a range of infrastructure projects and assets in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, and Turkey. The ...  >>MORE

DP World signs Algerian ports deal

Posted on 11/11/2008

The Algerian Government yesterday signed agreements, which will see DP World taking over the operation of the ports of Algiers and Djen-Djen. The agreements were signed in Algiers in the presence of the Algerian Minister of Transport, Amar Tuo and Minister of Industry and Investment Promotions Abdelhamid Temmar and Dubai World and DP World Chairman Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem and DP World Executive Vice-Chairman and Group CEO of Port and Free Zone World (P&FZ World) Jamal Majid bin Thaniah. Other ...  >>MORE

Mubadala-GE fund eyes global market

Posted on 06/11/2008

joint venture fund launched by Mubadala and General Electric (GE) will be up and running within a year with a credit line of US$50 billion (Dh183.5bn). Abu Dhabi Government-owned Mubadala and US-based GE signed an agreement to establish the 50-50 fund in New York last July. "Basically the deal is that GE and Mubadala will each invest US$4bn in a fund with up to US$50bn of borrowing capability to invest in infrastructure projects around the world," said GE Middle East and Africa General ...  >>MORE

DP World traffic rises despite crisis

Posted on 05/11/2008

At a time when the global container industry is suffering from low freight rates and a crunch in cargo volumes, DP World, the world's fourth largest marine terminal operator has reported a substantial surge of throughput at its terminals. DP World, a subsidiary of Dubai World said that throughput at its consolidated terminals increased by 16 per cent in the first nine months of 2008, compared to the same period last year. Consolidated terminals are those terminals where DP World has majority ...  >>MORE

Paulson praises UAE’s economic model: report

Posted on 30/10/2008

US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson has said that surging oil revenues present a historic opportunity for GCC countries to diversify their economies. His comments were made in an interview with the Oxford Business Group (OBG) for the ‘The Report: Abu Dhabi 2008' published by OBG. These revenues he said were helping to "shore up their economic fundamentals and make much needed investments in human capital – steps that should help avoid the up and down cycles of the past and support significant ...  >>MORE

UAE property prices increase 11-17%

Posted on 30/10/2008

Prices in the UAE property market surged in September with Dubai registering 17 per cent increase month-on-month and 11 per cent in Abu Dhabi, compared to an average of two to three per cent during the summer months, according to a new report. "Price growth is picking up again after a brief moderation during the summer. However, while prices remain on an upward spiral, rental rates in Dubai seem to be stabilising, thereby compressing rental yields. This shows we have reached a level where ...  >>MORE

Mortgage rates up, loan-to-value falls

Posted on 29/10/2008

Mortgage rates in the UAE are likely to rise further due to the liquidity strain, while the loan-to-value (LTVs) ratio is expected to further decline, a report said. HSBC's UAE Real Estate Sector Update said mortgage rates are likely to come under upward pressure given the current liquidity strain. ADCB had recently revised its mortgage rates upwards by 50bp, while Tamweel plans to increase its rates to 8.4 per cent from 7.4 per cent. Currently, the interest rates in the UAE are already ...  >>MORE

Land deals to hit Dh300bn

Posted on 29/10/2008

Land transactions in Dubai are expected to touch Dh300 billion by end of this year, says Sultan Butti bin Mijrin, Director-General of the emirate's Land Department, adding that this indicates the property sector in Dubai is not experiencing any negative impact from the international financial crisis. He also believes there will be no ill effects in the near future. Bin Mijrin told Emirates Business that the property sector was still healthy and generated business opportunities for the region ...  >>MORE

Tamweel nine-month net profit rises to Dh 573 million, up 135 per cent

Posted on 28/10/2008

Tamweel PJSC, the largest provider of real estate finance in the UAE, declared on Sunday its financial results for the third quarter of 2008. Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed bin Saqr Al Nahyan, Chairman of Tamweel, announced that the company's net profits for the first nine months of 2008 reached Dh 573 million, an increase of 135 per cent compared to Dh 244 million for the first nine months of 2007. He added, "In the face of the ongoing challenges to the stability of the global economy, we are ...  >>MORE

Fitch says UAE banks remain profitable

Posted on 27/10/2008

The operating profits of the UAE banks are expected to remain at satisfactory levels in the fourth quarter of this year, a senior executive of global rating agency Fitch Ratings said. "We expect some negative impact from worsening credit markets and volatile stock market on the UAE banking sector's operating profitability," said Yousuf Khan, associate director in Fitch Ratings' banks team. Khan said third quarter results were in line with expectations but the fourth quarter profits could take ...  >>MORE

Aldar Properties reports 137.9% growth in net profit

Posted on 27/10/2008

Aldar Properties PJSC yesterday reported a "very strong" financial performance during the first three quarters of 2008, with a 137.9% growth in net profit and a 111.9% rise in net asset value, compared to the same period last year. Net operating profit registered Dh 2,119.2 million, compared to a net operating loss of Dh 283.3 million last year. The net profit for the period was Dh 3,362.2 million, representing a growth of 137.9%. Basic earning was Dh 1.38 per share, up 68.3% from last year's ...  >>MORE

DMCC launches Dubai Cotton Centre

Posted on 20/10/2008

Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) announced yesterday the establishment of Dubai Cotton Centre (DCC), a new trading arm and a fully owned subsidiary of DMCC, which will consolidate Dubai's position as a key link in the global cotton supply chain between Central Asia particularly Uzbekistan and the cotton consuming economies in the wider Asian market. The newly established DCC also signed a framework agreement with Uzprommashimpeks (UPM), a renowned major exporter under the Uzbekistan ...  >>MORE

Emaar Properties profit rises

Posted on 20/10/2008

Emaar Properties PJSC posted revenue and net operating profits of Dh 12.520 billion (USD 3.409 billion) and Dh 5.573 billion (USD 1.517 billion), respectively, for the first nine months of 2008, supported by strong domestic revenues and profit, said a statement. The revenue is similar to the first nine months 2007 revenue of Dh 12.727 billion (USD 3.465 billion) as higher revenues from Dubai operations were set off by decreased revenue from J L Homes in the US. The net operating profit is ...  >>MORE

Consumer spending in UAE rises 18%

Posted on 19/10/2008

High inflation allied with a surge in population and income boosted the UAE's consumer spending by more than Dh43 billion in 2007 to maintain Emiratis position as the most extravagant people in the Arab World, official figures showed yesterday. Private consumption, which includes household expenditure on food, rents, education and other goods and services soared by nearly 17.7 per cent to an all-time high of Dh290.35bn last year, an increase of around Dh43.7bn over 2006 spending of Dh246.6bn, ...  >>MORE

Steel prices to fall 20-30%

Posted on 19/10/2008

The prices of steel in the UAE and the Gulf are likely to drop sharply by 20-30 per cent in the short term, impacting upon the overall inflation while lowering construction costs in the region. From today, leading Gulf producer Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) is reducing prices by 30 per cent or SR1,200 (Dh1,172) to SR2,700 per tonne bringing its cuts to a massive 43 per cent since the start of September. Earlier this month Sabic announced a cut in steel rebar products by SR720 per ...  >>MORE

UAE accounts for 50pc of GCC debt due in 2009: Merrill Lynch

Posted on 15/10/2008

The UAE accounts for 50 per cent of GCC foreign debt repayable in 2009, a study by Merrill Lynch economists said. GCC countries have an estimated US$15 billion in foreign debt (bonds and loans) that needs to be repaid over the remainder of this year and a further US$35 billion in 2009. "The majority of outstanding debt comes from the UAE at 91 per cent and 50 per cent for 2008 and 2009 respectively while Kuwait and Saudi Arabia make up the rest of the debt for 2009 (22 per cent and 10 per ...  >>MORE

J.P. Morgan takes equity stake in Dubai Mercantile Exchange

Posted on 15/10/2008

The Dubai Mercantile Exchange Limited (DME) yesterday announced that J.P. Morgan has taken an equity stake in the Exchange joining a number of other leading global financial institutions and energy trading firms, including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Vitol, Concord Energy, Casa Energy Trading, and a Shell Group company, who were announced as strategic investors in the DME in early August. DME's Board of Directors approved the issuance of an equity stake of up to 20% to strategic investors, ...  >>MORE

Non-oil sector to drive UAE GDP growth at 6% in 2009

Posted on 09/10/2008

The UAE economy will grow at a healthy pace of about six per cent in 2009 despite the global credit crunch, says a new report. This growth is mainly attributed to the good performance of the country's non-oil sector. Gross domestic product (GDP) has grown at an average annual real rate of about nine per cent since 2003. GDP per capita has increased by about 130 per cent since 2003, reaching an estimated US$57,000 (Dh209, 190) in 2008, according to figures released yesterday by investment bank ...  >>MORE

UAE can weather liquidity crisis, says Standard & Poor’s report

Posted on 09/10/2008

The UAE has the resources to ease liquidity constraints at short notice if the current cash crunch starts to bite too hard, Standard & Poor's (S&P's), a leading global credit rating agency said on Wednesday. UAE's liquidity crisis is not sparked by the global credit crunch, but driven by some country-specific factors, including speculative investor activity surrounding the dirham's peg to the dollar, a new report by S&P's said. "Other factors include rapid domestic growth in recent years, and ...  >>MORE

DFSA signs MoUs with regulators in China and Singapore

Posted on 09/10/2008

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) has entered into agreements with two of Asia's leading regulators, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). These Memoranda of Understanding, which were signed last week, commit the DFSA and the CSRC to information sharing and co-operation in the supervision of their securities markets and, in the case of MAS, which, like the DFSA is an integrated regulator, the commitment to information ...  >>MORE

Emirates Lebanon Bank confirms acquisition of the operations of BNPI

Posted on 09/10/2008

Bank of Sharjah announced yesterday that its Lebanese subsidiary, Emirates Lebanon Bank S.A.L. has received the final approval from Central Bank of Lebanon on the acquisition of the operations of the Lebanese branches of Banque Nationale de Paris Intercontinentale as at 30 September 2008. Bank of Sharjah raised earlier the share capital of Emirates Lebanon Bank S.A.L. to USD 50 million while injecting a cash contribution of capital of USD 100 million in order to boost equity to USD 150 ...  >>MORE

AMD, ATIC to create new semiconductor manufacturing company

Posted on 08/10/2008

AMD [NYSE: AMD] and the Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC) of Abu Dhabi yesterday announced the creation of a U.S.-headquartered, leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing company to address growing demand for independent, leading-edge foundry production capabilities. The new global company, to be temporarily called "The Foundry Company", will serve this need by combining advanced process technology, industry-leading manufacturing facilities and aggressive plans to expand its global ...  >>MORE

Veolia Environment, Mubadala to launch joint venture company

Posted on 08/10/2008

to build a strategic partnership in MENA region Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala) and Veolia Water yesterday signed agreements to create a joint-venture company that will focus on water production and waste water collection and treatment in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The announcement follows a decision by Abu Dhabi business development and investment company, Mubadala, and Veolia Water, the water and wastewater services subsidiary of Veolia Environment, to work ...  >>MORE

KazmunayGas, ConocoPhillips and Mubadala sign MoU for "N" block offshore Kazakhstan

Posted on 06/10/2008

JSC National Company KazMunayGas, ConocoPhillips [NYSE: COP] and Mubadala Development Company PJSC (Mubadala) announced yesterday that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to negotiate terms for the exploration and development of the "N" Block, located in offshore Kazakhstan, under a new subsoil use contract. The parties will now have until December 31 2008 to negotiate the definitive agreements for the assignment by KMG of a 49% interest in the subsoil use contract to be shared ...  >>MORE

Taqa to acquire 'green' firms

Posted on 06/10/2008

The Abu Dhabi National Energy Co (Taqa) plans to acquire multiple renewable energy firms as part of plans to make 50 per cent of its operations 'green' by 2023. "We are currently looking at two [renewable energy] firms, one European and one North American," Taqa's Chief Executive Peter Barker-Homek told Emirates Business. While declining to name the acquisition targets, Barker-Homek said that the two firms in question have been hit by the lack of ready project finance due to the global credit ...  >>MORE

Dubai World forms Dubai Natural Resources World

Posted on 06/10/2008

In response to tremendous growth opportunities in global natural resources business sector, Dubai World yesterday announced the formation of a new business unit, Dubai Natural Resources World, designed to explore new long-term investment avenues, while contributing positively towards sustainable development. Dubai Natural Resources World will drive the growth of the Group's interests across the entire natural resources value chain, including oil and gas, alternative energy, mining and ...  >>MORE

Amlak Finance Nine Months Net Profit up by 157%

Posted on 06/10/2008

Amlak Finance announced yesterday its preliminary financial results for the first nine months of 2008. At the end of September 2008, Amlak's net profit for the nine months rose to Dh444 million, an increase of 157 per cent compared to Dh 173 million for the same period of 2007. Amlak's revenue for the nine months that ended in September 2008 was posted at Dh963 million, up 112 per cent against the same period of 2007, with the company's property financing activities contributing 71 per cent of ...  >>MORE

UAE's Emaar, Saudi's Al-Shoala ink SR27bn joint venture

Posted on 05/10/2008

UAE's Emaar Properties and Saudi's Al-Shoala Group Establishment yesterday inked a SR27bn joint venture project to develop a 31 million sqm master-planned community, Rawabi Rumah, located near Riyadh. Rawabi Rumah will allocate around 60% of the master plan for residential developments including villas, town houses and apartments. Emaar, a global property developer, will share its core competencies in integrated mega-project development by creating a vibrant community featuring luxury homes ...  >>MORE

UAE’s cross-border M&A deals at US$27.4b

Posted on 28/09/2008

At a time when global financial crisis is hurting big economies of the world, the UAE managed to conclude a significant number of cross-border Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) deals worth US$27.45 billion up to June this year which reflects investors' confidence in the UAE economic prospects. According to a United Nations report, the UAE topped the list of GCC bloc countries with a total of 63 cross-border deals. World Investment Report, released by the United Nations Conference on Trade & ...  >>MORE

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Quick List

Dubai clears Dh2.4bn debt


Pearl Dubai awards Dh8.85 billion construction contract to Al Habtoor-Leighton Group


Dubai can meet all its debt obligations, says Mohammed Alabbar


Amlak Finance and Tamweel to merge under UAE Real Estate Bank


UAE personal loan growth likely to slow down after Dh64bn surge in H1


Dubai World cleared to up Mirage stake


Dh3bn Zayed varsity deal awarded


Construction machinery sector in UAE to grow despite crunch


ADX and Citi sign custody agreement


Bahrain lands craft contract for Abu Dhabi Ship Building


UAE Ranks 4th for Doing Business in the Arab World


Dubai Mercantile Exchange to List Products with CME Group


Mubadala Infrastructure Partners announces first closing of regional fund


DP World signs Algerian ports deal


Mubadala-GE fund eyes global market


DP World traffic rises despite crisis


Paulson praises UAE’s economic model: report


UAE property prices increase 11-17%


Mortgage rates up, loan-to-value falls


Land deals to hit Dh300bn


Tamweel nine-month net profit rises to Dh 573 million, up 135 per cent


Fitch says UAE banks remain profitable


Aldar Properties reports 137.9% growth in net profit


DMCC launches Dubai Cotton Centre


Emaar Properties profit rises


Consumer spending in UAE rises 18%


Steel prices to fall 20-30%


UAE accounts for 50pc of GCC debt due in 2009: Merrill Lynch


J.P. Morgan takes equity stake in Dubai Mercantile Exchange


Non-oil sector to drive UAE GDP growth at 6% in 2009


UAE can weather liquidity crisis, says Standard & Poor’s report


DFSA signs MoUs with regulators in China and Singapore


Emirates Lebanon Bank confirms acquisition of the operations of BNPI


AMD, ATIC to create new semiconductor manufacturing company


Veolia Environment, Mubadala to launch joint venture company


KazmunayGas, ConocoPhillips and Mubadala sign MoU for "N" block offshore Kazakhstan


Taqa to acquire 'green' firms


Dubai World forms Dubai Natural Resources World


Amlak Finance Nine Months Net Profit up by 157%


UAE's Emaar, Saudi's Al-Shoala ink SR27bn joint venture


UAE’s cross-border M&A deals at US$27.4b