SUSRIS Daily News – Excerpts from International Media Reports
/Provided as a service from the Saudi-US Trade Group, Washington, DC/
The Jadwa Investment firm in Riyadh introduced the “Saudi Chartbook” to provide a quick, chart-based briefing on the key developments and trends in the Saudi economy and stock market. SUSRIS is pleased to provide the summary from the February Saudi Chartbook and a link to the complete report, rich with illuminating charts and graphs. SUSRIS thanks Jadwa Investment’s Chief Economist, Brad Bourland, Head of Research, Paul Gamble and Associate Research Director Gasim Abdulkarim, for providing this insightful report for your consideration.
Saudi Economy Expected To Grow 3.8% in 2012: ARAB NEWS
Emirates NBD, a leading bank in the region, forecasts a 3.8 percent growth in Saudi GDP in 2012, backed by public sector spending, even as the global economy continues to lose momentum. With the oil sector remaining the main source of revenue for the Kingdom, the price of oil is forecast to remain at above $100 per barrel.
Saudi Arabia May Seek IMF Sway In Exchange For Riches: ARABIAN BUSINESS
Bloomberg | 2/2/12
Saudi Arabia, which has more than $500bn in foreign assets, may demand a greater share of voting rights at the International Monetary Fund in exchange for providing the lender with more money.
Sultan Al-Qassemi | 2/2/12
Across the Arabian Peninsula and stretching well into North Africa and Sudan, there is a common bond, perhaps only behind religion and language in importance, that binds Arabic language speakers together. Museums across the Gulf proudly display lineage maps illustrating the family trees of ruling members, linking them through lines and photos from bygone centuries up to the current leader. Major financial institutions in Dubai and Bahrain display in their offices large-scale maps detailing prominent ruling family members of the Gulf States and their marital, government, and business affiliations. Tribalism in modern day Arabia is alive and well. In this article, I highlight recent developments to illustrate how those in power in the Gulf and the Arabian Peninsula use tribalism, and how, sometimes, it is used against them.
Saudi Gold Miner Adds Shine of Different Hue: THE NATIONAL
Hadeel Al Sayegh | 2/2/12
The Saudi mining company Ma’aden yesterday started operations at its Ras Al Khair plant to produce diammonium phosphate. The US$5.6 billion phosphate project is fully operational and the plant, which is 90km north of Jubail in the Eastern Province, will gradually increase its production to its designed capacity of 3 million tonnes a year, the state-run producer said in a filing to the Saudi bourse yesterday.
Saudi Arabia remained the dominant energy investor in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with an estimated $141 billion during 2012-2016, data from the Dammam-based Arab Petroleum Investment Corporation (Apicorp), an affiliate of the 10-nation Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries, showed.
Kuwait and Saudi Arabia are pushing ahead with plans to develop the undisputed part of the offshore Dorra gas field with the front-end engineering and design (FEED) work expected to be completed by June, industry sources said.
Fujitsu signs a MOU with Saudi Arabia as Part of an Overseas Infrastructure Export Initiative of Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
Saudi-Japanese Forum to Open New Horizons: ARAB NEWS
More than 200 prominent businessmen and senior officials of public and private companies and organizations from Saudi Arabia and Japan are participating in the Saudi Japanese Economic Forum that began in Tokyo on Tuesday evening. Minister of Commerce and Industry Tawfiq Al-Rabiah is heading the Saudi delegation taking part in the event, which is discussing various aspects of bilateral business cooperation between the two major trade partners in Asia.
New Saudi Metro to Ease Haj Traffic: GULF NEWS
Aya Lowe | 2/2/12
Saudi Arabia’s new metro system will ease traffic congestion during the annual Haj pilgrimage, a top official has said. The Haramain High Speed Rail project, which is under construction, will be a 449.2km high-speed inter-city system linking Madinah and Makkah.
The Saudi stock market showed a positive march in January after falling over 3 percent in 2011.
A forum to promote collaboration and partnerships between Saudi Arabian industry and Lockheed Martin has been conducted in Riyadh. The forum, which was last Sunday and Monday, featured speakers such as Lockheed Martin President and Chief Operating Officer Chris Kubasik and U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia James B. Smith.
Saudi, Abu Dhabi Osps Awaited: EMIRATES 24|7
Reuters | 2/2/12
The Middle East crude market awaited the Saudi Aramco and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company’s (Adnoc) official crude selling prices (OSP) to gauge the direction of trade for the new month.
EGYPT: EGYPTIANS INCENSED AFTER 74 DIE IN SOCCER TRAGEDY
Egyptians incensed by the deaths of 74 people in clashes at a soccer stadium staged protests on Thursday as fans and politicians accused the ruling generals of failing to prevent the deadliest incident since Hosni Mubarak was overthrown, Reuters reports. MANY BLAME MILITARY FOR MELEE: The riot on Wednesday night refocused attention on the failure of the transitional government to re-establish a sense of order and stability in the streets and threatened to provoke a new crisis for Egypt’s halting political transition. The deadliest soccer riot anywhere in more than 15 years, the melee also illuminated the potential for savagery among the organized groups of die-hard fans known here as ultras who have added a volatile element to the street protests since Mr. Mubarak’s exit, David D. Kirkpatrick (NYT) reports. MARKET PLUNGES: Egypt’s benchmark stock index fell over 2 percent Thursday, paring an earlier plunge stemming from deadly soccer riots the night before that left 74 dead and rekindled fears of fresh instability akin to the unrest that has battered the country and its economy in the year since the ouster of Hosni Mubarak, Tarek El-Tablawy (ABC) reports. PORT SAID OFFICIALS SACKED: Senior officials in the Egyptian city of Port Said and the Egyptian football association have been sacked in the wake of riots on Wednesday in which at least 74 people were killed, BBC reports.
BAHRAIN: NATION BOILS LEADING UP TO ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF PROTESTS
A year ago this month, Bahrain’s majority Shiites took inspiration from the Arab Spring to sharpen long-standing grievances against the Sunni monarchy, accused by Shiites of relegating them to second-class status in the Western-allied nation. Within days of the first protest march, Bahrain was sliding into a crisis that would bring more than two months of martial law, more than 40 deaths, hundreds of arrests and ongoing clashes so disruptive that the U.S. Embassy last month relocated workers into safe haven neighborhoods, Reem Khalifa and Brian Murphy (Boston Globe) report.
AFGHANISTAN: PANETTA SETS TIMETABLE OF 2013 FOR END OF COMBAT MISSION
The secretary general of NATO echoed Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta on Thursday and said that the United States and its allies would step back from a combat role in Afghanistan in mid-2013, leaving Afghan forces in the lead to defend their own country, Elisabeth Bumiller (NYT) reports. TALIBAN RETURN SEEN AS UNLIKELY: Among the snippets in a secret NATO report detailing the hopes of jailed Taliban militants to retake Afghanistan was news the Islamist movement had set up telephone hotlines for Afghans to report anonymously on failures of its shadow government, Rob Taylor (Reuters) reports.
SYRIA: ANNIVERARY OF HOMS MASSACRE MARKED
Syrian security forces fanned out in Hama on Thursday as protesters splashed red paint symbolizing blood in the streets to mark the 30th anniversary of a notorious massacre carried out by President Bashar Assad’s father and predecessor, Fox News reports. TREATY WILL PUT PRESSURE ON SYRIA: Even a watered-down U.N. Security Council resolution will put pressure on the Syrian government, Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby told CNN Thursday, ahead of renewed talks at the United Nations, CNN reports.
ISRAEL: SUSPECTED SITES REMAIN VULNERABLE, DEPUTY PM SAYS
Israel’s deputy prime minister says Iran’s suspected nuclear weapons sites remain vulnerable to possible military strikes, suggesting that underground bunkers do not offer sufficient protection, AP reports. ISRAEL SAYS IRAN HAS MATERIAL FOR 4 ATOMIC WEAPONS: Israel estimated on Thursday that Iran could make four atomic bombs by further enriching uranium it has already stockpiled, and could produce its first within a year of deciding to build one, Reuters reports.
PALESTINE: CITIZENS TRY TO BLOCK UN CHIEF FROM ENTERING GAZA, THROW SHOES
Palestinians tried to block the U.N. chief from entering the Gaza Strip and flung shoes at his armored convoy on Thursday, the second day of Ban Ki-moon’s mission to the region to keep informal peace talks alive, MSNBC/AP reports.
PAKISTAN: COURT TO CHARGE GILANI WITH CONTEMPT
Pakistan’s Supreme Court is to charge Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani with contempt for failing to reopen corruption cases against the president, BBC reports.
/The daily news is provided as a service of the Saudi-US Trade Group, Washington, DC. Visit www.SUSTG.org for more information and to get a free email subscription to the News Review./</h4></div>