News – 2012.06.06

Published: June 6, 2012

SUSRIS Daily News – Excerpts from International Media Reports</strong>
/Provided as a service from the Saudi-US Trade Group, Washington, DC/

Analysis: Time running out for Asian buyers of Iran oil

South Korean refineries have already given up, industry sources said. They will switch to other sources of crude supply from July 1. China, India and Japan are scrambling to deal with the biggest headache – an EU ban on insuring shipments of Iranian crude from July 1 – and are considering …

Saudi banking outlook strong, valuations stay‘attractive’

The outlook for the Saudi banking sector remains strong, NCBC Research said, noting that it continues to prefer the larger banks which are better able to tap the retail lending opportunity and trade at attractive valuations. Although net interest margins (NIMs) will continue to contract, NCBC …

Saudi Construction Sector: A Sleeping Giant Awakes

Deloitte’s recently released report, “GCC powers of construction 2012: Five lessons to learn” assesses the current prospects of Saudi Arabia’s construction sector. Deloitte paints a very optimistic picture noting Saudi Arabia’s leading position in the GCC with regard to population and GDP. It …

Gulf Capital, Gulf Related launch SAR 1 billion residential real estate development in Riyadh

Gulf Related is the joint venture between Gulf Capital and Related Companies, the largest privately owned real estate development firm in the US. The development involves a multi-million dollar residential compound in Riyadh. Studies show that there is a huge demand for housing units in Saudi …

SR 2 bn SIDF loans for 17 projects

The Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF) has approved 17 loans valued at SR 2 billion to establish 11 new industrial projects and expand six existing projects with a total investment of SR 11.48 billion, its director general said yesterday. Mining industries received the lion’s share of …

Saudi banks to underwrite $1.6bn issue

Saudi Arabia’s Al Rajhi Bank and Banque Saudi Fransi are among five banks underwriting a six billion riyals ($1.6bn) rights issue from indebted telecoms operator Zain Saudi, according to the issue prospectus….

Saudi Arabia economic growth slows a bit

Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product, adjusted for inflation, grew 5.94 percent from a year earlier in the first quarter of this year, the government’s statistics department said on Wednesday. That marked a minor slowdown from the 6.6 percent growth recorded in the fourth quarter of last …

The Gulf Cooperation Council Turns 31 – Part 5 – Engaging Youth

But let me begin very quickly by saying that at State Department and the U.S. Government as a whole, we’ve been trying to make the case more recently that youth engagement is not just a demographic box to check but a powerful means, a powerful vehicle of tackling your key foreign policy …

Saudi FM: Iran atomic programme raises regional threats

‘For sure the Iranian nuclear programme has escalated the threat level in the region… So it is dangerous…,’ Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal told reporters in the Red Sea city of Jeddah after a Gulf Cooperation Council meeting. ‘We hope Iran, with all kinds of threats coming …

A Year at War

More than thirty thousand American soldiers have taken part in the Afghanistan surge. Here are the stories of the men and women of the First Battalion, 87th Infantry of the 10th Mountain Division. Over their deployment, from March 2010 until March 2011, The New York Times followed their journey….

Saudi call to help Syrians to ‘defend themselves’

Prince Saud Al Faisal, the Saudi foreign minister, yesterday urged Gulf states to mobilise their resources and help Syrians ‘defend themselves’ against Bashar Al Assad’s regime. At a meeting of Gulf Cooperation Council foreign ministers in Jeddah, Prince Faisal called on GCC countries to ‘to …

Qaeda Deputy Was Killed in Drone Strike, Official Says

Al Qaeda’s deputy leader, Abu Yahya al-Libi, was killed in a drone strike in northern Pakistan, an American official confirmed on Tuesday, in the biggest single success in the controversial campaign’s eight-year history. The official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss …

China’s Hu sees role for regional bloc in Afghanistan

A bloc bringing together China, Russia and central Asian states wants to play a bigger role in Afghanistan, Chinese President Hu Jintao said in an interview published on Wednesday, as group leaders gathered for an annual summit. The future of neighbour Afghanistan, facing the withdrawal of …

Officials Say Mubarak’s Health Is Worsening Rapidly

Former President Hosni Mubarak’s health has deteriorated so sharply since he was sentenced to life in prison on Saturday that authorities are close to a decision to return him to a hospital outside the penal system, Interior Ministry officials said on Wednesday Before his sentencing, he had …

Pakistan’s ‘Sesame Street’ hits dead end amid fraud charges

“No one is questioning, obviously, the value and positive impact of this kind of programming for children. But this is about allegations of corruption,” he said. The US decision to cancel funding for the program comes amid unrelenting tension between Islamabad and Washington, which are …

Saudi Telecom appoints Khaled al-Ghoneim as new group CEO

Saudi Telecom Co, the Gulf’s No.1 telecoms operator, has appointed Khaled al-Ghoneim as group executive, the former monopoly said on Wednesday. Ghoneim will take up his new post on June 18, replacing Saud al-Daweesh, who resigned in April. At the time, STC said Daweesh would remain at the …

Nokia Siemens Networks inks Saudi Arabia 4G deal

Network equipment vendor Nokia Siemens Networks (NOK, SI) said Wednesday that it has signed a 4G deal with Saudi Arabian operator Zain KSA….

Saudi diesel imports seen rising on seasonal demand, shortages

OPEC giant Saudi Arabia has increased diesel imports to cope with the anticipated rise in demand during the summer season and cope with localized distribution issues that have caused shortages in the capital Riyadh and other parts of the country, trading sources and media reports said …

Al-Suwaiket opens tallest tower in Eastern Province

The Eastern Province’s skyline is changing, and changing rapidly. The latest landmark, Al-Suwaiket’s SR 350 million, 46-story Dhahran Tower on the Dammam-Alkhobar Highway, was opened on Monday. Al-Suwaiket Group Chairman Mubarak Al-Suwaiket and his sons, Abdullah and Abdul Aziz, personally …

Artist’s suit revived against Saudi Royal Family

A federal appeals court on Tuesday revived a lawsuit by an artist who says he is owed nearly $12.6 million for 29 sculptures he designed for the Saudi royal family. Elli Bern Angellino, who filed his suit without being represented by a lawyer, says 16 members of the Saudi royal family asked …

Metito to invest $133m in Saudi water ops

Metito, the water management solutions provider, said on Tuesday it plans to invest SR500m ($133m) in Saudi Arabia over the next three years. The company held a press conference to formally relaunch its operations in the Gulf kingdom, a market it first entered in the late 1960s. Metito …

Abraaj Expects to Conclude Saudi Investment in 3 Months

Abraaj Capital Ltd., the biggest private equity firm in the Middle East, may conclude an investment in Saudi Arabia within three months and is looking at a “number of deals” in Turkey, a senior official said. “For at least one of them we expect it will be fairly imminent,” Chief Executive …

Paulson Buys Saudi Prince’s Aspen Ranch in $49 Million Deal

Billionaire John Paulson bought Hala Ranch, a 90-acre (36-hectare) property in Aspen, Colorado, that belonged to Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and a separate site in the town for $49 million….

TASI: 6/6/2012

Scottish firm wins top Saudi drilling order

Deep Casing Tools, an Aberdeen-based casing and completion technology specialist, has secured a major order in Saudi Arabia following the introduction of its high-speed drillable reaming system. Successful runs in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province resulted in landing casing and liners on depth …

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