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ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER

FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II

ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II Arab Financial Forum Newsletter Monitoring the latest news
ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II Arab Financial Forum Newsletter Monitoring the latest news

Arab Financial Forum Newsletter

Monitoring the latest news

Dear Reader,

The unrest in the Arab world continues to have an impact on Arab financial markets. Libya turmoil is followed by an increase not only in oil prices, but gold as well. Egypt is trying to manage financial difficulties in its markets, while the Saudi Economic Forum is looking for the ways to enhance the states economic development.

Stephen Kirkland and Boris Korby, editors at Bloomberg, share their views on the article Brent Crude Jumps to Two-Year High Above $108, Gold Rises on Libya Unrest‟ explaining how the recent developments in Libya affecting the international market.

If you have any news you would like to include in future issues please contact me. I would also like to hear from those wishing to offer commentaries on current developments in Arab financial markets. Also, let me know if there are others who would like to receive the newsletter.

With warmest regards,

Aynur Hamidova AFF Project manager

If you would like to learn more about this newsletter or forthcoming events, or would like to suggest an event, article or include any comment for inclusion in the next edition. We welcome new readers, if you would like to me to include new interest to our complimentary distribution of the newsletter, please do not hesitate to contact me at projects@meconsult.co.uk.

MEC International Ltd. Granville House. 132-135 Sloane Street London SW1X 9AX Tel: 020 7591 4816 Fax: 020 7591 4801 E-mail: projects@meconsult.co.uk

ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER

FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II

IN BRIEF

Gold climbs, set for best month since 2009 on Mideast unrest

February 28, 2011

best month since 2009 on Mideast unrest February 28, 2011 Gold is “moving in the same

Gold is “moving in the same direction as oil due to increased safe-haven buying from unrest in Libya and spreading unrest in other key Middle East oil producers,” Mark Pervan, an analyst at ANZ Banking Group Ltd, wrote in a note to clients.

Saudi Aramco CEO says extra oil supply needs met

February 28, 2011

Demand for extra oil supply following disruption to exports from OPEC member Libya has been met, Saudi Aramco CEO Khalid Al Falih told reporters on Monday.

Egypt Sells $934 Million in Bills as Yields Surge on Turmoil

February 21, 2011

Egypt raised 5.5 billion pounds ($934 million) from the sale of treasury bills today, with the yield on one-year notes rising to a more than two-year high as unrest escalated in the Middle East and North Africa.

February 28, 2011

The Forum, organized by the Ministry of Finance in cooperation with Economy and Business Group, will focus on the current global economy and the driving force behind Saudi Arabia's economy.

Dubai Shares Drop to 6-Month Low as Mideast Unrest Spreads; Morocco Slips

February21, 2011

as Mideast Unrest Spreads; Morocco Slips February21, 2011 Dubai‟s benchmark stock index dropped to the lowest

Dubai‟s benchmark stock index dropped to the lowest level in almost six months, leading a decline in the Persian Gulf, as unrest in the Middle East spread.

February 23, 2011

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said today it has lowered its long-term counterparty credit rating on Arab Banking Corp. B.S.C. (ABC) to 'BBB' from 'BBB+'.

ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER

FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II

February 20, 2011

The Egyptian banks and the ATM units will be ready to reopen for business today, Sunday following the compulsory closure owing to the circumstances Egypt is passing .

February 27, 2011

Economic and Political Relations February 27, 2011 Qatar and the Federal Republic of Germany held a

Qatar and the Federal Republic of Germany held a session of official talks before noon today at the Emiri Diwan, chaired by HH the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani and the German President Christian Wulff.

CSE Global to delay buying Middle East firm as unrest rocks region

February 28, 2011 Singapore's CSE Global , a systems integrator for the global oil industry, said on Monday it was delaying acquiring a Middle East company due to concerns over unrest, but remained bullish on the region's long-term prospects.

Middle East Airlines joins SkyTeam

February 28, 2011

more Middle East Airlines joins SkyTeam February 28, 2011 Middle East Airlines - Air Liban (MEA),

Middle East Airlines - Air Liban (MEA), the flag carrier of Lebanon, today signed an agreement to join SkyTeam in 2012. MEA will be the alliance's second member from the Middle East, a strategic growth market for SkyTeam.

COMMENTARY AND ANALYSIS

This piece entitled ‘Brent Crude Jumps to Two-Year High Above $108, Gold Rises on Libya Unrest’ is contributed by Stephen Kirkland and Boris Korby, editors from Bloomberg.

Oil rose to the highest since September 2008 and

gold rallied for a sixth day surpassing $1,400 an

ounce as tension in the Middle East escalated.

Stocks fell the most in a month as Eni SpA led

companies with operations in Libya lower.

Brent crude gained 5.3 percent to $107.93 at 5:34

p.m. New York time. Gold climbed 1.2 percent and

silver added 3.8 percent. The Stoxx Europe 600

Index declined 1.3 percent, with Eni sinking the

most since July 2009. Standard & Poor‟s 500 Index

futures lost 0.9 percent. Bahrain‟s 2020 bond yield

increased for a 10th day after S&P cut the nation‟s

debt rating. The yen and the dollar strengthened

ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER

FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II

against most of their major peers. U.S. markets were closed for the Presidents‟ Day holiday.

Libyan security forces attacked anti-government protesters as demonstrations spread across the Middle East and North Africa, a region that accounts for 36 percent of global crude output. Chinese authorities blocked foreign news reports on protests across the country to stamp out any movement toward pro-democracy revolts.

“You‟ve got to be very concerned, particularly because it can affect the oil price, and if you have the oil price spike up another $20, $30, you could reenter a global recession,” Bill Belchere, global chief economist at Mirae Asset Securities, said in a Bloomberg Television interview in Hong Kong.

West Texas Intermediate oil for April delivery jumped 6.3 percent to $95.39 a barrel in New York. Gold climbed to as high as $1,408.45 an ounce, and last traded at $1,406.45. The six days of gains is the longest streak since August. Silver rose to a 30-year high of $33.8925 an ounce.

Libya Ties

Eni, the largest foreign oil and gas producer in Libya, lost 5.1 percent, while OMV AG, central Europe‟s biggest oil company, which has been in Libya since 1975, slid 4.2 percent. Tekfen Holding AS tumbled 7.9 percent as the Turkish builder suspended work on a Libyan project, saying its priority now is the safe evacuation of 1,197 non- Libyan employees.

Merck KGaA gained 4.5 percent as earnings beat forecasts. Alpha Bank SA rose 5 percent as the

shares resumed trading following a takeover bid from National Bank of Greece SA.

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index slid 0.1 percent. Benchmark indexes in Russia and South Africa rose at least 0.9 percent while gauges in Turkey, Dubai and Morocco sank more than 1 percent. Brazils Bovespa fell 1.2 percent.

Facing Civil War

Muammar Qaddafi‟s son called on protesters to engage in dialogue or face a civil war, as violence escalated amid reports protesters seized control of Libya‟s second-biggest city. Violence has flared in Yemen, Djibouti, Iran and Bahrain as governments sought to crack down on demands for change.

Bahrain‟s dollar bond due 2020 fell as S&P cut its rating and signaled further downgrades were possible, saying it expected protests to persist.

Default swaps on Dubai jumped 11 basis points to 448, contracts on Qatar increased seven basis points to 113, and those for Saudi Arabia climbed five basis points to 144, according to CMA.

Indias Sensitive Index climbed 1.3 percent on gains by oil shares and Wipro Ltd.‟s biggest rally since November after Credit Suisse Group AG recommended the software services provider. Vietnam‟s VN Index slumped 4 percent, the most since November 2009, after the government said it will raise electricity prices by a record 15.3 percent.

The yield on Germanys 10-year bund slid seven basis points to 3.18 percent after Chancellor Angela Merkel‟s Christian Democratic Union lost an election in the city-state of Hamburg to the Social Democrats.

ARAB FINANCIAL FORUM NEWSLETTER

FEBRUARY 2011. ISSUE II

The yen strengthened 0.1 percent.

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If you would like to learn more about this newsletter or our forthcoming events, or would like to suggest an event or article for inclusion in the next edition, please do not hesitate to contact me at projects@meconsult.co.uk.

MEC International Ltd. Granville House 132-135 Sloane Street London SW1X 9AX Tel: 020 7591 4816 Fax: 020 7591 4801 E-mail: projects@meconsult.com