The Briefing

Weekly business & investment updates curated for you.

Erbil Rotana

Ford to Focus $1.8 Billion on China Smart Cars – The U.S. car marker said it will invest $1.8 billion, over the next five years to research how to add greater smartphone connectivity, autonomous driving and other smart car features to its Chinese products.

Brand UAE is world’s third strongest – “Brand UAE” is now worth more than $400 billion and is set to challenge Singapore as the country with the strongest international image. The efforts of the seven emirates have lifted the country to the world’s third-strongest nation brand and the 29th most valuable globally.

Russia, China, and France plan to fund Iran’s mine projects – Russian, Chinese and French companies have approached Tehran with investment plans to tap its natural resources. Iran’s state-run Management and Planning Organization will allocate $66.8 million to production.

Iran Aims to Boost Oil Output by 2 Million Barrels – Iran plans to increase crude output by 2 million barrels a day from about 50 energy projects slated for investors. Iran will need $30 billion of investment over five years to boost oil production, starting with about 350,000 barrels of new output next year. Oil production is now about 2.8 million barrels a day.

Saudi Arabia to invest $10B in Russia – Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, the country's sovereign wealth investment vehicle, agreed to invest $10 billion over the next five years approximately in the Russia Direct Investment Fund, a government-run investment fund.

Dubai developer to build $4.8B tourist resort in Bosnia – Dubai-based developer Buroj Property Development plans to invest $4.8 billion to build a luxury tourist resort near Sarajevo, in what could be the biggest foreign investment of its kind in the Balkan country.

Mobile industry contributed $102B to Africa’s economy in 2014 – The GSMA launched the Mobile Economy Report for sub-Saharan Africa 2015. The report found that the mobile industry in sub-Saharan Africa contributed $102 billion to the region in 2014 – equivalent to 5.7% of the region’s GDP.

Ethiopia aims to grow tourism threefold in five years – Ethiopia aims to triple its number of foreign visitors to more than 2.5 million by 2020, making tourism a pillar of one of Africa's fastest-growing economies. Buoyed by huge spending on infrastructure and an expansion of its services and agricultural sectors, Addis Ababa expects annual economic growth of around 11 percent for the next five years.

SkyPower to build 200MW of solar energy projects in Djibouti – SkyPower has signed anagreement with the Republic of Djibouti for the development of 200 MW of world-class solar projects to be built in four phases in Djibouti over the next four years. The 200 MW solar project will represent an estimated investment of $440 million, which also includes corporate social responsibility investments of $11 million toward education, training, research and development in Djibouti.

Philippines rating resilient to slowing growth in Asia, outlook stable – Moody's Investors Service says that the Philippines' BAA2 government bond rating reflects the resilience of its economy to the current headwinds buffeting neighboring countries and emerging markets as a whole. Further, the stable outlook reflects Moody's expectation that positive economic and fiscal trends will be sustained over the next 1-2 years. However, these will be balanced against the persistent weaknesses in the sovereign's credit profile.

Southeast Asia requires $2.5 trillion of cumulative energy investment – World Energy Outlook Special Report presents a central scenario in which Southeast Asia’s energy demand increases by 80% in the period to 2040, though the region’s per-capita energy use remains well below the global average. By 2040 the region’s net oil imports more than double to 6.7 mb/d, a level equivalent to the current oil imports of China. Southeast Asia’s oil import bill surges to over $300 billion per year by 2040, compared with around $120 billion in 2014, with increases in spending in almost all countries in the region.

Tech Giants Top Best Global Brands List – Madison Avenue may be the center of the advertising industry, but Silicon Valley is home to the most valuable brands. For the third consecutive year, Apple and Google top the annual Interbrand Best Global Brands report. The report estimates the value of the Apple brand at $170.3 billion, up 43 percent from last year. The Google brand, at $120.3 billion, increased in value by 12 percent. View the full list of top global brands.

The Briefing

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