The Briefing

Weekly business & investment updates curated for you.

Erbil Rotana

Abu Dhabi — Fitch Ratings has affirmed Abu Dhabi's Long-term foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) at 'AA' with Stable Outlooks. The issue ratings on Abu Dhabi's senior unsecured foreign currency bonds have also been affirmed at 'AA'.

Clean Energy — The White House proposed a $10 per barrel tax on oil to fund a $300 billion clean transportation plan.

Dominican Republic — The flow of foreign direct investment into Dominican Republic exceeded $21.14 billion during the past nine years (2006-2015), mainly in tourism; with just eight European countries accounting for more than $3.32 billion.

Dubai — Dubai Investments delivered a strong Dh1.1 billion net profit attributable to shareholders of the company in 2015 and said earnings per share will be amounted to Dh0.27.

Egypt — Egyptian investment bank HC Securities is working on acquisition deals in Egypt potentially worth $639 million.

Italy — GE signed an agreement to invest $600 million in Italy in research and development projects in the oil and gas sector over the next five years. The project, dubbed "Galileo", will increase GE Oil & Gas volumes in Italy by 50 percent and boost revenue by $1.7 billion over the five years.

India — Solar and wind projects in the country would attract $20 billion investment each year from next fiscal until 2018-19.

Iran — Germany-based Linde, a leading industrial gases company, and Japan’s Mitsui Chemicals plan to invest $4 billion into petrochemical projects in Iran. The lifting of sanctions would enable Iran to fulfill its 20-year vision plan, including its target to produce $70 billion of petrochemicals a year at current prices.

Israel — FIMI Opportunity Funds raised $1.1 billion in the largest funding round of an Israeli private equity firm. The country’s biggest buyout company will allocate the money to a new fund dedicated to investing in local businesses. FIMI plans to invest about $250 million in Israeli companies per year.

Ivory Coast — The world's top cocoa grower has become one of Africa's rising stars since emerging from a 2011 civil war and annual economic growth of around 9 percent is attracting a flood of foreign investment.

Japan & Iran — The Iranian government will guarantee $10 billion worth of development projects undertaken by Japanese companies. The projects are seen ranging from natural resource development to building power stations.

Mexico & China — Mexico and China are working to implement a joint investment fund of $2.4 billion to promote development.

Morocco — Sixteen industrial investment agreements were signed in Rabat for the investment of 1.4 billion dirhams that will create 4100 jobs by 2020. The Moroccan government has raised the annual investment budget from 180 billion dirhams in 2015 to 189 billion in 2016.

Nigeria — Nigeria is looking to international institutions in order to fund its record-setting 2016 budget. With approximately 35% of GDP, 75% of government revenue and 90% of export earnings coming from oil, the continued low price of crude oil has led Nigeria to seek out $3.5 billion in loans from the World Bank and African Development Bank.

Oman — Petroleum Development Oman, the Sultanate's dominant oil and gas producer, aims to invest in excess of $10 billion in a trio of signature integrated schemes that are key to sustaining the company's long-term hydrocarbon output.

Philippines — Citi and Standard Chartered see a slower economic growth for the Philippines in 2016 despite a stronger-than-expected finish last year. Citi raised its Philippine economic growth forecast to 5.4 percent instead of 5.1 percent this year and to 6 percent in 2017 but slower compared to the 5.8 percent expansion booked in 2015.

Qatar — Sainsbury's, Britain's second biggest supermarket which is 25 percent owned by Qatar Investment Authority, has agreed to buy Argos-owner Home Retail for $1.86 billion to boost its online business and expand sales of items such as electrical goods.

Renewable Energy — According to the International Renewable Energy Authority, global energy efficiency investment is set to reach $385 billion per year, or $5.8 trillion by 2030.

South Korea & UAE — South Korea is importing about 100 million barrels of crude oil every year from the UAE. The bilateral trade between Korea and the UAE is more than $14 billion with Korea’s export volume consisting electronic items and automobiles placed at $6 billion and import which is mostly related to crude oil and LPG at $8 billion.

Sri Lanka — Sri Lanka's president announced a $40 billion mega-development project to build a new city over the next 15 years in a push to attract more foreign investment to the Indian Ocean island nation.

Thailand — Thai telecoms-to-energy group Samart Corp plans to invest $561 million in 2016 to focus more on power, telecoms services and online businesses.

UAE — The United Arab Emirates' economy is expected to grow by around 3.5 percent in 2016 and the country is moving ahead with strategic projects despite the steep drop in crude oil prices.

What to watch — A recent report by investment monitoring platform, FDI Markets has ranked Nairobi as Africa's top foreign direct investment destination, saying that inflows rose by 37 per cent in 2015.

What to watch — This Is What a World Without Oil Looks Like

Zambia — Zambia has resumed issuing new mining licences, and granting renewal and transfer of rights which it had suspended in August 2015.

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