Summary of daily updates for period 1st to 6th Feb 2016

Updates
  • UAE private sector growth slumps to near 4-year low in January.
  • Perfect storm for UAE small businesses as payments, hiring and confidence all drop
  • The World Bank said that economic growth in Middle East and North Africa in 2015 was lower due to wars and low oil prices.  Five years of war in Syria and spillovers to sneighboring countries have cost the region some $35 billion in lost output measured in 2007 prices, equal to Syria’s gross domestic product that year.
  • 50% of Dubai property projects ‘fail to hit 2015 handover. UAE property to be hampered by lack of bank funding.  Dubai house prices and rents still slipping but worst appears to be over.
  • Dubai Financial Market Q4 profit drops 89 per cent as trading plunges.
  • Slowdown leads to exodus of Western law firms from Abu Dhabi.
  • Barclays cuts 150 jobs in Dubai.
  • Emirates NBD advises clients to ‘remain defensively invested.
  • Emirates brand valued at $7.7bn, named as top global aviation firm.
  • Dubai plans to build Arab world’s biggest library.Meydan Sobha unveils Phase III of giant Dubai project.
  • The World Bank said Saudi Arabia’s public debt would reach 20 per cent of GDP in 2017, 10 times its level of 2.2 per cent in 2013.Saudi private sector growth drops to record low in January. 25% probability of Saudi FX devaluation soon.  Saudi Arabia which has highly regulated aviation markets has decided to open the sky for new airlines considering the demand for more services due to rising population. Saudi ready to ‘manage’ oil market says report. Russia open to oil talks; oil rises.
  • Kuwait is oiling the wheels of national reform to attract more private investment.
  • Oman assures dollar peg will stay.
  • Egypt is working on infrastructure at the Suez Canal Economic Zone that will allow industry investing in the area to start production by 2020.
  • Middle Eastern carriers’ air freight grew four per cent in December and for 2015 in total the region expanded 11.3 per cent compared to the previous year. Airline battle brews in Gulf as Iran eyes regional hub role.
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