The Finance World Magazine| Edition: November 2022

The November edition of The Finance World Magazine (TFW) is out now! Featured interview with Esref Temel, Managing Director of Bright Capital Investment, sheds a light on a long journey of investment in Dubai, especially investment in education. Through this edition, we also bring you insights on topics like the fintech revolution, guidelines for corporate tax filing, the global energy crisis, and many more key informational articles in the finance sector, in addition to Lalit Matta, Chief Executive Officer of YaMarkets, sharing his insights aboutthe Forex industry in a featured interview. Keep up to date with all financial sector news with our current news segments. Each person can find something unique from us. We believe our readers deserve real value from what we have to offer.

The November edition of The Finance World Magazine (TFW) is out now! Featured interview with Esref Temel, Managing Director of Bright Capital Investment, sheds a light on a long journey of investment in Dubai, especially investment in education.

Through this edition, we also bring you insights on topics like the fintech revolution, guidelines for corporate tax filing, the global energy crisis, and many more key informational articles in the finance sector, in addition to Lalit Matta, Chief Executive Officer of YaMarkets, sharing his insights aboutthe Forex industry in a featured interview.
Keep up to date with all financial sector news with our current news segments. Each person can find something unique from us. We believe our readers deserve real value from what we have to offer.


Create successful ePaper yourself

Turn your PDF publications into a flip-book with our unique Google optimized e-Paper software.

Fintech Revolution in the Middle East Boosts Financial Inclusion<br />

Dubai Real Estate Sector set to Pick up Growth Momentum<br />

Global Energy Crisis Augments the Influence of Gulf Countries<br />

High output and new orders help Saudi Arabia's non-oil sector grow<br />

Investing in Education<br />

Yields Good Financial Return<br />

Founder & Managing Director of Bright Capital Investment, Esref Temel<br />

Sheds a Light on Investing in Education in the UAE<br />

UAE - AED 30 | USA - USD 8.5 | KSA - SR<br />

60 | Qatar - QAR 30 | Oman - OMR 3.5<br />

| Bahrain - BD 3.5 | Kuwait - KWD 2.5<br />

| UK - £6.5 | EU - €7.5<br />

P41 | ADIO collaborates with<br />

Innovaccer to enhance<br />

healthcare in the Middle East<br />

P46 | SME & Startup Fundraising <strong>2022</strong><br />

sets new funding horizons for SMEs &<br />

Startups in Dubai<br />






We make Short / Long Term<br />

Investments in Growing Businessess<br />


<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 3

UAE - AED 30 | USA - USD 8.5 | KSA - SR<br />

60 | Qatar - QAR 30 | Oman - OMR 3.5<br />

| Bahrain - BD 3.5 | Kuwait - KWD 2.5<br />

| UK - £6.5 | EU - €7.5<br />

August <strong>2022</strong><br />




UAE - AED 30 | USA - USD 8.5 | KSA - SR<br />

60 | Qatar - QAR 30 | Oman - OMR 3.5<br />

| Bahrain - BD 3.5 | Kuwait - KWD 2.5<br />

| UK - £6.5 | EU - €7.5<br />

September <strong>2022</strong><br />





N O W<br />

Blockchain and its importance in virtual asset world<br />

Air Taxis: From fantasy to reality in Dubai<br />

DeFi modernizing crypto lending routes<br />




<strong>The</strong> government’s assistance has<br />

accelerated the development of<br />

EdTech startups.<br />




Golden visa holders in the<br />

UAE can purchase specialized<br />

health insurance plans.<br />

Regulation of NFT trading in the UAE:<br />

Why It Matters?<br />

OCTOBER <strong>2022</strong><br />

SEPTEMBER <strong>2022</strong><br />

Masdar: Global Leader of clean energy<br />

Are NFTs the next revenue generation stream?<br />

BNPL: A new replacement for credit cards?<br />

Guidelines to keep in mind for CT<br />

SHARIF<br />


CEO OF<br />

DUBAI<br />

FUTURE<br />


FUND<br />

NOVEMBER <strong>2022</strong><br />

AUGUST <strong>2022</strong><br />

JULY <strong>2022</strong><br />

Contact us at:<br />

+971 58 591 8580<br />

www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

4 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />


Editor’s Note<br />

Contact:<br />

+971 58 591 8580<br />

Advertisement queries:<br />

Editorial:<br />

Press Release<br />

For News<br />

For Partnerships<br />

Public Relations<br />

For Printed Copy<br />

Published By:<br />



Approved and Licensed By:<br />

National Media Council,UAE<br />

com<br />

<strong>The</strong> <strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> (TFW) has taken constant<br />

efforts to make sure that content is accurate as<br />

on the date of publication. <strong>The</strong> published articles,<br />

editorials, material, adverts and all other content<br />

is published in a good faith and opinions and<br />

views are not necessarily those of the publishers.<br />

We regret that we cannot guarantee and accept no<br />

liability for any loss or damage of any kind caused<br />

by this magazine and errors and for the accuracy<br />

of claims in any forms by any advertisers or<br />

readers. We advise the readers to seek the advice<br />

of specialists before acting on information<br />

published in the magazine. <strong>The</strong> trademarks,<br />

logos, pictures, domain names and service marks<br />

(collectively the “Trademarks”) displayed on<br />

this magazine are registered and unregistered<br />

Trademarks of <strong>The</strong> <strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> and its content<br />

providers. All rights reserved and nothing can be<br />

partially or in whole be reprinted or reproduced<br />

or stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in<br />

any form without a written consent.<br />

Reaching a visionary goal requires<br />

one percent vision and 99 percent alignment.<br />

Dubai’s economy is keeping up with the booming fintech and<br />

cryptocurrency markets, as the emirate is sparing no effort<br />

to always be on top of things, acknowledging the constant<br />

changes accompanying the birth of a new era for the world’s<br />

economy. Under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin<br />

Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United<br />

Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, the emirate is amplifying its position<br />

as an investment magnet and one of the most fast-paced growing<br />

business hub.<br />

Due to Dubai’s expanding status as the world’s fastest-growing<br />

commercial and innovation center, investment is seeing unprecedented<br />

success, attracting major businesses from all over the globe. Together<br />

with other investments, our cover story holds investment in education<br />

as its main theme, shading light on a long journey of investment in<br />

Dubai. As we witness major IPOs, such as Burjeel’s, strong investor<br />

interest in the UAE emerges as a bright light in an otherwise subdued<br />

global IPO market. This is accompanied by a huge wave of mergers and<br />

acquisitions, signaling the nation’s booming economy.<br />

As our readers always expect, this edition includes the latest trends<br />

and updates from the finance sector, such as corporate results, corporate<br />

tax, startups, banking, funding and investment, fintech, digital assets,<br />

and topics such as the global energy crisis augmenting the gulf countries’<br />

influence, the boosting of financial inclusion in the Middle East through<br />

fintech revolution, and many more.<br />

Providing our readers with latest and credible finance news, with the<br />

aim of raising financial literacy, is what defines our vision that goes hand<br />

in hand with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s<br />

vision to set Dubai apart as a fast-paced and forward-looking metropolis.<br />

- Ambrish Agarwal, Editor in Chief<br />

Advertisers advertised in this guide are included on a sponsored basis.<br />

Details are correct at the time of going to press, but offers and prices<br />

may change.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 5<br />

September <strong>2022</strong> 3

Contents <strong>November</strong><br />

<strong>2022</strong><br />

P07 | Global News<br />


P08 | How to fund your startup<br />

independently<br />


P10 | UBF Audit Committee<br />

holds its sixth meeting and<br />

second for <strong>2022</strong><br />

P12 | UAE Banking News<br />


P15 | Latest trends and<br />

changes of the central bank of<br />

UAE<br />


P17 | Fintech Revolution in the<br />

Middle East Boosts Financial<br />

Inclusion<br />

P19 | Fintech News<br />


P22 | High output and new<br />

orders help Saudi Arabia’s nonoil<br />

sector grow<br />

P24 | Business News<br />


P26 | Lalit Matta Chief<br />

Executive Officer - YaMarkets<br />


P28 | Esref Temel Founder,<br />

Managing Director of Bright<br />

Capital Investment<br />

START-UP<br />

P34 | Domestic Transfer<br />

Pricing’s Effect on Startups<br />

P36 | Start-up News<br />

ENERGY<br />

P38 | Global Energy Crisis<br />

Augments the Influence of Gulf<br />

Countries<br />

P40 | Energy News<br />


P43 | ADIO collaborates<br />

with Innovaccer to enhance<br />

healthcare in the Middle East<br />

P46 | Healthcare News<br />

EVENTS<br />

P48 | SME and Startup<br />

Fundraising <strong>2022</strong> in Dubai<br />

brings together SMEs, startups,<br />

investors, and financial<br />

institutions<br />

P52 | <strong>World</strong> Blockchain Summit<br />

offers opportunities for crypto<br />

and metaverse innovators<br />



P54 | Latest mergers and<br />

acquisitions status in the MENA<br />

region<br />

P56 | Mergers & Acquisitions<br />

News<br />


P58 | DWTC’s Agreement with<br />

Binance to Establish a Crypto<br />

Regulatory Framework<br />

P61 | Cryptocurrency News<br />


P62 | UAE real estate continues<br />

to draw foreign investment<br />

P64 | Real Estate News<br />


P66 | Abu Dhabi’s New Funding<br />

Program Empowers Healthcare<br />

Innovation<br />

P68 | Funding & Investment<br />

News<br />

P70 | Local News<br />


P72 | YaMarkets: A leader of the<br />

Forex & CFD markets<br />

P74 | Cryptocurrency ETF<br />

outflows slow down in the third<br />

quarter<br />

P76 | Burjeel hopes to raise<br />

$300 million to $368 million in<br />

Abu Dhabi IPO<br />


P78 | Impact Of Corporate Tax<br />

On Uae Business<br />

P80 | Corporate Results<br />

TRAVEL<br />

P82 | UAE citizens no longer<br />

need visas to visit Japan under<br />

a new collaboration agreement<br />

P33 P84 | Travel News<br />

6 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Bulgaria’s<br />

inflation rate rose<br />

to 18.7% YoY in<br />

September<br />

According to data from the<br />

statistics office, consumer<br />

prices in Bulgaria increased<br />

by 18.7% on an annual basis<br />

in September after increasing by 17.7%<br />

in August. This represents a new 24-<br />

year high as a result of rising energy<br />

and food prices. According to the<br />

statistics office, monthly consumer<br />

price growth was unchanged in<br />

September at 1.2% from a month<br />

earlier. Consumer price inflation<br />

measured by the harmonised EU<br />

index was 15.6% in September relative<br />

to the prior year. Consumer prices<br />

increased by 0.7% on a monthly basis,<br />

according to the data. <strong>The</strong> central<br />

bank projects inflation to be 14.9%,<br />

whereas the finance ministry projects<br />

inflation to be 12.6% this year due to<br />

the war in Ukraine and the sanctions<br />

placed on Russia.<br />

“Mini-budget”<br />

strains are<br />

evident in the UK<br />

housing market<br />

After a more than 20%<br />

increase in prices since<br />

the start of the pandemic<br />

as a result of rising living<br />

expenses and the Bank of England<br />

gradually raising interest rates,<br />

the housing market in Britain has<br />

already started to show indications<br />

of cooling. However, the Truss<br />

administration unveiled a plan to spur<br />

economic growth by unfunded tax<br />

cuts last month, alarming the financial<br />

markets. Due to the upheaval,<br />

several institutions temporarily<br />

ceased offering mortgages to new<br />

clients, while others increased the<br />

repayment requirements for new<br />

loans. According to Rightmove, the<br />

uncertainty had a particularly negative<br />

impact on first-time buyers.<br />

Above-predicted<br />

$5 billion trade<br />

surplus recorded<br />

by Indonesia in<br />

September<br />

Global News<br />

China promises to increase its<br />

capacity for energy supply and<br />

reserves<br />

According to government<br />

officials, China would<br />

significantly boost its capacity<br />

for domestic energy supply as<br />

well as its reserve capacity for important<br />

commodities, reinforcing a policy of<br />

securing supplies and stabilising raw<br />

material prices. According to Ren<br />

Jingdong, deputy chairman of the<br />

National Energy Administration, the<br />

world’s largest energy consumer will<br />

develop its “diversified domestic supply<br />

base,” which is centred on coal, while<br />

also accelerating the exploitation of its<br />

oil and gas reserves. In contrast to its<br />

In spite of slower-than-expected<br />

growth in both exports and<br />

imports, Indonesia’s trade<br />

surplus for September came in<br />

at $4.99 billion, beating estimates.<br />

In contrast to August’s $5.76 billion<br />

surplus, a Reuters poll had predicted<br />

a $4.84 billion surplus for September.<br />

A boom in exports has been occurring<br />

in Southeast Asia’s largest economy<br />

as a result of rising commodity prices<br />

around the world. <strong>The</strong> resourcerich<br />

nation posted a $39.87 billion<br />

surplus for the first nine months of<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, surpassing its previous full-year<br />

record surplus of $39.73 billion in<br />

2006.<br />

objective of 4.41 billion tonnes of<br />

standard coal for <strong>2022</strong>, China wants to<br />

produce more than 4.6 billion tonnes<br />

of coal from its own resources by<br />

2025.<br />

Morgan<br />

Stanley’s<br />

earnings decline<br />

as deal-making<br />

slump continues<br />

For the third consecutive<br />

quarter, M&A volumes<br />

worldwide declined, with<br />

U.S. volumes falling by over<br />

63% as corporations postponed large<br />

acquisitions due to growing financing<br />

costs. Companies have postponed<br />

going public as a result of the financial<br />

market turmoil brought on by the<br />

Ukraine War and Rapidly Increasing<br />

Interest Rates. Rivals JPMorgan<br />

Chase and Co. and Well Fargo & Co.<br />

and Morgan Stanley have reported<br />

comparable losses in quarterly profits.<br />

<strong>The</strong> quarter’s net income dropped<br />

12% to $13 billion. For the quarter<br />

that ended on September 30, the<br />

bank posted earnings of $2.49 billion,<br />

or $1.47 per share, down from $3.58<br />

billion, or $1.98 per share, in the same<br />

period last year.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 7

Personal <strong>Finance</strong><br />

How to fund your startup independently<br />

Dubai is a rapidly expanding<br />

global commercial hub<br />

and the ideal location for<br />

start-up businesses to<br />

prosper. It provides budding startups<br />

and entrepreneurs with the<br />

ideal business ecosystem in terms of<br />

infrastructure and financial support.<br />

Finding is one of the biggest obstacles<br />

for a start-up business in the UAE.<br />

<strong>The</strong> start-up will need money for a<br />

variety of things, like setting up their<br />

workspace, making prototypes, doing<br />

research, investing in marketing, and<br />

filing for patents. Startups will receive<br />

assistance from venture capitalists<br />

and business incubators to navigate<br />

their early phases until they reach a<br />

sustainable level where they produce<br />

enough income to support their<br />

operations.<br />

To various people, self-funding or<br />

bootstrapping a fledgling company<br />

means different things. Bootstrapping,<br />

in the opinion of the Silicon Valley<br />

serial entrepreneur who recently<br />

sold his business to Google for $100<br />

million, is simply giving yourself a<br />

big check. If a new business owner<br />

is fortunate enough to have some<br />

personal assets, they may need to<br />

take money out of their retirement<br />

or savings to come up with $50,000<br />

to $100,000 to get things started.<br />

For others, who make up the<br />

great majority of entrepreneurs, it<br />

means subsisting on peanut butter<br />

sandwiches and Ramen noodles,<br />

asking friends to perform tasks for<br />

free, and setting aside a few hundred<br />

dollars at a time to keep the lights on.<br />

While some entrepreneurs have<br />

a history of stable employment and<br />

outstanding credit, the majority<br />

do not, since the entrepreneurial<br />

attitude does not really lend itself<br />

to living off of a constant paycheck<br />

and working at the Post Office for<br />

30 years. Due to this, most business<br />

owners must borrow money because<br />

they lack the necessary assets or<br />

resources to truly use “back pocket<br />

funding.” Most people will quickly<br />

become dissatisfied after a few<br />

trips to the bank, particularly since<br />

that low interest rates have forced<br />

banks and traditional lenders to<br />

strengthen underwriting standards,<br />

eliminate lower loan thresholds, and<br />

concentrate more on well-established<br />

firms. No matter how brilliant your<br />

idea may be, even if you’re fortunate<br />

enough to locate a bank that supports<br />

startups, you’re out of luck unless<br />

you have a very high FICO score. <strong>The</strong><br />

bank doesn’t care if you’re building<br />

the next Google if you don’t have<br />

collateral and a good FICO score<br />

because lending to small businesses is<br />

no longer profitable for banks.<br />

According to B.j. Lackland, CEO of<br />

Lighter Capital, “the new regulatory<br />

framework under Dodd -Frank<br />

doesn’t make it viable or easy for<br />

banks to offer loans to small firms.”<br />

Banks will eventually need to adjust<br />

to this new climate, but they won’t<br />

make significant changes until the<br />

regulatory doors are open. <strong>The</strong> most<br />

intriguing of the new choices available<br />

to entrepreneurs is peer-to-peer<br />

financing, which is frequently more<br />

expensive than bank loans with low<br />

interest rates but still less expensive<br />

than usurious payday loan companies.<br />

After you start to get some income,<br />

factoring, or financing against<br />

receivables, may be an alternative.<br />

This normally entails less examination<br />

than a conventional loan does. <strong>The</strong><br />

requirement for predetermined daily<br />

or weekly payments makes this option<br />

somewhat rigid.<br />

RBF, or revenue-based<br />

financing, is a more adaptable<br />

choice. Acknowledging Lackland,<br />

8 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

“Traditionally, tech startups had to<br />

sell equity to get growth capital as a<br />

result of having no hard assets (like<br />

equipment or inventory) for a bank<br />

to lend against. RBF fits the needs<br />

of tech entrepreneurs because it is a<br />

flexible instrument, doesn’t require<br />

hard assets, and combines many of<br />

the best aspects of debt and equity,<br />

since it’s non-dilutive yet aligns the<br />

interests of the entrepreneur and<br />

investor toward growth.”<br />

1. Self-<strong>Finance</strong> Your start-up<br />

Business<br />

<strong>The</strong> best kind of finance used by<br />

many new businesses is self-financing<br />

or personal investment. “How much<br />

capital will you be investing in your<br />

start-up?” is a question that is asked<br />

regardless of whether you take out a<br />

loan, approach a venture capitalist,<br />

or ask a government agency to give<br />

funding for your business. <strong>The</strong> wisest<br />

course of action for new business<br />

owners is to invest their own money.<br />

Lenders won’t have a justification<br />

to reject your request for a business<br />

loan when your company is in its<br />

later phases because they will see<br />

your company’s stability as a low-risk<br />

element.<br />

2. Obtaining Angel Investment<br />

Angel investors are people with<br />

extra money who are interested in<br />

funding start-up businesses both<br />

in India and around the world.<br />

Compared to loans provided by<br />

financial institutions, the risk<br />

associated with these investments<br />

by angel investors is higher because<br />

the rewards on their investments are<br />

expected to be larger. Mumbai Angels,<br />

Indian Angel Network, and Hyderabad<br />

Angels are a few of India’s well-known<br />

angel investors. <strong>The</strong>se investors are<br />

available for direct contact from<br />

startup entrepreneurs seeking finance<br />

assistance.<br />

3. Pay attention to crowdfunding<br />

<strong>The</strong> idea behind crowdfunding is to<br />

raise money from a large number of<br />

investors through online channels like<br />

social media and business-focused<br />

websites. Online crowdfunding web<br />

portals raise money for a range of<br />

other causes, organisations, projects,<br />

events, disaster assistance, etc. This<br />

notion or idea supports social and<br />

cultural reasons while simultaneously<br />

earning money for new businesses or<br />

Peer-to-peer lending can be attractive<br />

for small businesses as it does not<br />

require collateral or a long credit history<br />

to access traditional bank lending.<br />

first-time entrepreneurs. Kickstarter,<br />

Ketto, Catapooolt, FuelADream,<br />

Fundable, Indiegogo, Milaap,<br />

Wishberry, and others are some of the<br />

top crowdfunding websites in India.<br />

4. Make a loan application for a<br />

government programme<br />

<strong>The</strong> Indian government has<br />

introduced a number of loan<br />

programmes with the goal of helping<br />

new businesses, SMEs, MSMEs, as<br />

well as women business owners,<br />

educated young, SC/ST individuals,<br />

Small Scale Industries (SSIs), villages,<br />

people living in rural and urban areas,<br />

etc. <strong>The</strong> MUDRA loan programme<br />

under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra<br />

Yojana (PMMY), Start-up India, Credit<br />

Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro<br />

and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE),<br />

Stand-up India, Atal Innovation<br />

Mission, Make in India, Trade-related<br />

Entrepreneurship Assistance and<br />

Development (TREAD), etc. are just a<br />

few of the loan programmes launched<br />

by the Indian government to aid new<br />

businesses.<br />

5. Obtain Loans from Banks in the<br />

Public and Private Sectors<br />

For start-up businesses, banks are<br />

viewed as the top priority because<br />

they are a more dependable and<br />

practical source of funding. <strong>The</strong> two<br />

types of financing that banks offer to<br />

new businesses are term loans and<br />

working capital loans. In India, almost<br />

all public and private sector banks<br />

provide loans for new businesses. <strong>The</strong><br />

interest rate, loan size, and repayment<br />

period offered, however, will differ<br />

from bank to bank.<br />

6. Request loans for small<br />

businesses from NBFCs or MFIs<br />

It will be challenging to obtain<br />

loans from private or public sector<br />

banks if you are new to lending and<br />

lack any credit history or score. To<br />

apply for a startup loan, check your<br />

credit score and then get in touch<br />

with a microfinance institution or<br />

non-banking financial company. In<br />

comparison to PSU banks, NBFCS<br />

and MFIs provide interest rates that<br />

are relatively higher.<br />

7. Use business credit cards<br />

Since start-up businesses have<br />

become more prevalent in recent<br />

years, the use of credit cards for<br />

commercial purposes has increased.<br />

Using credit cards for transactions<br />

and promptly returning the balance<br />

will help you avoid debt and extra<br />

interest rates paid in the form of<br />

penalties if your startup does not<br />

initially require big sums of cash.<br />

8. Peer-to-Peer Lending<br />

Peer-to-peer lending is a sort of<br />

money borrowing in which there<br />

are no middlemen during the entire<br />

transaction. Borrowers receive money<br />

at their disposal to invest in their<br />

start-up from lenders who lend money<br />

to them as an investment. As a result<br />

of the greater interest rate offered<br />

in this process compared to banks,<br />

NBFCS, and MFIs, lenders can profit<br />

from the borrowers. For the benefit<br />

of both lenders and borrowers, the<br />

RBI regulates peer-to-peer lending<br />

organisations. Peer-to-peer lending is<br />

a sort of financing for new businesses,<br />

but for the lender it becomes an<br />

investment.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 9

UAE Banking<br />

UBF Audit Committee holds its Sixth<br />

meeting and second for <strong>2022</strong><br />

T<strong>The</strong> UAE Banks Federation’s<br />

Audit Committee recently<br />

held its sixth meeting (and<br />

second for <strong>2022</strong>) remotely to<br />

discuss a number of important issues<br />

and to examine the Federation’s<br />

financial statements and internal audit<br />

reports. <strong>The</strong> UAE Banks Federation is<br />

the representative and unified voice of<br />

the UAE banks. <strong>The</strong> most recent Audit<br />

Committee meeting’s minutes and<br />

action items, which were reviewed<br />

and approved at the meeting, which<br />

was chaired by His Excellency<br />

Abdullah Salem Al-Turifi, a member of<br />

the UAE Banks Federation Board of<br />

Directors, took place on June 9, <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Along with the audited financial<br />

statements and budgetary control<br />

reports for the first half of <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

the conference also featured<br />

presentations and assessments of the<br />

internal audit report for the second<br />

quarter (April to June) of this year.<br />

<strong>The</strong> participants also discussed<br />

the projects that the UAE Banks<br />

Federation intends to implement in<br />

the following months of this year as<br />

well as the allocated budget in order<br />

to ensure that the tasks and initiatives<br />

are carried out in the best interest of<br />

member banks, their clients, and the<br />

10 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

UAE economy.<br />

During its most recent meeting on<br />

April 21, <strong>2022</strong>, the Board of Directors<br />

of the UAE Banks Federation chose<br />

three of its members to reorganise<br />

the Audit Committee and improve its<br />

role. <strong>The</strong> chairman of the committee<br />

was also decided upon to be His<br />

Excellency Abdullah Salem Al-Turifi,<br />

a representative of Commercial Bank<br />

of Dubai. Among the board members<br />

designated to the audit committee are<br />

Mr. Abdullah Qassem, a representative<br />

of Emirates NBD, and Mr. Adnan Al<br />

Ismail, a representative of Abu Dhabi<br />

Commercial Bank.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE Banks Federation<br />

Board’s choice to support the<br />

Audit Committee by electing board<br />

members with in-depth knowledge<br />

of and experience in the banking<br />

and financial industries reflects its<br />

conviction that it is essential to adopt<br />

a governance model that complies<br />

with the highest international<br />

standards. <strong>The</strong> decision promotes<br />

openness and stakeholder confidence<br />

in the UAE Banks Federation’s efforts<br />

to support and facilitate the banking<br />

and financial sector’s management<br />

of risks and opportunity-seizing.<br />

Vision, strategy, supervision, and<br />

implementation are the four tiers that<br />

make up the UAE Banks Federation’s<br />

governance structure.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Financial Action Task Force<br />

(FATF) requirements and regulatory<br />

visions in the area of compliance<br />

were thoroughly discussed during<br />

the conference’s opening session by<br />

Fatima Abdullah Al Jabri, Assistant<br />

Governor for Anti-Money Laundering<br />

Compliance – Market Conduct<br />

Regulation and Consumer Protection<br />

Department. Representatives from<br />

member banks, financial services<br />

organisations, financial technology<br />

companies, and organisations that<br />

provide ratings and consulting<br />

services were also present at the<br />

annual conference.<br />

His Excellency Abdulaziz Al<br />

Ghurair, Chairman of the UAE Banks<br />

Federation, stated that the third<br />

edition of the Regulatory Compliance<br />

Conference “reflects the UAE Banks<br />

Federation’s commitment to continue<br />

its efforts to improve the framework<br />

and procedures required to develop<br />

and maintain compliance processes in<br />

accordance with the Central Bank of<br />

the UAE’s guidelines.” <strong>The</strong> country’s<br />

banking and financial system will be<br />

better able to manage risk, encourage

transparency and good governance,<br />

and guard against fraud and financial<br />

crime as a result.<br />

His Excellency said, “<strong>The</strong><br />

conference was a great success in<br />

bringing together a broad variety of<br />

banking and financial specialists from<br />

around the world to examine the most<br />

recent advancements in compliance<br />

and their effects on the industry”.<br />

<strong>The</strong> groundwork for bettering<br />

frameworks and strategic strategies to<br />

assure the application of compliance<br />

requirements in the face of the<br />

banking sector’s rapid advancements<br />

is laid forth by these discussions.<br />

In the second session, which<br />

was led by Waheed Rathore, Group<br />

Head of Compliance for Financial<br />

Crimes at Dubai Islamic Bank, Michal<br />

Szabo, Executive Vice President and<br />

Head of Anti-Money Laundering and<br />

Technology Oversight at Mashreq<br />

Bank, Nishanth Nottath, and Andrew<br />

Kimbrough, Head of Compliance<br />

at SEBA Bank AG, took part. <strong>The</strong><br />

discussion was conducted by FTI<br />

Consulting, Inc.’s Abi-Gail Marshman,<br />

Senior General Manager and Head of<br />

Financial Crime Advisory.<br />

<strong>The</strong> second day of the conference<br />

was devoted to a discussion of<br />

the challenges facing the banking<br />

industry in the future. Many experts<br />

attended a currency and digital asset<br />

expert session with the theme “New<br />

Technologies Helping to Shape the<br />

Future of Banking.” Participants<br />

included Richard Teng, Regional<br />

Head of Binance for Currency and<br />

Digital Assets in the Middle East and<br />

North Africa; Wai Lum Kwok, Senior<br />

Executive Director at ADGM Regist;<br />

Deepa Raja Carbon, Vice President of<br />

the Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory<br />

Authority (VARA); Malcolm Wright,<br />

Founder of InnoFi Advisory, Vice<br />

Chair of the Advisory Board, and Co-<br />

Chair of the Digital <strong>Finance</strong> Working<br />

Group.<br />

<strong>The</strong> discussion centred on how<br />

local banks may follow Financial<br />

Action Task Force guidelines (FATF).<br />

A number of people attended the<br />

session, including Victor Matafonov,<br />

Group Chief Compliance Officer at<br />

Emirates NBD and Chairman of the<br />

UAE Banks Federation Compliance<br />

Committee, Scott Ramsay, Senior<br />

Executive Vice President – Group<br />

Head of Compliance and MLRO at<br />

Mashreq Bank, Nagendra Shivaraya,<br />

Managing Director, Head of<br />

Compliance at Standard Chartered<br />

Bank, Richard Grint, Senior Director<br />

of Forensics and Litigation at FTI<br />

Consulting, and others. <strong>The</strong> discussion<br />

was chaired by Wael Qahoush,<br />

Senior Vice President and Head of<br />

Compliance at First Abu Dhabi Bank<br />

– USA.<br />

<strong>The</strong> representation of members<br />

and the protection of their rights and<br />

interests are essential components of<br />

UBF’s mission and goals. A vital part<br />

in educating the populace about the<br />

banking industry’s contributions to the<br />

economic and social development of<br />

the nation is the United Arab Emirates<br />

Banking Federation. It provides<br />

a forum for its members to work<br />

together and share knowledge and<br />

skills. CEOs and general managers<br />

from member banks and institutions<br />

make up the UBF’s advisory council,<br />

which has 22 members and is in<br />

responsible of monitoring the<br />

execution of the organization’s<br />

policies and programmes.<br />

<strong>The</strong> core of UBF’s mission and<br />

objectives is the representation<br />

of its members and the defence of<br />

their rights and interests. <strong>The</strong> UBF<br />

has a considerable impact on the<br />

general public’s knowledge of the<br />

contributions made by the banking<br />

sector in the United Arab Emirates<br />

to the country’s economic and<br />

social growth. It provides a space<br />

for its members to collaborate and<br />

exchange knowledge and abilities.<br />

<strong>The</strong> 22-member Advisory Council<br />

of UBF is in charge of overseeing<br />

how the organization’s policies and<br />

programmes are carried out and<br />

is made up of CEOs and general<br />

managers from member banks and<br />

institutions. <strong>The</strong> CEOs Council also<br />

oversees the 25 technical and 3<br />

advisory committees of UBF, which<br />

are in charge of debating all issues<br />

pertaining to the banking and financial<br />

services in the UAE.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

www.thefinanceworld.com 11

UAE Banking News<br />

First year of ADIB Amwali’s<br />

operation sees remarkable growth<br />

In the first year that the company was in existence, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB)<br />

saw a considerable rise for “Amwali.” A 27% growth rate month over month over<br />

a 12-month period has been recorded for the first Islamic digital bank account in<br />

history, which has experienced tremendous growth. 74% of consumers are Emiratis,<br />

with a gender split of 61% men to 39% women, and over 8,000 accounts have been<br />

registered since August 2021. 54% of accounts are also between the ages of 15 and 18<br />

years old. With a variety of specialised features, such as the ability to track spending and<br />

balances, set saving objectives, pay pals, and more, Amwali offers a customised banking<br />

experience for its target consumer segments.<br />

Saudi British Bank makes<br />

sustainable cards from<br />

recyclable plastic<br />

By using sustainable cards made of recyclable plastic, Saudi British Bank<br />

(SABB) is making its SABB cards more eco-friendly. <strong>The</strong> bank stated that<br />

this project is a part of its ongoing efforts to assist the development of<br />

international environmental standards, the implementation of its strategy<br />

for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) practises, and the promotion of<br />

a sustainable economy. <strong>The</strong> card is composed of 85% recycled plastic, which will<br />

help save tonnes of plastic garbage from being generated as well as reducing total<br />

carbon emissions, according to the statement.<br />

ADIB Joining<br />

UTC’s e&<br />

enterprise<br />

blockchain<br />

platform<br />

UAE Trade Connect now has<br />

the legitimate membership<br />

of Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank.<br />

<strong>The</strong> e& enterprise, UTC,<br />

fintech blockchain platform is the<br />

country’s first fully commercialised<br />

blockchain platform. UAE Trade<br />

Connect is a cloud-native system that<br />

recognises questionable transactions,<br />

averts fraud and duplication, and<br />

supports a range of trade-related<br />

documents that need to be validated<br />

and examined for legitimacy. ADIB’s<br />

group chief risk officer, Faisal Abu<br />

Shaar, stated “We are happy to<br />

cooperate with UTC as we focus on<br />

proactively lowering fraud risks and<br />

creating a secure and open online<br />

banking ecosystem”.<br />

12 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Dubai’s GII<br />

helps to make<br />

UAE banking<br />

more digital<br />

LuLu Exchange and Wio Bank to<br />

provide cash deposits for SMEs<br />

Cash deposits can now be made by corporate clients of money transfer<br />

business LuLu Financial Group through the 89 branches of the exchange<br />

thanks to a partnership with digital lender Wio Bank, based in Abu<br />

Dhabi. <strong>The</strong> collaboration broadens the range of financial services that<br />

LuLu Exchange offers, enabling it to integrate banking services and develop its<br />

network into a hub for financial institutions. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, UAE<br />

exchange houses have teamed up more frequently with FinTechs to expand their<br />

business offerings and serve a wider range of customers.<br />

Wio and Zand are among<br />

the first wave of digitalonly<br />

banks to launch, and<br />

more traditional banks<br />

in the UAE are benefiting from the<br />

shift. Abu Dhabi’s Al Hilal Bank has<br />

confirmed some significant consumer<br />

wins since the switch in February.<br />

Another digital-only bank will soon<br />

start operating in the United Arab<br />

Emirates, but with a slightly different<br />

target market. Anglo-Gulf Trade<br />

Bank was acquired from Mubadala<br />

earlier this year, and that is the<br />

strategy Dubai-based GII (Gulf Islamic<br />

Investments) has for it. Co-CEO of GII<br />

Pankaj Gupta said, “We’re working to<br />

make it a wholesale bank that will be<br />

strongly driven by technology”.<br />

UAE’s Cashee raises $3 million<br />

to support growth in Saudi<br />

Arabia<br />

Cashee, a digital banking platform for youth in the Mena area based in the<br />

UAE, has raised $3 million in a series of funding rounds. ANB Capital and<br />

Arab National Bank led a fundraising round. Cashee will be able to grow<br />

in Saudi Arabia thanks to the strategic collaboration with Riyadh-based<br />

lender ANB. Brad Whitfield, co-founder of Cashee, stated that “closing the series<br />

A funding was a huge and crucial milestone for the company”. In order to increase<br />

financial literacy in the Mena region and equip young people with smart money<br />

skills, Dubai-based Cashee was founded in 2020.<br />

<strong>The</strong> CBI is the first UAE<br />

bank to open a location<br />

in the Metaverse<br />

<strong>The</strong> official opening of their Metaverse location<br />

has been announced by Commercial Bank<br />

International (CBI or “the Bank”), a business<br />

and retail bank with its headquarters in Dubai.<br />

CBI is the first bank in the UAE to have a presence in the<br />

Metaverse and one of the few early-adopting financial<br />

institutions in the region as well as worldwide. Visitors<br />

can now access CBI’s virtual site in Decentraland by<br />

going to cbi.dcl.eth or by using the Decentraland map<br />

coordinates (63, -127). Portals are another way to get to<br />

CBI’s virtual location. A future-focused agenda has been<br />

created by CBI.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 13

UAE Banking News<br />

UAB relies<br />

on the UAE’s<br />

booming<br />

economy<br />

A<br />

ccording to its top<br />

executive, United Arab<br />

Bank (UAB) sees a<br />

promising future for the<br />

UAE banking sector and is optimistic<br />

about maintaining high profit growth<br />

this year because to its conservative<br />

approach to risk management<br />

and strict cost control. “Covid-19<br />

pandemic containment measures<br />

adopted by the UAE government, the<br />

targeted economic support scheme<br />

(TESS) launched by the Central<br />

Bank to increase liquidity in the<br />

banking sector, and UAB’s customercentric<br />

strategy following significant<br />

management changes were all<br />

factors”, according to the bank’s chief<br />

executive officer, Shirish Bhide.<br />

Dubai Islamic Bank unveils a<br />

customer-focused charter<br />

Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), the largest Islamic bank in the United Arab<br />

Emirates and the second-largest Islamic bank in the world, recently<br />

unveiled its Customer Charter #AllAboutYou. This pledge reflects<br />

DIB’s commitment to offering customers banking services that are<br />

easy to understand, provided in a responsible manner, and in accordance with<br />

the highest standards of integrity. In conjunction with the worldwide celebration<br />

of Customer Service Week last week, #AllAboutYou was unveiled at a ceremony<br />

conducted at the Sheikh Zayed Road Branch. With the intention of highlighting the<br />

growing importance of customer service inside the organisation, the unveiling was<br />

conducted in front of senior management and staff from across the bank.<br />

GITEX Global <strong>2022</strong> features<br />

digital first bank Emirates NBD<br />

Amajor financial organisation<br />

in the MENAT (Middle East,<br />

North Africa, and Turkey)<br />

region, Emirates NBD,<br />

has announced that it would attend<br />

GITEX Global (GITEX), the biggest<br />

technology exhibition in the area,<br />

which will be hosted at the Dubai<br />

<strong>World</strong> Trade Center from 10 to 14<br />

October. Emirates NBD’s participation<br />

demonstrates the digital-first bank’s<br />

dedication to banking innovation as<br />

it joins world technology leaders at<br />

the largest technology gathering of<br />

the year. Emirates NBD collaborates<br />

with the government and leading tech<br />

companies to offer visitors genuinely<br />

innovative events and experiences.<br />

Emirates NBD has a strong history<br />

of developing first-to-market<br />

technologies and digital-first banking<br />

products that make banking simpler.<br />

Assets of UAE’s<br />

Central Bank<br />

increased by<br />

4.2% in July 22<br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank of the UAE’s<br />

balance sheet increased to<br />

Dh495.54 billion in July, up<br />

4.2 percent or Dh19.93 billion<br />

from Dh475.61 billion in July 2021. In<br />

July <strong>2022</strong>, the bank’s monthly balance<br />

sheet increased by 0.84 percent, or<br />

Dh4.13 billion, from Dh491.41 billion<br />

in June <strong>2022</strong>, according to current<br />

statistics released on Monday by<br />

the bank. In July, the bank’s assets<br />

totaled Dh215.74 billion in cash and<br />

bank balances, Dh179.25 billion in<br />

investments held to maturity, Dh65.7<br />

billion in deposits, Dh2.15 billion<br />

in loans and advances, and Dh32.7<br />

billion in other assets.<br />

14 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Central Bank of UAE<br />

Latest trends and changes of the Central<br />

Bank of UAE<br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank of the UAE reported that efforts are now being made in the UAE to put in place a<br />

financial market infrastructure that will permit instant payments throughout the nation. In a statement<br />

released after a meeting with bank CEOs, it claimed that the action will “help the change of the payment<br />

landscape” in the UAE.<br />

<strong>The</strong> foundation for consumer<br />

protection in the nation was<br />

also examined by officials,<br />

along with the handling of<br />

complaints and the proposed creation<br />

of the Sanadak Ombudsman Unit.<br />

<strong>The</strong> unit would serve as a “unique<br />

consumer complaint resolution<br />

mechanism in the Middle East<br />

area, providing easy access and<br />

quick turnaround for settlement of<br />

consumer concerns,” according to the<br />

announcement.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank also emphasised<br />

the development of measures aimed<br />

at increasing the proportion of<br />

Emiratis employed in the banking<br />

industry this year, in keeping with<br />

the national objective of the UAE.<br />

“We at the Central Bank are keen on<br />

holding these regular meetings with<br />

the bank chief executives to discuss<br />

the updates and initiatives that<br />

would enhance the banking sector<br />

and support the transformation of<br />

the UAE’s financial infrastructure,<br />

to be among the best central banks<br />

and financial systems worldwide,”<br />

said Khaled Balama, governor of the<br />

Central Bank. As banks embraced the<br />

ideas mentioned at the conference,<br />

“we also recognise the role they play<br />

in the development of the industry,”<br />

he added.<br />

Following the Covid-19 outbreak,<br />

the UAE’s payments landscape is<br />

undergoing a rapid digital revolution.<br />

Locally, trends in the payments sector,<br />

such as platforms for “buy now, pay<br />

later,” digital wallets, and contactless<br />

<strong>The</strong> unit would serve<br />

as a “unique consumer<br />

complaint resolution<br />

mechanism in the<br />

Middle East area,<br />

providing easy access<br />

and quick turnaround<br />

for settlement of<br />

consumer concerns,”<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 15

Central Bank of UAE<br />

card designs, are gaining acceptance.<br />

After the pandemic, online<br />

purchases skyrocketed, and<br />

Checkout.com, a provider of payment<br />

solutions, recently reported that more<br />

than half of all inhabitants now use<br />

digital wallets. Among the younger<br />

age, these have grown in popularity.<br />

According to a Visa research<br />

released earlier this year, over<br />

half of UAE customers intend to<br />

abandon cash by 2024, compared to<br />

41% globally. According to a March<br />

research by US technology company<br />

Entrust, the majority of Middle<br />

Eastern consumers are likewise<br />

moving toward digital banking, with<br />

61% of UAE consumers choosing to<br />

transact online.<br />

In general, the Central Bank<br />

stated that the UAE’s banking sector<br />

“remained resilient throughout the<br />

pandemic, with a broad-based and<br />

robust recovery visible across key<br />

banking system indicators during<br />

<strong>2022</strong>.”<br />

According to the statement, the<br />

regulator “instituted extensive support<br />

measures throughout the pandemic<br />

and a well-sequenced exit strategy<br />

that balanced between a progressive<br />

lifting of emergency measures and<br />

sustained support of the recovery.”<br />

According to a report released<br />

last month by consultancy Alvarez<br />

& Marsal, the combined net profit of<br />

the top ten banks in the United Arab<br />

Emirates increased by more than<br />

24% quarter over quarter from April<br />

to June of this year. This increase<br />

was driven by a sharp increase in<br />

net interest income. According to<br />

the consultant, the total net income<br />

for the three months ending in June<br />

increased to Dh12.6 billion ($3.43<br />

billion).<br />

CBUAE’s assets increased by 4.2%<br />

to $135 billion in July <strong>2022</strong><br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank of the UAE’s<br />

balance sheet increased to AED495.54<br />

billion in July, a rise of 4.2 percent<br />

or AED19.93 billion as compared<br />

to AED475.61 billion in July 2021.<br />

Recent statistics from the bank were<br />

released, showing that its balance<br />

sheet increased month over month in<br />

July <strong>2022</strong> by 0.84 percent, or AED4.13<br />

billion, as compared to June <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

when it increased by AED491.41<br />

billion.<br />

In July, the bank’s assets included<br />

AED215.74 billion in cash and bank<br />

16 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

balances, AED179.25 billion in<br />

investments held to maturity, AED65.7<br />

billion in deposits, AED2.15 billion<br />

in loans and advances, and AED32.7<br />

billion in other assets.<br />

<strong>The</strong> balance sheet shows that<br />

assets and liabilities were allocated<br />

among current and deposit accounts<br />

worth AED 211.82 billion, certificates<br />

of deposit and cash bills worth AED<br />

144.84 billion, issued notes and coins<br />

worth AED 114.94 billion, capital and<br />

reserves worth AED 17.87 billion,<br />

and liabilities amounting to AED 6.07<br />

billion.<br />

CBUAE issued 1000 coins for the<br />

30th anniversary of Tawazun<br />

For the 30th anniversary of the<br />

Tawazun Economic Council, the<br />

UAE Central Bank has released a<br />

commemorative coin. Each 40-gram<br />

coin features a bitmap image of the<br />

desert on it. <strong>The</strong> phrase “Strong<br />

Roots, Endless Possibilities” is written<br />

in Arabic and English on the upper<br />

and lower edges of the coin, while<br />

the word “Tawazun” is inscribed on<br />

the front of the coin. <strong>The</strong> name of<br />

the Central Bank is written in Arabic<br />

and English around the notional<br />

value of Dh30 on the reverse side.<br />

According to the Central Bank, “Over<br />

its 30 years, Tawazun has significantly<br />

succeeded in fostering ecosystem<br />

growth and human potential<br />

development through international<br />

and local partnerships.”<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE Armed Forces and<br />

Abu Dhabi Police use Tawazun, an<br />

organisation founded in 1992, as their<br />

acquisitions authority. <strong>The</strong> nation’s<br />

defence and security sector benefits<br />

from its growth and development.<br />

A preliminary deal to establish<br />

a company in Abu Dhabi between<br />

Tawazun and the aircraft maker<br />

Airbus was reached last year,<br />

extending their business relationship.<br />

To speed up the development of the<br />

UAE’s industrial sector, it also joined<br />

the national In-Country Value initiative<br />

run by the Ministry of Industry and<br />

Advanced Technology.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank’s headquarters<br />

and branches will not be selling any of<br />

the issued coins because they have all<br />

been sent to Tawazun. In celebration<br />

of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque<br />

Center, the Central Bank released<br />

1,971 silver commemorative coins<br />

earlier this year.<br />

<strong>The</strong> words “<strong>The</strong> union exists in my<br />

spirit, in my heart, and it is the dearest<br />

to my heart” are printed alongside a<br />

portrait of the late Sheikh Zayed bin<br />

Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father<br />

of the United Arab Emirates.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque<br />

is depicted on the coin along with<br />

the phrase “<strong>The</strong> Year of the 50th.” As<br />

the UAE hosted the world’s fair the<br />

previous year, the banking authority<br />

further produced silver coins with the<br />

official mascots of Expo 2020 Dubai.<br />

Shari’ah authority meeting held at<br />

CBUAE<br />

Also, In the Emirate of Abu Dhabi,<br />

the Higher Shari’ah Authority at the<br />

Central Bank of the UAE hosted the<br />

fourth round table conference of the<br />

Central Shari’ah Authorities.<br />

<strong>The</strong> meeting is in line with<br />

initiatives to advance cooperation<br />

and experience sharing, develop<br />

Islamic finance, and it sheds light on a<br />

number of significant issues, including<br />

developments in Shari’ah and legal<br />

issues, difficulties faced by Islamic<br />

financial institutions, trends in Islamic<br />

finance toward sustainability, and<br />

cooperation in achieving sustainable<br />

development objectives while taking<br />

advantage of the central Shari’ah<br />

authorities’ experiences in this area.<br />

During the meeting, the participants<br />

covered three topics: the Shari’ah<br />

guide for exceptional circumstances,<br />

the regulatory authorities’ role in<br />

establishing the necessary controls in<br />

accordance with Shari’ah principles<br />

and standards, and the strategic<br />

planning needed to come up with<br />

workable solutions for exceptional<br />

cases.<br />

<strong>The</strong> meeting also covered a<br />

number of other subjects, such as<br />

the standardisation of cross-border<br />

transactions, the various approaches<br />

for Islamic financial institutions to<br />

adopt green finance and sustainability<br />

standards, and the social<br />

responsibility that Islamic financial<br />

institutions have taken on since their<br />

inception, which is a key component<br />

of sustainability.

Fintech<br />

Fintech Revolution in the Middle East<br />

Boosts Financial Inclusion<br />

Fintech has contributed notably to increasing access to digital financial services, and the needs to<br />

address the high proportion of financially excluded population fuel the rapid growth of fintech in the<br />

Middle East. Businesses are now able to offer financial services through different forms of technology,<br />

enabling themselves to expand and grow. <strong>The</strong>re are currently over 470 fintech unicorns globally, while<br />

several hundred others are being established every day.<br />

Moreover, the Saudi Arabian<br />

Technology Venture<br />

Capital Fund (STV) has<br />

recently conducted a<br />

study, through which it predicted<br />

that MENA region will witness the<br />

emergence of 45 unicorns worth<br />

over $100 billion by 2030. Similarly,<br />

An Economist Impact survey of 300<br />

C-suite executives from the banking<br />

industry titled Threat Assessment<br />

<strong>2022</strong>: Digital Competition in Global<br />

<strong>Finance</strong>, commissioned by WS02,<br />

concluded that 47% of banking<br />

executives provide customer services<br />

through digital channels.<br />

<strong>The</strong> survey also predicted that<br />

over the next two years, 77% of these<br />

executives expect their organizations<br />

will provide their services mainly<br />

through digital channels. As Eric<br />

Newcomer, WSO2 chief technology<br />

officer, puts it, “All signs in the<br />

Economist Impact report point to<br />

established financial institutions<br />

successfully rising to the digital<br />

challenge.”<br />

Numerous analysts and experts<br />

predict that the Middle East will be<br />

the global fintech leader in the near<br />

future, for it has always aspired to be<br />

at the forefront of financial innovation<br />

and has witnessed an influx of fintech<br />

startups. Statista revealed that the<br />

number of fintech companies in the<br />

Middle East is projected to grow from<br />

30 in 2017 to 465 this year, while the<br />

number of already existing fintech<br />

firms in the regain was above 760 in<br />

2020, according to Statista.<br />

According to Wamda, a platform<br />

of programs and networks that<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 17

Fintech<br />

aims to accelerate entrepreneurship<br />

ecosystems across MENA, startups<br />

in the Middle East and North Africa<br />

region raised $176m in May this year<br />

across 42 deals, which represents<br />

a 62.7% increase YoY. Furthermore,<br />

the post-COVID-19 period has been<br />

particularly prosperous, although<br />

most of the capital has been<br />

traditionally provided by the sovereign<br />

wealth funds of the Gulf Countries,<br />

as the region has been attracting<br />

more international investors who are<br />

looking for great opportunities.<br />

However, the infrastructure needs<br />

to address the high proportion of<br />

financially excluded population are<br />

driving the financial inclusion in the<br />

Middle East, as fintech businesses<br />

bridge the market gaps where<br />

traditional banks had limited success<br />

so far in a region where over 70<br />

percent of people do not have any<br />

access to bank accounts. <strong>The</strong> fintech<br />

firms have been able to secure fund<br />

raising, particularly in the fields of<br />

insurtech, payments, lending, money<br />

transfer, and digital wallets.<br />

<strong>The</strong> government of the UAE has<br />

taken numerous measures to support<br />

the growth of fintech. Dubai, for<br />

example, launched in 2017 a $100m<br />

fintech-centered fund to accelerate<br />

the development of fintech through<br />

investing in startups. In 2019, Dubai<br />

integrated the top-10 financial centers<br />

globally, then it became the most<br />

attractive financial center in the<br />

Middle East in 2020. In February <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

however, it became home to more<br />

than 3,600 financial businesses, up<br />

25 percent from a year earlier, and<br />

including 1,000 new registrations in<br />

2021, compared to 735 in 2020.<br />

In May 2021, the UAE launched the<br />

DIFC Innovation Hub, which is the<br />

region’s first ecosystem dedicated<br />

to bringing innovation and fintech<br />

communities together. <strong>The</strong> hub<br />

connects startups with commercial<br />

partners and delivers financial<br />

initiatives to provide funding, hence<br />

many experts believe that this hub<br />

is likely to play a prominent role in<br />

driving collaboration between earlystage<br />

and growth startups, big tech<br />

businesses, and tech unicorns.<br />

In Saudi Arabic, the government<br />

is aiming at enhancing the economic<br />

empowerment for individuals and<br />

communities, as Riyadh turning into<br />

a global fintech hub. Fintech Saudi<br />

estimates that the number of active<br />

18 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

fintech firms in the kingdom grew<br />

by 37% in 2021, whereas investments<br />

reached $347bn last month.<br />

However, each country in the GCC<br />

has its own regulatory requirements,<br />

fintech businesses have to balance<br />

their growth plans with each country’s<br />

operating rules. Governments have<br />

launched several initiatives of<br />

regulatory sandboxes across the<br />

region, aiming to accelerate the<br />

fintech growth and drive the adoption<br />

of digital financial solutions.<br />

Nevertheless, in order to grow<br />

sustainably, fintech firms must employ<br />

the right amount of regulatory risk<br />

as they balance their expansion with<br />

compliance to the aforementioned<br />

regulatory requirements. Moreover, by<br />

confirming that the steps of identity<br />

verification are secure, seamless, and<br />

compliant, the robust processes of<br />

onboarding prevent money laundering<br />

<strong>The</strong> central banks<br />

of UAE, Saudi<br />

Arabia, And Egypt<br />

are launching<br />

National Instant<br />

Payments Platforms<br />

(IPPs) in order to<br />

expedite the process<br />

of digitalizing<br />

payments and<br />

lead to financial<br />

inclusion<br />

and reduce the risk of fraud for<br />

businesses. Thus, fintech firms need<br />

to have the technology that may be<br />

deployed effortlessly in all countries.<br />

Middle Eastern governments, on<br />

their part, have undertaken significant<br />

financial reforms and commenced<br />

major initiatives to drive financial<br />

inclusion, privatize assets, monetize<br />

infrastructure assets, and increase<br />

public-private partnerships. As we<br />

mentioned earlier, Middle Eastern<br />

governments have also longestablished<br />

financial centers in major<br />

cities such as Abu Dhabi, Dubai,<br />

Manama, and Riyadh.<br />

Overall, fintech usage has surged<br />

as there has been massive increase<br />

in digital payments, compared to<br />

a decrease in branch openings.<br />

However, the usage of Buy Now, Pay<br />

Later (BNPL) services, as a recent<br />

focus of fintech initiatives, is still in<br />

its early stages compared to European<br />

countries. In 2021, the market share<br />

of Buy Now, Pay Later in domestic<br />

commerce payments did not exceed 1<br />

percent in the UAE and Saudi Arabia,<br />

compared to 6 percent in the United<br />

Kingdom, 18 percent in Norway, and<br />

25 percent in Sweden.<br />

In spite of that, Buy Now, Pay<br />

Later is projected to benefit from<br />

the overall growth of the region<br />

in electronic payments such as<br />

m-commerce, e-commerce, cards, and<br />

e-wallets, especially in the shadow if<br />

the increased collaboration between<br />

BNPL players and retail banks.<br />

<strong>The</strong> fintech sector is also<br />

expected to grow over the coming<br />

years, as suggested by the current<br />

government initiatives, governmentled<br />

infrastructure, and the efforts to<br />

reduce financial exclusion. Thus, the<br />

central banks of UAE, Saudi Arabia,<br />

And Egypt are launching National<br />

Instant Payments Platforms (IPPs)<br />

in order to expedite the process of<br />

digitalizing payments and lead to<br />

financial inclusion.<br />

Expanding financial technology,<br />

however, needs higher levels of<br />

digital financial technology, for there<br />

has been a significant shift towards<br />

accessing financial services through<br />

fintech platforms. Together with the<br />

widespread of internet access and the<br />

adoption of smartphones, financial<br />

inclusion and digital literacy will<br />

undoubtedly contribute positively<br />

to the growth of economy. This,<br />

however, requires tremendous work<br />

around financial education to confirm<br />

that financially-excluded people<br />

access financial facilities and know<br />

how to use them.

Mubadala<br />

invests $105<br />

million in<br />

Brazilian<br />

fintech Cerc<br />

Cerc confirmed Mubadala’s<br />

interest in the investment,<br />

which was initially reported<br />

by a Brazilian news website<br />

and is still subject to regulatory<br />

approval, according to Cerc. Reuters<br />

reported earlier this year that Cerc<br />

was in discussions with venture<br />

capital investors for an investment of<br />

$100 million as a step toward an initial<br />

public offering (IPO). When Cerc was<br />

first established in 2015, its primary<br />

goal was to offer an online platform<br />

for factoring transactions that would<br />

serve as a substitute for notaries and<br />

enable the owners of receivables to<br />

utilise them as collateral to obtain<br />

more affordable financing.<br />

Xpence<br />

introduces a<br />

Visa expense<br />

management<br />

product in UAE<br />

<strong>The</strong> second of five markets<br />

where Xpence’s fintech<br />

platform for SMEs is<br />

currently live was the UAE.<br />

This was done in the last 18 months.<br />

Following its early 2019 enrollment as<br />

one of the region’s first companies in<br />

the Visa Fintech Fast Track Program,<br />

the company is now providing the<br />

service in conjunction with Visa.<br />

Downloading the app will allow UAE<br />

business owners to create an Xpence<br />

account. <strong>The</strong>y can give their workers<br />

physical or virtual Visa cards that are<br />

accepted all around the world. Each<br />

card’s individual spending restrictions<br />

and limits can be set.<br />

Fintech News<br />

YAP negotiates<br />

with venture<br />

capital funds<br />

about $20<br />

million funding<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE-based fintech firm<br />

YAP is in negotiations<br />

to raise $20 million from<br />

a number of investors,<br />

including international and Middle<br />

Eastern venture capital (VC) funds.<br />

<strong>The</strong> funding will mostly be used to<br />

finance the digital banking venture’s<br />

expansion goals in South Asia and<br />

Africa. Fintech startup raised $41<br />

million from family offices and venture<br />

capital firms in July of this year,<br />

with Aljazira Capital of Saudi Arabia<br />

serving as the lead investor. In YAP’s<br />

most recent round of fundraising,<br />

other investors included Abu Dawood<br />

Group, Astra Group, Audacia Capital,<br />

and a few well-known Family Offices.<br />

A slowdown in funding for startups<br />

globally, according to investor circles,<br />

could raise concerns as YAP enters the<br />

capital market.<br />

DFSA grants UAE FinTech Mamo<br />

permission to operate from DIFC<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai Financial Services<br />

Authority (DFSA) has<br />

granted Mamo, a UAEbased<br />

FinTech and financial<br />

services platform for small and<br />

medium-sized businesses, a licence to<br />

establish operations within the Dubai<br />

International Financial Centre. Mamo<br />

will be able to conduct regulated<br />

money services and further extend<br />

its products and services without<br />

user limits thanks to the regulatory<br />

approval to operate from the emirate’s<br />

financial centre, one of the best in the<br />

Middle East, Africa, and South Asia<br />

region. <strong>The</strong> DFSA, the independent<br />

regulator of DIFC, granted the<br />

approval after deciding to permit<br />

Mamo to participate in its Innovation<br />

Testing Licence (ITL) programme in<br />

June 2021.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 19

Fintech News<br />

Data analytics & AI increase Middle<br />

East and Turkey’s FinTech industries<br />

FINTX of<br />

Emirates Post<br />

Group debuts<br />

at Gitex<br />

Emirates Post Group<br />

announced that Gitex<br />

Global <strong>2022</strong>, which will<br />

be hosted in Dubai from<br />

October 10–14, will be the time when<br />

its new fintech division, “FINTX,”<br />

would be introduced. In addition<br />

to launching new businesses with<br />

attractive product offerings and<br />

forming strategic alliances with<br />

established businesses and start-ups,<br />

the new company will be dedicated to<br />

establishing an improved and effective<br />

fintech eco-system by transforming<br />

the current financial services<br />

companies. <strong>The</strong> new business will also<br />

present to the general audience during<br />

Gitex its new strategy, offerings, and<br />

long-term goals.<br />

According to a new survey by the global payments corporation MasterCard,<br />

artificial intelligence and data analytics are the major technologies driving the<br />

growth of the Middle East and Turkish FinTech industries. FinTech offerings<br />

are “agile and able to identify opportunities,” frequently during the times of<br />

unfavourable events like the 2008 financial crisis and the Covid-19 pandemic, according<br />

to MasterCard’s white-paper, “Future of FinTech: smart, scalable, collaborative,”<br />

which was released during the Gitex <strong>2022</strong> at the Dubai <strong>World</strong> Trade Centre. <strong>The</strong> study<br />

discovered that the “collaborative approach” is one of the important factors influencing<br />

FinTech growth in the Middle East and Turkey region.<br />

Fintech Surge <strong>2022</strong> brings<br />

Middle East and North Africa<br />

Fintech Community together<br />

<strong>The</strong> greatest gathering of the<br />

fintech community will take<br />

place at Fintech Surge <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

featuring over 600 influential<br />

investors, entrepreneurs, and top<br />

innovators from disruptive fintech<br />

companies throughout the world.<br />

Visionaries and top innovators will<br />

be featured at the conference, and<br />

they will share their expertise on<br />

navigating the continuously changing<br />

financial ecosystem. <strong>The</strong> fintech<br />

industry has recently experienced an<br />

acceleration, with the UAE having<br />

been at the forefront of financial<br />

innovation. <strong>The</strong> nation is currently<br />

home to 24 percent of the region’s<br />

fintech companies, and it provided 41<br />

percent of the $864 million in startup<br />

funding for the MENA region in the<br />

first quarter of 2021.<br />

Banque Saudi Fransi to establish<br />

a corporate venture capital fund<br />

According to Grant Niven,<br />

head of group digital at<br />

Banque Saudi Fransi, the<br />

bank intends to establish<br />

a corporate venture capital fund<br />

to invest in fintech businesses.<br />

In a statement highlighting the<br />

development of the fintech industry<br />

in Saudi Arabia, where more than<br />

SAR 1 billion ($266 million) has<br />

been invested in fintech companies<br />

so far this year, Niven said that the<br />

majority of the nation’s banks have<br />

now modified their strategy toward<br />

entrepreneurs. He remarked during a<br />

panel discussion at Fintech Surge, a<br />

part of GITEX Global <strong>2022</strong> in Dubai,<br />

that traditional banks perceive an<br />

opportunity and anticipate investing<br />

an additional SAR 2.5 billion in Saudi<br />

fintech businesses.<br />

20 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

OneConnect Financial Technology establishes a<br />

presence in the Middle East in ADGM<br />

OneConnect Financial<br />

Technology, a supplier of<br />

Technology-as-a-Service<br />

for financial institutions,<br />

declared the beginning of its regional<br />

operations in Abu Dhabi Global<br />

Market (ADGM). With OneConnect<br />

becoming a member of the ADGM<br />

family, the ecosystem for fintech<br />

will grow even more, and the region<br />

and the UAE’s financial services<br />

will change into digital offerings<br />

faster. In particular, ADGM and<br />

OneConnect collaborated to build<br />

the ADGM Digital Lab, which was<br />

introduced in April 2021 as a market<br />

and industry sandbox to promote<br />

the development of fintech solutions<br />

under the direction and supervision<br />

of the Financial Services Regulatory<br />

Authority (FSRA).<br />

ADIB joins UAE Trade Connect’s<br />

e& enterprise blockchain<br />

platform<br />

One of the country’s top<br />

financial institutions,<br />

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank<br />

(ADIB), declared that<br />

it has joined UAE Trade Connect<br />

as an official member (UTC). This<br />

relationship is intended to strengthen<br />

the Bank’s digital transformation<br />

plan and improve the security and<br />

transparency of its services as part<br />

of the membership agreement.<br />

Through the use of the UAE Trade<br />

Connect technology to identify fraud<br />

and questionable trade financing<br />

transactions, this relationship further<br />

solidifies ADIB’s position as the most<br />

creative Islamic bank in the region.<br />

UTC is the e& enterprise fintech<br />

blockchain platform, which was<br />

developed by e& (formerly known<br />

as Etisalat Group), and is the first<br />

fully operational blockchain platform<br />

to emerge from the United Arab<br />

Emirates.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 21

Business<br />

High output and new orders help Saudi<br />

Arabia’s non-oil sector grow<br />

Despite worries about<br />

inflation and global<br />

macroeconomic challenges,<br />

business activity in Saudi<br />

Arabia’s non-oil private sector<br />

economy continued to improve in<br />

September as output and new orders<br />

surged strongly on strong demand. In<br />

September, the seasonally adjusted<br />

S&P Global purchasing managers’<br />

index for the kingdom registered 56.6.<br />

<strong>The</strong> headline PMI number indicated<br />

an improvement in the health of<br />

the nation’s non-oil private sector<br />

economy for the 25th consecutive<br />

month, although being down from 57.7<br />

in August. A reading that is above the<br />

neutral value of 50 denotes expansion,<br />

while one that is below it denotes<br />

contraction.<br />

“Saudi Arabia’s non-oil private<br />

sector economy retained an<br />

impressive pace of growth during<br />

September, especially against the<br />

backdrop of increasingly challenging<br />

22 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

global economic conditions,” said<br />

David Owen, an economist at S&P<br />

Global Market Intelligence. “Both<br />

output and new orders rose at rates<br />

above their averages for their current<br />

25-month growth sequences.”<br />

A substantial percentage of<br />

what is an incredibly favourable<br />

pipeline of new business, according<br />

to Mr. Owen, will be successfully<br />

converted into hard contract wins<br />

because businesses are confident<br />

in the quality of their products and<br />

services. <strong>The</strong> demand and output<br />

both continued to improve, which<br />

fueled consumer spending. In spite of<br />

August’s seven-year high, growth was<br />

noticeable as businesses worked to<br />

maintain inventory levels amid high<br />

“current and forecast sales demand.”<br />

According to the most recent data,<br />

the non-oil private sector economy<br />

of the kingdom is still adding jobs,<br />

but more slowly as work backlogs<br />

have decreased for four consecutive<br />

months.<br />

<strong>The</strong> non-oil private sector<br />

economies of Saudi Arabia and the<br />

UAE showed a considerable boost in<br />

business activity in August despite<br />

mounting concerns about a global<br />

economic slowdown and inflationary<br />

pressures. <strong>The</strong> seasonally adjusted<br />

S&P Global purchasing managers’<br />

index (PMI) for Saudi Arabia jumped<br />

to 57.7 in August from 56.3 in July,<br />

which is the highest reading since<br />

October 2021 as new business<br />

growth hit a ten-month high. <strong>The</strong><br />

non-oil private sector economies of<br />

Saudi Arabia and the UAE showed<br />

a considerable boost in business<br />

activity in August despite mounting<br />

concerns about a global economic<br />

slowdown and inflationary pressures.<br />

<strong>The</strong> seasonally adjusted S&P Global<br />

purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for<br />

Saudi Arabia jumped to 57.7 in August<br />

from 56.3 in July, which is the highest<br />

reading since October 2021 as new

usiness growth hit a ten-month high.<br />

According to anecdotal evidence<br />

provided by survey participants,<br />

output had risen mostly as a result<br />

of rising new business inflows,<br />

which were aided by strengthening<br />

demand circumstances. <strong>The</strong> third<br />

quarter of the year saw advances in<br />

the output, new orders, inventories<br />

of purchases, and employment of the<br />

kingdom. According to the survey,<br />

manufacturing, construction, and<br />

services all witnessed rise in the<br />

number of new jobs, with wholesale<br />

and retail seeing the largest rate<br />

of growth. Due to the continuous<br />

improvement in non-oil economic<br />

activity, businesses raised their input<br />

purchases in August, with the growth<br />

rate increasing to its sharpest in seven<br />

years.<br />

<strong>The</strong> second quarter of <strong>2022</strong> saw<br />

Saudi Arabia’s GDP rise by 11.8%, with<br />

the country’s oil-related economic<br />

activity increasing by 23.1% annually.<br />

In its <strong>World</strong> Economic Outlook report<br />

published in July, the IMF predicted<br />

that the kingdom’s economy will rise<br />

by 7.6% this year, followed growth<br />

of 3.2% in 2021. <strong>The</strong> non-oil growth<br />

rate will peak in <strong>2022</strong> at 4.2% before<br />

reverting to its medium-term potential<br />

of 4%. <strong>The</strong> UAE PMI Index recorded a<br />

score of 56.7 in August, up from 55.4<br />

in July, which is the fastest growth in<br />

business activity since June 2019. <strong>The</strong><br />

second-fastest sales growth rate in<br />

more than three years was recorded.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE Central Bank projects that<br />

inflation will normally reach 2.7% in<br />

<strong>2022</strong> after remaining at 3.3% in the<br />

first quarter. As businesses increased<br />

employees to clear backlogs in the<br />

midst of the ongoing economic<br />

recovery, the number of persons in<br />

employment increased for the fourth<br />

month in a row, rising to its highest<br />

level in a year.<br />

<strong>The</strong> second quarter saw Saudi<br />

Arabia’s GDP expand by 12.2%, faster<br />

than expected and at its best rate<br />

in over ten years, thanks to rising<br />

oil prices. <strong>The</strong> General Authority<br />

for Statistics (GASTAT) of the<br />

kingdom reported last month that<br />

the annualised real gross domestic<br />

product growth in the three months<br />

leading up to the end of June was<br />

the fastest since the third quarter<br />

of 2011. Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s top<br />

crude producer, saw a 23% increase<br />

in economic activity tied to oil in the<br />

second quarter. GASTAT revised up<br />

the non-oil economic activity’s growth<br />

from its 5.4 percent flash estimates to<br />

an 8.2 percent increase.<br />

<strong>The</strong> IMF predicted that Saudi<br />

Arabia’s GDP would increase by 7.6%<br />

this year after growing by 3.2% in<br />

2021 in its <strong>World</strong> Economic Outlook<br />

update. <strong>The</strong> non-oil growth rate of<br />

the kingdom will reach 4.2% in <strong>2022</strong><br />

before reverting to its medium-term<br />

potential of 4%. <strong>The</strong> economy of the<br />

Saudi Arabian kingdom is expected to<br />

expand by 8.7% this year, according<br />

to the investment firm Jadwa<br />

Investment, after showing significant<br />

growth in both oil and non-oil<br />

industries in the first half of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

According to David Owen,<br />

economist and survey compiler at<br />

S&P Global Market Intelligence,<br />

“the upturn was accentuated by a<br />

significant increase in new business<br />

levels, which encouraged firms to<br />

boost their output sharply and make<br />

higher input purchases.” “<strong>The</strong> most<br />

recent data also indicated an increase<br />

in input cost pressures, as fuel and<br />

raw material costs grew in response<br />

to supply issues around the world.<br />

Notably, cost inflation reached its<br />

highest point in over two years,<br />

leading to an additional increase in<br />

average prices charged.”<br />

Some businesses raised prices<br />

as a result of input cost inflation<br />

reaching its highest level in 22<br />

months. <strong>The</strong> most recent survey<br />

data showed that overall output<br />

confidence was increasing to a<br />

17-month high, Owen said, “despite<br />

some companies reporting fears that<br />

persistent price increases could slow<br />

the present path of development.”<br />

This encouraging development<br />

aided efforts to raise stock levels<br />

in anticipation of future demand as<br />

well as a slight rise in employment.<br />

Although the employment sub-index<br />

fell slightly in June, it still managed<br />

to stay just above the threshold of<br />

50 that distinguishes expansion from<br />

contraction.<br />

According to GASTAT, the<br />

kingdom’s GDP per capita soared in<br />

the April to June quarter, growing<br />

44.6% annually to 29,819 Saudi<br />

riyals ($7,941). <strong>The</strong> IMF anticipates<br />

that even if the kingdom’s central<br />

bank tightens monetary policy in<br />

accordance with the US Federal<br />

Reserve, inflation will be kept under<br />

control at 2.8% in <strong>2022</strong>. According to<br />

GASTAT, Saudi Arabia’s consumer<br />

<strong>The</strong> non-oil<br />

private sector<br />

economies of<br />

Saudi Arabia and<br />

the UAE showed<br />

a considerable<br />

boost in business<br />

activity in August<br />

despite mounting<br />

concerns about a<br />

global economic<br />

slowdown and<br />

inflationary<br />

pressures.<br />

prices grew by 3% on an annualised<br />

basis, which is higher than the 2.7%<br />

inflation rate seen in August. <strong>The</strong>y<br />

are significantly lower than OECD<br />

countries’ multi-decade inflation rates.<br />

At the end of the third quarter,<br />

inflation, energy rationing, import<br />

restrictions, and poor demand<br />

continued to put pressure on Egypt’s<br />

non-oil private sector economy.<br />

Egypt’s September PMI index reading<br />

was equal to its August level of<br />

47.6, which was its joint-weakest<br />

performance in the previous seven<br />

months. According to Shreeya Patel,<br />

an analyst at S&P Global Market<br />

Intelligence, “non-oil activity in Egypt<br />

continued to suffer from sluggish<br />

demand, geopolitical tensions,<br />

and skyrocketing inflation in the<br />

final month of the third quarter.”<br />

Energy rationing regulations were<br />

implemented as a result of the energy<br />

crisis, which was caused by Russia’s<br />

conflict with Ukraine. Unfavorable<br />

changes in the pound-dollar exchange<br />

rate increased the “already steep price<br />

pressures,” she continued.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 23

Business News<br />

Saudi Crown Prince launches<br />

a new company to enhance<br />

downtown areas<br />

HH Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince<br />

and Chairman of the Public Investment Fund, officially established the<br />

Saudi Downtown Company (SDC), whose goal is to build and develop<br />

downtown areas and mixed-use attractions in 12 cities throughout<br />

Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund (PIF). <strong>The</strong> organisation will work to improve<br />

the infrastructure and forge strategic partnerships with the private sector and<br />

investors by establishing new business and investment possibilities in important<br />

economic sectors like retail, tourism, entertainment, and housing. PIF’s fiveyear<br />

plan states that by the end of 2025, the wealth fund will create 1.8 million<br />

direct and indirect jobs, spend at least $40 billion yearly in domestic projects<br />

and investments, and contribute a total of $320 billion to non-oil GDP through its<br />

portfolio firms.<br />

Hackers stole $570 million from<br />

Binance<br />

Hackers stole the BNB token<br />

from Binance, the biggest<br />

cryptocurrency exchange<br />

in the world, for around<br />

$570 million. Following the attack,<br />

Binance, which processes 1.4 million<br />

transactions every second and moves<br />

$2 billion worth of digital assets every<br />

day, was forced to temporarily suspend<br />

its blockchain network. On Saturday<br />

morning, BNB lost more than 4% of<br />

its value, falling to $281.06. On Friday<br />

at midday, it had reached a price of<br />

$293.1. BNB Chain briefly shut down its<br />

blockchain before starting it up again<br />

around 06:30 GMT.<br />

Burjeel Holdings’ IPO to raise<br />

$300 million at the current share<br />

price<br />

Burjeel Holdings of the UAE has set its final share price at AED 2.00<br />

($0.54), raising AED 1.1 billion ($299.5 million) through its initial<br />

public offering (IPO). <strong>The</strong> company will issue shares on the Abu Dhabi<br />

Securities Exchange and is offering an 11% stake in the IPO (ADX). On<br />

October 10, <strong>2022</strong>, trading under the symbol “BURJEEL”, it is anticipated to begin<br />

and be listed on ADX. Burjeel’s market value upon listing is anticipated to be over<br />

AED 10.4 billion based on the final offer price, “making it one of the largest private<br />

healthcare companies on ADX by market value,” Burjeel Holdings stated in a<br />

release.<br />

UAE’s<br />

e-commerce<br />

business set to<br />

grow to $9.2<br />

billion by 2026<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai Chamber of<br />

Commerce predicts that the<br />

UAE’s e-commerce business<br />

will be worth $9.2 billion<br />

by 2026 and that its proportion of<br />

the country’s total retail sales would<br />

be 12.6 percent by then. <strong>The</strong> report,<br />

which used data from Euromonitor,<br />

highlighted a number of aspects<br />

encouraging e-commerce activity and<br />

expansion possibilities in the UAE.<br />

Total e-commerce sales in the UAE<br />

increased significantly in 2021, rising<br />

to $4.8 billion, up from $2.6 billion in<br />

2019. According to the report, more<br />

than a third of UAE customers made<br />

at least one smartphone purchase<br />

per week, which is higher than the<br />

global average for weekly online<br />

transactions.<br />

24 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

UAE’s Arada wins Dhs377 million<br />

construction contracts for the<br />

Aljada project<br />

In the first residential phase of<br />

Aljada, Arada claimed to have<br />

built over 1,500 residences,<br />

including all 14 apartment<br />

buildings and a community of garden<br />

villas. For its Aljada project in<br />

Sharjah, the real estate development<br />

business Arada has granted two<br />

significant contracts. <strong>The</strong> 24 million<br />

square foot mixed-use megaproject in<br />

Gulf alliance formed by Dubai’s<br />

Apparel Group and India’s Nykaa<br />

<strong>The</strong> lifestyle and clothing<br />

goliath Apparel Group<br />

in Dubai and the Indian<br />

cosmetics and fashion<br />

retailer Nykaa have teamed together<br />

to expand in the Gulf area. With<br />

the arrangement, Nykaa intends<br />

to expand in an area with a high<br />

demand for beauty items after<br />

reporting a “subdued season” for the<br />

three months ending in June due to<br />

inflationary pressures in India. Falguni<br />

Nayar, the chief executive of Nykaa,<br />

stated that “the two businesses would<br />

collaborate to create a multi-brand<br />

beauty retail business in the nations<br />

of the Gulf Cooperation Council, with<br />

Nykaa owning a 55% ownership and<br />

Apparel Group the remaining”.<br />

UAE Cabinet approves<br />

government spending of $68.69<br />

billion for 2023 through 2026<br />

<strong>The</strong> federal budget for the<br />

UAE was authorised by the<br />

cabinet with a total spending<br />

of Dh252.3 billion ($68.69<br />

billion) and a projected revenue of<br />

Dh255.7 billion for the years 2023 to<br />

2026. <strong>The</strong> statement came after the<br />

Cabinet met in Al Watan Palace in Abu<br />

Dhabi, under the leadership of Vice<br />

President and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh<br />

Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.<br />

the Muwaileh district of the emirate<br />

has contracts to build nine luxury<br />

apartment buildings. <strong>The</strong> buildings,<br />

which total 740 residences, are made<br />

up of the five Sokoon blocks, two<br />

brand-new apartment complexes<br />

close to the Aljada museum, and the<br />

two Gate structures, where about<br />

7,000 new dwellings are now being<br />

built.<br />

Sheikh Mohammed stated in a<br />

tweet that the union’s budget was<br />

“sustainable and balanced” and<br />

that it was a key factor in the union<br />

government’s development goals<br />

for the union’s citizens. According<br />

to the budget, government revenue<br />

will increase by 11% and spending<br />

will rise by 3.9% in the upcoming<br />

fiscal year.<br />

Binance’s new<br />

users have<br />

increased 49%<br />

YTD in the<br />

MENA region<br />

With a year-to-date user<br />

growth rate of 49%<br />

specifically for the<br />

MENA region, the<br />

cryptocurrency trading platform<br />

Binance boasts a considerable<br />

boost in user growth. This surge is<br />

evidence of the growing demand for<br />

virtual assets, which is being pushed<br />

by forward-thinking government<br />

policies that have opened up the<br />

market to many companies. Due to<br />

more licencing and relationships with<br />

regulated businesses, the company<br />

has maintained its growth pace in the<br />

MENA area this year. <strong>The</strong> number of<br />

employees at the blockchain service<br />

provider now exceeds 400 in Dubai<br />

alone. In response to the rise in<br />

demand for security training brought<br />

on by the increased interest in crypto<br />

adoption from businesses in the<br />

public and private sectors, Binance<br />

has also expanded its Global Law<br />

Enforcement Training Program.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 25

Interview<br />

Lalit Matta<br />

CEO of YaMarkets<br />

26 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Lalit Matta<br />

Chief Executive Officer of YaMarkets<br />

L<br />

alit Matta has 12 years of expertise in the Forex sector, with a focus on<br />

educating clients and promoting financial literacy rather than simply<br />

approaching them. He is currently the CEO of YaMarkets, where he is working to<br />

extend the company into new industries and nations.<br />

Exclusive to <strong>The</strong> <strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine<br />

Having been a part of multiple<br />

seminars that educate people on<br />

financial planning and literacy,<br />

can you tell us a little about the<br />

beginning of your career?<br />

I began working in the Forex<br />

sector 12 years ago. As a member<br />

of the Forex industry, I discovered<br />

that Forex education is a critical and<br />

fundamental instrument in this field.<br />

In the last ten years, we have held<br />

numerous seminars solely to educate<br />

people. <strong>The</strong>y should understand what<br />

this market is and how we can enter<br />

it.<br />

It is critical to understand education<br />

in this industry. We are attempting<br />

to educate people through a variety<br />

of means, including seminars,<br />

workshops, and educational tools. I<br />

truly believe that in the last ten years,<br />

there has been one thing that has<br />

gone unfulfilled in this market, and<br />

that is education. This is extremely<br />

important.<br />

Based on which concept did you<br />

develop YaMarkets and what does<br />

YaMarkets focus on?<br />

We are focusing on our clients with<br />

the goal of providing them with<br />

the best tools available. We have<br />

a reason to teach and educate the<br />

clients rather than simply approach<br />

them. YaMarkets’ concept is that<br />

whoever starts in YaMarkets should<br />

be a knowledgeable person who<br />

understands the market and knows<br />

how it works.<br />

What do you think the amount<br />

of money an individual makes is<br />

directly proportional to?<br />

It is solely determined by the<br />

requirements, management, public<br />

resources, and capacity. It is primarily<br />

determined by how sources are<br />

managed.<br />

Why do you think financial<br />

literacy is important in the Forex<br />

industry?<br />

Financial literacy is critical because<br />

money must be managed. When it<br />

comes to money management, you<br />

must first understand how money<br />

works. “Money makes money” is<br />

merely a phrase. We’ve all heard the<br />

expression “money makes money,”<br />

but it’s not as simple as that. To make<br />

money, we must first understand<br />

how to manage money. As a result,<br />

even if you have money, it is useless<br />

if you do not know how to manage<br />

it. <strong>The</strong>refore, when it comes to the<br />

financial market, basic literacy is<br />

critical.<br />

How has your journey been with<br />

Forex so far?<br />

This is an incredible industry since<br />

you can work for yourself, help<br />

people, and educate them. It is an<br />

industry with international market<br />

exposure.<br />

How does it feel being a seasoned<br />

c-suite executive?<br />

It’s interesting because I’m able to<br />

assist clients while trying to expand<br />

YaMarkets into different countries. We<br />

are attempting to leave our mark in<br />

various industries and regions.<br />

Do you have any message for our<br />

readers/listeners?<br />

I only have one thing to say to the<br />

readers and listeners: YaMarkets<br />

is a retail broker, and we provide<br />

the same services as others. What<br />

distinguishes us from others is that<br />

we do not simply approach clients<br />

who begin interacting with us. We are<br />

truly attempting to educate and get<br />

them involved in this industry where<br />

individuals can make money. <strong>The</strong><br />

most significant factor is education.<br />

“Learn and then trade” is a hashtag we<br />

use. In India, we don’t advise “start<br />

right away,” but rather “don’t start<br />

trading without knowledge.” Thank<br />

you to <strong>The</strong> <strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine<br />

for helping me to discuss the Forex<br />

industry with you.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 27

Cover Story<br />

Invest wisely and<br />

thoroughly in<br />

human resources,<br />

making sure<br />

you get the right<br />

team, in whatever<br />

business you are<br />

in to move your<br />

company forward.<br />

Esref Temel<br />

Founder, Managing Director of<br />

Bright Capital Investment<br />

28 28 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Esref Temel, Founder,<br />

Managing Director of<br />

Bright Capital Investment<br />

Brief Introduction:<br />

Esref Temel was born in a city called Tatvan in the East part of Turkey, where through his formative<br />

years he completed his early education. Since an early age, he always enjoyed learning, reading,<br />

exploring, and challenging himself. He became interested in building and construction, changing,<br />

developing and exploring new things; these traits ultimately directed him to take the path to<br />

Engineering and <strong>Finance</strong>.<br />

Exclusive to the <strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine<br />

After graduating he gained<br />

a Bachelor of Science<br />

Degree in Industrial<br />

Engineering. His thirst<br />

for education was prevalent at this<br />

time, and he wanted to achieve<br />

more. He therefore moved to the<br />

USA where he pursued his Master’s<br />

Degree in Financial Engineering. As<br />

his educational experience grew, he<br />

gained knowledge across a variety<br />

of disciplines including Financial<br />

Modelling, Restructuring, Real<br />

Estate Development and Human<br />

Capital Management and School<br />

Improvement.<br />

In 2010, he founded Bright<br />

Education Investment which was later<br />

renamed as Bright Capital Investment,<br />

an investment company focusing on<br />

the Education, Real Estate, Textile<br />

and most recently in the Hospitality<br />

sector. He spent nearly thirteen years<br />

in the education space in the UAE,<br />

and in this period he has established<br />

a growing group of nurseries and<br />

schools offering excellent education<br />

at International standards. <strong>The</strong> main<br />

area of focus has been to establish<br />

and operate premium-quality<br />

international education for midtier<br />

and affordable market segment<br />

offering excellent quality of education<br />

in the region.<br />

Daily Routine<br />

As with any business man, I have<br />

regular morning meetings with the<br />

management team at Bright Capital<br />

Investment discussing the status of<br />

our existing businesses. As a team<br />

we go through on-going projects: an<br />

example of these being: additional<br />

investment in IT infrastructure, online<br />

resources, or expanding existing<br />

buildings to create new state of the art<br />

campuses for schools.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company, as with business,<br />

is continually evolving and now has<br />

several strings to its bow; investments<br />

in Real Estate, Education and also<br />

the Textile business. At present, we<br />

are also looking at plans to extend<br />

our company into the hospitality<br />

sector, identifying the UAE and GCC<br />

countries as our initial investment<br />

areas. Even though the existing<br />

business consumes most of my<br />

time, I remain the young man I was<br />

at school with high aspirations for<br />

success but with that continued<br />

thirst for knowledge and exploration,<br />

consequently within the business<br />

I am keen that we focus on new<br />

developments.<br />

Recently Bright Capital Investment<br />

has successfully closed on a bid for<br />

a new school in Dubai. We are at<br />

advanced stages of discussions to sign<br />

this project and are working closely<br />

with our partners, stakeholders and<br />

authorities. <strong>The</strong> project is due to be<br />

completed in September 2024, where<br />

upon Bright Capital will be opening its<br />

newest British school in Dubai.<br />

With the global situation at present,<br />

I am also keen in extending the<br />

business portfolio to other GCC<br />

countries especially Qatar and Oman.<br />

At present we are in the initial stages<br />

of discussions in both countries, so<br />

the predictions for company growth<br />

and versatility are great.<br />

In having aspirations and a vision<br />

to move global, it is of the utmost<br />

importance to continually work with<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

www.thefinanceworld.com 29

Cover Story<br />

legal advisors to ensure compliance<br />

with country laws and government<br />

requirements; a section of my<br />

work which takes time, patience,<br />

understanding and dedication to<br />

our final goals. In order to achieve<br />

this, frequent meetings are held with<br />

partners and investors to discuss<br />

long-term and mid-term strategic<br />

plans and progress.<br />

A brief about your journey of<br />

investment in education.<br />

<strong>The</strong> commencement of my business<br />

journey found me as a Director<br />

of <strong>Finance</strong> and Operations in the<br />

education sector for the initial years<br />

in the UAE. It was while working at<br />

these positions I noticed the demand<br />

for Private education with over 85%<br />

of the population being expatriates.<br />

This discovery eventually led me in to<br />

exploring investment opportunities<br />

in the education field. Education is<br />

one of the most important sectors<br />

in UAE and through H. H. Sheikh<br />

Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s<br />

UAE Centennial 2071 vision, the UAE<br />

is aiming to become one of the best<br />

educators in the world. As such, the<br />

demand for high quality education in<br />

the UAE keeps growing.<br />

In 2010, with financial support<br />

from my family and my own savings, I<br />

started investing in a nursery project<br />

which gradually and successfully<br />

expanded to four branches by<br />

2014. <strong>The</strong> nurseries practiced the<br />

Montessori curriculum. Throughout<br />

the nursery era, the company<br />

carefully hired qualified early years<br />

educators. We ensured our students<br />

acquired good quality education from<br />

the beginning of their academic lives!<br />

A really good starting position for all<br />

of our students!<br />

While our nursery business grew,<br />

I became very interested in the<br />

‘next steps’ in education. I became<br />

both curious and keen regarding<br />

investment in the K - through<br />

12 school business model. Quite<br />

coincidently, as it would happen, I<br />

was introduced to the ETA Group, a<br />

company in Dubai who were looking<br />

at selling their group of schools. In<br />

2013, after long negotiations and<br />

research into this company, we<br />

secured a lease to buy the contract for<br />

Star International School- Al Twar and<br />

30 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

Star International School- Mirdif.<br />

In order to raise capital, we at<br />

Bright Capital Investment decided<br />

to sell the nursery chain to an<br />

investment company in Abu Dhabi.<br />

We also raised additional capital<br />

from my own funds and local banks<br />

and with this we fully acquired Star<br />

International Schools in the year 2017.<br />

With this came change and revision<br />

of the existing systems in place, new<br />

policies, procedures and protocols<br />

that built a solid platform on which<br />

the school would ultimately flourish.<br />

Initially Star International School<br />

Mirdif was an acceptable<br />

primary school with<br />

270 students. It<br />

had had five<br />

Principals in<br />

its six years<br />

of opening: a<br />

situation which<br />

we needed to<br />

strategically<br />

change. In<br />

2016 with the<br />

appointment<br />

of Ms Gill<br />

Roberts, this<br />

change started.<br />

<strong>The</strong> school<br />

team, headed by Gill created a strong<br />

vision to which everyone looked<br />

to. <strong>The</strong> vision, mission and values,<br />

understood by all stakeholders,<br />

permeated through the school.<br />

Working closely with Gill and the<br />

SLT, we soon managed to move the<br />

school to GOOD. In 2017 school<br />

also gained the KHDA approval to<br />

obtain a secondary school license. At<br />

present, the company has put major<br />

Investments into Human Resources,<br />

IT infrastructure, Sports Facilities,<br />

Educational Resources with student<br />

numbers tripling from where we<br />

started.<br />

In 2016, Star International School<br />

Al Twar, rated as a Good School<br />

was at 450 students. Ma’am<br />

Dolly has been the anchor for<br />

the school; through her good<br />

practice and continuity, the<br />

school has achieved much<br />

success. Unfortunately, with<br />

the success of the school came<br />

growth and it soon became<br />

clear that the Star Al Twar<br />

building was not big enough for<br />

the number of pupils wanting to<br />

attend. Problems need solutions<br />

and in October 2020, the<br />

company invested in a<br />

new secondary school

Investors, who have an interest in the education sector,<br />

should expect 1-5 years negative EBITDA and strong<br />

EBITDA from 8 years onward.<br />

campus nearby. In March <strong>2022</strong>, the<br />

secondary school operations and<br />

students moved to their new state of<br />

the art campus.<br />

At this time the company also<br />

established a new American<br />

curriculum school called Bright<br />

Learners Private School in Al<br />

Rashidiya. Currently the school has<br />

students from Pre-KG to Grade 6 and,<br />

as with both the other schools, Bright<br />

Learners is beginning to grow.<br />

At this point in my educational<br />

investment phase of life, everything<br />

that I and my team had developed was<br />

achieving success. <strong>The</strong> future looked<br />

Bright with all of the schools really<br />

moving forward successfully.<br />

Unfortunately, as with every<br />

business, we were affected by Covid.<br />

Everything that had to happen needed<br />

quick strategic thinking and teams<br />

to work systematically together to<br />

ensure that we met new criteria<br />

coming from the KHDA to deal with<br />

this global crisis.<br />

Schools had to switch to Digital/<br />

Distance Learning immediately.<br />

Massive changes needed to be<br />

implemented. Schools changed<br />

overnight from classrooms with<br />

four walls to global environments;<br />

the use of IT, Google classrooms,<br />

Zoom, Teams being innovatively used<br />

to secure the continuing learning<br />

process.<br />

While we were recovering from<br />

the COVID-19 impacts, and with life<br />

getting back to normal, we at Bright<br />

Capital were ready to make the next<br />

big leap to take the schools to the<br />

next growth path. We entered into<br />

a strategic alliance with a wellestablished<br />

international school<br />

partner for a majority stake keeping<br />

in mind further growth and expansion<br />

for the Star Schools.<br />

Why investing in education is a<br />

good financial investment?<br />

I believe Education is a very<br />

important sector to invest in since<br />

there will always be a demand for<br />

schools, especially quality schools.<br />

Besides financial return, it is a<br />

powerful and fulfilling investment that<br />

allows teachers to nurture the future<br />

leaders and development of UAE and<br />

the world.<br />

In GCC and particularly in UAE,<br />

85% or more of the population have<br />

a requirement to send their children<br />

to private schools. Parents are very<br />

conscious and selective about the<br />

school they chose for their children.<br />

<strong>The</strong>refore, if we can offer parents this<br />

service at good value for money, we<br />

will continue investing in affordable<br />

quality education in the upcoming<br />

years.<br />

Obviously companies need to<br />

be very selective in the area / city /<br />

country to invest- carefully analyzing<br />

the area, demand, type of curriculum<br />

needed, size of the school, tuition fee<br />

structure, etc. We need to ensure we<br />

create a business that is sustainable<br />

and has the highest standards which<br />

offer children the greatest opportunity<br />

to achieve success.<br />

How the school managed the<br />

COVID crisis - any lessons to<br />

share?<br />

As we all know, COVID 19 was<br />

traumatic to live through on so many<br />

levels. It created chaos since neither<br />

the <strong>World</strong> Health Organization nor<br />

Governments globally knew what to<br />

do on all these levels to fully contain<br />

the virus.<br />

<strong>The</strong> lessons learnt from COVID are<br />

many.<br />

All schools had to deal with financial<br />

trauma; families left the country, fees<br />

weren’t paid, discounts needed to be<br />

given, salaries were reduced, children<br />

suffered with mental health issues;<br />

I can go on! However, what lessons<br />

can I learn from COVID from an<br />

educational standpoint:<br />

1. Value your clients, look after<br />

them, and create a family. Through<br />

COVID, our schools were all there for<br />

each other and we all needed each<br />

other through this time. <strong>The</strong>re was<br />

always someone to lean on for helpeven<br />

if through a screen.<br />

2. Retain your values and humanity.<br />

Help, support and offer assistance<br />

where you can<br />

3. <strong>The</strong> above builds the character of<br />

a school. It builds a community who<br />

stick together through thick and thin.<br />

<strong>The</strong>re is a support network. School<br />

became the beating heart of our<br />

COVID community.<br />

From a financial perspective:<br />

4. Invest wisely.<br />

5. Invest carefully and fully in<br />

human resources, making sure you get<br />

the right team, in whatever business<br />

you are in to move your company<br />

forward.<br />

6. Create a strong vision and<br />

mission statement. Everyone buys into<br />

it, strategically whatever goes right or<br />

wrong, you have this as your guiding<br />

factor. You are all on the same page.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

www.thefinanceworld.com 31

Cover Story<br />

7. Have contingency in all areas of<br />

your company.<br />

8. Communicate fully with<br />

all stakeholders, explain what is<br />

happening. Be transparent.<br />

How are new innovative<br />

teaching tools helping in<br />

education?<br />

During COVID, Technology ruled<br />

the world! <strong>The</strong> aftermath is that<br />

schools now have an incredible<br />

technological platform on which<br />

even more innovative education can<br />

be practiced. Distance learning /<br />

remote learning is now an innovative<br />

methodology for learning- especially<br />

personalized learning through<br />

artificial intelligence platforms.<br />

Children have access and<br />

collaborate worldwide. <strong>The</strong>y can<br />

participate in academic global events<br />

from their classrooms. <strong>The</strong> world has<br />

got smaller and as such, the realms<br />

and opportunities of education have<br />

grown to a massive scale. School<br />

buildings have no boundaries,<br />

classrooms have no limits!<br />

Google, Microsoft and other<br />

platforms have made teaching and<br />

learning highly effective; everyone can<br />

work at the same time on the same<br />

document.<br />

How long does a typical<br />

investment take to make<br />

returns?<br />

Investment in the education sector<br />

requires patience and stability.<br />

Broadly, return on investment<br />

depends on demographics, location of<br />

the school, average tuition fees, cost<br />

of the revenue, etc. Before investing<br />

strategic plans / business plans need<br />

to be produced to cover all variables.<br />

This takes time; but it is worth it when<br />

the investment returns are good.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE economy is not an<br />

emerging market anymore. I believe it<br />

should be considered as a developed<br />

economy. Investors should be aware<br />

that huge returns seen in 1990s or<br />

2000s are not the same case scenarios<br />

anymore. Investors, who have an<br />

interest in the education sector,<br />

should expect 1-5 years negative<br />

EBITDA and strong EBITDA from 8<br />

years onward.<br />

32 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

Tell us about a challenge in<br />

your journey?<br />

Certainly COVID 19 was the<br />

biggest challenge I faced during my<br />

journey. Facing the financial burdens<br />

through the crisis was unavoidable. It<br />

required me to be level headed, stable,<br />

proactive, and mentally strong all the<br />

time.<br />

Selecting the right project is also<br />

quite challenging. You can get excited<br />

about initial offers, but due diligence<br />

is a must. As a company we have had<br />

to let several projects go after going<br />

through the due diligence process. It<br />

requires substantial time and money.<br />

From a financial perspective, we need<br />

to ensure we have certain liquidity<br />

either for existing operations or<br />

expansion.<br />

A major challenge for myself was<br />

the emotional element. When I was<br />

approached by our new partners from<br />

the UK for the sale of the majority<br />

stake of our schools, I was excited,<br />

however it was a tough decision<br />

to make and this partnership was<br />

essential for the growth of the<br />

schools.<br />

What changes do you foresee<br />

in the education field?<br />

I believe private education will<br />

grow further and governments will<br />

keep reducing their presence in the<br />

field globally. I think private education<br />

is more effective and serves the<br />

purpose. However, it is essential that<br />

governments provide more incentives<br />

such as; subsidised electricity & water<br />

supply, discounted or free land leases,<br />

arrangement with banks to provide<br />

more affordable loans.<br />

Obviously COVID proved that<br />

Technology has advanced and will<br />

advance further. We have a variety of<br />

educational resources at all different<br />

levels. All children have access to<br />

computers either bought or borrowed<br />

from the school. Artificial Intelligence<br />

(AI) facilitates personalised learning<br />

as well as accelerated learning. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

are exciting developments for the<br />

education field.<br />

Unfortunately, too much screen<br />

time due to technology also has its<br />

impact. It is important that with these<br />

new technological advances comes<br />

the support and strategic management<br />

to use them only for purpose. Too<br />

much screen time has detrimental<br />

effects on children; mental health<br />

issues could increase; it is important<br />

we are aware of this and safeguard<br />

children.<br />

What advice do you give to<br />

those thinking of investing in<br />

education?<br />

I would advise potential investors<br />

to have proper due diligence when<br />

they plan to invest in education<br />

sector. <strong>The</strong>y should avoid unnecessary<br />

competition that could potentially<br />

hurt all the competitors. Selecting the<br />

right area/ town / city / demographic<br />

is very important. Proper research on<br />

demand, appropriate fee structure,<br />

and the right curriculum is necessary<br />

and paramount.<br />

Proper financial planning is<br />

essential for sustainability. Payments<br />

to government authorities, permits,<br />

approvals, utility connection charges<br />

are mostly ignored costs. Since<br />

substantial investment is required in<br />

either construction or other capital<br />

expenditures, proper planning and<br />

calculation is very important.<br />

Expectations should be kept lower<br />

& reasonable, and a buffer budget<br />

should be considered for potential<br />

operating losses especially in the<br />

first 3 or 4 years. Once the school<br />

generates positive EBITDA, it is a very<br />

stable business.<br />

To me, education is a very<br />

satisfying business since it serves our<br />

communities and the children within<br />

these. Education creates ‘community<br />

families’ of staff, teachers, parents and<br />

students. It is an environment where<br />

all the members respect each other<br />

more than in any other businesses.<br />

Do you have a message for our<br />

readers?<br />

As in any business, there will<br />

be good times and difficult times<br />

when investing in education. If you<br />

are looking for a stable and longterm<br />

return, this is the right type of<br />

investment.<br />

You need to understand the<br />

business model, do proper planning<br />

and due diligence and invest wisely.

Cebu Pacific announces seat<br />

sales and increased service<br />

An additional daily frequency<br />

to Dubai as well as a<br />

special seat sale have<br />

been announced by the<br />

Philippine airline Cebu Pacific. For<br />

the trip between Manila and Dubai,<br />

the low-cost airline is running a<br />

special promotion. Passengers can<br />

take advantage of this promotion from<br />

Global Hotel<br />

Alliance’s<br />

room income<br />

increased<br />

by 68% due<br />

to increased<br />

travel<br />

I<br />

n the first nine months of the<br />

year, room revenue increased<br />

by 68% compared to the same<br />

period in 2021, reaching 84%<br />

of pre-pandemic levels, according<br />

to Global Hotel Alliance, the largest<br />

network of independent hotel brands<br />

in the world. As the travel sector<br />

continues to recover from the effects<br />

of the coronavirus pandemic, the total<br />

income generated by the 22 million<br />

members of its GHA Discovery loyalty<br />

programme reached more than $900<br />

million. “An increase of 20% in the<br />

average length of stay internationally<br />

from January to September compared<br />

to the same period in 2021, along with<br />

higher average charges.<br />

October 1 to October 16 for a basic<br />

cost of just Dh399. This will apply<br />

to travel between <strong>November</strong> 1, <strong>2022</strong><br />

and March 31, 2023. <strong>The</strong> airline has<br />

also declared that starting on October<br />

30th, the route will receive more<br />

flights. Between Manila and Dubai,<br />

Cebu Pacific will fly twice daily.<br />

A <strong>November</strong> opening is planned<br />

for Jumeirah Gulf of Bahrain<br />

Resort & Spa<br />

In <strong>November</strong>, a new hotel in<br />

Bahrain will debut under the<br />

Jumeirah Group brand. On<br />

the west coast of the island,<br />

Jumeirah Gulf of Bahrain Resort &<br />

Spa will be situated. It will feature 196<br />

guestrooms and suites in addition to<br />

the 11-bedroom Gulf Summer House,<br />

which is located directly on the beach.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Arabian Gulf’s ripples, waves, and<br />

flowing waters served as inspiration<br />

Travel News<br />

for the building’s design. Bahrain is<br />

known as “the island of pearls,” and<br />

mother-of-pearl accents and deep blue<br />

hues are used throughout. <strong>The</strong>re will<br />

be eight distinct restaurants, including<br />

one that serves meals in a family-style<br />

setting, one by the pool, and others<br />

with carefully prepared menus that<br />

use regional flavours, spices, and<br />

ingredients.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 33

Start-up<br />

Domestic Transfer Pricing’s Effect on<br />

Startups<br />

Transfer pricing concerns<br />

are gaining steam within<br />

the business sector in the<br />

UAE as Corporate Tax<br />

is on the horizon. International<br />

transactions typically involve transfer<br />

pricing. Such a broad understanding<br />

shouldn’t catch the UAE enterprises<br />

off guard or lead them astray as they<br />

don’t conduct worldwide business.<br />

Unique “domestic transfer pricing”<br />

features will be included in UAE<br />

tax laws. Family businesses, sole<br />

proprietorships, partnerships, and<br />

startups should pay greater attention<br />

to how it may affect their business<br />

operations.<br />

A ground-breaking announcement<br />

about the implementation of a new<br />

federal corporate income tax system<br />

in the UAE, effective for fiscal years<br />

beginning on or after 1 June 2023,<br />

was made by the Ministry of <strong>Finance</strong><br />

on January 31, <strong>2022</strong>. <strong>The</strong> corporate<br />

income tax regime in the UAE, which<br />

will have a standard rate of 9%, is<br />

being developed to take into account<br />

best practices from throughout<br />

the world and lessen the cost of<br />

compliance on businesses.<br />

According to the new corporate<br />

income tax law, business gains<br />

produced by UAE companies over<br />

the course of a tax accounting period<br />

would be subject to corporate income<br />

tax. <strong>The</strong> business income tax law’s<br />

text and specifics are anticipated to be<br />

released around the middle of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

When a corporate income tax is<br />

implemented, the UAE will be subject<br />

to the OECD Transfer Pricing Rules.<br />

<strong>The</strong> documentation requirements and<br />

transfer pricing regulations would<br />

apply to all businesses. <strong>The</strong>se transfer<br />

pricing regulations would need to<br />

be followed and might even apply to<br />

domestic transactions.<br />

Although UAE groups frequently<br />

engage in intercompany sales and<br />

financing services, in the past,<br />

compensation for these activities<br />

has not been a top priority because<br />

the transactions would probably be<br />

deleted upon financial consolidation.<br />

Intercompany transactions would<br />

have to be carried out at arm’s<br />

length and generally be supported<br />

by sufficient documentation under<br />

the new tax regime, which would<br />

be implemented. Businesses must<br />

therefore assess their current setups<br />

and take into account how the<br />

corporate income tax policy may<br />

affect both domestic and international<br />

transactions.<br />

Businesses in today’s globe must<br />

operate in at least two different<br />

nations, with fewer and fewer<br />

remaining wholly local companies.<br />

Global and regional expansions<br />

are the new norm as a result of<br />

globalisation, and there are endless<br />

opportunities to increase revenues<br />

and profits when looking outside<br />

national boundaries. After all, transfer<br />

34 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

pricing aims to price cross-border<br />

transactions conducted into between<br />

companies that are a member of the<br />

same group, therefore operations<br />

in two countries are enough for<br />

a business to be subject to the<br />

legislation (also known as related<br />

parties). For domestic transactions<br />

involving related parties, several<br />

nations even have transfer pricing<br />

rules, particularly when the nation has<br />

distinct tax rates.<br />

Transfer pricing, commonly referred<br />

to as the arm’s length principle, is the<br />

practice of valuing transactions using<br />

market prices and the assumption that<br />

two or more businesses belonging<br />

to the same group are completely<br />

independent and separate. We come<br />

across companies who are dealing<br />

with significant headaches that could<br />

have been avoided more often than<br />

you may expect. Examples include<br />

income and expense mismatches that<br />

cause losses in one company and<br />

disproportionate profits in another,<br />

inaccurate service transaction pricing<br />

and markups, the application of<br />

incorrect royalty rates, incorrect cost<br />

centre entity management, and the list<br />

goes on.<br />

<strong>The</strong> truth is that unless your<br />

company is located in a distant<br />

area where the “Transfer Pricing<br />

Tentacles” have not yet spread, which<br />

we are now unable to imagine, you<br />

cannot escape transfer pricing. More<br />

crucially, failing to take transfer<br />

pricing into account can have an<br />

influence on a company’s income and<br />

expenses as well as lead to double<br />

taxation or inaccurate assessments<br />

of tax responsibilities across nations.<br />

<strong>The</strong> good news is that transfer<br />

pricing specialists are available and<br />

willing to assist both large MNEs<br />

and smaller businesses, startups, and<br />

entrepreneurs. You won’t believe how<br />

thrilling it is to support entrepreneurs,<br />

start-ups, and SMEs since they are<br />

vibrant, perpetually changing, and<br />

never-ending.<br />

Do not dismiss transfer pricing if<br />

you are an entrepreneur, start-up,<br />

or small to medium-sized business<br />

(SME) or fall into the misconception<br />

that transfer pricing only applies to<br />

giant MNEs. To prevent headaches<br />

in the future that will keep you from<br />

doing what you do best—running a<br />

business with passion—be proactive<br />

and control your transfer pricing risks<br />

from the start.<br />

In relation to a company, a<br />

“connected person” is anyone who:<br />

(a) directly or indirectly owns,<br />

controls, or is a director or officer of<br />

the company; (b) is related to such<br />

an owner, director, or officer to the<br />

fourth degree of kinship or affiliation,<br />

including through birth, marriage,<br />

adoption, or guardianship; or (c)<br />

has any other close familial or other<br />

connection to such an owner, director,<br />

or officer. To be classified as a related<br />

person, the ownership percentage<br />

may not matter. Any shareholder,<br />

whether direct or indirect, may be<br />

regarded as a linked person. <strong>The</strong><br />

relatives would likewise be protected<br />

not just from the owners but also from<br />

the directors and officers.<br />

Global and regional<br />

expansions are the<br />

new norm as a result<br />

of globalisation, and<br />

there are endless<br />

opportunities to<br />

increase revenues and<br />

profits when looking<br />

outside national<br />

boundaries.<br />

Transfer pricing regulations and<br />

the arm’s length principles must be<br />

followed in all transactions between<br />

a corporation and its “related<br />

individuals.” According to the arm’s<br />

length standards, the business must<br />

show that the transaction between<br />

linked parties is compatible with<br />

similar transactions between<br />

unrelated third parties, or people who<br />

are not connected to one another.<br />

Benchmarking is the analysis of<br />

such unrelated financial activities.<br />

Since there is now no income tax in<br />

the UAE, transfer pricing would still<br />

be applicable even if the company<br />

and its “related persons” were both<br />

based there. By moving a company’s<br />

taxable profits to its owners, partners,<br />

senior management, or their family,<br />

domestic transfer pricing seeks to<br />

prevent tax fraud. <strong>The</strong> implementation<br />

of domestic transfer pricing may<br />

be a substantial issue and have<br />

ramifications given the expansion of<br />

the business environment in the UAE,<br />

particularly the family enterprises.<br />

It would be a difficult process<br />

to locate and keep track of the<br />

transactions with the owners,<br />

directors, officers, and their extended<br />

families. Such requirements might<br />

grow enormous for a publicly traded<br />

corporation. <strong>The</strong> UAE offers a<br />

thriving environment start-ups and<br />

SMEs, which pushes many senior<br />

professionals to quit their jobs<br />

and launch their own businesses.<br />

Such professionals would be paid<br />

significantly more from unrelated<br />

employers than the initial years’<br />

worth of income from their start-ups.<br />

<strong>The</strong>y may commit far more time in<br />

their own businesses than they do in<br />

their regular jobs. <strong>The</strong> remuneration<br />

of the owners and officers of major<br />

corporations may differ greatly<br />

from those of enterprises with<br />

similar sizes of operations. <strong>The</strong><br />

arm’s length standards regarding<br />

owners’ compensation and perks will<br />

necessitate close attention to detail.<br />

<strong>The</strong> tax issues facing family<br />

enterprises are complex, and setting<br />

compensation as a baseline for the<br />

owners is difficult in and of itself.<br />

Family and friends are frequently<br />

hired for a variety of positions<br />

within an organisation. <strong>The</strong> firms<br />

might also be required to show that<br />

a person’s education and experience<br />

are appropriate for the jobs they<br />

are applying for and the pay that<br />

results from them. <strong>The</strong> company/<br />

taxpayer would be responsible for<br />

ensuring the arm’s length principle<br />

is upheld. Benchmarking would be<br />

a yearly obligation for compliance.<br />

It could not be ignored on the off<br />

chance that it would be discovered<br />

by the tax authorities and dealt with<br />

then. Transfer pricing is a large area<br />

for studies and specialisation, just<br />

like all tax-related fields. Optimizing<br />

tax consequences would benefit<br />

from an awareness of tax subtleties.<br />

To manage their forthcoming<br />

tax compliance requirements, all<br />

businesses—large or small—need<br />

to interact with seasoned tax<br />

professionals in advance.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 35

Start-ups News<br />

Nadeera wins PepsiCo’s<br />

MENA Greenhouse Accelerator<br />

Program’s <strong>2022</strong> competition<br />

Nadeera, an organisation<br />

based in the United<br />

Arab Emirates that uses<br />

technology to encourage<br />

waste sorting at the source, has won<br />

the first round of PepsiCo’s MENA<br />

Greenhouse Accelerator Program. As<br />

part of the award, the organisation<br />

will receive a grant of $100,000 along<br />

with a number of other advantages<br />

to help it scale its sustainable<br />

packaging solution. <strong>The</strong> initial round<br />

of the accelerator aims to uncover<br />

local entrepreneurs with groundbreaking<br />

approaches to recycling and<br />

sustainable packaging, advancing<br />

PepsiCo Positive’s (pep+) objectives<br />

to support the creation of a circular<br />

and inclusive value chain.<br />

40 startups<br />

from Kerala will<br />

participate at<br />

the Dubai GITEX<br />

show<br />

A<br />

delegation of 40 businesses<br />

supported by the Kerala<br />

Startup Mission (KSUM)<br />

showcased innovative<br />

products, cutting-edge<br />

technology, and sustainable ideas<br />

at the four-day GITEX Global <strong>2022</strong><br />

exhibition, which was held in Dubai.<br />

<strong>The</strong> goal of the exhibition was to<br />

examine business and investment<br />

opportunities. Entrepreneurs from<br />

many industries, including Edutech,<br />

cybersecurity, enterprise tech, agritech,<br />

IoT (Internet of Things), media tech,<br />

health tech, finance, insurance tech,<br />

and consumer tech, attended the<br />

specialised event “North Star” that<br />

was held as part of GITEX Global. <strong>The</strong><br />

delegation from KSUM represented the<br />

biggest contingent of businesspeople<br />

supported by KSUM to take part in the<br />

conference.<br />

YAP in talks to<br />

raise $20<br />

million<br />

Anumber of investors,<br />

including international and<br />

Middle Eastern venture<br />

capital funds, recently<br />

started discussions with the UAEbased<br />

fintech startup YAP about a<br />

potential $20 million fundraising<br />

round. <strong>The</strong> investment would mostly<br />

be used to finance the expansion<br />

plans for the online banking business<br />

in South Asia and Africa. <strong>The</strong> venture<br />

was actively recruiting investors<br />

for a new round of capital raising,<br />

according to Marwan Hachem, the<br />

initiative’s founder and group chief<br />

executive officer. <strong>The</strong> fintech startup<br />

raised $41 million in July of this year<br />

from family offices and venture capital<br />

firms, with Aljazira Capital of Saudi<br />

Arabia serving as the lead investor.<br />

Emirates<br />

Development<br />

Bank makes<br />

opening bank<br />

accounts simple<br />

Any company that operates<br />

in or is closely related<br />

to one of the five core<br />

areas recognised as being<br />

essential to the future success of the<br />

UAE economy is eligible for the Dh5<br />

million loans that can be repaid within<br />

a week. <strong>The</strong>se include infrastructure,<br />

manufacturing, healthcare, agritech,<br />

and advanced technology. This is how<br />

Emirates Development Bank intends<br />

to differentiate itself with its one-yearold<br />

digital banking services, according<br />

to CEO Ahmed Mohamed Al Naqbi.<br />

<strong>The</strong> startup community and small<br />

businesses, he said, find it challenging<br />

to get some of the services they<br />

provide from commercial banks, are<br />

the group that this digital bank was<br />

created to assist.<br />

MENA startups<br />

raised $173<br />

million in<br />

September <strong>2022</strong><br />

As investment levels continue<br />

to fall this year, startups in<br />

Mena raised $173 million<br />

across 51 agreements.<br />

This is a loss in investment value of<br />

54% month over month and a loss of<br />

approximately 50% when compared<br />

to the same time last year. Investors<br />

with an eye on the region are still<br />

feeling the repercussions of the<br />

global economic crisis, which has<br />

led to rising prices and a decline in<br />

IT stocks. Nevertheless, the pre-IPO<br />

round led by Bahrain’s Investcorp<br />

raised $100 million for the Saudi<br />

Arabia-based truck aggregator<br />

TruKKer, making it one of the year’s<br />

largest investment rounds.<br />

36 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Dubai hosts<br />

UAE’s Future<br />

Blockchain<br />

Summit<br />

More than 600 investors,<br />

more than 100 speakers,<br />

and game-changing<br />

startups will congregate<br />

for four days of networking and<br />

education centred around disruptive<br />

future technologies at the Future<br />

Blockchain Summit, which is<br />

expected to attract the region’s<br />

largest gathering of thought leaders,<br />

Blockchain architects, and powerful<br />

investors. <strong>The</strong> Future Blockchain<br />

Summit’s fifth iteration will feature<br />

speakers from organisations like<br />

ADGM, Emirates Post, BCG, Binance,<br />

Mastercard, and EmiratesNBD,<br />

as well as FTX, OKX, and Elliptic,<br />

among many more. Engaging panel<br />

discussions on important subjects<br />

like “Mitigating Risks of Virtual<br />

Assets (Vas) and Virtual Asset Service<br />

Providers (VASPs),” “Regulations in<br />

the Metaverse”.<br />

Gates Hub attends the GITEX<br />

Fintech Surge <strong>2022</strong> event in Dubai<br />

Gates Hub was delighted<br />

to take part in FinTech<br />

Surge <strong>2022</strong>, the largest<br />

fintech event held in Dubai<br />

from October 10 to October 13 at<br />

the Dubai <strong>World</strong> Centre, in light of<br />

its phenomenal performance and<br />

dominant position in the market.<br />

Fintech Surge <strong>2022</strong> addressed<br />

a number of significant gaps in<br />

today’s local and regional events.<br />

<strong>The</strong> show, which was sponsored by<br />

global Fintech regulators, investors,<br />

banks, and associations, provided<br />

the whole fintech community with<br />

first-rate information and business<br />

<strong>The</strong> world’s first utility NFT,<br />

“Lovely Humans,” which<br />

gives consumers five hours<br />

of one-on-one time with<br />

international industry experts, has<br />

been launched by GLEAC, a Hub71<br />

startup that provides a mentorship<br />

network to help people use human<br />

skills through simulated work<br />

circumstances. Recently, GLEAC<br />

Dubai Chamber’s new training<br />

academy immerses digital<br />

startups in the metaverse<br />

opportunities. Fintech Surge is<br />

predicted to be the leading and most<br />

innovative event for the Middle East<br />

and North Africa’s fintech industry.<br />

Hub71 Startup GLEAC launches<br />

of the First Utility NFT “Lovely<br />

Humans”<br />

joined the Hub71 community, gaining<br />

access to its network of investors and<br />

partners as well as its hospitable work<br />

environment and talented workforce.<br />

This groundbreaking application of<br />

NFTs advances Abu Dhabi and the<br />

UAE’s aspirations to adopt cuttingedge<br />

technologies and lead the global<br />

export of paradigm-shifting ideas.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Future of the Digital<br />

Economy: Business in the<br />

Metaverse Academy, a<br />

first-of-its-kind specialised<br />

training programme created to<br />

provide digital startups with the<br />

real-world knowledge and resources<br />

they need to build in the metaverse<br />

and take advantage of Web3, has<br />

been launched by the Dubai Chamber<br />

of Digital Economy, one of three<br />

chambers operating under Dubai<br />

Chambers, in collaboration with the<br />

SEE Institute. A total of 30 companies<br />

from Dubai and other markets will be<br />

chosen to participate in the training<br />

academy, which makes use of VR,<br />

AR, and XR technologies to provide<br />

participants a hands-on understanding<br />

of the metaverse’s economic<br />

dynamics.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 37

Energy<br />

Global Energy Crisis Augments the<br />

Influence of Gulf Countries<br />

<strong>The</strong> world is now thirsty<br />

for energy more than ever,<br />

for the war in Ukraine<br />

has reshaped the world’s<br />

economy and revealed the fragility of<br />

supply chains. Amidst the global crisis<br />

that the world is witnessing right now,<br />

Gulf Countries will likely remain the<br />

most important source for energy, not<br />

only in the 20th century, but also in<br />

the coming decades.<br />

Supply and demand patterns were<br />

disrupted, and the long-standing<br />

trading global relationships were<br />

fractured. Energy prices have also<br />

surged far more than many consumers<br />

and businesses could handle, which<br />

led to the most devastating situations<br />

of uncertainty in decades. Investors,<br />

companies, and even governments are<br />

facing grave difficulties in determining<br />

what energy projects to develop or<br />

fund.<br />

However, even before the beginning<br />

of the war in Ukraine, the world was<br />

far off track from achieving energy<br />

and climate objectives, for the global<br />

CO2 emissions reached an all-time<br />

high in 2021, while fuel markets<br />

were already showing signs of strain.<br />

Correspondingly, investment in clean<br />

energy technologies has remained far<br />

below the levels needed to achieve the<br />

net-zero emissions by mid-century.<br />

Taking these facts into account,<br />

projects with short-lead times<br />

and quick payback seem to be the<br />

best options. <strong>The</strong>se may include<br />

extending oil and gas production<br />

from existing fields and making use<br />

of currently flared and vented natural<br />

gas, but lasting solutions, however,<br />

lie in reducing demand through the<br />

rapid deployment low emissions<br />

technologies. Some countries are<br />

Amidst the global<br />

crisis that the world is<br />

witnessing right now,<br />

Gulf Countries will<br />

likely remain the most<br />

important source for<br />

energy<br />

looking to move ahead with the<br />

exploration and approval of large<br />

longer-term supply projects, but such<br />

projects take many years to start<br />

production.<br />

Alongside the revolutionary<br />

development of non-oil sectors in the<br />

Gulf Countries, the oil and gas boom<br />

reveals the Gulf Countries as the most<br />

prominent plyers during the global<br />

current energy crisis and geopolitics,<br />

which are rather emphasizing the<br />

importance of these counties. This<br />

goes hand in hand with the response<br />

to the Western sanctions on Russia,<br />

the climate change, and the reengineering<br />

of global energy flows.<br />

Furthermore, America is no longer<br />

a reliable security guarantor, for the<br />

reshaping of geopolitical alliances<br />

in the Middle East is intensifying the<br />

birth of the multipolar world.<br />

Despite the fact that Qatar, Saudi<br />

Arabia and the UAE, the three Gulf<br />

energy powers, are facing a decline<br />

in global demand for fossil fuels, the<br />

changing of global energy trends is<br />

tipping the scales. Energy markets are<br />

changing, as the Western sanctions<br />

on Russia are reshaping the global<br />

trading of energy. Gulf Countries<br />

can earn 3.5 trillion dollars over the<br />

next five years, and as the Russian<br />

38 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

production flows to the east, Gulf<br />

countries will become a greater<br />

source of energy to the West.<br />

On the other hand, UAE and<br />

Saudi Arabia are ramping up capital<br />

investment in oil with the long-term<br />

objective of being the last in the<br />

industry, with the lowest extractions<br />

and costs. <strong>The</strong>y both aim to increase<br />

production from 13 million to 16<br />

million barrels per day in the medium<br />

term.<br />

Similarly, Qatar is expanding<br />

its North Field project in the next<br />

few years, making Doha the most<br />

prominent source of LNG in the<br />

world, as its annual production<br />

target equals 33% of total LNG traded<br />

worldwide in 2021. Qatar is a global<br />

leader in LNG, the third in natural<br />

gas reserves after Russia and Iran,<br />

providing 30% of the <strong>World</strong>’s LNG<br />

supplies, mainly to Europe and Asia.<br />

Thus, any disruption in pricing,<br />

shipment, or production would have<br />

an immediate impact on European<br />

Sates and push them to go for Russian<br />

gas despite the political tension with<br />

Russia.<br />

Saudi Arabia’s exports rose 2.5% to<br />

7.38 million barrels per day (bpd) in<br />

July, the highest since April 2020, from<br />

7.20 million bpd in June, but there<br />

is no oil or gas exchanges between<br />

Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which<br />

limited the impact of political tension<br />

between these countries on their<br />

energy polices.<br />

Moreover, the new alliance<br />

of powers in the Middle East is<br />

further enriching the Gulf region.<br />

For instance, Iran has established<br />

a great deal of influence across the<br />

Northern areas, including Syria,<br />

Iraq, and Lebanon, which led to the<br />

emergence of some rapprochement<br />

between some Gulf Countries, Israel,<br />

Egypt, and other countries. This<br />

rapprochement would revive the trade<br />

that can make these states even richer<br />

in a region with cross-border ties.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Gulf Countries have invested<br />

$22 billion in Egypt this year, and the<br />

Israelis have made more than half a<br />

million trips to the UAE. Additionally,<br />

members of this emerging bloc aim<br />

to expand their economic ties with<br />

the rest of the world. <strong>The</strong> UAE,<br />

for instance, singed a huge trade<br />

agreement with India in February.<br />

Dubai aspires to become another<br />

financial center for the world’s<br />

entrepreneurs.<br />

However, even if business was not<br />

disrupted, the chaotic atmosphere<br />

concerning supply routes is more<br />

likely to continue and have a longterm<br />

effect. This will push Asian<br />

and European countries to rethink<br />

their economies’ reliance on energy<br />

resources from the GCC Market, for<br />

global oil demand is projected to<br />

remain high until 2040. Still, the price<br />

volatility of crude oil is compelling<br />

the world’s greatest economies to<br />

become less dependent on oil, while<br />

renewables and natural gas are<br />

becoming the energy sources of the<br />

future in the coming decades.<br />

Hence, the Gulf Countries are likely<br />

to keep playing a vital role in world<br />

affairs in the coming decades, in<br />

spite of the fact that some American<br />

analysts believe their importance<br />

will fade away. However, the Gulf<br />

countries’ share of Europe’s imports is<br />

predicted to surge from less than 10%<br />

to more than 20% in the coming years.<br />

At 60% of regional GDP, the economic<br />

weight of the Gulf countries in the<br />

Middle East has reached its highest<br />

level and is set to grow alongside the<br />

3-trillion-dollar sovereign and reserve<br />

assets, which will pave the way for<br />

further investments abroad.<br />

Nonetheless, it is not clear whether<br />

the Gulf will be a secure source of<br />

lasting stability, for the region of the<br />

Gulf Countries has undergone two<br />

horrible decades; over one million<br />

people have been killed in the Middle<br />

East due to wars and uprisings. In<br />

addition to that, energy security is no<br />

longer a given with political stability.<br />

Thus, securing trade routes will be an<br />

essential part of the GCC countries’<br />

mode of operation.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 39

Energy News<br />

ADIO and<br />

Siemens Energy<br />

to establish<br />

an innovation<br />

centre in Abu<br />

Dhabi<br />

Siemens Energy and the Abu<br />

Dhabi Investment Office<br />

(ADIO) are collaborating<br />

to hasten the transition to<br />

net zero in the UAE and abroad. In<br />

accordance with the agreement,<br />

Siemens Energy would receive<br />

financial and non-financial incentives<br />

from ADIO, the emirate’s investment<br />

promotion agency, to aid in the<br />

establishment of its Middle East<br />

Innovation Centre in Abu Dhabi.<br />

ADIO will begin its Dh2 billion ($545<br />

million) Innovation Programme<br />

in 2020, which will include the<br />

incentives. According to Siemens<br />

Energy, the centre is projected to<br />

produce a “host” of intellectual<br />

property.<br />

UAE Ministry of Energy collaborates with an Engie<br />

subsidiary on clean energy initiatives<br />

To create renewable energy<br />

projects and assist the nation’s<br />

decarbonization objectives,<br />

the UAE Ministry of Energy<br />

and Infrastructure signed a preliminary<br />

deal with Engie Solutions, a division<br />

of the French utility giant Engie.<br />

According to the agreement, they will<br />

collaborate to establish while looking<br />

into other energy-related corporate<br />

social responsibility initiatives, technical<br />

cooperation” to produce sustainable<br />

energy projects on MoEI’s properties.<br />

<strong>The</strong> largest single-site solar park in the<br />

world, based on the independent power<br />

producer model, is already located in<br />

the UAE; this project strengthens the<br />

country’s expanding capabilities in the<br />

renewable energy industry. According<br />

to the UAE’s objectives for renewable<br />

energy, “we will keep pursuing these<br />

projects.”<br />

40 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

ENEC and UAE Cybersecurity<br />

Council contract improve<br />

cybersecurity in energy sector<br />

AMemorandum of<br />

Understanding (MoU)<br />

was signed by the<br />

Emirates Nuclear Energy<br />

Corporation (ENEC) and the UAE<br />

Cyber Security Council to support<br />

the creation and revision of nationallevel<br />

plans, policies, and standards<br />

for the cyber security of the UAE<br />

energy industry. Managing Director<br />

and Chief Executive Officer of ENEC<br />

Mohamed Ibrahim Al Hammadi and<br />

Dr. Mohamed Hamad Al Kuwaiti,<br />

Head of Cybersecurity for the UAE<br />

Government, signed the agreement at<br />

ENEC’s headquarters in Abu Dhabi.<br />

<strong>The</strong> partnership is a component of<br />

ENEC’s commitment to strengthening<br />

resilience, advancing cyber security,<br />

and implementing best-in-class<br />

technologies in the UAE’s renewable<br />

energy sector.

G42 combines<br />

sustainability<br />

and technology<br />

to drive forward<br />

G42 and its operational<br />

businesses are being<br />

recognised as a leader<br />

in environmentally<br />

friendly and ethical technology<br />

solutions as the UAE gets ready<br />

to host COP28. G42 promotes AI<br />

as a tool to propel progress from<br />

conception to execution, developing<br />

and implementing solutions that<br />

are self-sufficient in and of itself<br />

while simultaneously assisting in the<br />

development and empowerment of<br />

greener societies. Environmentalism<br />

and sustainable development are<br />

fundamental to G42’s company<br />

strategy and the solutions it offers,<br />

which are in accordance with the<br />

UAE’s Net Zero 2050 aim. Several<br />

of G42’s operating firms use these<br />

solutions in real-world settings.<br />

UAE’s clean energy capacity to<br />

reach 14 gigawatts by 2030<br />

As a consequence of fresh<br />

efforts and projects, the<br />

UAE’s clean energy capacity<br />

is “on pace” to achieve 14<br />

gigawatts by 2030, according to the<br />

nation’s minister of climate change<br />

and the environment. According to<br />

Mariam Almheiri at the RAK Energy<br />

Summit, the UAE is “home to the<br />

three largest-in-capacity, lowest-incost<br />

solar parks in the world” and is<br />

the “first country to have a carbon<br />

capture utilisation and storage facility,<br />

which is currently at a capacity of<br />

800,000 tonnes per annum and is being<br />

expanded to five million tonnes per<br />

annum.”<br />

Barakah nuclear power plant’s<br />

third unit now connected to the<br />

UAE grid<br />

After successfully connecting<br />

to the national grid, the third<br />

unit of the Barakah Nuclear<br />

Energy Plant in the United<br />

Arab Emirates has begun supplying its<br />

first supply of carbon-free power. Only a<br />

few weeks after the reactor was turned<br />

on, the nation reached its most recent<br />

clean energy milestone. With a maximum<br />

output of 1,400 megawatts of emissionfree<br />

electricity, Unit 3 can support the<br />

UAE’s efforts to combat global warming.<br />

In June, a licence to operate was granted<br />

for the third unit of the Abu Dhabi<br />

facility. ENEC said the nuclear sector is<br />

set to be a vital part of the UAE’s clean<br />

energy system of multiple low-carbon<br />

technologies and aims to ensure the<br />

reliability, efficiency, and resilience of the<br />

UAE grid for at least the next 60 years.<br />

UAE approaches<br />

the energy<br />

transformation<br />

“pragmatically”<br />

According to a representative<br />

of the Ministry of Energy<br />

and Infrastructure, the UAE<br />

is “ideally positioned” to<br />

take a “pragmatic” approach to its<br />

energy transition while also becoming<br />

a global leader in the hydrogen<br />

industry. <strong>The</strong> strategy is part of a<br />

strategy to “hold back emissions,<br />

but not development,” according<br />

to Sharif Al Olama, the ministry’s<br />

undersecretary for energy and<br />

petroleum affairs. <strong>The</strong> UAE’s vision<br />

for clean fuel will be established<br />

through the National Hydrogen<br />

Strategy, which will also serve to<br />

direct policy choices as the country<br />

works to meet its net zero targets by<br />

2050.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 41

Energy News<br />

Shuaa Energy phase B project in<br />

Dubai launched by Saudi ACWA<br />

Power ahead of time<br />

Energy company ACWA<br />

Power, based in Saudi<br />

Arabia, announced in a<br />

bourse filing that phase B<br />

of the Shuaa Energy 3 PSC project in<br />

Dubai had begun operations earlier<br />

than expected. <strong>The</strong> financial impact<br />

is expected to be fully accounted<br />

for in ACWA Power’s fourth-quarter<br />

Aldar Properties PJSC<br />

(Aldar) has agreed to spend<br />

Dh25 million on energy<br />

retrofit projects in 13 of<br />

its residential communities that will<br />

lower electricity usage for owners<br />

and tenants as part of the company’s<br />

efforts to make its communities<br />

more environmentally friendly and<br />

energy efficient. A total of Dh12<br />

2023 results. Mohammed bin Rashid<br />

Al Maktoum’s fifth solar park will<br />

be developed by Shuaa Energy 3,<br />

a special-purpose entity with a 900<br />

megawatt capacity. A consortium led<br />

by ACWA Power was given the $570<br />

million Shuaa Energy III PSC project<br />

in 2020.<br />

Aldar increases energy<br />

efficiency in residential areas<br />

million in annual utility savings will<br />

result from Aldar’s investment in<br />

the 13 neighbourhoods, which will<br />

offset 19,000 tCO2 of carbon dioxide<br />

emissions each year. <strong>The</strong> owners’<br />

associations of the communities,<br />

which Provis, Aldar’s real estate<br />

property management firm, manages,<br />

were involved in the creation of the<br />

plan.<br />

ADIPEC <strong>2022</strong><br />

to address the<br />

issue of energy<br />

security<br />

During ADIPEC, which<br />

will take place in Abu<br />

Dhabi from October 31 to<br />

<strong>November</strong> 3, the UAE will<br />

be at the center of the international<br />

conversation about the future of<br />

energy. ADIPEC has developed to<br />

reflect a quickly changing global<br />

energy landscape under the newly<br />

conferred patronage of His Highness<br />

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al<br />

Nahyan. Under the theme “Secure,<br />

Affordable and Sustainable,” the<br />

premier international energy event<br />

will involve the entire world’s energy<br />

sector in assisting with the answers to<br />

the sector’s most pressing questions,<br />

in addition to bringing attention to the<br />

current energy needs while reducing<br />

emissions and working toward a clean<br />

energy future.<br />

Dubai’s non-oil<br />

economy<br />

continues to<br />

grow at a<br />

“strong” rate<br />

In spite of a decreased rate of<br />

growth in September, business<br />

activity in Dubai’s non-oil private<br />

sector economy continued to<br />

expand at a “strong” rate as new<br />

orders increased significantly. S&P<br />

Global’s purchasing managers’ index<br />

for the emirate as a whole registered a<br />

headline reading of 56.2 in September,<br />

which was a three-month low. From<br />

the 38-month high of 57.9 reached<br />

in August, it was reduced by a more<br />

gradual increase in staffing and<br />

inventories. An economic expansion<br />

is indicated by a value above the<br />

neutral 50 level and a contraction by<br />

one below.<br />

42 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

ADIO collaborates with Innovaccer to<br />

enhance healthcare in the Middle East<br />

Healthcare<br />

To increase the quality and accessibility of healthcare in the UAE and the rest of the Middle East, Abu<br />

Dhabi Investment Office has partnered with Innovaccer, a health cloud firm. According to the agreement,<br />

ADIO, the government agency in charge of luring investment, would offer financial and non-financial<br />

incentives to Innovaccer in order to support the establishment of its regional headquarters and a<br />

research and development centre in Abu Dhabi.<br />

<strong>The</strong> rewards are a<br />

component of ADIO’s<br />

Dh2 billion ($545 million)<br />

Innovation Programme. “As<br />

we build Abu Dhabi’s core sectors,<br />

two important industries that we wish<br />

to concentrate on are healthcare and<br />

biopharma,” said Abdulla AlShamsi,<br />

interim director general of ADIO,<br />

confirming that this is one of several<br />

deals in the pipeline and the first<br />

healthcare deal.<br />

Innovaccer is a well-known<br />

name in cloud data activation for<br />

the healthcare industry and offers<br />

connectivity between various<br />

healthcare providers. <strong>The</strong>ir expertise<br />

and database could strengthen the<br />

local talent ecosystem and raise<br />

the standard of healthcare in the<br />

area. According to Mr. AlShamsi,<br />

Innovaccer’s establishment in Abu<br />

Dhabi would quicken the pace of<br />

healthcare innovation throughout<br />

the UAE and the region with the help<br />

of its health cloud, data activation<br />

platform, healthcare technology<br />

solutions, and expertise with local<br />

populations.<br />

As part of the agreement,<br />

Innovaccer will collaborate on<br />

conferences, presentations, and<br />

research with regional universities<br />

in Abu Dhabi. <strong>The</strong> establishment<br />

of their physical presence in Abu<br />

Dhabi, according to Mr. AlShamsi,<br />

“will strengthen the emirate’s talent<br />

ecosystem and promote knowledge<br />

transfer”.<br />

A healthcare technology startup<br />

called Innovaccer, based in San<br />

Francisco, has developed a cloudbased<br />

software platform for<br />

the healthcare industry. “In this<br />

transaction, we’re discussing boots<br />

on the ground. We anticipate more<br />

prospects for partnership with<br />

universities and regional industries,<br />

which will lead to the creation of jobs,<br />

now that Innovaccer has more than 80<br />

highly trained workers based in Abu<br />

Dhabi,” said Mr. AlShamsi.<br />

Relation between ADIO and<br />

Innovaccer<br />

Innovaccer and Abu Dhabi have<br />

been partners since Mubadala<br />

Capital’s investment in 2019. OMERS<br />

Growth Equity, Dragoneer, Steadview<br />

Capital, Tiger Global Management,<br />

and other new investors joined<br />

current investors B Capital Group,<br />

Microsoft’s M12 fund, and Innovaccer<br />

in the $150 million Series E funding<br />

round that Mubadala Capital led last<br />

year.<br />

“Since our initial investment in<br />

Innovaccer in 2019, we have observed<br />

broad adoption of their solutions by<br />

healthcare institutions across the<br />

US, and we are pleased to see them<br />

now expanding their presence in the<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 43

Healthcare<br />

Middle East by establishing a regional<br />

headquarters in Abu Dhabi,” said<br />

Ibrahim Ajami, head of ventures and<br />

growth at Mubadala.<br />

With the most recent round of<br />

fundraising, Innovaccer has now<br />

raised more than $375m. As it rapidly<br />

scales its technical, product, and<br />

customer experience talent, the firm<br />

will invest the recently-received<br />

money in R&D and recruitment.<br />

Sandeep Gupta, co-founder and chief<br />

operating officer of Innovaccer, said:<br />

“We’re excited to cooperate with<br />

ADIO to bring our technology and<br />

skills to Abu Dhabi, which is a driving<br />

force for innovation in the area.”<br />

Additionally, Innovaccer has gotten<br />

extensive assistance from the Abu<br />

Dhabi ecosystem. In order to make<br />

Abu Dhabi its first commercial market<br />

in the Middle East and a base for<br />

regional expansion, the corporation is<br />

cultivating local ties in the city.<br />

Patient data from various systems<br />

is combined in the Innovaccer<br />

Health Cloud. According to Asma Al<br />

Mannaei, executive director of the<br />

Research and Innovation Centre at the<br />

Department of Health in Abu Dhabi,<br />

collaboration amongst important<br />

sectors has a lot of potential to<br />

raise the calibre of healthcare in the<br />

emirate. “Today, more than ever, we<br />

recognise the significance of data as<br />

it enables organisations to advance<br />

value-based care, manage population<br />

health, and produce real-world<br />

evidence,” said Al Mannaei.<br />

<strong>The</strong> robust local healthcare<br />

environment and breadth of support<br />

made Abu Dhabi the choice of<br />

Innovaccer. With its industry-leading<br />

Health Cloud, Data Activation<br />

Platform, healthcare technology<br />

solutions, and deep experience<br />

available to local communities,<br />

Innovaccer’s Abu Dhabi headquarters,<br />

which combines an R&D hub and<br />

a commercial role, will quicken the<br />

speed of healthcare innovation.<br />

Innovaccer will also collaborate<br />

on conferences, presentations, and<br />

research with nearby universities in<br />

Abu Dhabi.<br />

By linking and curating healthcare<br />

information from around the world<br />

to make it accessible and helpful,<br />

Innovaccer is committed to advancing<br />

innovation in the healthcare industry.<br />

By unifying patient data across<br />

systems and care settings, the<br />

Innovaccer Health Cloud enables<br />

healthcare organisations to create<br />

scalable, cutting-edge apps that<br />

enhance clinical, financial, and<br />

operational outcomes.<br />

Sandeep Gupta, co-founder and<br />

COO of Innovaccer, expressed his<br />

excitement about working with ADIO<br />

to bring his company’s technology<br />

and skills to Abu Dhabi, which is a<br />

regional innovation hub. “Healthcare<br />

faces worldwide difficulties. Global<br />

markets are striving to boost the<br />

clinical and financial performance<br />

of their healthcare systems in<br />

response to the epidemic and<br />

spiralling expenses,” said Gupta.<br />

“In order to meet the demands and<br />

expectations of the public for readily<br />

available, reasonably priced, highquality<br />

healthcare, we will hasten<br />

the transformation of healthcare<br />

in the Middle East through this<br />

collaboration. Our technology is<br />

crucial to the success of healthcare<br />

stakeholders in markets that are very<br />

complicated, heavily regulated, and<br />

becoming more consumer-centric. We<br />

are now delivering our tested platform<br />

to Abu Dhabi in order to promote<br />

global healthcare data innovation and<br />

aid the area’s.”<br />

Wide-ranging support for<br />

Innovaccer has come from the Abu<br />

Dhabi ecosystem. <strong>The</strong> company’s<br />

valuation reached USD 3.2 billion with<br />

the most recent Series E fundraising<br />

round, which was led by Mubadala<br />

in December 2021. Innovaccer is also<br />

cultivating local ties in Abu Dhabi<br />

in order to make the emirate its first<br />

market for trade in the Middle East<br />

and a base for regional expansion.<br />

Ibrahim Ajami, Head of Ventures &<br />

Growth at Mubadala, stated: “We are<br />

pleased to see Innovaccer expanding<br />

their presence in the Middle East by<br />

establishing a regional headquarters<br />

in Abu Dhabi. Since we first invested<br />

in Innovaccer in 2019, we have seen<br />

widespread adoption of their solutions<br />

by healthcare institutions across<br />

the United States.” Abu Dhabi has a<br />

vibrant research and development<br />

ecosystem, making it the ideal<br />

location for Innovaccer to accelerate<br />

healthcare innovation and advance<br />

Abu Dhabi’s healthcare system.<br />

Present and future initiatives<br />

Abu Dhabi now has a top-notch<br />

healthcare sector, supported by<br />

cutting-edge medical care and<br />

research facilities that serve both the<br />

local population and a burgeoning<br />

medical tourism business, thanks to<br />

years of major investment led by the<br />

44 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Department of Health – Abu Dhabi.<br />

<strong>The</strong> emirate adopts a partnership<br />

strategy to promote the healthcare<br />

industry, a strategy that has attracted<br />

some of the top healthcare providers<br />

and biopharma businesses in the<br />

globe.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Department of Health in Abu<br />

Dhabi (DoH), led by Dr. Asma Ibrahim<br />

Al Mannaei, said: “We are happy to<br />

see another treasured collaboration<br />

across important sectors within Abu<br />

Dhabi to further improve the quality<br />

of healthcare in the emirate. Today,<br />

more than ever, we recognise the<br />

significance of data because it enables<br />

organisations to improve value-based<br />

care, manage population health, and<br />

provide more real-world evidence.”<br />

Abu Dhabi keeps solidifying its<br />

reputation as a centre for smart data<br />

solutions that offer incontrovertible<br />

proof and guide decision-making<br />

under the guidance of the UAE’s wise<br />

leadership and through beneficial<br />

collaborations across many sectors.<br />

Moreover, high-growth businesses<br />

are supported by ADIO’s Innovation<br />

Programme, which also enables<br />

them to take advantage of the sizable<br />

sectoral opportunities present in<br />

Abu Dhabi. Since the program’s start<br />

in 2020, more than 40 innovative<br />

enterprises have received funding<br />

totalling AED 1.3 billion.<br />

With its industry-leading Health Cloud, Data Activation Platform,<br />

healthcare technology solutions, and deep experience available to<br />

local communities, Innovaccer’s Abu Dhabi headquarters, which<br />

combines an R&D hub and a commercial role, will quicken the<br />

speed of healthcare innovation.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 45

Healthcare News<br />

Modern Technology may extend<br />

Abu Dhabi inhabitants’ lifespans<br />

Using cutting-edge<br />

technologies like digital<br />

twins, artificial intelligence,<br />

and future ideas like<br />

a personalised smart coach, a<br />

local healthcare organisation has<br />

announced a radical vision to raise<br />

the average person’s life expectancy<br />

to 101 years. <strong>The</strong> largest integrated<br />

Malaffi Health<br />

Portal launched<br />

with app for<br />

accessing<br />

medical details<br />

At GITEX Global <strong>2022</strong>, the<br />

Department of Health – Abu<br />

Dhabi (DoH) introduces<br />

the Malaffi Health Portal<br />

as a cutting-edge expansion of the<br />

region’s first Health Information<br />

Exchange platform, Malaffi. Through<br />

a website and mobile application,<br />

the portal aims to give residents<br />

of the emirate easy access to their<br />

centralised medical records. Since<br />

most patients forget up to 80% of the<br />

instructions after leaving a clinical<br />

setting, safe online access to this<br />

material will enable people to take an<br />

active role in their own healthcare.<br />

<strong>The</strong> site will strengthen the doctorpatient<br />

connection by enabling more<br />

meaningful dialogues to achieve better<br />

health outcomes, which will in turn<br />

inspire people to be more involved in<br />

managing their health.<br />

46 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

healthcare platform in the UAE, Pure<br />

Health, aims to provide individuals in<br />

Abu Dhabi more years to live, better<br />

health, and a better quality of life<br />

while also freeing up their time. <strong>The</strong><br />

goal is to turn Abu Dhabi into a place<br />

that people visit from all over the<br />

world to live longer, healthier lives<br />

filled with happiness.<br />

SEHA healthcare facility reopens<br />

following Covid-related closure<br />

Ambulatory Healthcare<br />

Services, a SEHA healthcare<br />

facility, said that Al Maqam<br />

Healthcare Centre in Al<br />

Ain has reopened after being closed<br />

during the Covid-19 pandemic. Dr.<br />

Noura Al Ghaithi, the temporary CEO<br />

of AHS, said: “With a wide range of<br />

services to meet the needs of the Al<br />

Maqam community and communities<br />

nearby like Asharej, Al Bateen, and Al<br />

Markhaniyyah and make access to our<br />

medical services easier, we are happy<br />

to announce the reopening of the Al<br />

Maqam Healthcare Center in Al Ain.<br />

<strong>The</strong> center’s specialty services will<br />

be increased in the upcoming months<br />

through our efforts.”<br />

Medcare Women & Children<br />

Hospital is UAE’s first medical<br />

establishment in the Metaverse<br />

People were unable to access<br />

hospitals during the epidemic<br />

because of travel restrictions<br />

and lockdowns, even though<br />

they still desired to consult with<br />

their doctors, communicate with<br />

medical professionals, or otherwise<br />

obtain assistance. Patients who<br />

are physically unable to travel can<br />

nonetheless have access to that<br />

universal experience thanks to the<br />

metaverse technology. <strong>The</strong> Medcare<br />

Women & Children Hospital will<br />

currently use the VR/AR world to<br />

promote itself, particularly among<br />

those looking for specialised care<br />

in Dubai. <strong>The</strong> Metaverse will enable<br />

them to have the experience of going,<br />

regardless of whether they are in<br />

Dubai or face any other obstacles to<br />

doing so. Within months, Medcare<br />

will have the Metaverse ‘upload’<br />

of the Medcare Hospital Al Safa<br />

and Medcare Orthopedics & Spine<br />


ADQ and Abu<br />

Dhabi Health<br />

Department<br />

support activities<br />

in the healthcare<br />

sector<br />

To support the emirate’s<br />

endeavours in the healthcare<br />

sector, investment giant ADQ<br />

and the Department of Health<br />

– Abu Dhabi (DoH) signed a contract.<br />

<strong>The</strong> two parties will work together to<br />

assist projects related to life sciences<br />

research and innovation under<br />

the terms of the agreement, which<br />

was inked alongside GITEX Global<br />

Week <strong>2022</strong>. A steering committee<br />

will be established by both parties<br />

as part of the MoU to oversee and<br />

manage all projects that will profit<br />

from the collaboration in clinical<br />

research, evidence development, and<br />

innovation.<br />

Medical Clinic Middle East<br />

boosts employee benefits for<br />

mental health<br />

Aprivate healthcare<br />

organisation with three<br />

operating divisions in<br />

Switzerland, southern<br />

Africa (South Africa and Namibia),<br />

and the United Arab Emirates.<br />

According to Sam Browning, who<br />

oversees recruitment operations<br />

and employee welfare for Mediclinic<br />

Middle East, “As a healthcare<br />

provider, Mediclinic takes the health<br />

and wellbeing of its personnel<br />

extremely seriously.” “We believe<br />

that everyone should feel confident<br />

enough to ask for help when they<br />

need it, especially when it comes to<br />

mental health. However, we recognise<br />

that some Mediclinic staff members<br />

might find it more convenient to<br />

Dubai: each<br />

patient will<br />

have a single,<br />

unified medical<br />

record by 2023<br />

By the end of the year, all<br />

of Dubai’s hospitals will<br />

be integrated into a single<br />

computerised medical<br />

record. At the ongoing GITEX trade<br />

show, which is taking place at the<br />

Dubai <strong>World</strong> Trade Center, the Dubai<br />

Health Authority highlighted this<br />

significant achievement. For patients,<br />

this means that they will have a single<br />

electronic medical file with all of their<br />

medical records safely saved, and<br />

that the medical file will follow them<br />

as they travel from one hospital to<br />

another. <strong>The</strong> project is related to the<br />

UAE’s Riyati plan, which will ensure<br />

that every person in the UAE has<br />

an electronic medical record in the<br />

future.<br />

consult a mental health expert who<br />

is not affiliated with the Mediclinic<br />

organisation.<br />

ADNIC & Jafza<br />

offer specialised<br />

health &<br />

property<br />

insurance<br />

<strong>The</strong> Jebel Ali Free Zone<br />

(Jafza) and Abu Dhabi<br />

National Insurance Company<br />

(ADNIC) have a contract<br />

for the exclusive provision of health<br />

and property insurance to the<br />

residents and visitors of the free<br />

zone community. Ahmad Al Haddad,<br />

Chief Operating Officer, Parks and<br />

Zones, DP <strong>World</strong> UAE, and Ahmad<br />

Idris, Chief Executive Officer, Abu<br />

Dhabi National Insurance Company<br />

(ADNIC), signed the contract. Preunderwritten<br />

insurance products for<br />

health and business insurance will be<br />

made available by ADNIC at special<br />

rates. Because of this agreement,<br />

the Jafza community will be able to<br />

enrol in health insurance coverage<br />

easily online without having to submit<br />

individual application forms or<br />

medical history information.<br />

Dubai Health<br />

Authority<br />

permits interns<br />

to work at<br />

private hospitals<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai Health Authority’s<br />

(DHA) Medical Education<br />

and Research Department has<br />

stated that medical interns<br />

will be able to obtain training at both<br />

public and private institutions in<br />

the Emirate, which will significantly<br />

improve medical education in Dubai.<br />

<strong>The</strong> action intends to cultivate<br />

and enhance medical education<br />

possibilities for medical students as<br />

well as provide the DHA’s medical<br />

education programmes more<br />

momentum.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 47

Events<br />

SME and Startup Fundraising <strong>2022</strong> in<br />

Dubai brings together SMEs, startups,<br />

investors, and financial institutions<br />

SME and Startup Fundraising<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, organized by the<br />

<strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine<br />

on October 11, <strong>2022</strong> at the<br />

Radisson Blu Dubai Canal View Hotel,<br />

witnessed a LIVE pitch by selected<br />

SMEs and startups. Prominent retail<br />

and institutional investors, banks,<br />

financial institutions, entrepreneurs,<br />

SMEs, and representatives from<br />

ministries and business associations<br />

were in attendance for the event.<br />

Along with the SME & startup<br />

funding pitch representatives, the<br />

event also invited speakers such<br />

as branding and marketing expert<br />

Sarah Al-Sayegh, Global Executive<br />

Isabelita Castilho, the author of “All<br />

the Secrets of Getting a New Job in<br />

Dubai, Unleashed” and Manoj Sureka,<br />

Managing Partner, Synergy Fin.<br />

Consulting.<br />

“<strong>The</strong> gathering was teeming with<br />

brilliant minds and concepts worth<br />

investing in. <strong>The</strong> people behind<br />

<strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine did a<br />

fantastic job of assembling such an<br />

incredible corporate community in<br />

one location,” says Isabelita Castilho.<br />

With only eight selected, it is<br />

notable that over 1600 SMEs and<br />

startups had registered to be<br />

part of the fundraising and were<br />

given the opportunity to pitch for<br />

funding. AVISA Smart Hospitals,<br />

NexusMeentis, Toys we Loved, Quantl<br />

AI, Paisa, Settler, Dassani Connoisseur<br />

48 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

Watch the event video!

DMCC and Order N Get were the<br />

selected companies pitching for<br />

investments.<br />

“This fundraising event is an<br />

initiative to offer opportunities to<br />

the SMEs and startups like that of<br />

mine, looking for business growth, to<br />

shape long-standing relationships with<br />

investors and enable us to explore<br />

new possibilities seamlessly,” said one<br />

of the companies pitching there.<br />

As it gathered many high-level<br />

business representatives and<br />

investors to offer the selected SMEs<br />

and startups different funding<br />

options with the possibility to<br />

expand their businesses, SME<br />

and Startup Fundraising <strong>2022</strong><br />

took place in conformity with HH<br />

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al<br />

Maktoum’s vision to set Dubai apart<br />

as a fast-paced and forward-looking<br />

metropolis, working to boost the<br />

emirate’s position as a business<br />

hub, drawing the most innovative<br />

businesses in the world.<br />

“<strong>The</strong> event will be followed by<br />

many similar events in the future to<br />

offer entrepreneurs who aspire to lead<br />

the world of entrepreneurship and<br />

innovation different funding options.<br />

This event will focus on supporting<br />

SMEs and Startups in the UAE by<br />

allowing them to meet with the best<br />

investors and business leaders in the<br />

world,” states a spokesperson from<br />

<strong>The</strong> <strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine.<br />

Building on already existing funding<br />

choices provided by the UAE’s wise<br />

Leadership, such as Mohammed<br />

Bin Rashid Fund for SME (Dubai<br />

Fund) and Mohammed Bin Rashid<br />

Innovation Fund (MBRIF), SME and<br />

Startup Fundraising <strong>2022</strong> aims for<br />

offering different funding options<br />

for SMEs and Startups in Dubai,<br />

which includes bridge finance, equity<br />

partnership, working capital, invoice<br />

discounting, and short & long-term<br />

loans & investments and other<br />

alternatives that may contribute to the<br />

seamlessness of business environment<br />

in Dubai.<br />

“<strong>The</strong> best part of the event was<br />

how the organizer brought SMEs<br />

and investors in one location. What I<br />

like about this event is that the SMEs<br />

companies are in the right direction.<br />

<strong>The</strong>y are coming with very innovative<br />

ideas and solutions based on some<br />

kind of AI, online or automated<br />

solutions that make other businesses’<br />

lives easier and help the economy and<br />

the society to grow,” says Mr. Yasser<br />

Abdallah from First Abu Dhabi Bank.<br />

All these SMEs and startups “bring<br />

some value addition to the market,”<br />

adds Mr. Abdallah, expressing<br />

his joy to witness such a moment<br />

being granted for these developing<br />

businesses.<br />

In addition to the latest regulations<br />

on cryptocurrency, the UAE has<br />

recently launched a new visa scheme<br />

intending to further improve personal<br />

security, safety, and social stability.<br />

SME and Startup Fundraising <strong>2022</strong> is<br />

also in line with the country’s efforts<br />

to facilitate the growth of alreadyexisting<br />

businesses and the building of<br />

new businesses, as the event attempts<br />

to augment the UAE’s position as a<br />

magnet for SMEs and startups from all<br />

over the globe by creating a meeting<br />

point between SMEs and startups<br />

as well as a platform to build longlasting<br />

business relationships between<br />

business world leaders and investors.<br />

“We are enormously optimistic<br />

about what this event will contribute<br />

to boosting the UAE’s attracting<br />

position for new businesses,” added<br />

the spokesperson from <strong>The</strong> <strong>Finance</strong><br />

<strong>World</strong> Magazine, “and we are sincerely<br />

delighted to be part of HH Sheikh<br />

Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s<br />

vision to augment the UAE’s position<br />

as a global hub for business and<br />

innovation.”<br />

<strong>The</strong> event was powered by <strong>Finance</strong><br />

<strong>World</strong> magazine and endorsed by<br />

the Private Office of HH Sheikh<br />

Ahmed Bin Faisal Al Qassimi. <strong>The</strong><br />

major supporters of the event<br />

included Wasaya Investments, the<br />

venue partner, Radisson Blu Dubai<br />

Canal View, Ahmed Al Maghribi<br />

Perfumes, Al Wasl Printing, the<br />

Company Formation, and iFund<br />

Factoring and Forfaiting services,<br />

community partner ICAI Dubai and<br />

official advisory firm Synergy Fin<br />

Consulting, media partners Yalla TV,<br />

Talk 100.3, Big 106.2, and Mobi-shastra<br />

Technologies.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 49

Events<br />

50 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 51

Events<br />

<strong>World</strong> Blockchain Summit offers<br />

opportunities for crypto and metaverse<br />

innovators<br />

<strong>World</strong> Blockchain Summit (WBS), the largest global series of blockchain, cryptocurrency,<br />

and web3 events, took place on October 17–18, <strong>2022</strong> at Atlantis, the Palm, hosting the most<br />

important thought of leaders on blockchain, cryptocurrency, NFT, web 3.0, and the Metaverse<br />

to examine the market’s effects on business, banking, gaming, culture, and community<br />

development. <strong>The</strong> event was held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Juma Ahmed Juma Al<br />

Maktoum, a member of the ruling family of Dubai, Chairman, Elite Partner Investment.<br />

Dubai is renowned for its<br />

open attitude toward<br />

Cryptocurrencies and<br />

blockchain technologies.<br />

This is seen from how easily<br />

blockchain and cryptocurrency<br />

rules can be implemented, which is<br />

an amazing opportunity for foreign<br />

businesses wishing to open offices<br />

there. This is further supported by the<br />

Dubai Virtual Asset Regulation Law’s<br />

recent approval, which creates a more<br />

“crypto-friendly” framework that<br />

encourages investment and growth<br />

in blockchain use. With over 6000<br />

millionaires living there and a private<br />

fortune of over $40 billion, the nation<br />

is a popular place for investments.<br />

“Dubai is the ideal location for<br />

blockchain innovation. We are<br />

pleased to be collaborating with WBS<br />

to realise the goals outlined by the<br />

Dubai government’s Blockchain and<br />

Metaverse Strategy,” said Furqan<br />

52 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Rassul, CEO Elite Partner Investment.<br />

In answer to some of the most<br />

important questions in the present<br />

market, WBS hosted the most<br />

informative sessions examining the<br />

blockchain and cryptocurrency area.<br />

Along with other things, it included<br />

fireside chats, use-case studies, panel<br />

discussions, and industry highlights.<br />

<strong>The</strong> CEO and founder of WBS,<br />

Mohammed Saleem, stated: “One<br />

of the world’s most blockchain-and<br />

crypto-friendly travel destinations,<br />

Dubai has the ideal positioning. We<br />

are thrilled to bring WBS back to<br />

Dubai this October as we host some of<br />

the top experts in the world to share<br />

their insights and showcase the most<br />

recent advancements in the space.<br />

With all the recent announcements<br />

regarding new crypto licences being<br />

issued, Dubai Metaverse Strategy,<br />

and more, we are super excited to be<br />

bringing WBS back to Dubai.”<br />

“<strong>The</strong> government’s attention on<br />

blockchain is visible in the UAE,<br />

with many programmes and ventures<br />

related to the technology. <strong>The</strong> main<br />

purpose of the event is to examine<br />

what the UAE might expect in the<br />

future with regard to the adoption<br />

of blockchain technology across<br />

various businesses and legislative<br />

developments,” added Mr. Saleem.<br />

In line with Dubai’s vision of<br />

being a global Web3 hub, leadership<br />

backer and provider of a digital asset<br />

regulatory framework, the summit<br />

featured presentations, use-case<br />

studies and educational sessions by<br />

global technology providers who<br />

showcased their latest innovations<br />

designed with the primary focus of<br />

enabling businesses and organisations<br />

to adopt blockchain and crypto<br />

solutions.<br />

Dubai is the ideal location for blockchain<br />

innovation. We are pleased to be<br />

collaborating with WBS to realise the<br />

goals outlined by the Dubai government’s<br />

Blockchain and Metaverse Strategy,<br />

Watch the event video!<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 53

Mergers & Acquisitions<br />

Latest mergers and acquisitions status<br />

in the MENA region<br />

During the first half of <strong>2022</strong>, the MENA area saw 359 merger and acquisition (M&A) agreements<br />

totaling $42.6 billion. <strong>The</strong> increase in M&A activity reflects a 12% year-over-year (YoY) increase<br />

in deal volume, which is fueled by the region’s post-pandemic economic expansion, which is<br />

supported by high oil prices and rising boardroom confidence.<br />

Domestic transactions<br />

provided 48% and 33%,<br />

respectively, of the overall<br />

value and volume of M&A<br />

transactions over the course of the<br />

past six months, according to the<br />

research. Deal activity was primarily<br />

fueled by the engagement of private<br />

equity (PE) or sovereign wealth funds<br />

(SWF), despite fluctuations in crude<br />

prices, economic unpredictability,<br />

and interruptions to global markets<br />

providing only modest incentive. In<br />

the first half of <strong>2022</strong>, the M&A activity<br />

involving PE and SWFs made up 35%<br />

and 38%, respectively, of the overall<br />

deal volumes and values.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE was the most popular<br />

destination among domestic PE or<br />

SWF deals, receiving 18 deals, while<br />

Saudi Arabia was the most active<br />

acquiring area, receiving 27 deals. In<br />

addition, the research showed that<br />

deals involving GREs witnessed a<br />

total deal value of $16.9 billion in the<br />

first half of <strong>2022</strong>, or 40% of all declared<br />

deal value. It’s interesting to observe<br />

that GRE-led deals now account for<br />

40% of value on average rather than<br />

62% as in previous years, indicating<br />

a greater involvement of the private<br />

sector in regional deals.<br />

“Despite the global economic<br />

unpredictability, we are continuing to<br />

witness a positive trajectory in M&A<br />

activity across the MENA region, as<br />

economic diversification initiated<br />

by governments continues to buoy<br />

interest in strategic transactions,” said<br />

Brad Watson, EY’s MENA strategy<br />

and transactions leader. Investors’<br />

appetites are growing as a result of<br />

fiscal reforms, particularly in the UAE<br />

and Saudi Arabia, which are aimed<br />

at improving cooperation between<br />

the public and private sectors.<br />

Government-led initiatives are also<br />

supporting the region’s thriving startup<br />

ecosystem, which drives up deal<br />

activity.<br />

Top five MENA target countries by<br />

deal value<br />

With 105 agreements worth $14.2<br />

billion completed, the UAE was the<br />

top target nation in the MENA area.<br />

It was followed by Egypt, where 65<br />

deals totaling US$3.2 billion were<br />

signed, Saudi Arabia, where 39 deals<br />

totaling US$2.8 billion were signed,<br />

Morocco, where 18 deals totaling<br />

US$1.8 billion were signed, and Oman,<br />

where 10 deals totaling US$0.7 billion<br />

were signed.<br />

<strong>The</strong> top five MENA target<br />

subsectors in terms of deal value<br />

<strong>The</strong> GCC region continued to<br />

diversify its economy away from its<br />

oil and gas industries despite the<br />

instability of commodity prices and<br />

inflationary pressures. As a result, the<br />

majority of investments continued to<br />

flow into sectors like transportation,<br />

consumer goods, telecommunications,<br />

real estate, and electricity & utilities.<br />

54 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

<strong>The</strong> UAE was the most popular destination among domestic<br />

PE or SWF deals, receiving 18 deals, while Saudi Arabia<br />

was the most active acquiring area, receiving 27 deals.<br />

<strong>The</strong> less reliance on GRE-led deals is<br />

the most intriguing shift in the MENA<br />

M&A market in H1 <strong>2022</strong>, according<br />

to Anil Menon, head of MENA M&A<br />

and ECM at EY. Due to the region’s<br />

appealing fundamentals, a plenty of<br />

cash, and the rerating of longer-term<br />

growth companies, the private sector<br />

is driving deal making.<br />

Domestic business<br />

In total, 173 domestic transactions<br />

totaling $13.9 billion were completed<br />

in the first half of <strong>2022</strong>. Three<br />

transactions made up almost 41% of<br />

the value of domestic M&A.<br />

Ghitha Holding and Tamween<br />

Management reached an agreement to<br />

be acquired for $2.4 billion; Q Holding<br />

and Reem Investments were acquired<br />

for $1.6 billion; and Kingdom Holding<br />

Company (16.8% share) was acquired<br />

for $1.5 billion by Saudi Arabia’s<br />

Public Investment Fund.<br />

Real estate ($3.3 billion), consumer<br />

products ($2.9 billion), banking and<br />

financial markets ($2.4 billion), asset<br />

management ($1.5 billion), and other<br />

transportation ($0.8 billion) were the<br />

top five domestic subsectors by deal<br />

value.<br />

Inbound deals<br />

Greater inbound transaction volume<br />

in the MENA region, with 94 deals<br />

worth $9.8 billion, compared to 62<br />

deals in the same period previous<br />

year, was caused by rising oil prices,<br />

the adoption of business-friendly<br />

policies in the area, and the relaxing<br />

of government travel restrictions.<br />

With 51 transactions totaling $7.4<br />

billion in the first half of <strong>2022</strong>, the<br />

UAE remained a top choice for<br />

investors, thanks to changes aimed at<br />

enhancing its business climate, luring<br />

foreign capital, and encouraging<br />

businesses to establish or extend their<br />

operations.<br />

As a result of favourable government<br />

actions, such as the granting of a<br />

special licence to foreign investors,<br />

Egypt has also emerged as a<br />

significant investment destination,<br />

with deal activity increasing three<br />

times in 6M <strong>2022</strong> YoY.<br />

<strong>The</strong> US is leading the MENA<br />

region’s inbound deal activity<br />

In terms of deal volume, US-based<br />

organisations were the most active<br />

investors in MENA, participating in<br />

30% of inbound deal activity with<br />

an emphasis on technology-related<br />

investments. <strong>The</strong> $5 billion agreement<br />

made in June by Caisse de Depot et<br />

Placement du Quebec to purchase a<br />

22% share in each of Jebel Ali Free<br />

Zone, National Industries Park, and<br />

Jebel Ali Port served as a major<br />

catalyst for activity.<br />

Other transportation ($5 billion),<br />

electricity and utilities ($1.7 billion),<br />

technology ($1.5 billion), chemicals<br />

($0.6 billion), and real estate<br />

($0.4 billion) made up the top five<br />

subsectors by deal value.<br />

Outbound deals<br />

In the first half of <strong>2022</strong>, the region<br />

saw 92 outbound deals worth $19<br />

billion, up from 75 deals worth $5.2<br />

billion in the same period in 2021. Out<br />

of 54 overseas sales from the UAE, the<br />

technology and consumer products<br />

industry led with the most outbound<br />

deals, accounting for 35% of the total<br />

number of export deals.<br />

<strong>The</strong> largest outbound deal ever<br />

done in the UAE occurred in May<br />

when Emirates Telecommunications<br />

Group Company paid $4.398 billion<br />

to acquire a 9.8% share in the UK’s<br />

Vodafone Group.<br />

According to deal value, the top five<br />

outbound target sub-sectors were<br />

telecoms ($4.4 billion), media and<br />

entertainment ($3.5 billion), airlines<br />

($2.2 billion), consumer products<br />

($1.3 billion), and power and utilities<br />

($1.3 billion).<br />

<strong>The</strong> $2.25 billion sale of NMC<br />

Healthcare, a hospital operator in the<br />

UAE, to its creditors is the largest<br />

MENA target M&A deal so far this<br />

year. With $2.3 billion in transaction<br />

activity, or one-fourth of M&A activity<br />

in <strong>2022</strong>, the healthcare sector was the<br />

most active in Mena, according to a<br />

study from Refinitiv.<br />

Since last year, the region has<br />

experienced significant M&A activity<br />

as economic growth has accelerated<br />

due to the relaxation of Covid-19<br />

limitations. In the first quarter of<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, MENA’s equities capital markets<br />

raised $3.7 billion from 15 offers,<br />

an increase of seven times annually.<br />

Since 2008, equity capital markets<br />

have had their best start to a year.<br />

13 out of 15 ECM agreements came<br />

from IPOs, according to the report,<br />

which stated that IPOs accounted<br />

for the majority of the total. Egypt<br />

came in second with $163.3m, and<br />

Saudi Arabia was the country with the<br />

largest revenues ($3.5bn). <strong>The</strong> IPO of<br />

Nahdi Medical raised $1.3 billion and<br />

was the largest listing in the MENA<br />

region.<br />

In the first quarter of<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, MENA’s equities<br />

capital markets raised<br />

$3.7 billion from 15<br />

offers, an increase of<br />

seven times annually.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 55

Mergers & Acquisitions News<br />

Salama, a UAE<br />

insurance, will<br />

survive the<br />

Takaful Emarat<br />

merger<br />

In a statement to the Dubai<br />

Financial Market (DFM), Salama<br />

stated that the proposed merger,<br />

which is anticipated to be<br />

finished in the second half of next<br />

year, will be a cashless transaction<br />

accomplished through a statutory<br />

merger, with all of TE’s assets<br />

and liabilities being merged into<br />

Salama. According to the firm, TE<br />

shareholders will get new shares in<br />

Salama, and KPMG has been selected<br />

as a joint valuer in order to determine<br />

the best ratio swap. <strong>The</strong> parties have<br />

not yet finalised the terms of the<br />

transaction, thus its value is still up in<br />

the air.<br />

Starzplay Arabia<br />

is aquired by e&<br />

and ADQ<br />

Aagreement to purchase<br />

the majority of shares<br />

in the video streaming<br />

service Starzplay Arabia<br />

has been finalised by E-Vision, the<br />

entertainment division of e&, the<br />

largest telecom provider in the United<br />

Arab Emirates. In a report to the<br />

Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, e&<br />

stated that the e&-led consortium has<br />

successfully acquired a 57% share in<br />

the Middle East and North Africa’s<br />

fastest-growing video streaming<br />

business. This acquisition “is<br />

consistent with e&’s plan to expand<br />

up the entertainment part of e& life<br />

consumer digital vertical by boosting<br />

E-development Vision’s on the video<br />

streaming segment,” the company<br />

claimed. It also greatly improves<br />

Starzplay Arabia’s position within the<br />

entire Mena area.<br />

Mena’s M&A deals are primarily<br />

focused on the UAE<br />

As the value of agreements in the first nine months reached $69.7 billion,<br />

17% less than in the same time in 2021, the UAE was the country most<br />

sought after for mergers and acquisitions in the Middle East and North<br />

Africa area. Refinitiv, a subsidiary of the London Stock Exchange Group,<br />

conducted an investment banking analysis that found that despite the value<br />

reduction, the number of deals announced in the region climbed by 5.0% from the<br />

previous year to reach the greatest first-six-and-a-half total since 1980. <strong>The</strong> next<br />

most sought-after countries in the area for mergers and acquisitions were the UAE,<br />

followed by Saudi Arabia and Egypt.<br />

UAE’s Cashee<br />

gains ownership<br />

from Saudi ANB<br />

Adeal has been concluded<br />

between Arab National<br />

Bank (ANB) and Cashee,<br />

a tech startup offering<br />

financial services based in the UAE,<br />

to purchase shares in the latter.<br />

However, neither the value nor the<br />

size of the share the Saudi lender<br />

acquired were mentioned in the<br />

press statement. <strong>The</strong> agreement<br />

supports ANB’s efforts to improve<br />

banking services geared at millennials<br />

and increase financial literacy and<br />

inclusiveness. Additionally, it will<br />

assist Cashee in introducing its<br />

banking and knowledge-related<br />

products, services, and applications<br />

to the Saudi market. Cashee was<br />

founded in 2020 and is headquartered<br />

in Dubai with the goal of promoting<br />

financial inclusion for young people in<br />

the MENA area.<br />

UAE’s e&<br />

business<br />

successfully<br />

acquires<br />

Smartworld at<br />

full price<br />

One of the top technological<br />

solution providers and<br />

systems integrators in the<br />

UAE, Smartworld, has been<br />

fully acquired by the e& enterprise<br />

unit based in the UAE, which is a<br />

division of e& (formerly known as<br />

Etisalat). <strong>The</strong> e& enterprise business<br />

lines for the Internet of Things and<br />

artificial intelligence will incorporate<br />

Smartworld’s technologies. According<br />

to e& enterprise, Smartworld will now<br />

operate under its umbrella and adopt<br />

the name e& enterprise iot and ai.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company will concentrate on use<br />

cases in a variety of sectors through<br />

e& enterprise IoT and AI, including<br />

smart and sustainable cities, safe<br />

cities, Industry 4.0, digital healthcare,<br />

aviation, manufacturing, logistics, oil<br />

and gas, utilities, and eGovernment.<br />

56 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Chedid Capital purchases BuyAnyInsurance.com<br />

Chedid Direct Limited,<br />

a division of Chedid<br />

Capital, announced a deal<br />

to strategically buy the<br />

majority of MMR Holding Limited, a<br />

business based in Abu Dhabi Global<br />

Multiply Group<br />

buys 80% of<br />

International<br />

Energy Holding<br />

to increase<br />

utility stream<br />

ultiply Group, an Abu<br />

Dhabi investment holding<br />

firm with a technology<br />

focus, has purchased 80%<br />

of the stock in International Energy<br />

Holding, a division of International<br />

Holding Company (IHC), an Abu<br />

Dhabi-based conglomerate. In a<br />

statement to the Abu Dhabi Securities<br />

Exchange, where its shares are<br />

traded, the group claimed that<br />

Multiply’s acquisition of a majority<br />

holding in IEH comes after IEH<br />

bought a 50% investment in the<br />

Turkish clean and renewable energy<br />

company Kalyon Enerji Yatrimlari.<br />

Multiply intends to increase its utility<br />

and energy investments with this<br />

acquisition, the business stated.<br />

Market (ADGM) and the proprietor<br />

of one of the top online insurance<br />

marketplaces, BuyAnyInsurance,<br />

in order to expand its international<br />

insurance offering (www.<br />

buyanyinsurance.com). MMR Holding<br />

Masdar intends to make acquisitions as it<br />

continues to diversify its business<br />

Masdar, a clean energy<br />

firm based in Abu<br />

Dhabi, is expanding its<br />

business and considering<br />

acquisitions in various nations. Its<br />

goal is to reach 100 gigawatts of<br />

renewable capacity in the next ten<br />

years. With a total installed renewable<br />

energy capacity of 15 gigawatts and<br />

operations in over 40 countries, the<br />

US$69.7 billion<br />

in MENA M&A<br />

activities in<br />

the first nine<br />

months of <strong>2022</strong><br />

nvestment banking fees in the<br />

Middle East and North Africa<br />

are anticipated to have reached<br />

US$1.1 billion in the first nine<br />

months of <strong>2022</strong>, a 5% increase over the<br />

same period in 2021 and the biggest<br />

first-nine-month total since 2008.<br />

<strong>The</strong> first three months of the year<br />

produced almost half of this year’s<br />

fees, which decreased in the following<br />

two quarters. <strong>The</strong> third quarter of<br />

<strong>2022</strong> saw fees reach US$186.4 million,<br />

which was a six-year low for the<br />

region. <strong>The</strong> percentage of fees from<br />

the MENA region in investment<br />

banking fees generated so far in<br />

<strong>2022</strong> is 1.3%, which is the highest<br />

percentage since 2008. United Arab<br />

Emirates produced 37 percent of total<br />

MENA fees for the first nine months<br />

of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

M I T<br />

Limited now has access to a network<br />

of brokers in more than 60 nations<br />

in the Middle East, North and Sub-<br />

Saharan Africa, and Asia as a result of<br />

this deal.<br />

company is “assessing” fresh chances<br />

to expand its portfolio. Acting<br />

executive director of clean energy<br />

at Masdar, Fawaz Al Muharrami.<br />

Masdar is rapidly growing its portfolio<br />

of renewable energy sources as<br />

nations focus on reducing emissions<br />

to slow global warming. Masdar<br />

has investments worth $20 billion<br />

worldwide.<br />

DIB will adopt a<br />

comprehensive<br />

digital KYC<br />

journey for new<br />

bank customers<br />

he second-largest Islamic<br />

bank in the world, Dubai<br />

Islamic Bank (DIB), the<br />

biggest Islamic bank in the<br />

UAE, said today that it will work with<br />

the UAE Ministry of Interior (MOI)<br />

at GITEX GLOBAL, the biggest tech<br />

expo on earth, held in Dubai from<br />

October 10–14, <strong>2022</strong>. With the aid<br />

of a cutting-edge facial recognition<br />

solution made possible by the new<br />

partnership, the bank will be able to<br />

digitise its KYC process and provide<br />

the opportunity to validate new bank<br />

customers opening accounts with<br />

DIB. <strong>The</strong> MOI digital verification face<br />

gateway solution, which ensures<br />

rapid, accurate, and highly secure<br />

confirmation of identification,<br />

enhances the modern eKYC journey.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 57

Cryptocurrency<br />

DWTC’s Agreement with Binance to<br />

Establish a Crypto Regulatory Framework<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai <strong>World</strong> Trade Centre authority and Binance, a cryptocurrency exchange, have signed<br />

a memorandum of understanding to work together to develop a regulatory framework for<br />

cryptocurrencies. Binance announced that it will share its experience cooperating with<br />

international regulators in order to help the development of “progressive” cryptocurrency<br />

laws. According to Binance, the project intends to assist cryptocurrency exchanges,<br />

businesses that offer blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) services, as well<br />

as a broad range of digital assets and currencies, in obtaining licences in Dubai.<br />

58 58 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

All financial institutions that have been awarded<br />

licences and are under the supervision of the UAE<br />

Central Bank, SCA, DFSA, and FSRA are required to abide<br />

by the Enabling Technology Guidelines, which deal with<br />

the use of Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT)<br />

Before discussing what this<br />

memorandum is bringing to<br />

the UAE crypto regulations,<br />

it is worth noting that the<br />

United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a<br />

federation made up of seven Emirates<br />

(Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah,<br />

Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm Al<br />

Quwain). Islamic Sharia, French, and<br />

Egyptian civil law are all incorporated<br />

into the civil legal framework known<br />

as UAE Federal Law. Federal financial<br />

regulation is overseen by the UAE<br />

Central Bank and the Securities and<br />

Commodities Authority (SCA). Each<br />

of the Emirates is free to choose and<br />

maintain their own distinct local<br />

courts in addition to the Federal<br />

jurisdiction to handle situations that<br />

the Constitution does not expressly<br />

reserve for federal jurisdiction. In Abu<br />

Dhabi, Dubai, and Ras Al Khaimah,<br />

distinct judiciaries are upheld, and<br />

they apply both civil law and Sharia<br />

principles.<br />

<strong>The</strong> establishment of free zones is<br />

also permitted by Article 121 of the<br />

United Arab Emirates constitution.<br />

<strong>The</strong> “Financial Free Zones” are a<br />

subset of the free zones that Federal<br />

Law No. 8 of 2004 specifically<br />

authorises. <strong>The</strong> key features of a<br />

Financial Free Zone are that they<br />

are exempt from all Federal civil<br />

and commercial laws while still<br />

being governed by Federal criminal<br />

laws, such as Federal Anti-Money<br />

Laundering regulations. Article 3 of<br />

Federal Law No. 8 of 2004 lists these<br />

features. <strong>The</strong> UAE has created two<br />

financial free zones: the Abu Dhabi<br />

Global Market (ADGM) and the Dubai<br />

Internal Financial Centre (DIFC).<br />

<strong>The</strong> ADGM Courts and the Financial<br />

Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA)<br />

are two different financial regulators.<br />

English Common Law is rendered<br />

immediately applicable in the ADGM<br />

by the ADGM Courts, Civil Evidence,<br />

Judgments, Enforcement and Judicial<br />

Appointments Regulations 2015,<br />

explicitly separating it from the civil<br />

law that is applicable at the Federal<br />

level and in Onshore UAE.<br />

Both DIFC Courts and the Dubai<br />

Financial Services Authority (DFSA),<br />

are different financial regulators, and<br />

independent organisations within<br />

DIFC. <strong>The</strong> common law system<br />

utilised by DIFC Courts is based on<br />

the English Common Law (i.e., DIFC<br />

law), despite the fact that, unlike in<br />

the ADGM, English law is persuasive<br />

but not immediately applicable, and<br />

its court rules are closely modelled<br />

after the English Civil Procedure<br />

Rules. Both the ADGM and DIFC<br />

Courts do their business in English,<br />

and their decisions are also written in<br />

English.<br />

<strong>The</strong> most recent iteration of these<br />

rules, laws, and regulations was<br />

made public on February 24, 2020.<br />

(In the years 2020–2021, onshore<br />

Federal regulators released the<br />

first crypto asset legislation. Stored<br />

Value Facilities Regulation, Retail<br />

Payment Services and Card Schemes<br />

Regulation, and Decision No. 23<br />

of 2020 Concerning Crypto Assets<br />

Activities Regulation were both<br />

released by the UAE Central Bank<br />

(the SCA Virtual Asset Regulation).<br />

<strong>The</strong> law only applies to payment<br />

tokens (also known as stablecoins);<br />

it expressly exempts security and<br />

commodity tokens.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Guidelines for Financial<br />

Institutions Adopting Enabling<br />

Technologies were created in<br />

collaboration by the SCA, UAE<br />

Central Bank, DFSA, and FSRA<br />

and announced on <strong>November</strong> 15,<br />

2021, following a time for public<br />

comment that started in June<br />

2021 (<strong>The</strong> Guidelines for Enabling<br />

Technologies). All financial<br />

institutions that have been awarded<br />

licences and are under the supervision<br />

of the UAE Central Bank, SCA, DFSA,<br />

and FSRA are required to abide by<br />

the Enabling Technology Guidelines,<br />

which deal with the use of Distributed<br />

Ledger Technologies (DLT),<br />

sometimes known as “Blockchain.”<br />

<strong>The</strong> term “investment token”<br />

excludes cryptocurrencies and<br />

tokens backed by assets (such as<br />

stablecoins). This hasn’t stopped<br />

people from launching businesses in<br />

DIFC that are related to blockchain<br />

and cryptocurrencies. For example,<br />

the regional headquarters of Ripple<br />

are located in DIFC, and starting<br />

on April 29, <strong>2022</strong>, Bifinity, Binance’s<br />

payments technology company, will<br />

also have a presence there. In March<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, both the DFSA of DIFC and the<br />

Emirate of Dubai achieved significant<br />

advancements in the regulation of<br />

virtual currencies. <strong>The</strong> DFSA unveiled<br />

its proposed regulatory framework<br />

for cryptocurrencies in Consultation<br />

Paper No. 143, which was published<br />

on March 8, <strong>2022</strong>. “<strong>The</strong>se proposals<br />

were born out of the necessity to<br />

enact appropriate investor protection<br />

laws in this field, while also<br />

encouraging the development of this<br />

market in a responsible and careful<br />

manner,” the consultation states.<br />

According to a statement released<br />

by the Dubai Media Office, the Dubai<br />

<strong>World</strong> Trade Centre will oversee<br />

cryptocurrency regulation in the<br />

United Arab Emirates (UAE). <strong>The</strong><br />

centre will create cryptocurrency<br />

legislation to abide by anti-money<br />

laundering regulations and oversee<br />

global trading. Binance has teamed<br />

with the centre in response to<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 59

Cryptocurrency<br />

rumours that the exchange is getting<br />

ready to set up a headquarters in the<br />

United Arab Emirates. According to<br />

reports, Binance has spoken with<br />

representatives from the special<br />

economic zones Abu Dhabi Global<br />

Market (ADGM), Dubai International<br />

Financial Centre (DIFC), and Dubai<br />

Multi Commodities Centre about this.<br />

<strong>The</strong> exchange recently hired Mark<br />

McGinness from the Dubai Financial<br />

Services Authority, which regulates<br />

DIFC, and Matt Gamble from ADGM.<br />

Prior to it, both men had important<br />

positions at the economic zones.<br />

Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ”<br />

Zhao recently made his first real<br />

estate purchase in Dubai. “<strong>The</strong><br />

administration there is pretty<br />

progressive, and it’s a very beautiful<br />

business climate,” Zhao said in a<br />

media interview. Zhao has dropped<br />

various hints in recent months<br />

regarding possible locations for<br />

Binance’s headquarters, including<br />

France and Ireland. Binance, a 2017<br />

establishment in China, is the largest<br />

cryptocurrency exchange in the world<br />

without a head office. Instead, the<br />

exchange has established businesses<br />

in a variety of nations, making it<br />

difficult for regulators to assert<br />

control over the company. Consumer<br />

alerts and investigations into Binance<br />

have been launched in a number of<br />

countries, including the U.S., U.K.,<br />

Japan, Singapore, Germany, and Italy.<br />

Binance, one of the largest<br />

cryptocurrency exchanges in the<br />

world, took on itself to handle $7.7<br />

trillion in cryptocurrency deals in<br />

2021, with an estimated 28 million<br />

members and a daily trading volume<br />

of $80 billion. Helal Saeed Almarri,<br />

director general of the DWTCA,<br />

said that Dubai is renowned for its<br />

inventiveness and that the “Future-<br />

Economy” environment is intended<br />

to promote collaboration, encourage<br />

creativity, and, most importantly,<br />

ensure protection. <strong>The</strong> establishment<br />

of the first specialised Authority in<br />

the world reflects Dubai’s proactive<br />

reaction to the industry’s request<br />

for assistance so that governments,<br />

service providers, and technological<br />

enablers may work together to<br />

develop the global Virtual Asset<br />

Economy’s ecosystem of the future.<br />

This is consistent with Dubai’s goal of<br />

creating a totally digital and inclusive<br />

society.<br />

60 60 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Binance’s new users increase<br />

49% YTD in the MENA area<br />

With a year-to-date user<br />

growth rate of 49%<br />

specifically for the<br />

MENA region, the<br />

cryptocurrency trading platform<br />

Binance boasts a considerable<br />

boost in user growth. This surge is<br />

evidence of the growing demand for<br />

virtual assets, which is being pushed<br />

by forward-thinking government<br />

policies that have opened up the<br />

market to many companies. Due to<br />

more licencing and relationships with<br />

regulated businesses, the company<br />

has maintained its growth pace in the<br />

MENA area this year. <strong>The</strong> number of<br />

employees at the blockchain service<br />

provider now exceeds 400 in Dubai<br />

alone. In response to the rise in<br />

demand for security training brought<br />

on by the increased interest in crypto<br />

adoption from businesses in the<br />

Dubai hosts the 22nd <strong>World</strong><br />

Blockchain Summit in October<br />

<strong>The</strong> 22nd global edition of the<br />

<strong>World</strong>’s Biggest Blockchain<br />

Summit Series, one of the<br />

most exclusive gatherings<br />

of the global crypto and blockchain<br />

ecosystem, will make a triumphant<br />

return to Dubai on October 17–19,<br />

<strong>2022</strong> at Atlantis, <strong>The</strong> Palm, Dubai,<br />

UAE. With a market capitalization of<br />

US$1.4 trillion, up 86% year-to-date,<br />

and a forecast for the Middle East’s<br />

public and private sectors, Binance<br />

has also expanded its Global Law<br />

Enforcement Training Program.<br />

blockchain market to reach US$3.2<br />

billion by 2023, Dubai has set its<br />

sights on becoming a major global<br />

tech hub. To that end, it has attracted<br />

entrepreneurs, investors, and even<br />

cryptocurrency influencers. Over 30<br />

exchange licences have been issued<br />

by the UAE in the past year, and a<br />

dedicated regulatory body has been<br />

established.<br />

Cryptocurrency News<br />

Hackers stole<br />

$570 million<br />

from Binance<br />

<strong>The</strong> largest cryptocurrency<br />

exchange in the world,<br />

Binance, had its BNB<br />

token stolen by hackers for<br />

around $570 million. Binance, which<br />

processes 1.4 million transactions per<br />

second and moves $2 billion worth of<br />

digital assets every day, was forced to<br />

briefly pause its blockchain network<br />

as a result of the attack. On Saturday<br />

morning, the price of a BNB coin<br />

dropped by more than 4% to $281.06.<br />

At noon on Friday, it had reached a<br />

price of $293.1. A few hours later, at<br />

about 0630 GMT, BNB Chain resumed<br />

using its blockchain.<br />

UAE Witnesses<br />

10-fold<br />

Increase In<br />

Crypto Market<br />

This Year<br />

<strong>The</strong> Middle East and North<br />

Africa (MENA) area has<br />

the world’s fastest-growing<br />

Bitcoin market (and crypto<br />

market in general). Algeria, Bahrain,<br />

Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan,<br />

Kuwait, and Lebanon are nations<br />

that are a part of the MENA region.<br />

Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi<br />

Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab<br />

Emirates, and Yemen are more<br />

countries in the region. From July<br />

2021 to June <strong>2022</strong>, more than 9% of all<br />

bitcoin transactions worldwide were<br />

registered within these sovereign<br />

entities. During the same time<br />

frame, individual crypto investors<br />

from various nations in the area<br />

received about $566 billion in digital<br />

currencies.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 61

Real Estate<br />

Dubai Real Estate Sector set to Pick up<br />

Growth Momentum<br />

Due to the government’s<br />

relaxation of most<br />

pandemic-related<br />

restrictions, which boosted<br />

the tourism, aviation, hospitality,<br />

logistics, and retail sectors, experts<br />

believe Dubai’s real estate sector is<br />

poised to resume growth.<br />

<strong>The</strong> property sector will ultimately<br />

benefit from the relaxation of travel<br />

restrictions that were put in place<br />

to prevent the Covid-19 outbreak,<br />

according to analysts, top executives,<br />

and industry experts. <strong>The</strong>y claimed<br />

that despite the epidemic, real estate<br />

continued to grow steadily, and that<br />

this time, investors won’t have any<br />

significant obstacles to visiting or<br />

making investments in the UAE.<br />

As long as there is a high demand in<br />

the market, real estate will continue to<br />

rise, high momentum in terms of enduser<br />

and investment property demand<br />

in Dubai. <strong>The</strong> market has not been<br />

62 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

<strong>The</strong> entire sales value<br />

exceeded Dh180 billion<br />

with more than 67,000<br />

transactions between<br />

January and September<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, setting a record for<br />

the highest sales value in<br />

the first nine months of a<br />

year.<br />

affected by the pandemic limitations,<br />

with sales continuing at a record pace<br />

over the past 21 months. <strong>The</strong> growing<br />

cost of living, rising mortgage rates,<br />

the strengthening US dollar, and the<br />

anticipated increased supply, but they<br />

could also cause this trend to change.<br />

According to the most recent<br />

data, Dubai’s real estate sector<br />

experienced record sales during the<br />

first nine months of <strong>2022</strong> as buyers<br />

and investors flocked to the emirate<br />

to buy homes. <strong>The</strong> entire sales value<br />

exceeded Dh180 billion with more<br />

than 67,000 transactions between<br />

January and September <strong>2022</strong>, setting<br />

a record for the highest sales value<br />

in the first nine months of a year.<br />

According to the most recent figures<br />

from the Dubai Land Department,<br />

the emirate had previously registered<br />

sales of Dh116 billion at the same time<br />

in 2009.

Bright prospects ahead<br />

<strong>The</strong> relaxation of Covid-related<br />

regulations, according to Imran<br />

Farooq, CEO of Samana Developer,<br />

will hasten the expansion of the<br />

real estate industry. “Right now,<br />

everyone just wants to move on and<br />

forget about the pandemic. No Covid<br />

restrictions will promote greater<br />

travel. Greater inbound and outbound<br />

tourism will improve the value of real<br />

estate in Dubai,” said Farooq.<br />

According to David Abood, a<br />

partner at the real estate consultant<br />

CORE, the Dubai real estate<br />

market has maintained its strong<br />

pace since the beginning of <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

with robust growth seen across<br />

performance measures for all asset<br />

classes. Transaction volumes kept<br />

increasing, with the third quarter<br />

of <strong>2022</strong> marking the second-highest<br />

number of transactions overall and<br />

the greatest value of secondary<br />

market transactions closed in a<br />

quarter. “We expect socio-economic<br />

mood to improve further as we return<br />

to pre-pandemic levels with travel,<br />

mobility, occupancy levels, and rules<br />

(particularly the recent declaration<br />

that masks are no longer required,<br />

with some exceptions) signalling a<br />

return to normalcy,” said Abood.<br />

Villa sales to dominate<br />

According to Haider Tuaima of<br />

ValuStrat, the demand for villas will<br />

remain high after Covid. “With the<br />

exception of Palm Jumeirah and<br />

Emirates Hills, where villa prices are<br />

currently significantly higher than<br />

their 2014 highs, villa and townhouse<br />

prices have increased by 52% from the<br />

pandemic’s bottom, although overall<br />

they remain below the top,” said<br />

Tuaima. “Despite slower growth rates,<br />

demand is anticipated to remain high,<br />

particularly for larger, conveniently<br />

placed homes”.<br />

According to Farooq of Samana<br />

Developer, end-user demand for<br />

our projects is now above normal<br />

according to statistics from the Dubai<br />

Land Department and fresh inquiries.<br />

“Investor interest is not limited to<br />

villas or penthouses; it also includes<br />

high-end flats and luxury properties,<br />

which are becoming more and more<br />

popular among the new millionaires<br />

and billionaires who are moving to<br />

Dubai,” he said.<br />

Villa supply is limited<br />

Villa demand will continue to be<br />

high, according to Abood of CORE,<br />

“there is a supply shortage due to<br />

the high demand for villas, which is<br />

reflected in the rise in villa prices and<br />

occupancy rates. For many residents,<br />

especially for families with children,<br />

the desire for larger unit types—<br />

especially villas and townhouses<br />

with enough usable outdoor space<br />

and masterplans offering a variety<br />

of services and a strong feeling<br />

of community—remains a crucial<br />

decision-making factor.” He added<br />

that “the majority of current villa<br />

occupants would choose to move to<br />

more inexpensive places to continue<br />

living in villas, even if we expect<br />

some demand to shift from villas to<br />

apartments as a result of the high<br />

prices.”<br />

Double-digit expansion<br />

Villa prices in a few neighbourhoods<br />

continue to climb by double digits<br />

each month, according to Seyed<br />

Mohammad Ata Shobeiry, CEO of<br />

Zoom Property. “Consider Dubai<br />

Hills Estate and the Palm Jumeirah<br />

as examples, said Shobeiry. In August<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, prices in these localities rose<br />

by 11.5 percent and 18 percent,<br />

respectively. <strong>The</strong> demand for villas is<br />

rising despite this substantial price<br />

hike. This demonstrates unequivocally<br />

that the villa market would continue<br />

to experience robust demand even<br />

after COVID. Sales of villas increased<br />

during the epidemic as people<br />

chose more room than flats. “We are<br />

confident that this trend will sustain<br />

and we can expect moderate growth,”<br />

he said, “while the demand for the<br />

villa and luxury segment did pick up<br />

during the pandemic as people were<br />

looking for bigger and better working<br />

spaces due to the change in lifestyle<br />

and work schedules.<br />

<strong>The</strong> demand for beach front houses<br />

is now high while the supply is<br />

constrained, thus Shobeiry predicted<br />

that the ultra-luxury segment would<br />

increase at a slower rate while beach<br />

front properties would continue to<br />

grow.<br />

How the $30 trillion metaverse<br />

opportunity will be tapped into by<br />

the Dubai real estate market<br />

Away from the hot spots, the UAE is<br />

at the forefront of a quiet revolution in<br />

the real estate sector that is expected<br />

to soon become the new rage in the<br />

industry. <strong>The</strong> Dubai real estate market<br />

may be booming, with people like the<br />

Ambanis purchasing villas in upscale<br />

neighbourhoods for top dollar.<br />

<strong>The</strong> metaverse, a virtual<br />

environment, is where it’s all taking<br />

place. <strong>The</strong> UAE’s virtual real estate<br />

sector, which at first was only<br />

a curiosity, has recently grown<br />

dramatically, with virtual land and<br />

residences selling out quickly and<br />

reaching new highs in price.<br />

New virtual real estate assets in<br />

the UAE are being driven by techsavvy,<br />

innovation-focused businesses<br />

like Crypto House Capital, which are<br />

also drawing investors and corporate<br />

brands to the developing metaverse<br />

market.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s real estate market has<br />

had a great couple of months as<br />

investors pounce on the Gulf country’s<br />

attempt to become a global hub for<br />

property investments. According<br />

to figures from the Dubai Land<br />

Department (DLD), sales transactions<br />

reached a staggering $6.9 billion just<br />

in June of this year, which is thought<br />

to be the biggest in the previous 13<br />

years.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 63

Real Estate News<br />

Real estate<br />

Prices in<br />

Dubai rise as<br />

prospects are<br />

favourable<br />

A<br />

ccording to recent analysis<br />

from global real estate<br />

consultant Knight Frank,<br />

continued demand from<br />

the world’s wealthy has pushed up<br />

prices in Dubai’s luxury residential<br />

sector, with values in Palm Jumeirah,<br />

Emirates Hills, and Jumeirah Bay<br />

Island jumping by 88.8% in the last<br />

12 months. Due to higher oil prices<br />

and a quicker economic recovery<br />

from pandemic restrictions than the<br />

majority of other cities around the<br />

world, Dubai’s real estate market<br />

recovered strongly from 2020’s severe<br />

downturn. This attracted UHNWIs<br />

from all over the world. Due to<br />

increased Russian market buying<br />

demand and a dearth of luxury real<br />

estate, the trend is likely to last the<br />

rest of the year.<br />

Sharjah’s real<br />

estate sales<br />

reached $517<br />

million in<br />

September<br />

According to the Sharjah<br />

Real Estate Registration<br />

Department’s (SRERD)<br />

monthly report, there were<br />

2,299 total real estate transactions in<br />

September, totalling AED 1.9 billion<br />

in real estate trading value. Six<br />

hundred seventy-seven of the total<br />

transactions were for the sale of real<br />

estate in various areas of the Emirate<br />

of Sharjah. A total of 2,299 real estate<br />

transactions of various types were<br />

reported by the Sharjah Real Estate<br />

Registration Department over the<br />

course of the previous month, with<br />

677 sales transactions accounting for<br />

29.4% of all executed transactions,<br />

299 mortgage transactions accounting<br />

for 13.1% of the total and valued at<br />

AED608 million, and 1,323 other<br />

miscellaneous transactions making up<br />

the remaining 57.5% of the total.<br />

A new agreement assists real<br />

estate buyers in applying for<br />

Golden Visas<br />

Aldar Properties PJSC, the<br />

top firm in Abu Dhabi for<br />

property development,<br />

management, and<br />

investment, and the Abu Dhabi<br />

Residents Office, both parts of the<br />

Abu Dhabi Department of Economic<br />

Development (ADDED), have signed<br />

a strategic agreement to improve the<br />

services and options available for the<br />

Abu Dhabi Golden Visa. In accordance<br />

with the agreement, the Abu Dhabi<br />

Residents Office and Aldar Properties<br />

are working together to design a<br />

plan to market the Emirate of Abu<br />

Dhabi and its portfolio of real estate<br />

developments as well as chances to<br />

attract talent and investors.<br />

Real estate<br />

transactions in<br />

Dubai reached<br />

about $408<br />

million<br />

According to information<br />

from Dubai’s Land<br />

Department (DLD), there<br />

were 469 sales worth<br />

AED1.29 billion, coupled with 77<br />

mortgage deals at AED190.01 million<br />

and 8 gift deals worth AED26.82<br />

million. As a result of the sales of<br />

438 villas and apartments worth<br />

AED976.46 million, the mortgages<br />

of 47 villas and apartments worth<br />

AED109.29 million, and the purchases<br />

of 30 land plots costing AED80.72<br />

million, more than AED1.5 billion has<br />

been spent on real estate.<br />

64 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

Dubai property prices improve as the economy<br />

recovers from the pandemic<br />

Due to the wider UAE<br />

economic recovery<br />

from the coronavirusinduced<br />

downturn, Dubai<br />

property prices, particularly in prime<br />

neighbourhoods, have improved<br />

during the past 12 months. <strong>The</strong> city<br />

has seen a rise in high-net-worth<br />

individuals, and the success of the<br />

Dubai has the<br />

lowest chance<br />

of a real estate<br />

bubble<br />

According to a study by<br />

a top Swiss bank, the<br />

nominal house price growth<br />

worldwide accelerated<br />

to 10% on average from mid-2021 to<br />

mid-<strong>2022</strong> amid signs that the global<br />

housing boom is coming to an end.<br />

Dubai’s real estate bubble risk is the<br />

second-lowest among the world’s<br />

25 major cities, behind Warsaw.<br />

According to the UBS Global Real<br />

Estate Bubble Index, Toronto and<br />

Frankfurt exhibit the highest risk<br />

levels on housing markets, but despite<br />

having a strong year, the Dubai<br />

housing market is only back to its<br />

2019 price level and is still 25% below<br />

its 2014 peak. As a result, it is in fair<br />

value territory.<br />

UAE’s Golden Visa programme<br />

has helped to bolster its market.<br />

According to real estate portal<br />

Property Finder, Dubai saw the<br />

most sales transactions in July in the<br />

previous 12 years. But in the latter<br />

part of the year, rising interest rates<br />

are anticipated to slow down price<br />

rise.<br />

Over 5,000 housing units will<br />

be available through 18 new<br />

projects in Abu Dhabi<br />

18 new projects have been<br />

registered with the Department<br />

of Municipalities and Transport<br />

(DMT) in Abu Dhabi’s online<br />

real estate services platform, “DARI.”<br />

In the Abu Dhabi emirate, these<br />

projects will help provide 5,037<br />

additional dwelling units in a variety<br />

of locations, including Saadiyat Island,<br />

UAE’s premium real estate market<br />

sees growth and price increases<br />

Unique Properties, one of<br />

Dubai’s top real estate<br />

companies, has noticed a<br />

steady rise in the buying of<br />

luxury properties in the UAE. Over<br />

the first half of the year, there were<br />

18% more high-net-worth individuals<br />

(HNWIs) in Dubai. By the end of<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, it is anticipated that the emirate<br />

would surpass the US and UK in terms<br />

of attracting the greatest net influx<br />

of millionaires worldwide. Unique<br />

Properties predicts that as more<br />

HWNIs choose to make the UAE their<br />

home, investment in Dubai’s luxury<br />

real estate market will continue to<br />

rise. According to recent data, Dubai’s<br />

real estate market ranked fourth<br />

globally for the growth in the price of<br />

luxury properties during the first half<br />

of <strong>2022</strong>. Prices rose by 4.7% compared<br />

to an average of 2.4% in 30 cities.<br />

Yas Island, Al Reem Island, Madinat<br />

Zayed, and other places. Since the<br />

platform’s introduction in February<br />

of this year, 178 projects have been<br />

launched, with various completion<br />

rates of up to 99%. <strong>The</strong>se projects<br />

include 74 residential structures, 43<br />

plots, 49 villas, and 12 mixed-use<br />

projects.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 65

Funding & Investment<br />

Abu Dhabi’s New Funding Program<br />

Empowers Healthcare Innovation<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE is working<br />

assiduously to attract the<br />

most innovative businesses in<br />

the world, with its businessfriendly<br />

environment, world-class<br />

infrastructure, favorable government<br />

policies in promoting trade and<br />

investment, and strategic location<br />

as a global trading hub. Abu Dhabi’s<br />

Department of Health, on its part,<br />

is rapidly developing to offer worldclass<br />

medical care, hence it recently<br />

launched the first edition of the<br />

healthcare grant to promote research<br />

and innovation in the healthcare<br />

sector in line with the emirate’s<br />

position as a leading destination for<br />

life sciences.<br />

<strong>The</strong> grant program is a monetary<br />

fund which fosters the efforts of<br />

research and innovation among<br />

the professionals of Abu Dhabi’s<br />

healthcare sector. It aims to fuel<br />

healthy competition, unique research<br />

projects, technologies, services,<br />

and innovative products across the<br />

healthcare ecosystem in Abu Dhabi.<br />

This funding will support clinical<br />

research projects which have the<br />

potential to fight Alzheimer’s, cancer,<br />

and other rare and life-threatening<br />

Abu Dhabi’s wise<br />

leadership has long<br />

recognised the pivotal<br />

role of research and<br />

innovation across<br />

all sectors - more<br />

importantly in<br />

healthcare to drive<br />

better outcomes<br />

while improving the<br />

effectiveness and<br />

efficiency of the<br />

healthcare system,<br />

diseases.<br />

“Abu Dhabi’s wise leadership has<br />

long recognised the pivotal role<br />

of research and innovation across<br />

all sectors - more importantly in<br />

healthcare to drive better outcomes<br />

while improving the effectiveness and<br />

efficiency of the healthcare system,”<br />

said Dr. Asma Al Mannaei, Executive<br />

Director, Research and Innovation<br />

Centre at the Department of Health<br />

– Abu Dhabi (DoH), commenting<br />

on the grant program. “Efforts to<br />

reiterate the capital’s position as a<br />

leading destination for life sciences<br />

and innovation, we are committed<br />

to enabling and empowering<br />

innovators and researchers within<br />

our community to take their passion<br />

projects to the next stage,” she added.<br />

Many analysts view this program<br />

as an encouragement to a culture<br />

of research and innovation among<br />

innovators and providers of<br />

healthcare, as well as a means<br />

to increase clinical research<br />

and Intellectual Property (IP)<br />

generation in the emirate. Abu<br />

Dhabi’s Department of Health stated<br />

that the grant will be offered to<br />

professionals who carry out clinical<br />

research projects in the fields of rare<br />

diseases, emerging infectious disease,<br />

antimicrobial resistance, Cardiometabolic<br />

and Vascular Disorders,<br />

cancer, and Alzheimer’s, in addition to<br />

innovative projects solutions focusing<br />

66 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

on smart hospitals and prevention and<br />

management of chronic diseases.<br />

“With Abu Dhabi providing the<br />

right environment for individuals<br />

and companies to thrive,” stated<br />

Al Mannaei, “we are thrilled to put<br />

forward this Grant that will expand<br />

clinical research capabilities in the<br />

emirate as well as conceptualise<br />

unique project in the Capital.”<br />

Thus, the emirate is planning to<br />

become an attractive destination for<br />

clinical trials and research, as it has<br />

expressed its ambition to establish<br />

the world’s first whole-population<br />

gene bank, pioneer connected health,<br />

and build on previous medical<br />

research collaborations with global<br />

pharmaceutical giants such as<br />

AstraZeneca and Pfizer.<br />

After the country’s success in<br />

Phase III clinical trials for the<br />

development and testing a Covid-19<br />

vaccine, where 130 nationalities<br />

participated, the globally-recognized<br />

AI-Powered company G42 Healthcare<br />

with innovative healthcare solutions<br />

was established in Abu Dhabi. Last<br />

year, the company launched Insights<br />

Research Organization and Solutions,<br />

which is a first-of-its kind contract<br />

research organization in the United<br />

Arab Emirates, supporting the<br />

internationally leading standards of<br />

scientific and ethical research, as well<br />

as conducting clinical trials, reporting<br />

and developing treatments.<br />

Abu Dhabi also partnered with<br />

Pfizer to train and support 150 Abu<br />

Dhabi scientists to conduct clinical<br />

research at the level required by<br />

multinational companies, aiming to<br />

produce highly effective medicines.<br />

On top of that, peer-to-peer<br />

knowledge sharing, strong<br />

government investments, together<br />

with the robust collaboration<br />

network, have made the emirate an<br />

emerging global hub of innovation<br />

and research, especially across the<br />

healthcare sector, leading the future<br />

of the UAE and charting the future of<br />

health care.<br />

Furthermore, the government<br />

has urged Emiratis to voluntarily<br />

give an anonymous blood sample<br />

to help expand the data collection<br />

for the Emirati Genome Project.<br />

Launched officially last year, the<br />

program has so far collected blood<br />

samples and buccal swabs from tens<br />

of thousands of people. According<br />

to the data, experts claim that they<br />

can predict, and even in some cases<br />

prevent, diseases before they happen,<br />

emphasizing that the end objective<br />

lies in the collection of samples from<br />

100% of the country’s population.<br />

Using biotechnology and AI,<br />

researchers have the ability to<br />

characterize things such as genetic<br />

variations, as well as understand<br />

how these genetic variations relate to<br />

different diseases. All volunteers can<br />

now submit DNA samples at various<br />

centers across the emirate, including<br />

NMC Royal Hospital in Khalifa City,<br />

Bareen International Hospital, and<br />

NMC Specialty Hospital, Al Ain.<br />

As for the above-mentioned<br />

Healthcare Research and Innovation<br />

Grant, alongside providing awardees<br />

with financial support for clinical<br />

research projects and proof of<br />

concept projects for innovative new<br />

technologies and services, it will<br />

support the winners with guidance<br />

to ensure project continuity and<br />

sustainability.<br />

It is led by the Department of<br />

Health in collaboration with Abu<br />

Dhabi’s Healthcare Sector and further<br />

government and non-government<br />

partners in Abu Dhabi and the UAE.<br />

“We look forward to receiving and<br />

reading through all entries as well as<br />

providing guidance to all applicants,”<br />

said Al Mannaei. “This is an exciting<br />

milestone for the healthcare sector<br />

that will spread a fine share of healthy<br />

competition among science and<br />

technology fanatics,” Al Mannaei<br />

added.<br />

It is also worth noting that Abu<br />

Dhabi has been recently recognized<br />

once again by Deep Knowledge<br />

Analytics (DKA), a London-based<br />

DeepTech analytical subsidiary of<br />

Deep Knowledge Group (DKG), as the<br />

world’s most pandemic-resilient city,<br />

which reflects its timely, efficient, and<br />

comprehensive response to COVID-19<br />

pandemic. <strong>The</strong> Emirate was also<br />

ranked as the leading city in response<br />

to the pandemic globally in a similar<br />

report published by DKA in early 2021.<br />

Abu Dhabi is one of the highest<br />

cities in the world in vaccination rates<br />

globally, and the UAE was one of the<br />

first countries in the world to launch<br />

a Covid-19 vaccination campaign. As<br />

an innovation hub, the emirate is on<br />

its way to complete digitalizing the<br />

majority of healthcare services, as it<br />

has reported connecting 100 percent<br />

if its hospitals to Malaffi, a first-inthe-region<br />

platform for exchanging<br />

health information, and safely and<br />

securely connecting private and<br />

public healthcare providers, creating<br />

a centralized database of unified<br />

patient records, which contributes to<br />

the improvement of healthcare quality<br />

and patient outcomes.<br />

Considering all the facts mentioned<br />

earlier, it is no surprise that the new<br />

Healthcare Research and Innovation<br />

Grant comes in line with Abu Dhabi’s<br />

efforts to leverage life sciences,<br />

innovation, digital transformation,<br />

and medical tourism in order to<br />

position itself as a leading destination<br />

for healthcare, as it is continuously<br />

providing the latest innovative<br />

treatments to preserve the safety<br />

and health of the community, in<br />

addition to continuously supporting<br />

start-ups throughout their different<br />

development stages, aiming to elevate<br />

research and innovative projects<br />

across the healthcare sector.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 67

Funding & Investment News<br />


Drilling<br />

receives $980<br />

million to<br />

boost offshore<br />

activities<br />

To support ADNOC’s offshore<br />

activities, ADNOC Drilling<br />

has secured a contract<br />

worth AED3.6 billion for the<br />

employment of two jack up offshore<br />

rigs together with associated labour<br />

and equipment. Due to the size of<br />

its rig fleet, which consists of 105<br />

owned rigs, including 28 offshore<br />

jack-up units, ADNOC Drilling is the<br />

largest national drilling business in<br />

the Middle East. According to Yaser<br />

Saeed Almazrouei, executive director<br />

of ADNOC Upstream, “This award<br />

for the hiring of jack up rigs supports<br />

our continuous efforts to responsibly<br />

unlock our lower carbon intensity oil<br />

and gas.” Using combined resources<br />

and those of key partners abroad will<br />

support international energy security.<br />

Banque Saudi<br />

Fransi plans<br />

a corporate<br />

venture capital<br />

fund<br />

Grant Niven, head of group<br />

digital at Banque Saudi<br />

Fransi, has stated that<br />

the company plans to<br />

create a corporate venture capital<br />

fund to invest in fintech companies.<br />

According to Niven, “the majority<br />

of banks in the nation have now<br />

modified their approach to startups,<br />

highlighting the rise of the Saudi<br />

Arabian fintech sector, where more<br />

than SAR 1 billion ($266 million)<br />

has been invested in fintech firms so<br />

far this year.” He remarked during a<br />

panel discussion at Fintech Surge, a<br />

part of GITEX Global <strong>2022</strong> in Dubai,<br />

that traditional banks perceive an<br />

opportunity and anticipate investing<br />

an additional SAR 2.5 billion in Saudi<br />

fintech businesses.<br />

MENA start-ups<br />

have access to<br />

$2.3 billion in<br />

venture capital<br />

According to a Magnitt<br />

report, venture capital<br />

funding for start-ups in<br />

the Middle East and North<br />

Africa increased 20% yearly to more<br />

than $2.3 billion in the first three<br />

quarters of <strong>2022</strong>, putting it on pace to<br />

possibly surpass the total investments<br />

attracted in 2021. In its quarterly<br />

update, the data analytics company<br />

noted that funding had fallen to<br />

$512 million in the third quarter, the<br />

lowest level since the first quarter<br />

of 2021, citing global economic and<br />

geopolitical reasons as the cause.<br />

<strong>The</strong> industry still has a full quarter to<br />

match or even top the industry’s total<br />

of about $2.8 billion from last year.<br />

That, however, brought total funding<br />

in <strong>2022</strong> to more than 80% of the level<br />

in 2021.<br />

Emirates Development Bank approves funding<br />

totalling $1.12 billion<br />

As it continues to support the<br />

UAE’s national economic<br />

strategy, the stateowned<br />

lender Emirates<br />

Development Bank, which focuses<br />

on lending to businesses in important<br />

industrial sectors, authorised Dh4.4<br />

billion ($1.12 billion) in loans in<br />

the first nine months of the year.<br />

Comparing the same period a year<br />

ago to the nine months ending in<br />

68 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

September, the bank’s lending climbed<br />

nearly seven times. According to<br />

EDB, loans approved from July to<br />

September increased by 59% from the<br />

prior quarter. Total finance for the<br />

first nine months of the year increased<br />

EDB’s contribution to the UAE’s gross<br />

domestic product to Dh2.6 billion,<br />

an increase of more than 600% when<br />

compared to the same time in 2021.

UAE’s e& opens a new $250 million venture capital<br />

fund to help tech startups<br />

A$250 million venture capital fund was formed by UAE telecom and<br />

technology giant e& (formerly known as Etisalat Group) as a part of<br />

its new investment division, e& capital, to promote the ecosystem for<br />

digital start-ups. <strong>The</strong> company stated in a statement that the e& Capital<br />

VC fund will endeavour to draw in, engage, and promote start-ups and give them<br />

access to investor and expert networks. E& Capital, however, promised to “further<br />

boost the tech ecosystem through greater investments at the growth stage beyond<br />

its VC fund”. Additionally, it took part in an investment round worth €1.4 million<br />

($1.36 million) for Lablabee, a tech start-up that wants to develop a lab platform<br />

for telecom cloud training that is more interactive and available.<br />

UAE Royal<br />

Group to Invest<br />

$10 Billion<br />

in the US and<br />

Europe<br />

One of the top Abu Dhabi<br />

royals’ investment<br />

company, Royal Group,<br />

intends to invest up to $10<br />

billion in US and European equities<br />

and other assets that have been hit<br />

hard by growing concerns about a<br />

worldwide recession. According to<br />

those with knowledge of the situation,<br />

the group, which is led by Sheikh<br />

Tahnoun bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the<br />

national security adviser for the<br />

United Arab Emirates, sees this as a<br />

chance to sell off some of its current<br />

equity holdings, lessen its exposure to<br />

riskier assets, and expand its global<br />

portfolio. Investing in shares, fixed<br />

income, and tangible assets, such<br />

as real estate, are all being taken<br />

into consideration, the sources said,<br />

asking to remain anonymous because<br />

the plans are private, even if the final<br />

approach is still being developed.<br />

UAE’s Vuz obtains $20 million in<br />

investment to enter new markets<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE-based social app<br />

Vuz, which enables users to<br />

broadcast immersive realism<br />

in extended reality (XR) and<br />

take part in metaverse digital events,<br />

has raised $20 million in a series B<br />

fundraising round, paving the path for<br />

it to enter new markets and accelerate<br />

expansion. <strong>The</strong> cash will also be<br />

used by the business to create new<br />

products, speed up the growth of its<br />

recurring subscription revenue, and<br />

hire new employees, according to data<br />

platform. Leading the financing were<br />

Caruso Ventures, the Vision Ventures<br />

VC Fund, e& capital, the Dubai Future<br />

District Fund, SRMG, and the Webit<br />

Investment Network. According to a<br />

Markets and Markets study, the size of<br />

the XR market is predicted to increase<br />

from $33 billion in 2021 to $125.2<br />

billion by 2026.<br />

UAE’s LuLu Group to expand as<br />

planning an IPO for the following year<br />

Abu Dhabi based LuLu Group International has hired investment firm<br />

Moelis to assist it on the deal and plans to launch an IPO next year.<br />

<strong>The</strong> action is being taken as the retail group prepares to broaden its<br />

operations throughout the Middle East. <strong>The</strong> market is currently in<br />

good spirits, and the LuLu Group’s director of marketing and communications, V<br />

Nandakumar, expressed confidence regarding the IPO next year. <strong>The</strong> company’s<br />

IPO aspirations come as the Middle East and North Africa area continues to see an<br />

increase in listings as economies there recover from the Covid-19 outbreak.<br />

Investopia’s Event highlights the<br />

future of Investment in Sports<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE government announced in September 2021 that it would develop<br />

Investopia, a worldwide investment platform, and that it would organise<br />

a unique event in conjunction with the FIFA <strong>World</strong> Cup <strong>2022</strong> with the<br />

theme “<strong>The</strong> Future of Investment in Sports.” <strong>The</strong> <strong>World</strong> Corporate<br />

Summit (WCS) and the event will be co-hosted in Dubai on December. Peer-to-peer<br />

discussions and networking sessions on the future of investments in the sports<br />

sector in light of its current significant opportunities will be part of the event,<br />

which will take place in December <strong>2022</strong> and bring together influential decisionmakers<br />

from the football world and sports investors worldwide.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 69

Local News<br />

GDP of Ras Al Khaimah will<br />

increase by 2.7% annually on<br />

average until 2025<br />

From <strong>2022</strong> to 2025, Ras Al Khaimah’s GDP is projected to rise by an<br />

average of 2.7% per year, and the government is predicted to have net<br />

assets equal to roughly 13% of GDP, thanks to ongoing fiscal surpluses.<br />

<strong>The</strong> emirate has relatively strong growth prospects due to increased<br />

domestic and regional demand, but real GDP per capita growth will still be<br />

below the average for sovereigns at a similar level of economic development,<br />

according to S&P, which affirmed the emirate’s credit rating of A-/A-2; outlook<br />

stable. According to the rating agency, the stable outlook indicates hopes that the<br />

Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) government will continue to run the country’s finances<br />

responsibly over the next two years. According to the agency’s forecast, RAK’s real<br />

GDP would increase 2.8% this year after contracting 4.4% in 2020 and 3.0% in 2021.<br />

Board of<br />

Tecom Group<br />

proposes<br />

interim<br />

dividends of<br />

more than $54<br />

million<br />

<strong>The</strong> interim cash dividends of<br />

AED200 million, or 4 fils per<br />

share, have been approved<br />

by the board of Tecom<br />

Group. <strong>The</strong> plan is in accordance with<br />

the group’s dividend strategy, which<br />

calls for disbursing a total of 800<br />

million AED per year through October<br />

2025. Tecom Group reported net<br />

earnings of AED 427.53 million in the<br />

first six months of <strong>2022</strong>, an increase<br />

of 43.40% from AED 298.22 million the<br />

previous year. From H1-H2, revenues<br />

increased by 15.80% to AED 989.41<br />

million from AED 854.51 million.<br />

Al Seer Marine forms a joint<br />

venture to construct ships with a<br />

$10 billion contract goal<br />

Al Seer Marine Supplies<br />

and Equipment Co. in<br />

Abu Dhabi, a division of<br />

International Holding<br />

Company (IHC), has formed a joint<br />

venture with two international firms<br />

to construct marine boats with a<br />

view toward prospective contracts<br />

worth more than AED36.7 billion ($10<br />

billion) over ten years. According<br />

to a regulatory filing on the Abu<br />

Dhabi Securities Exchange, Al Seer<br />

Marine will collaborate with DTEC, a<br />

Singapore-based maritime solutions<br />

firm, and DTC Industries Investments,<br />

a marine environment technology<br />

company, to sell, manufacture, and<br />

service marine boats around the world<br />

(ADX). <strong>The</strong> business’s net profit for the<br />

second quarter of the year increased<br />

from AED411.3 million to AED882.9<br />

million.<br />

UAE and WHO Sign $25-million<br />

Cooperation Agreement for Al<br />

Makassed Hospital<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE signed a $25-million<br />

collaboration deal with<br />

support for East Jerusalem’s<br />

Al Makassed Hospital on<br />

the orders of His Highness Sheikh<br />

Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.<br />

This was done as part of the UAE’s<br />

initiatives to assist Palestine’s medical<br />

and healthcare sectors in partnership<br />

with the <strong>World</strong> Health Organization<br />

(WHO) and the Office of the United<br />

Nations Special Coordinator for<br />

the Middle East Peace Process<br />

(UNSCO). <strong>The</strong> COVID-19 pandemic,<br />

according to Dr. Tedros Adhanom<br />

Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the<br />

WHO, “has proved that health is not<br />

a luxury, but a human right, and it is<br />

vital to development.” “We applaud<br />

the United Arab Emirates for its<br />

kind donation, pioneering role, and<br />

dedication to enhancing the provision<br />

of high-quality medical care,” added<br />

Ghebreyesus.<br />

70 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

UAE is illuminated by Jafza’s<br />

electronics centre<br />

Due to increased disposable income, tourism, and deep internet<br />

penetration rates, the electronics and electrical sector in the Gulf has<br />

experienced rapid growth in recent years, making it one of the most<br />

connected regions in the world. Dubai is a major provider of electrical<br />

goods to the Middle East and the rest of the world as a result of its advantageous<br />

position. Over Dh347 billion worth of electronic goods weighing 2.7 million metric<br />

tonnes (MT) were traded through the Emirate in 2021. <strong>The</strong> strong local and<br />

regional e-commerce fulfilment infrastructure and the global re-export markets<br />

serve to further enhance its trading capabilities. Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) is<br />

essential for the UAE and the wider region to be able to meet this constantly<br />

increasing demand.<br />

UAE<br />

accelerates<br />

the growth<br />

of digital<br />

economy<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE government’s<br />

initiative to adopt cuttingedge<br />

technology and<br />

increase the use of artificial<br />

intelligence in finding solutions to<br />

pressing problems will hasten the<br />

expansion of the digital economy<br />

and help create a better future. <strong>The</strong><br />

UAE Council for AI and Blockchain<br />

seeks to foster collaboration between<br />

various departments and pave the<br />

way for new opportunities, according<br />

to Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister<br />

of State for Artificial Intelligence,<br />

Digital Economy, and Remote Work<br />

Applications, who was speaking at a<br />

meeting in Dubai. <strong>The</strong> minister stated<br />

during the AI council meeting that the<br />

adoption of new technological and<br />

digitally based solutions will increase<br />

the nation’s competitiveness and<br />

global leadership.<br />

$70.84-million deals in UAE to<br />

produce medical equipment<br />

locally<br />

<strong>The</strong> ministry of industry<br />

and advanced technology<br />

recently announced the<br />

signing of two memorandums<br />

of understanding between significant<br />

pharmaceutical and medical device<br />

businesses in the UAE, totalling<br />

AED260 million ($70.84 million).<br />

Signed in the presence of Sarah bint<br />

Youssef Al Amiri, Minister of State<br />

for Public Education and Advanced<br />

Technology, the partnerships are in<br />

line with the National Strategy for<br />

Industry and Advanced Technology<br />

and the ICV Program, which aim to<br />

attract investors and manufacturers<br />

to the UAE’s pharmaceutical and<br />

medical equipment sectors, among<br />

others. Under the partnerships,<br />

PureHealth, one of the largest<br />

healthcare providers in the UAE and a<br />

member of the ministry’s National ICV<br />

Program, will work with Abu Dhabi<br />

Medical Devices Company (ADMD),<br />

which is a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi<br />

National Industrial Projects, as well<br />

as Abu Dhabi Ports Group and Abu<br />

Dhabi Polymers Company (Borouge)<br />

to establish a AED 110 million medical<br />

supplies production line in Abu Dhabi.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 71


YaMarkets<br />

A leader of the Forex &<br />

CFD markets<br />

Trading in foreign exchange is referred to as “Forex”, which is primarily to benefit from variations<br />

in relative prices. Trillions of dollars are exchanged daily between different currencies. Now,<br />

bigger than stock markets, the Forex market has expanded. Buying or selling a currency with the<br />

expectation that it would appreciate in value relative to other currencies is what companies such as<br />

YaMarkets includes, a currency chosen under the presumption that it will lose value in comparison<br />

to other currencies.<br />

72 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />


<strong>The</strong>re are various reasons why<br />

Forex brokers and institutions<br />

should expand overseas, for<br />

the popularity of the fastgrowing<br />

Forex trading is rising<br />

quickly due to its accessibility and ease of<br />

usage. YaMarkets is one of the companies<br />

that are leading the Forex and CFD<br />

markets, providing a robust, user-friendly,<br />

and ethical trading platform.<br />

YaMarkets’ clients can trade the<br />

most popular assets, including indices,<br />

commodities, and currencies, on this<br />

platform. <strong>The</strong>y gain access to intensive<br />

training, committed service, and<br />

professional guidance and support<br />

around-the-clock. In addition to that, they<br />

can fully manage their accounts with<br />

YaMarkets via web or mobile. <strong>The</strong>y can<br />

trade CFDs for the largest Stock Market<br />

Indices in the world right from the same<br />

account and user interface where you<br />

trade currencies.<br />

Over the past ten years, the popularity<br />

of Forex trading has increased<br />

exponentially. <strong>The</strong>re were more than<br />

$48 trillion worth of currency exchanges<br />

in 2008; today, there are more than $80<br />

trillion worth of exchanges, a rise of more<br />

than 50%. <strong>The</strong> Forex market appears<br />

to have a promising future because<br />

researchers predict that it will keep<br />

growing.<br />

YaMarkets CFDs are connected with<br />

the company’s MT4, MT5, Ctrader and<br />

Match trader platforms, giving clients<br />

immediate access to Index CFD trading<br />

from their trading account under the<br />

same ideal conditions as they would for<br />

FX. <strong>The</strong> company also offers trading on<br />

21 of the largest stock exchanges in the<br />

world, including the NAS100, JPN225,<br />

GER30, CN50, US2000, and AUS200.<br />

For all traders, regardless of their<br />

degree of experience, YaMarkets offers<br />

a top-notch CFD trading environment.<br />

Investors that engage in CFD trading<br />

have the option of trading with relatively<br />

low margin requirements. <strong>The</strong> amount<br />

in a trading account needed to maintain<br />

open positions is known as the margin<br />

requirement. <strong>The</strong> notional value of the<br />

CFD contract for stock index CFDs is<br />

equal to the market price. For instance,<br />

the cost to open the trade with 1:1<br />

leverage will be $5,999 if the ASX200 is<br />

trading at 5999. <strong>The</strong> required margin is<br />

5999/500 ($11.99) if the account has a<br />

leverage of 500:1.<br />

Forex traders are frequently-engaged<br />

financial experts who make their money<br />

by trading currencies, while computers<br />

are thought to trade up to 80% of all Forex<br />

activity electronically. Although it can be<br />

challenging, there is a high risk of failure<br />

when attempting to predict changes<br />

in exchange rates. Over the past few<br />

years, the Forex market has undergone<br />

a worldwide transformation. In Forex<br />

trading, individuals from all over the<br />

world engage in daily currency exchanges<br />

in an effort to profit from changes in<br />

exchange rates. Forecasting changes in<br />

exchange rates can be difficult, and there<br />

is a high chance that it will fail.<br />

Successful Forex traders, however,<br />

may make over $300 per hour or even<br />

more, depending on how much they’re<br />

ready to put into this kind of business.<br />

However, Forex and CFDs are leveraged<br />

products and involve a high level of risk.<br />

It is possible to lose all your capital.<br />

<strong>The</strong>se products may not be suitable for<br />

everyone and you should ensure that<br />

you understand the risks involved. Seek<br />

independent advice if necessary.<br />

Hence, one of the essential objectives<br />

of YaMarkets is to educate clients and<br />

teach them about the Forex Market and<br />

how they can make money in this market.<br />

“We are truly attempting to educate<br />

people and get them involved in this<br />

industry where individuals can make<br />

money. <strong>The</strong> most significant factor is<br />

education,” said Lalit Matta, YaMarkets’<br />

CEO, in an exclusive interview with <strong>The</strong><br />

<strong>Finance</strong> <strong>World</strong> Magazine.<br />

Consequently, Mr. Matta also<br />

emphasizes the critical importance of<br />

financial literacy, for “even if you have<br />

money, it is useless if you do not know<br />

how to manage it,” because “when it<br />

comes to money management, you must<br />

first understand how money works.”<br />

Moreover, the Vanuatu Financial<br />

Services Commission (VFSC) has issued<br />

a special brokerage licence to YaMarkets<br />

Ltd, an international Forex broker, under<br />

number 14819, in addition to a special<br />

brokerage license T<strong>2022</strong>091. YaMarkets<br />

immediately tops up the balance on the<br />

client’s trading account to zero, and the<br />

client is not charged for this action if<br />

market volatility prevents the client from<br />

maintaining a positive balance.<br />

YaMarkets is also a participant in <strong>The</strong><br />

Financial Commission’s Compensation<br />

Fund. <strong>The</strong> Compensation Fund, a benefit<br />

of Financial Commission membership,<br />

offers coverage of up to €20,000 per<br />

case should a member refuse to follow<br />

a Financial Commission decision. <strong>The</strong><br />

company belongs to <strong>The</strong> Financial<br />

Commission as a “A” member. <strong>The</strong><br />

Commission’s goal is to enable alternative<br />

pre-trial resolution of disputes between<br />

traders and brokerage firms.<br />

Furthermore, YaMarkets has<br />

been awarded the execution quality<br />

accreditation Verify My Trade (VMT),<br />

attesting to its compliance with the<br />

stringent demands placed on member<br />

brokers by the Financial Commission.<br />

YaMarkets has put in place a Civil<br />

Liability insurance programme with<br />

a limit of 5,000,000 EUR that offers<br />

industry-leading protection against risks<br />

that could cause clients to suffer financial<br />

losses, including omissions, fraud,<br />

mistakes, negligence, and other issues.<br />

According to analysts, the Forex<br />

market will continue its fast-paced<br />

growth, making the future of the sector<br />

quite optimistic. Due to increased efforts<br />

at globalization being made in Europe,<br />

especially in the wake of Brexit, as well<br />

as other Forex markets like India, China,<br />

and Russia, these numbers are also<br />

anticipated to rise outside.<br />

What distinguishes YaMarkets is its<br />

complete comprehension of the value<br />

of education and financial literacy in the<br />

Forex market, in addition to its efforts<br />

to provide clients with the finest trading<br />

conditions. Rather than just approaching<br />

its clients, the company endeavours to<br />

educate and assist clients so that they<br />

could easily navigate the Forex market<br />

and make money.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 73

Digital Assets<br />

Cryptocurrency ETF outflows slow down<br />

in the third quarter<br />

An Exchange-traded fund<br />

(ETF) is a fund that trades<br />

on exchange and operates<br />

much like a mutual fund but<br />

can be purchased or sold on a stock<br />

exchange the same way that a regular<br />

stock can. An ETF tracks a specific<br />

index, commodity, sector, or other<br />

assets. It is a collection of bonds or<br />

stocks managed by experts and can be<br />

structured to track prices or specific<br />

investment strategies.<br />

An ETF is more like a marketable<br />

security, having a share price that<br />

allows you to purchase it or buy it<br />

easily on exchanges throughout the<br />

day. As a means of investing, ETFs<br />

have grown in popularity since the<br />

mid-1990s as a consequence of their<br />

low transaction cost and intraday<br />

liquidity. <strong>The</strong>y allow investors to trade<br />

their shares in a securities market<br />

contentiously throughout the trading<br />

day, purchasing or redeeming shares<br />

at the close of the trading day.<br />

On the other hand, cryptocurrency<br />

ETFs consist of numerous<br />

cryptocurrencies and track the<br />

price of digital tokens. <strong>The</strong>y invest<br />

in business transforming business<br />

application through creating and<br />

deploying blockchain technology.<br />

ETFs based on the blockchain<br />

invest in cryptocurrency investment<br />

products provided by asset managers<br />

or futures or options, the price of<br />

which is related to the performance<br />

of cryptocurrencies. <strong>The</strong> first crypto<br />

ETF, ProShares Bitcoin Strategy<br />

ETF, began trading in October<br />

2021, but the market has many<br />

alternatives that allow for exposure<br />

to cryptocurrencies without requiring<br />

investors to manage the digital asset<br />

themselves.<br />

This ETF tracks Bitcoin futures<br />

prices, and its share price imitates<br />

the price movements of derivatives,<br />

instead of the actual cryptocurrencies’<br />

prices. Thus, the share’s price<br />

rises with an increase in future<br />

contract prices and declines with<br />

a corresponding decrease in those<br />

prices.<br />

Managers of the aforementioned<br />

products observe the price of Bitcoin<br />

via the futures markets in spite of the<br />

fact that there are no EFTs linked<br />

directly to the Bitcoin’s spot price.<br />

However, investors should be cautious<br />

74 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

while investing in volatile securities<br />

such as cryptocurrencies. For<br />

instance, Bitcoin could pose risks to<br />

investors in case the fund was holding<br />

a big portion of the futures market.<br />

Traditional ETFs directly own<br />

the underlying asset, while crypto<br />

ETFs either own the cryptocurrency<br />

options, futures, or other crypto-based<br />

securities to emulate the fluctuations<br />

of the fundamental cryptocurrency’s<br />

price. In addition, crypto ETFs can<br />

be backed by synthetic variants such<br />

as derivatives, where the ETF share<br />

price mirrors the price movement<br />

of these derivatives. For instance,<br />

many ETFs proposed to the U.S.<br />

Securities and Exchange Commission<br />

(SEC) track prices of Bitcoin futures<br />

contracts traded at the Chicago<br />

Mercantile Exchange. However,<br />

synthetic cryptocurrency ETFs carry<br />

added risk because their operations<br />

may not always be transparent.<br />

Nevertheless, ETFs can also be<br />

backed by physical crypto assets,<br />

where crypto investors own the<br />

cryptocurrencies indirectly without<br />

bearing any expenses of owning<br />

them outright. <strong>The</strong> investment firm<br />

that manages the crypto ETF makes<br />

purchases of cryptocurrencies,<br />

and the ownership of the coins is<br />

represented as shares. Owners may<br />

gain exposure to cryptocurrencies<br />

without the expense and risk of<br />

owning them outright because<br />

when purchasing the shares in the<br />

ETF, investors will directly own<br />

cryptocurrencies.<br />

However, the money flowing out<br />

of crypto ETFs in the third quarter of<br />

<strong>2022</strong> has slowed down, signaling that<br />

numerous bearish investors may have<br />

already left the class of risky assets.<br />

Recent reports showed that in the<br />

three months ending in September 30,<br />

investors have pulled out $17.6 million<br />

from crypto ETFs, which is far below<br />

record $683.4 million withdrawn from<br />

ETFs in the second quarter.<br />

Assets of risk such as<br />

cryptocurrencies have been deeply<br />

affected as fears of global economic<br />

recession rise. <strong>The</strong> second quarter’s<br />

record outflows tracked plunging<br />

cryptocurrencies prices, with the<br />

Bitcoin, the world’s largest digital<br />

asset based on market value, falling<br />

nearly 60% and posting a record low<br />

of $17,785 on June 18. However, it<br />

rose in the third quarter by 3.7%,<br />

then it was trading above $19,400 on<br />

September 30, <strong>2022</strong>, close to its price<br />

at the beginning of the quarter.<br />

It is no doubt that the safety<br />

of crypto investment lies in the<br />

investors’ hands and depends upon<br />

their expertise, for extensive price<br />

fluctuations may be experienced with<br />

crypto ETFs investments, especially<br />

if the funds were physically backed.<br />

Since ETFs are traded on well-known<br />

regulated exchanges and issued by<br />

regulated companies, all crypto ETF<br />

investments are being watched to<br />

prevent the funding of any illegal<br />

activities and market abuse, especially<br />

that the available crypto ETFs track<br />

only some of the digital currencies,<br />

and they are subject to hacking and<br />

other cybercrime risks.<br />

In spite of the fact that a few<br />

companies have accredited the<br />

Bitcoin futures ETF, no Bitcoin<br />

spot ETF has seen the light so far,<br />

although the U.S. Securities and<br />

Exchange Commission has received<br />

many requests to legitimize crypto<br />

spot ETFs. <strong>The</strong> agency has rejected<br />

all these requests due to the concern<br />

it elucidated in the January 2018<br />

letter, some of which are the absence<br />

of transparency at cryptocurrency<br />

exchanges, the potential of market<br />

manipulation, and the low levels of<br />

liquidity in cryptocurrency market.<br />

Nevertheless, the overall market<br />

cap for cryptocurrencies has<br />

surpassed $2 trillion as of April<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, and Coinbase Global, North<br />

America’s biggest cryptocurrency<br />

exchange, is now a publicly traded<br />

entity. In addition, the former SEC<br />

Chairman Jay Clayton was replaced<br />

by Gary Gensler, who taught a course<br />

in blockchain and cryptocurrencies<br />

at the Massachusetts Institute of<br />

Technology. This has raised many<br />

hopes for an approval of a Bitcoin<br />

ETF. However, Gensler seems to agree<br />

with Clayton’s views.<br />

How to invest in Crypto ETFs?<br />

Many investors pool their money<br />

in crypto ETFs to hedge the risks<br />

associated with buying digital tokens<br />

directly, so if you intend to diversify<br />

your portfolio without managing<br />

your crypto investments yourself,<br />

you should consider investing in<br />

blockchain-based crypto ETFs rather<br />

than directly buying digital assets.<br />

First, you have to open an account<br />

with a broker of your choosing<br />

and complete their onboarding<br />

process. <strong>The</strong>n you should decide the<br />

percentage of your total investment<br />

budget. After that, you have to fund<br />

your account and look for ETFs to<br />

invest in, then you should place a<br />

market order for the crypto ETFs you<br />

intend to purchase.<br />

On the other hand, you should be<br />

completely aware of the management<br />

fee or expense ratio associated<br />

with your crypto ETF investment,<br />

for transaction fees and expense<br />

ratios are the two ways in which an<br />

ETF makes money. You should also<br />

consider an exit plan because when<br />

you sell at some point, you will have<br />

to pay other costs.<br />

However, you should know that the<br />

share price of Crypto ETFs fluctuates<br />

on a daily basis, based on the sales<br />

or purchases of investors, and yet,<br />

low costs of ownership and the<br />

outsourcing of knowledge required to<br />

trade cryptos are considered among<br />

the benefits of crypto ETFs.<br />

<strong>The</strong> money flowing<br />

out of crypto ETFs<br />

in the third quarter<br />

of <strong>2022</strong> has slowed<br />

down, signaling that<br />

numerous bearish<br />

investors may have<br />

already left the class<br />

of risky assets.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 75

Stock Market<br />

Burjeel hopes to raise $300 million to<br />

$368 million in Abu Dhabi IPO<br />

Burjeel Holdings of Abu<br />

Dhabi announced a<br />

price range for its initial<br />

public offering (IPO) that<br />

opened for subscription on Friday<br />

30 September of 2 to 2.45 dirhams<br />

($0.5446 to $0.6671) per share, valuing<br />

the hospital operator at $3.3 billion<br />

at the high end. In addition to more<br />

than 200 million new shares, or 4%<br />

of Burjeel’s issued share capital, the<br />

selling shareholder anticipates selling<br />

more than 350 million shares or 7%<br />

of Burjeel’s issued share capital.<br />

Depending on the pricing range,<br />

Burjeel Holdings might raise between<br />

$299.90 million and $367.38 million.<br />

A first tranche of the IPO is being<br />

offered to ordinary investors, while<br />

a second tranche is being provided<br />

to professional investors. <strong>The</strong><br />

subscription period for both tranches<br />

is open until October 4. On October<br />

5, the final share price is anticipated<br />

76 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

to be revealed, whereas on October<br />

10, the shares are anticipated to start<br />

trading on the Abu Dhabi Securities<br />

Exchange.<br />

At the bottom end of its Dh2 share<br />

offer, the company sold over 550.7<br />

million shares. Burjeel is anticipated<br />

to have a market value of around<br />

Dh10.4 billion upon listing, making it<br />

one of the largest private healthcare<br />

firms listed on the Abu Dhabi<br />

Securities Exchange. On October 10,<br />

its shares will start trading under the<br />

ticker “BURJEEL.” After the listing,<br />

VPS Healthcare Holdings will still<br />

hold a 70% share in the business.<br />

Burjeel Holdings, established in<br />

2007 by Dr. Shamsheer Vayalil, has a<br />

network of roughly 61 assets spread<br />

across the UAE and Oman, including<br />

hospitals and medical facilities as well<br />

as pharmacies and other ancillary<br />

services.<br />

Through joint ventures and publicprivate<br />

partnerships, the corporation<br />

intends to expand into Saudi Arabia,<br />

the largest economy in the Arab<br />

world, with investments of up to $1<br />

billion. <strong>The</strong> high-quality investment<br />

opportunity offered by Burjeel<br />

Holdings founded around our distinct<br />

clinical vision and our powerful<br />

growth trajectory in the MENA area is<br />

reflected in the robust demand for the<br />

IPO, according to Dr. Vayalil.<br />

<strong>The</strong> largest firm in the UAE<br />

by market value, Abu Dhabi’s<br />

International Holding Company,<br />

acquired a 15% share in Burjeel on<br />

September 19. Burjeel’s revenue in<br />

the fiscal year of 2021 was around<br />

Dh3.4 billion, which represents an 18%<br />

CAGR from 2019 to 2021. From 2023<br />

forward, the firm intends to pay cash<br />

dividends, on the anticipated premise<br />

of a payout ratio of 40% to 70% of net<br />

income, depending on the required<br />

investment for further growth plans. It

indicated it would distribute dividends<br />

at the top of the payout ratio range<br />

or possibly higher if there were no<br />

compelling investment possibilities.<br />

Based on net income for the first<br />

half of 2023, the first interim dividend<br />

is anticipated to be paid in the second<br />

half of 2023. First Abu Dhabi Bank<br />

served as the lead receiving bank in<br />

the IPO, while International Securities<br />

served as the financial advisor. Dubai<br />

Islamic Bank served as lead manager.<br />

BHM Capital Financial Services<br />

served as the listing adviser, and JP<br />

Morgan served as the company’s<br />

and the selling shareholder’s capital<br />

markets counsel.<br />

Burjeel Holdings has stated that it<br />

will launch an initial public offering<br />

of roughly 550,729,221 shares, or<br />

11% of its outstanding share capital<br />

(IPO). Additionally, the Abu Dhabi<br />

Securities Exchange will list its<br />

shares. Beginning on September 30,<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, the subscription period for<br />

the offering will be available until<br />

Tuesday, October 4, <strong>2022</strong>, for both the<br />

First Tranche (“UAE Retail Offering,”<br />

offering to individual subscribers<br />

and other investors in the UAE) and<br />

the Second Tranche (“Professional<br />

Investors”). Shares of the Offering<br />

will cost between Dh2 and Dh2.45<br />

each, representing an equity value of<br />

between $2.7 billion and $3.3 billion.<br />

On October 5, <strong>2022</strong>, it is anticipated<br />

to be known what the final offer price<br />

will be. On Monday, October 10, <strong>2022</strong>,<br />

the shares are anticipated to be listed<br />

and begin trading on ADX.<br />

Strong investor interest has resulted<br />

in the Gulf region emerging as a<br />

bright light in an otherwise subdued<br />

global IPO market. Nevertheless, the<br />

situation is getting worse as oil prices<br />

have dropped about 40% since June<br />

due to concerns that a slowdown<br />

in the global economy brought on<br />

by central banks’ aggressive policy<br />

tightening will reduce energy use.<br />

Burjeel, a company founded by<br />

Shamsheer Vayalil and owned by<br />

VPS Healthcare, is slated to become<br />

the first privately-owned company<br />

in the UAE to go public this year. It<br />

runs medical facilities in the UAE and<br />

Oman, and is preparing to expand into<br />

Saudi Arabia. Chairman Vayalil said<br />

on Bloomberg TV that the company<br />

intended to use the IPO money to<br />

improve its balance sheet and grow<br />

operations. “With this IPO, we sought<br />

to strengthen the balance sheet and<br />

ensure that our scale of ambitions is<br />

intact,” he said.<br />

<strong>The</strong>y anticipate selling 350,331,555<br />

shares, or 7% of the Company’s<br />

issued share capital. <strong>The</strong> Selling<br />

Shareholder reserves the right, subject<br />

to applicable laws and the approval<br />

of the Securities and Commodities<br />

Authority, to change the Offering’s<br />

size and the size of any Tranche<br />

at any time before the end of the<br />

subscription period (SCA).<br />

Additionally, 200,397,665 additional<br />

shares, or 4% of the company’s<br />

outstanding share capital, are<br />

included in the offering. <strong>The</strong> size of<br />

the Offering will be between $300<br />

million and $368 million, assuming<br />

all shares are sold. Burjeel’s<br />

capital markets advisor and selling<br />

shareholder for the IPO is JPMorgan<br />

Securities. To develop and diversify its<br />

local and regional healthcare assets,<br />

International Holding Company<br />

(IHC), a diversified Abu Dhabi-based<br />

conglomerate, said in September <strong>2022</strong><br />

that it had purchased a 15% share in<br />

Burjeel Holdings PLC.<br />

Burjeel is anticipated to have a market<br />

value of around Dh10.4 billion upon<br />

listing, making it one of the largest private<br />

healthcare firms listed on the Abu Dhabi<br />

Securities Exchange.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 77

Corporate Tax<br />

Impact Of Corporate Tax On UAE Business<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates had long been thought of as an economy that was supported by oil.<br />

Dubai, on the other hand, has been working very methodically over the years to assist the country<br />

break free and establish itself as a modern state with significant investments in innovation and<br />

technology.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Ministry of <strong>Finance</strong> (MoF)<br />

made the ground-breaking<br />

announcement on January<br />

31, <strong>2022</strong>, that a new federal<br />

Corporate Tax (CT) system would be<br />

implemented in the UAE, effective<br />

financial years beginning on or after<br />

June 1, 2023. This changed the tax<br />

landscape of the region. With a regular<br />

rate of 9%, the UAE has now become<br />

the GCC country with the lowest<br />

corporate income tax rate.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE CT regime was created to<br />

take best practises from around the<br />

world into account and lessen the cost<br />

of compliance on businesses. Each<br />

and every registered business would<br />

have to register for CT, and each year<br />

they would have to pay 9% of their<br />

adjusted taxable profits over the<br />

exemption threshold of Dh375,000.<br />

As a result, CT would be a short-term<br />

obligation for the businesses, which<br />

would have a negative impact on their<br />

working capital.<br />

Businesses would be compelled<br />

to evaluate the working capital gap<br />

and fill it. <strong>The</strong>y would take CT’s<br />

effect on the business into account<br />

78 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

while creating the budget for the<br />

relevant time, and they would plan the<br />

measures accordingly.<br />

In order to determine the group<br />

taxable earnings, groups operating<br />

in the UAE would have the option of<br />

registering under a single CT number<br />

and adjusting the losses of the group<br />

firms. <strong>The</strong> entities that share common<br />

control or ownership will undoubtedly<br />

seek to restructure, such as by<br />

changing ownership or control to<br />

opt-out of the single CT registration,<br />

as this will enable them to modify the<br />

losses of the group firms and lower<br />

their tax obligations.<br />

Loss-making organisations or<br />

companies would be entitled to carry<br />

forward their losses, which would be<br />

subtracted from future taxable profits,<br />

preventing CT from being seen as a<br />

burden on loss-making Units.<br />

Corporate Taxation of Free Zones<br />

in the UAE<br />

International trade in the UAE<br />

has been significantly boosted by<br />

the various Free Zone businesses<br />

there. Free Zones benefit from a<br />

number of exemptions, such as 100%<br />

foreign ownership, 100% customs and<br />

VAT exemptions, 100% capital and<br />

profit repatriation, corporation tax<br />

exemptions, etc.<br />

If certain requirements are met, tax<br />

exemptions to such Free Zones work<br />

as a multiplier, allowing the UAE<br />

Government to implement its goal of<br />

economic reforms with growth.<br />

Free Zone businesses need to be<br />

aware that, depending on a number<br />

of variables, corporate tax may not<br />

only be applicable but also have a<br />

broader scope and a higher effective<br />

tax rate than 9%, including domestic<br />

supply-chain constraints, international<br />

taxation, transfer pricing, and other<br />

OECD regulations.<br />

Free Zone Regulations and<br />

Interplay with Economic<br />

Substance Regulations (ESR)<br />

Conditions of the Free Zone for<br />

tax exemption may be in conflict<br />

with other aspects of the laws now<br />

in effect, such as the influence on the<br />

Economic Substance Regulations<br />

currently in effect (ESR). <strong>The</strong> UAE<br />

ESR may change after the imposition

With a regular rate<br />

of 9%, the UAE has<br />

now become the<br />

GCC country with<br />

the lowest corporate<br />

income tax rate.<br />

of corporate taxes, however this is<br />

uncertain.<br />

<strong>The</strong> purpose of the ESR was to<br />

implement international standards<br />

for business taxation developed by<br />

the OECD and the EU in order to<br />

prevent harmful tax practises while<br />

conducting business in the UAE.<br />

This was created in order to prevent<br />

multinational groups from artificially<br />

shifting profits to jurisdictions that<br />

impose little or no income tax without<br />

substantial economic activity in those<br />

jurisdictions.<br />

<strong>The</strong> ability of a Free Zone entity to<br />

make an irrevocable election to be<br />

subject to regular corporate taxation<br />

and join a tax group in order to benefit<br />

from simpler administration of tax<br />

compliances and the ability to set off<br />

losses incurred by group companies<br />

when an entity does not wish to<br />

enjoy corporate tax exemption is<br />

another crucial factor. In this manner,<br />

there will be no interruption to its<br />

operations at all.<br />

Startups and new businesses<br />

would be encouraged by the fact that<br />

companies with taxable income up to<br />

Dh 375,000 would not be subject to<br />

CT.<br />

Due to the simplicity of the UAE’s<br />

tax system, the implementation,<br />

training, and administrative costs<br />

associated with CT would not be<br />

prohibitive. <strong>The</strong>re will undoubtedly be<br />

a rise in the demand for tax specialists<br />

as businesses concentrate on tax<br />

planning to lessen the impact of CT on<br />

their earnings.<br />

It is very likely that shareholders<br />

would work to protect their share<br />

of profits and that they would pass<br />

on the effects of CT to customers by<br />

raising prices, which would make<br />

items a little more expensive for<br />

them and have a negative effect on<br />

their purchasing power. <strong>The</strong> demand<br />

for products and services would be<br />

impacted by a decline in purchasing<br />

power, and this would have a knockon<br />

effect on company production and<br />

sales, slowing down the economy’s<br />

growth in the short term.<br />

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)<br />

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)<br />

decisions are also impacted by CT,<br />

which produces a gulf between<br />

FDI’s pre-tax and post-tax returns.<br />

Investors are always interested in<br />

learning about direct taxes and taxes<br />

on the repatriation of profits in the<br />

country where they wish to invest.<br />

<strong>The</strong> government’s announced rate is<br />

very competitive when compared to<br />

rates in other nations, and the UAE<br />

government has double tax treaties<br />

in place, so the implementation of<br />

CT won’t have a significant effect on<br />

FDI. Additionally, Free Zones will<br />

continue to provide invectives to the<br />

enterprises for a certain time period in<br />

accordance with their national rules,<br />

allowing businesses to continue to<br />

profit from the tax.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE government would use<br />

this money to build world-class<br />

infrastructure, including hospitals,<br />

roads, and medical facilities, in a<br />

similar manner to how VAT is another<br />

source of income for the country.<br />

Additionally, it would lessen the<br />

government’s reliance on revenue<br />

from the oil industry and result in<br />

diversified sources of revenue, which<br />

would be a sign of a robust and<br />

developed economy.<br />

Conclusion on impact of corporate<br />

tax<br />

Due to its competitiveness, CT<br />

would have a minimal impact on<br />

corporate savings and FDI, which<br />

would have a negative impact on the<br />

country’s growth in the short term.<br />

However, in the long run, it would<br />

help investors gain confidence, which<br />

would result in growth.<br />

A stable society where enterprises<br />

may contribute and provide value for<br />

the expansion of the economy has<br />

been created, according to the CT,<br />

which has been designed to encourage<br />

investment and maintain transparency<br />

to match international standards. <strong>The</strong><br />

UAE is crucial in assisting businesses<br />

to expand both domestically and<br />

internationally as a top jurisdiction for<br />

innovation and investment.<br />

“<strong>The</strong> UAE’s position as a global<br />

hub for business and investment<br />

will be cemented by the certainty<br />

of a competitive and best-in-class<br />

corporate tax environment and<br />

the UAE’s large double tax treaty<br />

network.”<br />

Each financial year, one corporate<br />

tax return will be submitted. <strong>The</strong>re<br />

will be no need for provisional tax<br />

returns or advance tax payments. <strong>The</strong><br />

federal government will “certainly<br />

have more income” to reinvest back<br />

into the economy as a result of the<br />

new tax, which will boost government<br />

finances and increase its revenue<br />

streams. To aid in the economic<br />

recovery following the pandemic,<br />

the government previously made<br />

significant efforts in that direction.<br />

According to data from the Tax<br />

Foundation, corporate tax rates have<br />

steadily decreased over the past 40<br />

years, with the global average falling<br />

from more than 40% to between<br />

25% and 30%. According to the<br />

organisation, the weighted average<br />

company tax rate fell from about 50%<br />

in the 1980s to approximately 25% in<br />

2021.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 79

Corporate Results<br />

Majid Al Futtaim results in<br />

H1-22<br />

Net profits: AED453 million<br />

Despite a 9% growth in revenue to<br />

AED14.4 billion for <strong>2022</strong>, Majid Al<br />

Futtaim – Retail saw a 9% decline in<br />

EBITDA to AED567 million. AED268<br />

million more in income for LFL sites<br />

and AED453 million more in digital<br />

sales are what are driving the retail<br />

sector’s growth. Higher tourism rates<br />

and restored consumer spending<br />

power, both effects of eased COVID-19<br />

regulations, are to blame for H1 <strong>2022</strong><br />

revenue growth compared to H1 2021<br />

revenue growth. Majid Al Futtaim also<br />

established 18 new stores across its<br />

regions, extending its global reach<br />

even further. <strong>The</strong> Group engaged in<br />

the growth of express commerce in<br />

pace with the global transition to<br />

digital retail services, and as a result,<br />

digital sales increased by 73%.<br />

ADNOC results in H1- 22<br />

Net profit: AED1.56 billion<br />

ADNOC Distribution released<br />

impressive second-half results<br />

for <strong>2022</strong>, reporting EBITDA of<br />

Dh1.99 billion and net profits of<br />

Dh1.56 billion. ADNOC Distribution<br />

announced its milestone transaction<br />

to acquire a 50% stake in<br />

TotalEnergies Marketing Egypt, one<br />

of the top four fuel retail operators<br />

in Egypt, for approximately Dh683<br />

million ($185.9 million), with an<br />

additional earn-out of up to Dh63.5<br />

($17.3 million). This partnership<br />

with TotalEnergies helped ADNOC<br />

Distribution advance its international<br />

expansion (if certain conditions are<br />

satisfied). <strong>The</strong> purchase is in line<br />

with the company’s goal of making<br />

ADNOC Distribution the top regional<br />

fuel distributor. Under certain<br />

conditions, such as receiving typical<br />

regulatory approvals, the transaction<br />

is anticipated to close in Q1 2023.<br />

80 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

Dubai Financial Market<br />

results in H1- 22<br />

Net profit: AED35.9 million<br />

Comparing the second quarter of <strong>2022</strong><br />

to the second quarter of 2021, the net<br />

profit climbed by 134% to Dhs35.9m.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s revenue in the second<br />

quarter of <strong>2022</strong> was Dhs85.2 million,<br />

up from Dhs63.2 million in the same<br />

quarter the previous year, while its<br />

expenses came to Dhs49.3 million,<br />

up from Dhs47.9 million. Seventy two<br />

percent of the new investors were<br />

foreign investors. In addition, 303<br />

international institutions were among<br />

the 426 new institutional investors<br />

that DFM onboarded in the first half.<br />

Dubai Investment Fund<br />

results in H1- 22<br />

Net profit: AED364 million<br />

In comparison to the same sixmonth<br />

period previous year, Dubai<br />

Investments’ net earnings increased<br />

by 20.5% to Dh364 million, or Dh364<br />

million. <strong>The</strong> group’s total assets<br />

remained constant at Dh22 billion,<br />

while total equity climbed to Dh12.1<br />

billion from Dh11.98 billion during<br />

the same period previous year. <strong>The</strong><br />

group has completed selling its 50%<br />

equity stake in Emirates District<br />

Cooling (Emicool) LLC and will report<br />

Dh980.4 million in gain on sale and<br />

fair valuation gain on retained interest<br />

in the third quarter of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Nasdaq Dubai Ltd results<br />

in Q3-22<br />

Net profit: 15% increase<br />

<strong>The</strong> high demand for the exchange<br />

operator’s investment products helped<br />

Nasdaq Inc. achieve a 15% increase<br />

in Q3 adjusted earnings, offsetting a<br />

slowdown in initial public offerings<br />

(IPOs). <strong>The</strong> exchange operator also<br />

reported that in the third quarter,<br />

listing services revenues increased<br />

by 6% to USD 105 million. Nasdaq<br />

earned 68 cents per share in the three<br />

months that ended on September 30<br />

after taking one-time things out. In<br />

addition, net revenue for the quarter<br />

increased 6% to USD 890 million. <strong>The</strong><br />

company reported that in the first nine<br />

months of the year, it repurchased<br />

shares of its common stock worth<br />

USD 633 million.<br />

First Abu Dhabi Bank<br />

results in H1-22<br />

Net Profit: 5.11 billion<br />

First Abu Dhabi Bank PJSC, formerly<br />

National Bank of Abu Dhabi PJSC, is<br />

a United Arab Emirates-based public<br />

joint stock company that is engaged<br />

in the banking sector. Despite global<br />

market volatility, the largest lender<br />

in the UAE reported a significant<br />

year-over-year increase in net profit<br />

for the first half of the year. This<br />

success was attributed to a favourable<br />

regional backdrop. In comparison to<br />

the same period previous year, net<br />

profit for the quarter increased by 50%<br />

to AED8 billion ($2.17 billion). Total<br />

net profit for the second quarter of<br />

the year was AED2.9 billion, above<br />

analyst expectations while modestly<br />

increasing from a year earlier.<br />

Borouge results in H1- 22<br />

Net profit: 35% increase<br />

<strong>The</strong> joint venture between ADNOC<br />

and the Austrian manufacturer of<br />

chemicals, Borealis, called Borouge,<br />

reported a net profit increase of<br />

about 35% from the same period last<br />

year. <strong>The</strong> company reported in its<br />

maiden results report on Thursday<br />

since being listed on the Abu Dhabi<br />

Securities Exchange last month that<br />

net profit for the three months ending<br />

in June increased to $490 million<br />

from the same period a year earlier.<br />

Adjusted profits before interest,<br />

taxes, depreciation, and amortisation<br />

(EBITDA) surged by 35.5% year over<br />

year to $1.87 billion in the second<br />

quarter, while revenue gained an<br />

annual 18%.

DIFC results in H1 -22<br />

Net Income: 12.5%<br />

increase<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai International Financial<br />

Centre welcomed 537 new firms in<br />

the first half of this year, an 12.5%<br />

rise over the same period last year,<br />

reiterating the emirate’s position as<br />

a major financial hub. During the<br />

six-month period, there were 4,031<br />

registered corporations, up from<br />

3,297 during the same time last year.<br />

<strong>The</strong> overall number of businesses<br />

operating in the DIFC increased<br />

by 22% yearly. “Dubai’s ability to<br />

accelerate knowledge- and innovationdriven<br />

growth, supported by its robust<br />

and stable economy, is testament to<br />

DIFC’s first-half performance,”<br />

Emirates Global<br />

Aluminium results in Q3-<br />

22<br />

Net Profit: $1.6 billion<br />

<strong>The</strong> industrial company Emirates<br />

Global Aluminium (EGA), situated in<br />

the UAE, announced a net profit of<br />

Dhs5.9bn ($1.6bn) of <strong>2022</strong> as opposed<br />

to Dhs1.7bn ($473m) in the first half<br />

of 2021. Comparing the first half of<br />

2021 to the first half of 2021, cast<br />

metal sales climbed by 11% to 1.31<br />

million tonnes. In over 50 countries,<br />

EGA provided metal to more than 400<br />

customers. From 1.02 million tonnes<br />

in H1 2021 to 1.07 million tonnes in<br />

H2 2021, sales of value-added goods,<br />

or “premium aluminium,” climbed by<br />

5%. EGA made a Dhs2.9 billion ($800<br />

million) corporate debt pre-payment<br />

after the first half of <strong>2022</strong>. <strong>The</strong><br />

business has made planned payments<br />

of Dhs968m ($263m) and prepaid<br />

Dhs6.5bn ($1.8bn) since January 2021.<br />

RAK properties results in Q3- 22<br />

Net Profit: AED194 million<br />

In <strong>2022</strong>, RAK Properties recorded revenue of Dh193.99 million, a decrease from<br />

Dh265.10 million in the same time the previous year. Comparing the same quarter<br />

to H1 2021, the net profit decreased to Dh25.55 million from Dh119.81. Comparing<br />

the first half of this year to the same period in 2021, the company’s assets climbed<br />

slightly, to Dh6.23 billion. Sales of real estate generated Dh141.78 million in<br />

revenue during the course of the six-month period, and Dh24.41 million came from<br />

hotel operations.<br />

Anghami results in H1-22<br />

Net Profit: 29% increase<br />

Future expansion of Anghami is<br />

dependent on Arabic content. To<br />

solidify its position as a top supplier<br />

of Arabic digital content and digital<br />

entertainment in the MENA region,<br />

the company has made a number of<br />

announcements about collaborations<br />

and projects. Annual growth in the<br />

number of subscribers who pay a<br />

monthly fee was 41%. This gain was<br />

principally brought on by higher rates<br />

of conversion of users supported by<br />

advertising to paying subscribers,<br />

as well as a bigger number of<br />

active users, which rose 46% year<br />

over year to 19.5 million users and<br />

translated into higher advertising and<br />

subscription income.<br />

International Holding Company<br />

(IHC), a conglomerate based in<br />

Abu Dhabi, has announced strong<br />

profits for the first quarter of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

In the first half of <strong>2022</strong>, International<br />

Holding Company’s sales increased<br />

by 121% to Dhs21.93 billion from the<br />

corresponding period in the previous<br />

year, while its net profit increased by<br />

137% to Dhs10.35 billion from H1 2021.<br />

As a result of the holding company’s<br />

strategic acquisitions in H1 <strong>2022</strong>, the<br />

organization’s net worth increased<br />

from Dhs88.98 billion at the end of<br />

December 31, 2021 to Dhs163.69<br />

Al Rajhi Bank results in<br />

9m- 22<br />

Net Profit: 19% increase<br />

Al Rajhi Bank reported net profits<br />

of SAR12.74 billion for the first nine<br />

months (9M) of <strong>2022</strong>, an increase of<br />

18.74% over SAR10.73 billion for the<br />

same period in the previous year.<br />

A bourse disclosure stated that the<br />

earnings per share (EPS) for 9M-22<br />

were SAR3.16 as opposed to SAR<br />

2.68 for the same period last year.<br />

In addition, client deposits reached<br />

SAR555.76 billion from January<br />

to September <strong>2022</strong>, an increase of<br />

16.19% from SAR478.33 billion in the<br />

same period the previous year. <strong>The</strong><br />

bank’s assets increased by 27.11% to<br />

SAR740.62 billion from SAR582.65<br />

billion, while its investments<br />

increased by 24.08% to SAR101.80<br />

billion in 9M-22 from SAR82.04 billion<br />

in 9M-21.<br />

International Holding Company (IHC) results in H1-22<br />

Net Profit: 121% increase<br />

billion at the end of June 30, <strong>2022</strong>, an<br />

increase of 84 percent.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 81

Travel<br />

UAE citizens no longer need visas to visit<br />

Japan under a new collaboration agreement<br />

An agreement that aims to improve bilateral ties will allow Emirati people to visit Japan<br />

without a visa. <strong>The</strong> strategic agreement intends to promote trade and investment together with<br />

strengthening diplomatic, economic, and political cooperation between the two nations. Dr.<br />

Sultan Al Jaber, the UAE’s special representative to Japan and minister of industry and advanced<br />

technology, and Yoshimasa Hayashi, the Japanese minister of foreign affairs, signed the agreement<br />

in Tokyo.<br />

According to Dr. Al Jaber,<br />

the agreement will promote<br />

greater economic, trade,<br />

and investment opportunities<br />

as well as increase tourism, cultural,<br />

and academic contacts between<br />

the two countries. In due order, the<br />

date of the entry-visa exemption will<br />

be disclosed. A team from the UAE<br />

and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio<br />

Kishida met on Monday, with Sheikh<br />

Khaled bin Mohamed, member of the<br />

Abu Dhabi Executive Council and<br />

chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive<br />

Office, leading the delegation.<br />

<strong>The</strong> agreement’s specifics were<br />

revealed in 2018 during Shinzo Abe’s<br />

visit to Abu Dhabi as prime minister.<br />

<strong>The</strong> primary areas of collaboration are<br />

bilateral and international cooperation<br />

in the political and diplomatic<br />

82 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong><br />

spheres, in addition to coordination in<br />

the areas of economy, trade, energy,<br />

and industry by enhancing the business<br />

climate for trade and investment<br />

in all sectors, including manufacturing<br />

and technology, infrastructure, artificial<br />

intelligence, healthcare, small and<br />

medium-sized enterprises, as well as<br />

agriculture, environment and climate<br />

change, education, science, technology,<br />

defence, and security.<br />

Additionally, Sheikh Khaled was<br />

present at the official Japan-Emirati<br />

Friendship Association event<br />

in Tokyo. He commended the close<br />

economic ties between the UAE and<br />

Japan as well as the Friendship Association’s<br />

contribution to the expansion<br />

of bilateral cooperation.<br />

<strong>The</strong> visit this week gave both<br />

parties a chance to consider their<br />

50-year friendship and business relationships.<br />

For the past 50 years, the<br />

UAE has been one of Japan’s primary<br />

oil suppliers; currently, 20% of its oil<br />

requirements are met by the UAE. Statistical<br />

data from 2021 indicates that<br />

<strong>The</strong> Emirates is Japan’s tenth-largest<br />

trading partner globally. Over $14<br />

billion has been invested by Japanese<br />

companies in the United Arab Emirates.<br />

In 1971, Japan was one of the<br />

first nations to establish diplomatic<br />

ties with the UAE.<br />

Rules and regulations for the visa<br />

scheme<br />

<strong>The</strong> New Visa Scheme for the<br />

United Arab Emirates has been<br />

officially launched on October 3,<br />

<strong>2022</strong>, and the Federal Authority for<br />

Identity, Citizenship, Customs and

For the past 50<br />

years, the UAE<br />

has been one of<br />

Japan’s primary oil<br />

suppliers; currently,<br />

20% of its oil<br />

requirements are<br />

met by the UAE<br />

Ports Security (ICP) has approved the<br />

regulations and procedures for the<br />

programme.<br />

This action carries out Cabinet<br />

Resolution No. 65, which relates to<br />

the executive regulation of Federal<br />

Decree-Law No. 29 of 2021 regarding<br />

the entry and residence of foreigners.<br />

<strong>The</strong> ICP has outlined the terms and<br />

regulations for putting the decision<br />

into effect as well as the operational<br />

procedures for the unified system for<br />

entrance visas for tourists, patients,<br />

and students. <strong>The</strong> ICP further stated<br />

that the methods for establishing<br />

rules and standards are intended<br />

to maximise the degree of strategic<br />

balance when making decisions and<br />

to crystallise government visions<br />

and directions in accordance with a<br />

common work approach.<br />

To further improve personal<br />

security, safety, and stability as well<br />

as social stability, this was done in<br />

conjunction with ICP’s partners.<br />

Major General Suhail Saeed Al Khaili,<br />

Director-General of the ICP, stated<br />

that the new visa system is in line<br />

with both the goals of the UAE’s<br />

2071 Centennial and the Principles of<br />

the 50. Additionally, it supports the<br />

ideals of peace, tolerance, and human<br />

fraternity and keeps up with the<br />

many adjustments and advancements<br />

witnessed in the local and global<br />

economic, political, and social<br />

landscapes, he noted.<br />

Al Khaili emphasised that the<br />

system creates a general outline<br />

for the nation’s visa structure for<br />

labour, tourism, medical care, and<br />

education, furthering the nation’s<br />

status and boosting its regional and<br />

worldwide competitiveness. “<strong>The</strong><br />

terms and regulations that the ICP<br />

approved were developed based on<br />

extensive studies of government<br />

trends, with the aim of preventing<br />

any security breaches and ensuring<br />

the safety of society members, as<br />

well as protecting the UAE’s cohesive<br />

society, its status as an alluring hub<br />

for business and tourism, a champion<br />

of knowledge, and a leader in<br />

sustainable development and future<br />

planning,” stated Al Khalil.<br />

He also emphasised how the newly<br />

created visas will spur development in<br />

the UAE by luring in businesspeople,<br />

professionals, exceptional graduates,<br />

and students, as well as boosting its<br />

reputation as a welcoming place to<br />

live and work.<br />

Additionally, Major General Al<br />

Khaili stated that in order to guarantee<br />

that the new visa system meets its<br />

goals, the terms and regulations<br />

for visas were created after being<br />

reviewed and assessed by the relevant<br />

authorities, including the Ministry of<br />

Human Resources and Emiratization<br />

and other federal and local entities.<br />

According to Sultan Al Nuaimi,<br />

Director General of Residency and<br />

Foreigners Affairs, the updated<br />

standards and guidelines cover the<br />

prerequisites for obtaining visas to<br />

investigate company startup chances,<br />

as well as for those with certain<br />

foreign residency permits and in<br />

humanitarian situations.<br />

In Tokyo, H.H. Sheikh Khaled<br />

bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan<br />

met with Fumio Kishida, the prime<br />

minister of Japan. His Highness saw<br />

the beginning of a strategic alliance<br />

between the UAE and Japan during<br />

the meeting. Additionally, on his visit<br />

to the UAE in 2018, the late Japanese<br />

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced<br />

the maiden partnership deal.<br />

Moreover, the partnership’s debut<br />

coincides with the 50th anniversary<br />

celebrations between the two nations,<br />

which emphasises the significance of<br />

enhancing bilateral collaboration.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 83

Travel News<br />

UAE Tourist Visa for 60 Days<br />

Through the Advanced Visa<br />

System<br />

One of the most significant<br />

improvements to residence<br />

and entry permits in the<br />

UAE was made through the<br />

Advanced Visa System. Sixty days<br />

after the date of issuance, all entry<br />

visas are still valid. Consequently,<br />

tourists will be able to visit the UAE<br />

for two months, thanks to these new<br />

revisions in the tourist visa. Among<br />

the most popular is the five-year<br />

multiple-entry tourist visa. A sponsor<br />

isn’t necessary, though. However, as<br />

long as the overall length of stay does<br />

not exceed 180 days in a single year,<br />

it enables the holder to stay in the<br />

country for up to 90 days, with the<br />

option to extend for a similar period<br />

of time.<br />

Wizz Air Abu<br />

Dhabi Flights to<br />

Samarkand are<br />

available for<br />

Dh149<br />

As budget airline Wizz Air<br />

Abu Dhabi begins service<br />

to the historic city of<br />

Samarkand in Uzbekistan,<br />

UAE tourists seeking to embark on<br />

a cultural journey this fall may book<br />

aeroplane tickets for just Dh149. For<br />

more than 2,600 years, Samarkand,<br />

one of the most significant cities along<br />

the ancient Silk Road, has served as<br />

a nexus for cultural exchange. For<br />

visitors and locals in the UAE and<br />

Uzbekistan, the new Wizz Air Abu<br />

Dhabi route will offer hassle-free,<br />

point-to-point travel.<br />

Flydubai is the<br />

first UAE airline<br />

to fly to Gan<br />

Airport in the<br />

Maldives<br />

Vacationers from the UAE<br />

who are eager to visit the<br />

Maldives will soon have<br />

another option. Beginning<br />

in February, low-cost airline Flydubai<br />

will begin offering service to Gan<br />

International Airport, located at the<br />

southernmost point of the Indian<br />

Ocean archipelago. Beginning on<br />

February 4, the low-cost airline will<br />

run a daily flight to Gan, an ex-base of<br />

the British Royal Air Force, becoming<br />

the first UAE airline to do so. Gan<br />

is the second-largest international<br />

airport in the Maldives.<br />

Vida Dubai<br />

Marina & Yacht<br />

Club hotel<br />

to open in<br />

December<br />

This year, a premium hotel<br />

debuting in Dubai Marina<br />

will eventually take the<br />

place of one of the area’s<br />

most well-liked boating, dining, and<br />

drinking hotspots. <strong>The</strong> 158 rooms at<br />

the Vida Dubai Marina & Yacht Club,<br />

which will debut in December, will<br />

have views over one of the biggest<br />

artificial marinas in the world. <strong>The</strong><br />

four-star hotel will transform the<br />

property on the Marina Promenade,<br />

originally occupied by the adored<br />

Dubai Marina Yacht Club, with a chic<br />

yet unpretentious design from Miami,<br />

communal eating options, and coworking<br />

spaces.<br />

84 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong>

<strong>The</strong> <strong>World</strong> Cup in Qatar made<br />

accessible to those without<br />

tickets<br />

Those without tickets for the<br />

Fifa <strong>World</strong> Cup Qatar <strong>2022</strong> may<br />

enter the nation during the<br />

competition with permission<br />

from a holder of a match ticket.<br />

International tourists were previously<br />

forbidden from entering the country<br />

during the biggest football tournament<br />

in the world unless they had a match<br />

ticket, but those restrictions have been<br />

modified by Qatar’s Supreme Committee<br />

for Delivery & Legacy. Travelers flying to<br />

Doha who have a tickets for at least one<br />

football game may invite up to three nonticketed<br />

friends or family members to<br />

join them in Qatar under the Hayya with<br />

Me (1+3) policy.<br />

Emirates launches an A380 in<br />

Japan to address the spike in<br />

demand<br />

A<br />

s Japan eliminates the daily arrival cap and relaxes the Covid-19<br />

testing and self-quarantine rules for inbound travel, Emirates, the<br />

largest international airline, will increase capacity on its Narita-Dubai<br />

route beginning on <strong>November</strong> 15. Emirates has noticed an increase in<br />

reservations for flights to its gateways, Narita and Osaka, following the Japanese<br />

government’s move last month to loosen the entrance restrictions. Emirates flight<br />

EK318 from Dubai will take off at 2:55 and land in Narita at 17:20. <strong>The</strong> return<br />

aircraft from Narita, EK319, will take off at 22:30 and land in Dubai at 5:30 the<br />

following morning. All times are local.<br />

Qatar <strong>World</strong><br />

Cup <strong>2022</strong> to<br />

trigger “Expo<br />

impact” for<br />

UAE hotels<br />

D<br />

ue to the lack of<br />

accommodations in the<br />

neighbouring host nation<br />

Qatar, the first Fifa <strong>World</strong><br />

Cup to be staged in the Middle<br />

East is expected to bring in a huge<br />

amount of business for UAE hotels<br />

in the fourth quarter of <strong>2022</strong>. Major<br />

local and international hotel brands<br />

in the UAE anticipate operating<br />

at or close to capacity throughout<br />

the four-week football event due to<br />

significant advance reservations for<br />

<strong>November</strong>. With strong demand trends<br />

comparable to those seen during<br />

the peak of Expo 2020 Dubai, hotels<br />

in Dubai and Abu Dhabi anticipate<br />

occupancy levels ranging between<br />

80% and 100%.<br />

<strong>November</strong> <strong>2022</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 85

Giving Businesses<br />

Support to ease their<br />

Cashflow<br />

Contact Us<br />

www.iFundFactoring.com<br />


Hooray! Your file is uploaded and ready to be published.

Saved successfully!

Ooh no, something went wrong!