Quotes: MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Citadel Capital bullish on Egypt's return to growth  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 07/12/2013
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!



(MENAFN - Arab News) Citadel Capital, a major investment company in Africa and the Middle East with 9.5 billion in investments under control, was a key participant at the Egypt GCC Investment Forum, a two-day event hosted by the Egyptian Ministry of Investment in partnership with the UAE and Euromoney Conferences.

The event brings together top-tier Egyptian and GCC private sector investors, financiers and leading government officials from Egypt and the GCC to discuss strategic partnerships and new investment opportunities in Egypt as the government attempts to jump-start the economy and capitalize on rising investor confidence.

"Egypt has always had an economy that has the capacity to absorb investments and we as a country have always been able to find the right track. Granted, there may be heartache and frustration along the way, but when all is said and done, Egypt has always done the right thing. Right now Egypt needs investments. In order to achieve a growth rate of 7 percent, we need 20-25 billion in new investments," said Citadel Capital Founder and Chairman Ahmed Heikal during a keynote interview at the forum.

"In this context, two things are clear: We enjoy immense support from the Gulf countries not just in budget support and direct aid to the government, but from companies and countries with a genuine interest in helping Egypt build its infrastructure base. Secondly, I believe it is patently obvious that energy policy is at the root of our macro challenges today. The simple fact is that had increased the price of petroleum products by 17 piasters per annum starting in 2000, the total debt of the Egyptian government today would have been zero," he said.

Heikal pointed out that the startling statistic underscores the necessity of adopting a much more aggressive strategy as regards energy pricing.

"People are now aware of the problem - and that's the first part of finding a solution. But talking isn't enough: Now is the time for implementing solutions. The funding that we have received from the Gulf States has allowed us to avoid major problems, this does not however change the fact that we cannot continue to ignore the impending crisis that will occur once this funding is discontinued. Energy prices need to be liberalized gradually lest we wish to see a spike in inflation at the same time as we face rising unemployment as a result of failing enterprises. With that in mind, we need to cushion the impact of price rises through a system of direct cash subsidies to consumers," added Heikal.

Asked about the concerns of GCC investors - such as the legal environment and whether or not the current regulatory framework can ensure the safety of their investments - Heikal pointed out that "despite the uncertainty and the very real problems that are delaying the completion of projects in the interim, the risk-reward relationship is still very favorable in Egypt."

Heikal added: "I think that the lack of resolution on the political front and the bureaucratic delays have without a doubt hampered Egypt's capacity to attract new investment, but GCC investors are still finding it worthwhile to invest in Egypt. There are still excellent opportunities out there for large deals in key sectors such as energy and infrastructure that have attracted ad will continue to attract large amounts of capital coming from the Gulf."


A case in point is Citadel Capital's Egyptian Refining Company (ERC), a 3.7 billion second stage oil refinery that will reduce Egypt's present day diesel imports by more than half, generate more than 300 million in annual benefits to the state treasury, and reduce by nearly one-third the country's present sulfur dioxide emissions. The financing package for ERC, one of the largest-ever project finance deals in Africa, was completed post revolution with an international pool of investors that included Gulf-based sovereign wealth funds.

Asked what advice he would give to the government, Heikal noted that a shield law for government officials who are taking legitimate decisions that are discretionary in nature is a must to avoid bureaucratic inertia.

He also added that additional institutional capacity was required.

"We need to be able to attract higher calibers in the government and we also need to raise the productivity of the Egyptian economy as a whole, which means enacting policies regarding the types of investments we want to encourage bearing in mind energy, water and electricity consumption," said Heikal.

Citadel Capital also participated in two targeted sector workshops on renewable energy and hydrocarbons that featured government ministers and industry experts. Leading the discussion on hydrocarbons was Citadel Capital Managing Director for Energy Investments Mohamed Shoeib who highlighted the importance of future cooperation between the government and private sector investors in the hydrocarbons sector.

"To keep pace with projected economic growth and provide much needed energy capacity in the region Citadel Capital has invested heavily in energy as one of its five core industries. Our integrated energy investments cover the full value chain and include refining, energy distribution, power generation and alternative fuels," said Shoeib, an industry veteran with over 30 years experience in the upstream and downstream oil and gas sector in Egypt.

Khaled Abu Bakr, executive chairman of Citadel Capital's energy distribution platform, TAQA Arabia, participated in a workshop that discussed the role of renewable energy in sustainable development and explored the policy and regulatory framework that is required in order to facilitate and encourage more investments of this nature, which will be crucial for Egypt's energy security going forward.

TAQA Arabia is the largest private sector energy distribution company in Egypt with over 16 years of experience, investing and operating energy infrastructure including gas transmission and distribution through its largest operational arm, TAQA Gas. As part of it's ongoing effort to grow the energy sector in Egypt and meet increasing domestic demand, TAQA Arabia recently entered into an agreement with the Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources to connect 66,000 homes with natural gas.

The growth of Citadel Capital's energy investment comes as the firm continues its transformation of its business model from a private equity firm to Africa's leading investment company. Energy is one of Citadel Capital's five core industries alongside transportation, agriculture agrifoods, mining, and cement.

 


Arab News




  MENA News Headlines
 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Court reopens case against Neymar for Barcelona transferKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) A case into alleged irregularities regarding the transfer of Brazil striker Neymar to Spanish club Barcelona has been reopened, a Madrid court said Friday. The ruling came ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Guardiola thinks he's 'God', snipes Toure's agentKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Four-time African Player of the Year Yaya Toure's chances of ever playing for Manchester City again diminished further Friday after his fiery agent launched another ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- United win without Rooney as City maintain perfect startKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Manchester United thrashed defending Premier League champions Leicester City 4-1 as they vindicated manager Jose Mourinho's decision to drop Wayne Rooney while Manchester ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Guardiola wants Aguero to get even better for CityKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has vowed to make Sergio Aguero an even better player. The Argentine striker scored two goals on his return to City colours as the ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Tuchel still wary of Ronaldo despite slow start to seasonKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Borussia Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel is not convinced Cristiano Ronaldo is out of form saying he expected the Real Madrid talisman to cause his side plenty of problems in ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Sampaoli counts on Nasri talent for European runKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Sevilla coach Jorge Sampaoli believes Manchester City loanee Samir Nasri has the talent to help his side to the latter stages of the Champions League ahead of Tuesday's ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Wide-eyed Leicester face Champions League home bowKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Four months on from their astonishing 5,000-1 Premier League triumph, the stardust returns to Leicester City's King Power Stadium in Tuesday's first ever Champions League ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- CSKA play down fan fears at Tottenham clashKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) CSKA Moscow coach Leonid Slutsky insisted there would be no repeat of the Euro 2016 fan violence when the Russian champions host Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League. ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Mubadala to acquire 20% take in InvestcorpKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Mubadala, Abu Dhabi state investment fund, will acquire a 20 per cent stake in Investcorp, a Bahrain-based alternative investment firm. Under the terms of the two-step ...

 Sep 27 2016 - UAE- Oil to stabilise in 2017: EIAKhaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) abu dhabi - Brent crude oil prices are expected to average $42 a barrel in 2016 and will rise up to $52 a barrel in 2017, a latest report shows. The short-term energy ...

more...


 





Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2014 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help