United Arab Emirates

UAE-based troubled contractor Arabtec Holding has submitted a bankruptcy petition to Dubai Court, following the company's former group CEO Wail Farsakh's resignation in February 2021, Construction Week reported. In a missive issued to Dubai Financial Market (DFM), Arabtec Holding stated that a bankruptcy petition was submitted to the Dubai Court in addition to certain subsidiaries, which include Arabtec Construction, Austrian Arabian Readymix Concrete Co., Arabtec Precast, Emirates Falcon Electromechanical Co.
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Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC, one of the biggest lenders to NMC Health Plc, expects creditors’ approval for a restructuring plan for the collapsed hospital operator in the first half, Bloomberg News reported. The bank recorded 1.66 billion dirhams ($450 million) in provisions and interest in suspense toward NMC, Finablr Plc and associated companies last year, according to a statement. ADCB is “comfortable” with the provisioning levels, “given the positive developments in NMC’s recent financial performance and its ongoing restructuring process,” it said.

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A unit of the main conglomerate controlled by Dubai’s ruler is facing off against creditors including Mashreqbank PSC after telling them it won’t fully repay a loan that was restructured in 2013, Bloomberg News reported. The $1.2 billion syndicated facility is linked to Dubai Holding Investments Group LLC’s acquisition in 2007 of a 10% stake in U.S. hedge fund Och-Ziff Capital Management Group, since renamed Sculptor Capital Management.

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Dubai’s government expects to spend 57.1 billion dirhams ($15.5 billion) next year as it tries to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus, according to the budget approved on Sunday, Bloomberg News reported. The program takes into account “the exceptional economic conditions of the fiscal year 2020 and the repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic on the global economy,” according to a statement on the website of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashed Al Maktoum, Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Dubai. Government revenue is expected to reach 52.3 billion dirhams, it said.
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Sentiments on the UAE stock markets have turned completely negative – as a mix of global events and local concerns fuel investor fears, Gulf News reported. Within the first two hours of Monday. The index shed more than 100 points, with 28 stocks in the red. (Al Salam Group Holding is the only one as of 11.30am to break the down trend.) By 12pm, the drop was brought down below 4 points. But it still looks like being a long day for UAE investors. The real estate stocks, which had been showing signs of strong recovery through the first two months, are particularly hit.

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Payments company Finablr is selling its entire business and operations to an Israeli-United Arab Emirates consortium for a nominal $1 after running into financial difficulties, the company said on Thursday, Reuters reported. Global Fintech Investments Holding (GFIH), an affiliate of Prism Group AG, has partnered with Abu Dhabi’s Royal Strategic Partners to buy the business, Finablr said in a statement. GFIH will provide working capital to support Finablr so it can continue to operate and support various stakeholders, including its employees and creditors, the statement said.

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Investment Corp. of Dubai is gaining a larger footprint in the emirate’s property market by asserting control over state-owned developer Meydan’s real estate projects, Bloomberg News reported. “We have embarked on a review of Meydan’s business strategy,” Mohammed Al Shaibani, ICD’s chief executive officer, said in an emailed reply to questions.

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Administrators of troubled hospital operator NMC Health are sounding out potential buyer interest for its flagship business in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), three sources familiar with the matter said, Reuters reported. The potential sale of its biggest assets which would also include Oman, could generate around $1 billion, one of the sources said. It follows administrators Alvarez & Marsal’s launch in August of a process to sell NMC’s international business including its international fertility units.

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Dubai-listed contractor Arabtec has terminated thousands of workers again in recent weeks, sources said, as the construction firm prepares for liquidation after the coronavirus pandemic deepened its financial woes, Reuters reported. Arabtec Holding shareholders in September authorised the board to file for liquidation due to its untenable financial position. The company, which helped build the Louvre Abu Dhabi and the world’s tallest skyscraper, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, suffered a first-half loss of $216.18 million, piling up accumulated losses of nearly $400 million.

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Abu Dhabi’s government has stumped up around $22 billion for Etihad Airways since it began flying in 2003, underscoring the ambition of the oil-rich emirate to turn its national carrier into a global player before the effort faltered in recent years, Bloomberg News reported. The heavy investments, made before Covid-19 lockdowns strangled demand for air travel, were likely a prelude to support for the carrier this year, given the sector’s dire need for cash during the pandemic.

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