Samson: Wide popular turnout for Baghdad International Fair
The Ministry of Commerce announced today a wide popular turnout for the 46th Baghdad International Fair, which started its activities on the first of this November to see the exhibits of the companies' pavilions and the countries participating in the exhibition.
A ministry statement quoted the Director General of the General Company for Iraqi Exhibitions and Commercial Services as saying, "The Baghdad International Fair has witnessed, since its early days, the influx of Iraqi families from various regions to see the most important exhibits and the products of the companies and countries participating in the exhibition."
He explained that "Iraqi families found the Baghdad International Fair an outlet for them, by learning about the cultures of the countries participating in the exhibition and the events that take place during its days, as it is the largest cultural and social gathering that includes places to shop for Iraqi, Arab and international goods." He pointed out that "the company is in high coordination with the security authorities to create safe conditions for families roaming the corridors of the exhibition."
It is noteworthy that the Baghdad International Fair also witnessed the establishment of a number of cultural events and seminars within the pavilions of companies and participating countries, and the establishment of fireworks activities and a display of rare cars. LINK
Samson: Iraq and Russia are preparing to sign a cooperation agreement in the field of nuclear energy
5th November, 2022
The Economic Adviser of the Russian Embassy in Iraq, Ilya Lobov, announced on Saturday that Moscow and Baghdad are preparing the necessary steps to sign a memorandum on cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear technologies.
"Preparations are underway to sign a memorandum of understanding on cooperation between the two countries in the field of peaceful use of non-energy nuclear technologies," Lubov said in a statement to the Russian "RT" channel. He pointed out that the two sides are also studying cooperation in the field of education, including in the form of accepting Iraqi students to study in specialized Russian universities.
According to him, the Iraqi side shows traditional interest in Russian nuclear energy, and the two sides resumed the negotiation process to establish a partnership in this field, within the framework of the agreement signed in 1975 on cooperation in the use of atomic energy.
The adviser added: "Rosatom and the Iraqi Agency for the Control of Radioactive Materials are considering the possibility of implementing small projects in the field of low-energy research reactors. The two parties are also studying the possibility of cooperation in the use of nuclear technologies in non-energy fields, such as medicine, agriculture and water desalination.
In early September 2022, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced Moscow's readiness to supply Iraq with radioisotope products, and to assist Baghdad in the field of nuclear medicine.
Director of the Middle East and North Africa Department at the ministry, Alexander Kinchak, said that "the Russian side expressed its readiness to assist Iraqi partners in the peaceful use of nuclear energy and the supply of radioisotope products, as well as training cadres in Russian universities specialized in related fields."
In this context, Kinshak indicated that Russia is also ready to "implement major joint projects," adding: "We proceed from the fact that a return to a practical view in this issue is possible with an increase in the volume of cooperation in this intensive scientific field, and also when updating and revising customer plans. related Iraqis. LINK
Samson: Ankara and Moscow agree to send free Russian grain to African countries
4th November, 2022
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Friday his agreement with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin that Russian grain that is sent under an export agreement through the Black Sea to poor African countries should go free of charge
Erdogan explained, in a speech at the Musiad Expo organized by the Association of Independent Industrialists and Businessmen in Istanbul, that "Putin offered, in his last phone call with him, to send grain for free to needy countries, and he said, "Let's send these grains to countries such as Djibouti, Somalia and Sudan for free." And we agreed on that
Putin said this week that even if Russia withdrew from the deal again, it would replace the entire amount of grain intended for "the poorest countries" from its stockpile, free of charge
Last Saturday, Moscow expressed its readiness to provide 500,000 tons of grain for free to poor countries in the coming months, with the help of Turkey
The Turkish president indicated that he agreed with his Russian counterpart to discuss this issue extensively during the G20 summit, which will be held in Bali, Indonesia, on November 13-14 LINK
Samson: Iraqi oil exports to America decreased to 134 thousand barrels per day during the past week
5th November, 2022
On Saturday, the US Energy Information Administration announced that Iraq's oil exports to the United States of America decreased to 134,000 barrels per day during the past week
The administration said in a report that "the average US imports of crude oil during the past week from eight countries amounted to 5.465 million barrels per day, an increase of 108 thousand barrels per day from the previous week, which amounted to 5.357 million barrels per day
She added that "Iraq's oil exports to America amounted to an average of 134,000 barrels per day last week, lower than the week before, when oil exports to America reached an average of 220,000 barrels per day
She pointed out that "most of America's oil revenues during the past week came from Canada at a rate of 3.410 million barrels per day, followed by Mexico at a rate of 748,000 barrels per day, and oil revenues from Saudi Arabia at a rate of 533,000 barrels per day, and then Colombia at a rate of 218 thousand barrels per day
According to the administration, "the amount of US imports of crude oil from Brazil amounted to an average of 212,000 barrels per day, from Libya at a rate of 129 thousand barrels per day, and from Nigeria at an average of 81 thousand barrels per day, while it did not import any quantity from Ecuador and Russia LINK
Samson: How do Gulf countries use oil wealth to build bridges with countries in the region?
5th November, 2022
The Gulf's oil majors are using the newly acquired fortunes of the Ukraine war to build economic bridges with their poorer neighbours, some of whom the Gulf once viewed as adversaries.
Monarchies are now doubling down on economic cooperation. At the heart of this diplomatic initiative are sovereign wealth funds, which work to secure regional stability through billions of dollars in investments.
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - both of which are reaping huge returns from higher oil prices this year - are at the forefront of these investments, establishing themselves in countries that have faced turmoil in some parts due to economic distress.
The International Monetary Fund said last week that energy exporters in the Middle East, including the Gulf states, are expected to see windfall gains of nearly $1 trillion over the next four years on the back of this year's oil boom.
Money has a huge impact, Michael Madewell, president of the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute in Las Vegas, told CNN, adding that "sovereign wealth funds can be used as tools of foreign policy, as a kind of soft power."
After nearly a decade of conflict-ridden regional politics, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are moving toward a less confrontational approach. These two countries have repaired relations with regional rivals Turkey and Qatar, and both have reached out to Iran. They have also significantly reduced their military activity in Yemen, where they fought the war seven years ago.
Analysts say this is a new approach to ensuring regional stability, primarily by boosting major economies across the Middle East through investments that are closely linked to their financiers. “The current structure certainly evolved from the days when hard power was seen as more effective,” said Ayham Kamel, head of the Middle East and North Africa research team at Eurasia Group.
The de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, announced last week that the Public Investment Fund is establishing five regional companies worth $24 billion across the Middle East. From infrastructure and real estate development to communications and technology, the new investments of the Public Investment Fund are targeting Bahrain, Iraq, Oman, Jordan, Sudan and Egypt.
Some of these countries experienced political turmoil when the “Arab Spring” uprisings of 2011 rocked the region more than a decade ago. Other countries are still caught up in the economic and political chaos that has resulted. “This is part of the soft and sticky power aspect of a strategic and tactical departure from the decade of confrontation and conflict initiated by the Arab Spring,” said Hussein Ibish, a senior resident scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington.
He told CNN that countries that "have projected their power in the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - with the partial exception of Iran - have found themselves stressed and somewhat exhausted after a decade of confrontation."
The Public Investment Fund's announcement came on the second day of the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh. In a statement, the Public Investment Fund said that it is pursuing a "strategy to search for new investment opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa." He added that the investments are also aimed at "diversifying Saudi Arabia's revenue sources."
The past year has been generally good for state-owned investors around the world, according to the 2022 annual Global SWF Report, as the size of the sovereign wealth fund industry expanded by 6% in 2021 and for the first time in history crossed the $10 trillion mark.
Emirati wealth funds in particular are at the forefront of the industry. Global SWF said the Gulf state manages about $1.3 trillion through its four funds.
Egypt was one of the main regional investment destinations for both Abu Dhabi and Riyadh. It witnessed nationwide protests in 2011, which led to the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak's rule. To the dismay of the Gulf states, the events that followed led to the brief emergence of the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist political group viewed with suspicion in Saudi Arabia and the UAE, and now considered a terrorist organization by both sides.
Unrest erupted in Egypt more than a decade ago in part because of the country's economic problems. Today, the Egyptian currency is depreciating again and inflation is rising as the authorities try to keep the economy afloat by securing loans from the International Monetary Fund.
In August, Abu Dhabi Development Holding Company (ADQ), one of the emirate's wealth funds, announced a number of investments in publicly listed companies in Egypt, "based on its long-term commitment to investing in the country's economic growth through its strategic joint investment platform." It's worth $20 billion."
The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia also launched the Saudi Egyptian Investment Company (SEIC) in August, a company dedicated to investments in several vital sectors of the Egyptian economy. SEIC bought stakes worth $1.3 billion in four Egyptian companies.
The financial diplomatic hand of the Gulf states has already proven effective in some countries. Turkey was once a regional competitor, and is now an economic ally of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. “Even with adversaries, Gulf countries now see their financial assets as potentially important levers in building bridges and stimulating more moderate policies in these countries,” Kamel said. "The rapprochement with Turkey has brought valuable investments or financial injections," he added.
In the face of a severe currency crisis at home, repairing relations with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates comes at an opportune time for Ankara.
Last year, the UAE established a $10 billion investment fund to "support the Turkish economy and enhance bilateral cooperation between the two countries." This was followed by a number of other agreements between the UAE's ADQ and the Turkish Wealth Fund (TWF), with significant investments in venture capital and high-growth potential companies planned in Turkey.
In October, Saudi Trade Minister Majid bin Abdullah al-Qasabi said his country's investments in Turkey now amount to $18 billion, according to the Saudi Gazette, adding that the Public Investment Fund is looking forward to more investment opportunities there.
Analysts say that despite improved political relations, Gulf investments in Iran and Syria are currently unlikely. But there are signs of a growing economic relationship with it. The Tehran Times reported that Iran and the UAE are targeting $30 billion in annual trade within the next two years from $20 billion this year. Earlier this year, Syrian TV reported that the UAE was weighing investments in the country, without providing details. But these kinds of economic partnerships may go a long way in helping to protect the Gulf states from future turmoil and conflicts with their neighbors.
Ibish says that “infrastructure integration” can help “reduce the risk of conflict by creating mutual interests and interdependence,” giving countries strong incentives to avoid confrontation.LINK[/size]