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Issue 26 March / April 2014

Letter from the editorial director

Dear Reader, The work of the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment and Export Credit (ICIEC), the standalone export credit and investment risk insurance agency of the Islamic Development Group, has changed the face of business in its 56 member countries. And this year, as it celebrates 20 years of outstanding success, ICIEC has designed a new strategy focusing ... Read More »

Bid to maintain banking stability

The Basel Committee believes that a simple, non-risk based ‘backstop’ measure will restrict the build-up of excessive leverage in the banking sector to avoid destabilising An underlying cause of the global financial crisis was the build-up of excessive on-and-off- balance-sheet leverage in the banking system, according to the Basel Committee. It said that “in many cases banks built up excessive ... Read More »

Collections: accolade for NBAD

The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has been ranked the “Best Bank for Payments and Collections” in the Middle East by Global Finance, the international financial magazine. To rank Best Treasury and Cash Management Banks and Providers 2014, Global Finance used a multi-tiered assessment process, which included a readers’ poll, input from industry analysts, corporate executives, technology experts and ... Read More »

Trade: MENA needs a shake-up

When it comes to international business, MENA is punching below its weight. MELANIE LOVATT looks at why that is and what could be done to correct the position MENA countries have furthered their integration into the global trade system over the past decade, but they still have considerable work to do to improve their position. Of course, crude oil is ... Read More »

Unique ‘cash margin’ structure turns deal

The Indian steel and manufacturing company Jindal Saw received an order worth $168m from Iraq, with another potential order of $150m provided the quality of goods supplied under the first contract was of an acceptable standard. However, Jindal Saw’s senior management was not keen to supply material to Iraq without assurance on the payment, due to limited control after supplying ... Read More »

New aims for the future: ICIEC powers forward

This year, as it celebrates two decades of outstanding success, ICIEC has designed a new strategy focusing more on investment insurance and project finance. But, at the same time, it will naturally continue to underwrite its export credit insurance business, which it sees as an essential part of its mandate to support the exports of its member countries The Islamic ... Read More »

Investment: eyes swivel towards the UK and the EU

There are signs that the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Islamic finance institutions are increasingly looking to the UK in particular and the eurozone to a lesser extent to increase and diversify their trade finance, real estate and other investment portfolios. MUSHTAK PARKER takes up the story London is already one of the world’s largest domiciles for Murabaha business mainly through ... Read More »

Mysteries of trade finance unravelled

A book entitled Financing Trade and International Supply Chains by Cash&Trade contributor Alexander R. Malaket is said to take the mystery and complexity out of trade finance. The book suggests that every trade or supply chain finance solution – no matter how elaborate – addresses some combination of four elements: facilitation of secure and timely payment, effective mitigation of risk, ... Read More »

How different the future could be…

In a question-and-answer response to Cash&Trade, the World Bank urged MENA to consider the benefits of trade reform C&T: What reforms do you think need to be made across MENA to better facilitate trade? WB: The region’s share in total world exports of non-oil goods has remained flat at around two to three per cent for more than 30 years. ... Read More »

Finding the cutting edge…

Banking nowadays is more about how innovative the funding structure can be, rather than the proverbial ‘offering the best service’. This is the view of a leading Gulf investment house, which explains its rationale to PAUL MELLY As global economic recovery takes hold, the Gulf’s major companies are gearing up to seize fresh opportunities – but it is vital to ... Read More »

Brand of the future

Caroline Maginn looks at one of the growing number of companies in the KSA that is transforming itself into an international powerhouse The new corporate powerhouses in MENA started to announce further progress last year and it is a very exciting time to be a progressive corporate in the KSA, pro-active in the commercial equivalent of London’s financial Big Bang ... Read More »

Bank Payment Obligation: it’s still early days

The BPO is an electronic trade finance payment assurance and risk mitigation tool created by banks to add value for corporate customers in a world where open account trade is growing, while growth in trade using bank partners and traditional letters of credit has remained stagnant. Here, a global survey reveals its uptake and other banking strategies In a 2012 ... Read More »

Cash management: innovation is vital

Fifty-five per cent of clients that took part in a recent cash management survey by Barclays consider innovation vital in achieving treasury/cash management goals and the number will only rise as banks invest in more advanced technology. It was found that global organisations with a turnover above $1bn+ were increasingly focusing on cash and treasury management to support business growth ... Read More »

Riyad Bank showcases its corporate offerings

Riyad Bank recently held three seminars in Riyadh, Jeddah and Al-Khobar under the title “Trade and Cash Solutions for Corporate Customers”. They were organised by the bank’s corporate banking division and were well attended by a large group of the bank’s corporate clients in all three regions. Opening remarks were made by Ossama A. Bukhari, executive vice-president – corporate banking ... Read More »