Latest articles from James King

Saudi Arabia's banks braced for a slowdown

April 1, 2016

Well capitalised with low non-performing loan ratios and strategically diverse business lines, Saudi Arabia's banks have weathered the country's economic slowdown well. Now, with the economic backdrop unlikely to change in their favour, these lenders are looking at ways to remain profitable in the long term.

Kuwait maintains its long term vision for growt

Kuwait maintains its long-term vision for growth

April 1, 2016

Kuwait's economy has come under pressure in the past year, mainly due to falling oil prices. But, with the help of healthy sovereign reserves, the country has weathered the difficulties well, and the government remains committed to its long-term development plan. 

Meshaal Jaber Al Ahmad Al Sabah

KDIPA chief looks to foreign investment boost for Kuwait

April 1, 2016

The director-general of the Kuwait Direct Investment Promotion Agency tells James King how the country's opening up to foreign investment and the liberalisation of its economy is helping to alleviate the impact of the oil price crash.

A cautious optimism

A cautious optimism: Kuwait's banks stay ahead of the game

April 1, 2016

There is a positive mood in Kuwait's banking sector, thanks in no small part to the government's healthy balance sheet and its commitment to project spending. However, the low oil price environment and cooling real estate market loom large on the horizon.

Sukuk moves add to mood of optimism for Kuwaiti Islamic finance

April 1, 2016

Kuwait boasts one of the most respected Islamic finance markets in the world. But ever keen to move with the times, the country is establishing a capital markets authority law designed to develop the domestic sukuk market, one of many recent boosts the industry has received.

Abdulaziz Saleh Al-Furaih

SAMA vice-governor continues on path of stability

April 1, 2016

The vice-governor of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency, Abdulaziz Saleh Al-Furaih, is happy for the central bank to maintain low interest rates and a consistent policy on the riyal. He tells James King of his plans for SMEs, the low oil price environment and what the future holds for the country's banking sector.

Dr Ahmad Mohamed Ali Al Madani

A risk shared: why Islamic finance is a safer option

April 1, 2016

Islamic finance's approach to risk sharing makes it less speculative and more disciplined than its conventional counterpart. However, says Dr Ahmad Mohamed Ali Al Madani, the president of the Islamic Development Bank, if the industry is to reach its full potential, more collaboration and innovation is needed.

GET-EcobankMEAMandAteaser

Middle East and Africa banks retain M&A allure

March 1, 2016

The high levels of merger and acquisition activity seen in the Middle East and Africa banking sector – from both overseas names and domestic companies – shows that the economic and political turbulence much of the region has experienced in recent years has not dampened investors' appetites.

BLM-Lagos_fin_district

Nigeria's banks rethink African expansion plans

March 1, 2016

Economic problems at home and lower profits elsewhere in Africa mean Nigerian banks are having to revisit their strategies for growth across the continent, but what will be the consequences for the countries that they are winding down in or even exiting from?

Abdul_Aziz_Al_Ghurair

UAE Banks Federation chief looks to mobile payments, SMEs and Islamic finance

March 1, 2016

The United Arab Emirates Banks Federation is embarking on a range of measures to tackle the country’s slowing economy, including improving mobile banking payment services, bolstering the assistance provided to SMEs, and developing a more consistent approach to applying sharia law to finance. Its chairman speaks to James King.

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