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Saudi Arabia and UAE compete to complete major deal in Egypt

The Saudi Public Investment Fund is close to acquiring The United Bank at an estimated cost of $600 million after due diligence, according to people familiar with the matter.

The source added that the deal is expected to be completed before the end of this month, after the Saudi Arabian offer became more acceptable to the UAE sovereign fund offer.

Last May, the Saudi Arabian Sovereign Investment Fund expressed a desire to acquire United Bank, which is wholly owned by the central bank, before it was ousted by the UAE government’s sovereign wealth fund (ADQ) holding company. and started the due diligence process with the approval of the Central Bank.

And the former head of the Central Bank, Tariq Amer, announced in March 2016 the start of procedures to prepare The United Bank for sale to a strategic investor, and at that time an American fund specializing in small and medium-sized enterprises applied to buy the bank in 2019, but the process was due due to the fact that it coincided with the spread of the Corona virus pandemic.

The United Bank was created in 2006 by merging a number of small state-owned banks that were on the verge of bankruptcy at that time.

Egypt seeks to increase its foreign exchange reserves and dollar liquidity by withdrawing from a number of sectors of the economy, in line with what was stated in the Public Ownership Policy document, which increases the provision of dollar reserves to meet the needs of the local market and stability. Exchange rate.

Gulf investors have expressed a desire to buy shares in the National Natural Water Bottling Company, Safi and the National Oil Production and Distribution Company, which are owned by the armed forces.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, through the State Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, intends to invest $10 billion in a group of Egyptian sectors, as it has established a company to separately manage its investments in Egypt, and a number of Saudi companies have signed investment agreements. $7.7 billion in Egypt, and also made several acquisitions of shares in companies listed on the Egyptian Stock Exchange.

The UAE Sovereign Wealth Fund is seeking to acquire a number of listed companies after it seized ownership of about 5 companies listed on the Egyptian Stock Exchange in exchange for the exit of state-owned companies.

Source: Cairo 24

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