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Standard Chartered hosts Global Research Briefing sessions for corporate clients in the UAE

Briefings also held in Bahrain and Qatar

UAE – 24 April, 2013 - Standard Chartered today hosted a Macro-Economic briefing session titled:”Transforming, Rebalancing, and Outperforming” for its corporate clients in Dubai. The Bank will hold another session for its clients in Abu Dhabi on the 28th of April. The bank is holding similar briefings to clients in Bahrain and Qatar. The sessions are held exclusively for Standard Chartered’s clients, with a cohesive programme that provides in-depth insight and analysis on the global, regional, and local economic outlook as well as the financial picture for the year ahead.

Marios Maratheftis, Head of Macro Research, Standard Chartered Bank, and Samiran Chakraborty, Head of Research, India, Standard Chartered Bank - Download Picture

At the sessions, Marios Maratheftis, Head of Macro Research, Standard Chartered Bank, and Samiran Chakraborty, Head of Research, India, Standard Chartered Bank discussed the implications of the transformation that the world is going through, to the business environment in the MENAP region. This transformation is partially driven by the deleveraging of the West and the increasing reliance of Asia on its regional drivers of growth, making the old models of growth obsolete. As China and Asia are looking to rebalance their economies, there are risks, especially when it comes to politics and policy. But the world economy will continue to grow, and growth in 2013 will probably exceed 2012's.

Marios Maratheftis, Global Head of Macroeconomic research, Standard Chartered Bank said:

"The MENA region is changing rapidly. Countries which have financial and physical resources and are backed by governments willing and able to implement spending and investment plans are outperforming in 2013. The UAE and Saudi Arabia are clear leaders in this regard. Others in MENA still have to attract inward investments by reforming existing fiscal, subsidy and legal systems."

Sami Mahfouz, Head of Global Markets and Co- Head of Wholesale Banking Standard Chartered UAE, said:

"In light of economic, political and fiscal uncertainties, it is vital for businesses today to make informed decisions based on information from trusted advisors that have strong global and local understanding of business and economic dynamics. Today’s Briefing session forms an ideal platform for our clients to closely interact with our economists and senior bank representatives to get specific insights into the latest developments affecting their business, and opportunities present in the regional and global markets and outlook on the global and regional economy."

Standard Chartered is one of the leading international banks operating in the Middle East region for over 90 years. The Bank employs more than 3500 employees and out of its regional headquarters in the Dubai International Financial Centre, Standard Chartered manages regional and international conventional and Islamic operations.

Standard Chartered’s research team was ranked the number one firm in the world for economic forecasting by Bloomberg Markets in 2011.

MENA Economic highlights:

  • MENA growth dynamics are diverging. Oil exporters are benefiting from strong oil prices, which will underpin spending plans for 2013. Non-oil exporters face a more challenging fiscal reality this year. Inflation is selectively picking up. Inter-regional fiscal co-operation is growing.
  • Saudi Arabia's strong spending trends show no signs of abating; planned spending is up again in 2013, underpinned by high oil prices and a record surplus for 2012. A mortgage law is likely this year; this is positive in the medium term, though it might drive a near-term housing crunch. Energy efficiency is a policy priority this year.
  • Abu Dhabi is investing in its own economy once again. Dubai's non-oil economy is outperforming, underpinned by regional trade flows and its safe-haven status. Credit growth should begin to improve following more than four years of very tight conditions.
  • In Qatar, projects related to FIFA 2022 are beginning. Inflation may be a concern, especially as spending outlays materialise this year. The LNG sector is back in focus, with policy makers addressing long-term challenges.
  • In Egypt, progress on necessary subsidy reform is slow amid an uncertain political environment and prolonged discussions with the IMF. A balance of payments deficit, falling reserves and a consequently weaker currency heighten the need to secure IMF funding.
- Ends -

For further information please contact:
Ramy Lawand
Senior Regional Manager, Business Communications,
Corporate Affairs MENAP
Standard Chartered Bank
Phone: +971 4 508 2564
Mobile: +971 56 675 9894

Note to Editors:

Standard Chartered – leading the way in Asia, Africa and the Middle East
Standard Chartered is a leading international banking group. It has operated for over 150 years in some of the world's most dynamic markets and earns around 90 per cent of its income and profits in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

This geographic focus and commitment to developing deep relationships with clients and customers has driven the Bank's growth in recent years. Standard Chartered PLC is listed on the London and Hong Kong stock exchanges as well as the Bombay and National Stock Exchanges in India.

With 1,700 offices in 68 markets, the Group offers exciting and challenging international career opportunities to over 89,000 staff. It is committed to building a sustainable business over the long term and upholding high standards of corporate governance, social responsibility, environmental protection and employee diversity. Standard Chartered’s heritage and values are expressed in its brand promise, 'Here for good'.

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