IBBC joins World Free Zones (FZO) as observer partner

The Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) is delighted to announce a new partnership as observers with FZO, the international association of World Free Zones.

World Free Zones Organization (World FZO) is the strongest, most active free-zone organization in the world. IBBC and its members can access strategic objectives, make connections that matter, and engage with the industry’s most powerful insights, resources and tools.

Samira Samez membership engagement manager, explains that FZO HQ is in Dubai, with over 2000 FZO members globally, in Middle East ( Esp GCC) , India, China, North and South America, Africa, Europe and Central Asia they represent the leading association in their field.

IBBC members can access their knowledge platform, Consulting capabilities on Government, Marketing and business models, as well as reports from the library on setting up Free Zones, Guidance, and benefits to economic growth. Finally, the FZO hold an annual conference, set for Jamaica in 2021. Currently FZO are not in Iraq, but hope to establish as some stage, to support economic growth and business diversity.

Dr Samir Hamrouni.Ceo of FZO said:

“As the single global voice of free zones around the globe, we are proud to count amongst our membership over 640 entities in 130 countries. We are delighted to welcome the Iraq Britain Business Council as our latest member and look forward to working with them to further develop the Iraqi free zones and grow trade across Iraq and the rest of the world.”

Christophe Michels, MD, IBBC said:

“IBBC and FZO together are able to provide mutually supportive business opportunities for our members around the world and for FZO members to consider Iraq as an investment opportunity’

For more information please contact london@webuildiraq.org

(Source: IBBC)

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A 29 MW gas-fuelled power plant supplied by the technology group Wärtsilä to the Umm Qasr Ports Authority Zone in Basra, Iraq, commenced commercial operations in February. The plant ensures availability of a reliable supply of electricity to the port’s operations, which had previously been subject to frequent power interruptions.

The Wärtsilä plant was ordered in October 2018 by Lebanon-based Butec, the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) provider for the project. Butec was contracted by Prime Metro Power Holdings (PMPH), the company having a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the General Company for the Ports of Iraq, an Iraqi Ministry of Transport entity.

Wärtsilä delivered the plant on a fast-track basis, and the project was completed in an exceptionally short period of time, despite delays caused by the ongoing political situation in the country.

Guillaume Lucci, President and COO of PMPH, said:

We have been able to leverage the local natural gas resources to develop a first class, state-of-the-art power plant facility that adds a vital power generation infrastructure and services to the state of Iraq. The completion of this project in less than one year is a significant milestone in our strategy to quickly develop the needed power infrastructure.

“We are pleased to have worked with Wärtsilä on this project, and we are certain that the quality and performance of the engine will be an asset over the lifecycle of the plant.

Alexandre Eykerman, Energy Business Director, Middle East, Wärtsilä Energy Business, said:

“The fast-starting, flexible operation of the Wärtsilä engines was a decisive consideration in the award of this contract. The plant can run fewer engines when less power is demanded and start the additional engines only when and as needed. This provides a cost-effective, efficient, and highly reliable solution that will greatly enhance the port’s operations.”

The Umm Qasr plant operates on three Wärtsilä 34SG gas engines, which deliver reliable baseload power on a 24/7 basis. Wärtsilä has also signed a maintenance agreement, the scope of which includes field service, and engine maintenance planning based on remote monitoring and asset diagnostics. For this, the plant is already connected to the Wärtsilä Digital Expertise Centre located in Dubai.

In addition to providing cost predictability, the agreement ensures the safety, reliability, and efficiency of the plant’s operations. Wärtsilä will have technical advisors stationed on site for mutually agreed periods of time to supervise the plant’s performance.

This is the first phase of an overall power supply project that will be expanded to increase the availability of electricity throughout the region. It represents Wärtsilä’s first gas-fired power plant in Iraq.

(Source: Wärtsilä)

Advertising Feature

Rabee Securities Iraq Stock Exchange (ISX) market report (week ending: 6th February 2020).

Please click here to download a table of listed companies and their associated ticker codes.

The RSISX index ended the week at IQD612 (-2.5%) / $652 (-2.5%) (weekly change) (-7.0% and -7.0% YTD change, respectively). The number of week traded shares was 4.0 bn and the weekly trading volume was IQD4.0 bn ($3.3 mn).

ISX Company Announcements

  • The Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) / Erbil branch organized a course (International Financial Reporting Standards relating to the banking sector) on Feb 2, 2020. Several private and government bank employees from Baghdad and Kurdistan Region participated in the course, within the series of courses organized by the Center for Banking Studies in the Central Bank of Iraq. (CBI)
  • Within the efforts of the CBI in maintaining the stability of the economic process, the Governor of the CBI Mr. Ali Mohsen Ismail initiated a meeting with the Chairman of the Securities Commission and the Executive Director of the Iraq Stock Exchange and the Executive Director of the Iraqi Private Banks League, to discuss the mechanism for increasing the return on bank shares and improving the circulation of those shares, as well as increased transparency of banks to disclose performance and other recommendations. (CBI)
  • Asiacell (TASC) has reportedly been ranked as the best telecom company in Iraq for 2019 at the International Finance Award ceremony in Dubai. According to a press release on PR Newswire, the award was made for the company’s network quality and the development of its infrastructure. (Iraq Business News)
  • Al Nibal Al Arabya for Money Transfer (MTNI) will hold an AGM on Feb. 25, 2020 to discuss and approve 2018 annual financial statements. The company has been suspended since Sep. 4, 2019 by an ISC decision.
  • AL-Badia for General Trans (SBAG) will hold an AGM on Feb. 19, 2020 to discuss and approve 2015 and 2016 annual financial statements. The company has been suspended from trading since Jul. 6, 2017 by an ISC decision.
  • ISX will suspend trading of Al-Qabedh Islamic Bank for Finance & Investment (BQAB) starting Feb. 13, 2020 due to the AGM that will be held on Feb. 18, 2020 to discuss and approve the financial statements.
  • Iraqi Middle East Investment Bank (BIME) will resume trading on Feb. 9, 2020 after discussing and approving 2017 and 2018 annual financial statements.
  • ISX suspended trading of Credit Bank of Iraq (BROI) starting Feb. 3, 2020 due to the GA that will be held on Feb. 6, 2020 to discuss electing 9 original and alternative board members.

Genel Energy has announced the appointment of David McManus as Chairman with immediate effect.

Sir Michael Fallon (pictured) has been appointed as senior independent Non-Executive Director, and Tolga Bilgin and Hassan Gozal have also been appointed to the Board as Non-Executive Directors.

David McManus has more than 40 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, having held various executive roles at Pioneer Natural Resources, BG Group, ARCO, Ultramar, and Shell. He is currently serving as a Non-Executive Director at Hess Corporation, a large, integrated US oil and gas company; FlexLNG, a Norwegian listed LNG shipping company; and Costain Group PLC, one of the UK’s leading smart infrastructure solutions companies. Previous directorships include Rockhopper Exploration plc and Northern Drilling Limited.

Sir Michael Fallon has 30 years of senior political and business experience, serving in four British Cabinets, and as Non-Executive Director on City and commercial boards. He was MP for Sevenoaks from 1997 to 2019, serving as Energy Minister responsible for the oil and gas sector from 2013 to 2014 and as Secretary of State for Defence from 2014 to 2017.

Sir Michael will act as Senior Independent Director, Deputy Chairman and Chairman of the International Relations Committee. George Rose is remaining at Genel as an independent Non-Executive Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee.

Tolga Bilgin has been CEO of Bilgin Energy Holding, and its subsidiaries, since 2014. Bilgin Energy Holding is a pioneer and a leading Turkish energy firm, that owns, operates and sells electricity from wind, natural gas, and hydroelectric projects, and is a major shareholder of Genel.

Hassan Gozal is Chairman of Daax Corporation, a Dubai based company with investments in a wide range of sectors, notably energy and oil, oil and gas trading, construction, and property development with significant Middle Eastern experience, including the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Daax Corporation is a major shareholder of Genel.

As a temporary result of these appointments, the majority of the Board (excluding the Chairman) is not independent. It is the intention of the Board to appoint one further independent Director to return to an equal balance of independent versus non-independent Directors as soon as reasonably practicable.

George Rose, Non-Executive Director of Genel, said:

“I am delighted to welcome David to the Board. He has vast experience which will help guide the Company through the next phase in our development, as we build our operating capability and seek material growth. The appointments today bring significant industry and international expertise, with experience of operating, investing, and delivering major projects in the region.”

David McManus, Chairman of Genel, said:

“Genel has built a portfolio with a compelling mix of cash-generation and funded growth options. I look forward to working with the Board as the Company continues to deliver on its strategy, enters an exciting new chapter, and strives to take advantage of the significant opportunities ahead.”

(Source: Genel Energy)

By John Lee.

Asiacell has reportedly been ranked as the best telecom company in Iraq for 2019 at the International Finance Award ceremony in Dubai.

According to a press release on PR Newswire, the award was made for the company’s network quality and the development of its infrastructure.

(Source: PR Newswire)