Bahrain's Mumtalakat plans $400M in international investments
Bahrain Financial Harbour skyscrapers in Manama. (Shutterstock)
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Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund, known as Mumtalakat, plans over $400 million this year on international investments in a bid to diversify its economy away from oil, Bloomberg reports.
The change in policy focus comes at a time when Gulf sovereigns are struggling with the impact of lower oil prices. The fund reported a 70 percent drop in profits for 2015, due to an impairment of its stake in Aluminium Bahrain and losses at Gulf Air, according to Mumtalakat's Chief Executive Officer Mahmood Al Kooheji.
“Everybody knows 2015 was a very challenging year, so in that context we had a good performance,” Al Kooheji said. “We achieved profitability for a third year in a row, so we are happy with it. We could have been happier, but it’s a good result given the background.”
More than half of Mumtalakat's investments are in Bahrain, Bloomberg reports, with $335 million invested in industrial, manufacturing, real estate and tourism businesses.
The fund has already announced international investments in Kuwait-based industrial company Gulf Cyro and Spanish aluminum grain refiner Asturiana de Aleaciones, known as Aleastur. Earlier this month the fund announced that it partnered with Regent Properties to buy an interest in a US real estate portfolio.
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