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Alternative Market Briefing

MENA region different from typical frontier markets

Thursday, September 05, 2013

amb
Dr. Amin El Kholy
Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York:

In 2008, Arqaam Capital was founded with the intent of serving as a boutique investment bank in frontier and emerging markets with a strong focus on the MENA region. The firm manages seven business lines including custody and treasury; asset management; corporate finance; M&A; equities; fixed income, and derivatives. Dr. Amin El Kholy, Managing Director, Asset Management, at Arqaam discussed how investors are coming to realize the unique opportunities afforded by the MENA region in a recent Opalesque TV interview.

"There is the typical story you expect to find in frontier and emerging markets in terms of the population growth and in terms of moving to more sensible monetary policies, which would lead to economic growth. In the Middle East and North Africa, government finances are very stable and very rich. Already in very large parts of the Gulf you have a developed infrastructure, so you can find more interesting opportunities," El Kholy explains. Because of this, even though the MENA region is considered emerging, it is innately more mature than other cohorts in the category.

"The region we are looking at is internally diversified, so if there are periods of oil spikes that can actually reflect favorably on the economies," he adds.

That diversification is also reflected in countries like Turkey, which are making investmen......................

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