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#MiddleEast, #Geoeconomics: China and Bahrain join forces to create $1 billion fund

The launch of the new fund will promote cross-border cooperation and investment between Gulf Cooperation Council and China. Trade and economic relations between the Middle East and China are growing stronger. In November 2023, the Central Bank of Saudi Arabia (SAMA) and the People's Bank of China (PBOC) signed a local currency swap agreement worth $6.93 billion



China's interest in the Middle East is growing: its sovereign wealth fund has joined forces with Bahrain's Investcorp to create a $1 billion investment fund.


According to the official press release, the newly formed Investcorp Golden Horizon Fund will seek to support business development in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region, and China.

The fund is supported by major GCC institutional and private investors and the China Investment Corporation.



The press release revealed that target companies should demonstrate high growth potential in sectors such as consumption, healthcare, logistics and business services.


Qi Bin, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer of China Investment Corporation, said, "In recent years, we have established a number of bilateral funds with major financial institutions with the aim of promoting industrial cooperation between China and major world economies. We are currently working closely with Investcorp to establish a similar bilateral fund to deepen financial and industrial ties between China and the GCC countries."


"Underlying Investcorp's efforts are the stable regulatory environment and GCC trade policies have made the region increasingly attractive to institutional investors. This attractiveness is accelerating, mainly due to the GCC countries' economic diversification strategies and privatization mandates." added Qi Bin.


"As one of the world's largest sovereign wealth funds, this commitment from CIC is a great demonstration of Investcorp's franchise excellence in the GCC region and further reinforces confidence in the company's global platform and team." said Mohammed Al-Ardhi, Executive Chairman of Investcorp, who added, "We look forward to further solidifying this relationship and deepening our partnership in the future."


Hazem Ben-Gacem, Co-CEO of Investcorp, also said that the launch of the new fund will boost cross-border cooperation and investment between the GCC and China, opening up wider scope for cooperation and development opportunities for both sides.


Trade and economic relations between the Middle East and China are growing stronger. In 2023, Chinese exports to Saudi Arabia amounted to $42.86 billion and exports to the United Arab Emirates amounted to an impressive $55.68 billion. In the same year, Chinese imports from Saudi Arabia amounted to $64.36 billion.


In November 2023, the Central Bank of Saudi Arabia (SAMA) and the People's Bank of China (PBOC) signed a local currency swap agreement worth $6.93 billion.

In a statement, SAMA stressed that the three-year agreement is part of the deepening financial cooperation between the two countries' central banks, marking a new step forward in financial cooperation between the two countries.





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