Posted on October 31, 2013

Ahmad Bin Hamad Al Nuaimi, Chief Executive & General Manager of Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP), was presented the ‘Newsmaker of the Year’ award by Lloyd’s List, the world’s leading daily newspaper for the maritime industry, at its Middle East and Indian Subcontinent Awards 2013 held in Dubai yesterday. Mr. Al Nuaimi received the recognition at a ceremony attended by business leaders in the region’s shipping industry. The government of Qatar owns a 10% stake in APICORP. 

The award recognizes the contribution made to the shipping industry by the Multilateral Development Bank’s APICORP Petroleum Shipping Fund (APSF), a landmark Fund announced in February 2013. APSF is the region’s first fund aimed at a specific vessel category. Lloyd’s List said the Fund “makes a signal contribution to Middle Eastern shipping, and to the global advance of the industry.”

Ahmad Bin Hamad Al Nuaimi said: “I am honored to receive this recognition from Lloyd’s List. APICORP has been working closely with its partners to identify unique opportunities to support the development of MENA’s oil and gas industry. Our Fund is a good example of such an opportunity in the petroleum shipping sector; a sector that is strategically important and necessary to the growth of the region’s hydrocarbon industry.  APICORP worked more than two years to develop this Fund, as we had to identify the appropriate time to launch the Fund and acquire the vessels.”

APSF is a Shariah-compliant Fund that manages a total of $150 million of which 70% is composed of debt and 30% equity.  The Fund acquired five medium range (MR) petroleum product tankers between Q4 2012 and Q1 2013, which have been chartered to Hess Energy Trading Company (Hetco) in the regional and international tanker market for the life of the Fund, 5 years. The Fund is fully underwritten by APICORP and is co-managed by APICORP and Tufton Oceanic Middle East Limited.  The management of the Fund is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), the regulatory authority of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). 

Al Nuaimi further said: “This initiative is the first in a series of similar funds that we are planning to support the development of shipping and other oil and gas sectors in the Arab world. I would like to thank APICORP’s team, which worked on the development of the Fund, Tufton Oceanic, the co-manager of the Fund, as well as Hetco, the charterer of the ships.”

Lloyd’s List said the Fund “provided an important sign that new capital is entering shipping. Traditionally, investment in shipping in the Middle East has come either from a handful of private companies or with state backing, but very rarely via public equity.” 

Qatar Airways flies 3 times weekly to Belgrade, Serbia starting 20th November