ARGENTINA NEED INVESTMENT: $14 BLN
REUTERS - Domestic and foreign companies likely will invest $14 billion in Argentina this year as firms open their pockets to make good on previously announced investments, the head of the government's investment promotion agency said on Tuesday.
President Mauricio Macri's government struggled to pull in the investment it promised in his first year in office but the head of his Investment and Trade Promotion Agency, Juan Procaccini, said in an interview that 2017 was looking better.
"The first year we had so many things to do in terms of ... becoming again a normal economy," Procaccini said. "Now, we're enjoying the fruits of that effort."
The agency, created shortly after Macri took office in late 2015, is working with companies on an additional $12.5 billion worth of investments in projects that have not yet been announced, he said.
Foreign investors stayed away from Argentina during much of the past decade due to former President Cristina Fernandez's populist policies and many are waiting to see if market friendly reforms Macri has proposed or passed remain in place.
Foreign direct investment (FDI) totaled just $5.7 billion in 2016 - down from $11.8 billion in the previous year - as the economy contracted 2.3 percent. The agency's goal is annual FDI of $20 billion to $25 billion, Procaccini said.
The 2016 dip was due in part to multinational companies repatriating their profits outside of Argentina after Macri lifted capital controls.
Specifically, a plan to boost wind and solar energy capacity in coming years was likely to bring in $13 billion in investment, Procaccini said. There also is potential for $30 billion in mining investments to help Argentina catch up to neighboring Chile, and efforts to cut labor costs will help attract investment in oil and gas.
The agency has identified $58.6 billion in investment announcements since Macri took office, many for projects that would take an average of four to five years, Procaccini said. About three-quarters of the investment expected this year would come from foreign companies.
Macri's diplomacy has helped attract investment from non-traditional sources, Procaccini said, noting that Japanese companies were looking for projects a year after leaders of the two countries had their first bilateral meeting in decades.
"They want to have the political framework aligned between the two countries," he said. "We will have very strong Japanese companies investing in Argentina for probably the first time ever."
Major Japanese trading companies were eyeing lucrative rail contracts.
|May, 21, 11:10:00|
|May, 21, 11:05:00|
|May, 21, 11:00:00|
|May, 21, 10:55:00|
|May, 21, 10:50:00|
|May, 21, 10:45:00|
API - American Petroleum Institute reported that the first four months of this year saw U.S. petroleum demand average 750 thousand barrels a day above the same period in 2017 despite higher prices, a sign of solid economic activity. April also saw the U.S. produce a record 10.5 million barrels per day (MBD) of oil.
IMF - “Egypt’s growth has continued to accelerate during 2017/18, rising to 5.2 percent in the first half of the year from 4.2 percent in 2016/17. The current account deficit has also declined sharply, reflecting the recovery in tourism and strong growth in remittances, while improved investor confidence has continued to support portfolio inflows. In addition, gross international reserves rose to $44 billion by end-April, equal to 7 months of imports.
BAKER HUGHES A GE - U.S. Rig Count is up 1 rig from last week to 1,046, with oil rigs unchanged at 844, gas rigs up 1 to 200, and miscellaneous rigs unchanged at 2. Canada Rig Count is up 4 rigs from last week to 83, with oil rigs up 6 to 38 and gas rigs down 2 to 45.
REUTERS - Brent crude futures LCOc1 were at $79.57 per barrel at 0310 GMT, up 27 cents, or 0.3 percent from their last close. Brent broke through $80 for the first time since November 2014 on Thursday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $71.62 a barrel, up 13 cents, or 0.2 percent, from their last settlement.