Britain tops Mideast investment target

Business Materials 5 October 2007 07:14 (UTC +04:00)

( Gulf ) - Britain, the US and Sweden are the biggest recipients of almost $80 billion of Middle Eastern investment in the first nine months, with Qatar the biggest buyer.

Middle Eastern nations, including Qatar and the UAE, sank or proposed to sink $41.1 billion into Britain-based companies during the nine months to September 30, the data show.

Of all the deals, Qatar's proposed $32.8 billion takeover of British supermarket chain J. Sainsbury Plc is the largest, followed by the Saudi Basic Industries Corp's $11.6 billion purchase of the plastics unit of General Electric Co, the data show.

Dubai's proposed $4.1 billion offer for Stockholm-based Nordic and Baltic stock exchange company OMX puts Sweden in third place. Dubai has since raised its offer to $4.9 billion.

Arab investors also spent or said they would invest about $9.5 billion in Egypt, Malaysia and Germany, the data show.

At $3.84 billion, pending purchase of Britain-based fashion retailer New Look by Dubai-based Landmark Group was the fourth-biggest deal.