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Mon 15 Feb 2010 11:09 PM

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Gulf project finance may hit $30bn in 2010 - BNP

'Potential for $25-$30bn of large to medium sized projects in the pipeline' - BNP head.

Gulf project finance may hit $30bn in 2010 - BNP
POTENTIAL PROJECTS: The Gulf Arab market has the potential for $25 to $30 billion large to medium sized projects according to BNP Paribas. (Getty Images)

The Gulf Arab market for project finance could reach $30 billion in 2010 on improved liquidity and increased lending, a banker at French group BNP Paribassaid on Monday.Speaking to Reuters, Christophe Mariot, head of project finance, BNP Paribas, said: "There is a potential for $25-30 billion of large to medium-sized projects in the pipeline. It could be more if some of the large projects are completed."

He most of that volume would be accounted for by seven or eight projects currently planned, without elaborating.

Mariot added: "I think banks are more cautious on mainstream lending or lending to corporates."

Gulf loan markets were hit by high profile defaults last year and profit at regional banks was burdened by provisions for bad loans.

Mariot said the market was big enough to accommodate banks, leading to little pressure on banks to bid at low prices. (Reuters)

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