Abu Dhabi fund in talks to invest in Turkish companies after lira’s slump

ADQ, Abu Dhabi’s state investment vehicle, is pledging to spend billions of dollars in Turkey despite a currency crisis that sent the lira to record lows last month.

Abu Dhabi crown prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan visited Ankara in November as part of efforts to repair fraught bilateral relations. ADQ made a $10 billion commitment to invest in local businesses.

The lira’s weakness could provide opportunities, Mohammed Hassan al-Suwaidi, chief executive of ADQ, told the Financial Times in an interview published on Wednesday. It is a great time to buy if you take a long-term view, he said.

The Turkish lira lost 44 percent of its value against the dollar last year and is down almost 4 percent in January. The currency has plummeted after the central bank cut interest rates despite accelerating inflation. Consumer prices climbed by an annual 36.1 percent in December, the most since 2002 and the pace of the increases is expected to accelerate.

ADQ is already in talks with the Turkey Wealth Fund (TWF), chaired by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, on a couple of opportunities, Suwaidi said.

“They have some stranded assets that they can either bring you into, or you could develop a platform from, so we are looking at a few things with them,” he said.

The fund is also very interested in Turkish financial services, Suwaidi said.

During Sheikh Mohammed’s visit, ADQ signed a memorandum of understanding with the TWF, which has stakes in 28 businesses, including state-owned banks, energy, mining and transport companies.

“It (Turkey) is a big powerhouse for industries; (has) great logistics capabilities, so we are definitely interested in logistics; great food businesses there, so definitely interested in that,” Suwaidi said.

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