MENA - Mark Mobius is "cautiously" looking to buy oversold quality companies in the Middle East and North Africa, despite increasing volatility in the region.
Templeton Asset Management's chairman is focusing on companies with a competitive advantage, that are leaders in their space.
"We are interested in companies that are domestic, regional and/or international leaders, that focus on the core advantage of the countries in which they operate and/or those that are likely to benefit from increased budget spending and economic activity," Mobius says.
"North African and Levant countries are likely to see increased pressures on their current accounts and budgets in the short term, and consequently slower economic growth.
"However, the picture could probably change in the medium to long term if governments implement the right policies."
Mobius says over the longer term, foreign direct investment from wealthy Gulf countries could potentially spill over into the North African countries, which offer several production and operational advantages as well as a wide consumer base and a cheaper labour force.
Meanwhile he says there could be protests emerging from Saudi Arabia over the coming weeks and months, although it is "very unlikely" there will be a Libyan-style uprising.
The MENA region grew around 3.9% in 2010, according to the International Monetary Fund.
Mobius says growth rates varied widely within the region, however, with Tunisia and Egypt posting growth of around 3.8% and 5.3% respectively, while Qatar recorded growth of around 16% for the year.
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Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell has lost the appeal against his section 72 conviction and sentence for failing to hand over information to The Pensions Regulator (TPR).
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