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|| Qatari Diar acquired 5% stake in Veolia Environnement for $874 million

diar-french.jpgQatari Diar, the qatar-based investment fund, said that it will buy 5% stake in French utility giant Veolia Environnement for around $874 million.

The deal will lead to common projects in the infrastructure and public services sector in the Middle East and North Africa and could be extended to other countries in which the Qatari fund has a presence, Veolia said.

Qatari Diar is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code BFD107.

More details from their release follows

Veolia Environnement and the Qatari Diar fund today announced the signature of an agreement aiming at setting up a long-term strategic partnership, including the acquisition by Qatari Diar of a 5% stake in Veolia Environnement's capital with full voting rights.

The acquisition of this stake in Veolia Environnement's capital reflects the two groups' mutual ambition to work together on infrastructure and utilities projects in the Middle East and North Africa. In the longer term, the partnership could also be extended to those countries in which the Qatari Diar fund has developed its presence.

In addition, this agreement stipulates that the company Qatari Diar will be appointed to Veolia Environnement's board, subject to approval by Veolia Environnement's Annual Shareholders Meeting on 7th May, 2010.

Qatari Diar has indicated to Veolia Environnement that it will hold its stake and its voting rights for three years.

Antoine Frérot, Chief Executive Officer of Veolia Environnement:

We are very happy to welcome Qatari Diar, both as a shareholder and also as a long-term partner. Today's agreement is an expression of the Fund's confidence in Veolia Environnement's strategy of sustainable growth, as well as in our capacity to accompany the Fund as it develops its presence in a region which is a priority for our group. Today's agreement comes in the wake of our initial agreement with the Emirati Mubadala Fund in the water sector, which enabled the group to win a number of new contracts, and will strengthen Veolia Environnement's position in a strategic area which continues to offer important growth opportunities, notably in obtaining public service contracts.

Eng. Mohammed bin Ali Al Hedfa, Group CEO of Qatari Diar:

We are pleased to become a long-term industrial partner and shareholder of Veolia Environnement. We intend to fully involve Veolia Environnement in the development of our projects in the Middle East, Europe and Africa where Qatari Diar already enjoys a significant presence, our objective being to leverage Veolia Environnement's well established expertise in public services and sustainable development.

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