Investment and Trade in Time of Pandemic

2021-06-05 - 10:35 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): Are there crisis opportunists investing in Bahraini lives? Is there a greedy businessman investing in the Indian mutated virus?

Through the following, one can notice that most of the hotels specified to be a quarantine center for travelers coming from countries who have the Indian mutated virus are owned by the Indian national, Varghese Kurian, and that most of the private hospitals that provide Coronavirus services and tests are owned by Kurian and his partners.

Varghese is not alone in this game, as the group ruling the country is wealthy and full of traders.

The Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Sri Lankan and Nepalese workers, who want to reach their workplaces in the Gulf countries that have decided to close their air for any flights from these countries now known as (Indian mutated virus) countries, amount to millions of people. Thus, some "opportunists" like Varghese and his senior partners considered the situation an opportunity for investment.

The ticket to Bahrain costs 300 BD, let alone the cost of the PCR test at the airport and the 2-week quarantine period in one of the hotels they own.

If one of the arrivals tested positive for Coronavirus, he would be transferred to be treated at the state's expense. Then, it is a profit-guaranteed project for them.

Varghese Kurian is the largest Indian investor in the country. He arrived in Bahrain in 1986 and he is now the chairman of VKL Holding, which owns Al-Namal group and 15 other companies in Bahrain, India and Saudi Arabia.

After King Hamad assumed power, Varghese started establishing his business empire with VK Universal Real Estate Management, which expanded investments in various regions such as Juffair, Saif, Al-Hidd, Al-Houra, Amwaj, Al-Busaiteen, Seqaya, Ras Zuwayed, Rifaa and A'ali.

His companies have accomplished about 200 projects in Bahrain, India, Suadi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar in various residential, commercial and investment fields. His group (VK Holding) has investments in well-known business complexes.

He also started investing in the health sector and he owns one of the largest hospitals in Manama, made up of 85 beds, and the largest private health center in Al-Hidd as well as the largest hospital in Muharraq, made up of 50 beds. He has a share in almost every Indian hospital in Bahrain. Varghese is the biggest owner of hospitals in the Middle East.

Varghese expanded his investments in education; he owns the New Horizon School and is building a school in Al-Rifaa. In 2013, he was waiting for his official approval to establish and build a private university in Bahrain, however, it is unknown whether he obtained it or not.

Many believe that he has shares in the private Al-Hilal Hospital, which has several branches and is owned by former MP Abdulnabi Al-Sheala.

In the tourism and recreation sector, Varghese Group owns a 4-star hotel chain and hotel apartments, as well as a new five-star hotel in Al-Hidd, with a conference hall for 3,000 people. 

Varghese signed a 15-year agreement with Tatweer Company to develop and manage Hawar Resort.

Varghese Kurian started as an arm of Khalifa bin Salman, but he was aware that everything would change. Thus, after the Crown Prince became the first deputy prime minister, he accompanied him on his visits to India more than once.

After this long explanation, you can understand the whole scene in the airport, hotels and even the private hospitals. Varghese and his partners have gained immensely from this pandemic.

These are the facts and information. Many people have dealt with the pandemic in terms of profit and loss.

One last question for riddle solvers: Who is the senior official in the Ministry of Health who has shares with Varghese in a number of hospitals? 

Arabic Version