In upgrading Orascom Construction Industry (OCI)–Egypt’s largest listed builder and also the country’s biggest producer of nitrogen fertilizers–local investment bank CI Capital noted that the firm’s net EBITDA is largely a function of fertilizer prices, which most analysts expect to rise up to a further 40% in 2010. “We believe OCI’s 2010 fertilizer margins will be supported by a number of factors, including fertilizer price increases, the establishment of strategic alliances with global fertilizer distributors and production capacity growth,” CI’s report stated, while forecasting an increase in earnings for the company from $427.8m in 2009 to $668.9m in the coming year.

Sticking with OCI, last month Citigroup name the company as one of its twelve “long-term” emerging market plays. “The construction company enjoys many long-term qualifications. Its construction division dominates approximately 2.5% of total developments under construction in the GCC region. The division also grows at an annual rate of 25%,” the bank reported.