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DUBAI: Gulf bourses rose on Wednesday, with Abu Dhabi’s main index touching a record high and Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index hitting its highest in 16 years, tracking global positive sentiment.

World stocks crept higher for the second day in a row, and safe-haven assets such as government bonds and gold lost ground, despite Western scepticism over Russian claims of a troop pullback from Ukraine’s borders.

While immediate war fears waned - Russia published video that it said showed tanks and military vehicles leaving annexed Crimea - tensions remain high.

In Abu Dhabi, the index advanced 0.7% to a record high of 9,202.

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index closed up 1.2% at its highest since July 2006.

“The Saudi stock market recorded an increase today supported by the strong oil prices and the IPO of Elm. New listings continue to attract new capital and boost liquidity on the market,” said Eman AlAyyaf, CEO of EA Trading.

Zain Saudi shares rose 3.6%, after the telecommunications company on Tuesday approved final offers to buy stakes in Zain KSA’s Towers Infrastructure.

Shares of Saudi Arabian digital security firm Elm surged 30%, the maximum daily price fluctuation limits set for the first three trading days, to 166.4 riyals per share in their stock market debut.

Dubai’s main share index rose 1.4%, marking its best day since Dec 6.

Shares of National Central Cooling Company PJSC (Tabreed) were nearly flat after rising through the day.

Its Chief Executive Officer Khalid Abdulla Al Marzooqi said in an interview with Al Arabiya TV that the company was considering an acquisition in Oman and expanding into Egyptian and other Gulf markets.

Emaar Properties rose 3% in its biggest intraday percentage gain since Nov. 29.

The Qatari index ended 0.3% higher, driven by Qatar Fuel and Ooredoo.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s blue-chip index ended flat.

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