The Arabs Enhance and Strengthen Their Presence in the Field of Tourism and Travel

Tunisia was ranked second in the Arab world after the UAE on the international list of competition indicator dedicated for tourism and travel. According to the report issued by the World Economic Forum, the UAE was ranked the 18th world wide. The importance of the report, which covers 2006, lies in the fact that it measures the factors which encourage on developing travel and tourism industry in the world, and underlines the importance of the procedural and legislative environment that support tourism sector, a specially with regard to mean of transportation, infrastructure, and new services according to international criteria capable of competition.
Analysts at the World Economic Forum considered the poorest countries enjoy potentials which qualify them to be leading powers in the world of tourism, and compete with the industrialized countries in the field of this prosperous industry worldwide.
The indicator of travel and tourism competence has covered 124 countries, ten of them were Arab countries, on the top of which came the UAE, followed consecutively by: Tunisia, ranked 34, Qatar .36, Jordan 46, Bahrain 47, Morocco 57, Egypt 58, Kuwait 67, Mauritanian 92, and Algeria 93.

Japan Takes Part in the Peace Process in Palestine through the Economic Gate

“ Peace and Prosperity Corridor”, is the name of the initiative launched officially by Japan last March.
Japan worked on activating this initiative through launching economic projects a few days ago, joining through this initiative the international and regional efforts aiming at achieving peace and putting an end to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, but it preferred to concentrate its participation on the field which it proved great ability and superiority, i.e. economy.
In this respect, Jericho city has been chosen to build a big industrial and agricultural complex within the context of holding a number of projects which stem from the initiative, and which enable the Palestinian exports to flow abroad easily via Jordan, which would reflect positively on the life and economy of the Palestinian people.

Syrian-Iranian Talks on Establishing a Free Trade Zone Between the Two Countries

The Syrian and Iranian sides have discussed means of developing and increasing the volume of trade and economic exchange between the two countries. The meeting between Damascus Chamber of Commerce and a delegation of Iranian businessmen centered on holding exhibitions of Syrian products in the Iranian cities, as well as establishing a free trade zone between the two countries. It is worth mentioning that the volume of trade exchange between the two countries reached last year 4.6 billion Syrian pounds. The volume of Iranian investments in Syria has reached 1 billion US dollar, the most prominent of which is building the first factory for assembling cars to produce “Sham” car.

Iraq Intends to Export Kirkuk Oil to Jordan Soon

Iraqi Minister of Finance said that the Iraqi government has renewed its commitment to supply Jordan with about 30.000 barrels of oil daily with preferential prices that are more less than 18 dollars of world prices.

“Korek Telecom” company Holds Talks to Buy the Assets of “Iraqna” company for Telecommunications

An official at “Korek Telecom” company has revealed that talks are being held between “Korek” company and “Iraqna” company for telecommunications to buy a towers and prosperities of “Iraqna” company, with the aim of covering all regions in Iraq, following the win of “Korek” company of a license of mobile phones in Iraq.

The Egyptian “Citadel Capital” Builds an Oil Refinery

The Egyptian “Citadel Capital” announced yesterday that intends to build an oil refinery with a total cost of $2.4 bn, and with a production capacity of 5 million tons of refinery products annually.

Iran Seeks to Play an Active Role in World Economy

Chairman of the Iranian Chamber of Commerce, Mohammad Nahawandian underlined yesterday the importance of forming and executive strategy for dealing between the Iranian economy and the world economy, he called members of chambers of commerce in Iran to be ready to play an active part in the international economic arena.

A Coalition of International Companies Executes the Project of Building Tripoli New Airport

Director of the Project of Tripoli New Airport said that the project, which is total value is estimated by 1 billion and 700 million dinars, will be executed by a coalition of companies comprising: The Brazilian “Odebrecht”, the Turkish “Tepe-Akfen-Vie (TAV)”, the Lebanase “CCC”, the French “Vinci”, the German “Astra”, and the Japanese “Tyse”, under the supervision and a designing of the French “ABBA” Bureau.

A-43% - Increase of the Profits of the Tunisian Housing Bank During the Fist Half of This year

The Tunisian Governmental Housing Company said yesterday that its net profits have jumped to 43% in the first half of this year, reaching $14.6 m, due to the increase of dealings profits. Moreover the revenues of the bank have increased to 78.78 million dinars during the first half of this year with an increase of 18.4%.

Kuwait Establishes Two Joint-Stock Corporations with a Capital of 2 Million Dinars

The official Kuwait Today newspaper said that two Kuwaiti Joint-Stock Corporations have been established with a total capital of two million dinars.

The Increase of Demand on Gold in Bahrain and the UAE

A newly-issued report by World Gold Council said that the total volume of demand on gold in Bahrain has reached 12 tons during the second quarter of this year, with an increase of 15% in terms of weight, compared to the same period of last year, adding that demand on gold in the UAE has increased by 15% during the second quarter of 2007 compared to the same period of last year.

A Giant Austrian-European Consortium Builds the Turkish “Alisso” Dam

Following extensive talks, the Giant Andrets Company for Engineering has signed an agreement with the Turkish government for the construction of the Turkish “Aliso Dam” for producing electrical energy.
The company, which is considered an Austrian-European consortium, said that the total cost of the Turkish project is estimated by 1.2 billion Euro.

Small Indexes

- Electricity production in Jordan has increased by 22.5%, contributing in the total production of the industrial sector by 0.06%.
- The Canadian Minister of General Security said that 100.000 Canadian dollars have been allocated to combat crimes committed via the internet.
- An official Jordanian source said that the meeting of the joint Syrian-Jordanian Trade Committee will be held at the end of this month with the aim of promoting and enhancing the economic cooperation between the two countries.

Companies Indexes

- The seasonal profits of Wal Mart series of markets, the biggest series of markets in the world, have increased compared to the same period of last year, reaching $3.1 bn, or 76 cents per share from $2.08 bn, i.e. 50 cents per share a year ago.
- “Chinguitel” company for mobile phones in Mauritania has announced that it would start to offer its services beginning from next Thursday, adding in a statement that the company has concluded all necessary arrangements to offer its services.
- The Australian company “Murchison United” said that it has been granted a concession for exploring Uranium north of the country by the Mauritanian government.
- The national “Al-Khair National for Stocks and Real Estate Co”, owned by “Kharafi Group”, owns 9.085% of the “Mobile Telecommunications Company (MTC)”, the biggest Kuwaiti company, after it used to own about 8.97% of the same company.

Bids & Contract

- “Nasdaq” company for stock markets said that it intends to sell its share estimated by 31% at London stock market after five months of failing attempts to acquire it.
- The governmental Indonesian Pertamina oil company has signed an agreement of $ 1 bn to build a station of liquid natural gas in Solawese island with the two Japanese companies: “Mitsubishi Corp” and “Medco Energi”.


- The Exhibition of the Palestinian National Industries was opened in Turkey on Monday under the title of “Made in Palestine”, with the participation of tens of companies working in the fields of food stuff, construction handicraft industries, as well as supporting services.
- The Palestinian Center for Economic and Social Development has concluded in participation with the Swedish cooperational center the exhibit of promoting of local honey (Yaomak Asal) after it lasted for more than two weeks, exceeding expectations in terms of the number of visitors or the volume of sellings.

A Special Publication of the 54th of Damascus International Fair

The Fifth Day

Indicators continues to cover the activities of the 54th of Damascus International Fair.
Indicators toured a number of French and South Korean companies participating in the fair. What drew the attention was the big number of companies taking part in the sector of household industries, and kitchen equipment. It is worth mentioning, that the agreement of the great Arab free trade zone has granted the license of importing Arab made electrical household equipment without any custom tariff.
At the French pavilion, Indicators met Mr. Adeb al Dasouqi, the Executive Manager of Al Dasouqi company-Moulinex-Syria, who said that Moulinex-Syria company is manufacturing about 13 kinds of the international Moulinex products which address the demands of the Syrian market. Moreover, Mr. Al Dusoqi said that the quality of Moulinex-Syria company products is 90% compared to the quality of the mother French company.
Indicators also met Mr. Imad al Hakim, the commercial manager of “Aljebal” company specialized in importing “Tefal and Pyrex” from France. Mr. al Hakim said that the company’s annual participation in Damascus International Fair is through “the annual Gota”, which he described that it is enough to cover about 4 months a year due to the great demand of the local consumer for this kinds of products.
Nariman Barodi, the Sales Manager at “Daewoo” company, which imports a products and electrical household equipment from South Korea, said that the local consumer still prefers the foreign product if available, adding that the company’s products are assembled in Jordan and entering the Syrian market as a Jordanian industry but the consumer knows for sure that the engines and parts of this product are all Korean-made.
Mr. Ra’ed al Sabagh, the Administrative Director of Al-Diyar Company, “The Exclusive Agent of Samsung Company in Syria”, said that there is a real and tough competition in the field of household and electrical equipment in the Syrian market, adding that Al-Diyar company is taking part at Damascus International Fair for the second year consecutively, amid, what he described, as tough competition in the fair in the sector of household and electrical industries., pointing out that what helped them compete in the fair, specifically, and in the Syrian market, generally was the name of the company (Samsung).

Indicators is a daily economic watch newsletter about the Near East, issued by New Orient News agency in Beirut, Lebanon. It is available on in Arabic and English. Also worth a read is Tendencies, the daily Near East political watch newsletter, available in Arabic, English and French languages.