A Less Enthusiasm for Privatization in Russia

A poll has revealed that 37% of the Russians think that there is a necessity to return what has been privatized on the general assets since the start of privatization in Russia 15 years ago to the public property.
The result was maybe a surprise for the whole world but it was not so for the Russians. 70% of real estate in Russia are still owned by the Russian state, add to that that the percentage of privatization has declined by more than 2.5 times during the last two years.
How we view these developments through our economic perspective which still talks about adopting the idea of depending on the private sector and private investments? How to understand that specially when we know that what draws the attention is that the Russian state tends to establish more governmental companies or companies that run by the government whereas it has controlled oil, ships, and planes industries? Add to the fact that the private sector is still the backbone of the Russian industry. As for the industry of beer, which is not a basic industry, is let for the private sector and not vice versa.

Fatah Investigates About the Increase of Prices in al Khalil

The Representative of Fatah Movement, Akram al Haimoni said that an investigation committee was formed for investigating the big increase prices in al Khalil governorate.
Al Haimoni called upon, in a press statement published by Al-Quds newspaper, all officials to consider this issue seriously and help the citizens to face the problem of high prices.

"A New Program of Reforms" in Turkey with the Aim of Joining the European Union

The Turkish Foreign Minister, Ali Babacan, said that his country will set up a new program for implementing the required reforms with the aim of joining the European Union.
The minister said that the new program of the reforms aims specifically at modifying the Turkish laws with the criteria of the European Community.

New Water Sources for Damascus

The Syrian Prime Minister Muhammad Naji al-Utri inaugurated the first phase of the project "Developing New Water Sources for Damascus City" in Jedadet Yabus. The project aims at providing new sources of fresh water from al Harmoun area, located fifty kilometer north west of Damascus.

Zebari Discusses in Moscow The Issue of Oil Agreements

The Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Mahmud Zebari is due to discuss, in his visit to Russia, issues related to the agreements that have been signed by Russian companies, including "Lukoil" company with Iraq at the time when Saddam Hussein was President of Iraq.

The Kuwaiti "Agility" Wins a Deal Estimated by $1.3 bn in Iraq

The Kuwaiti Al-Watan newspaper said that the Kuwaiti "Agility" company is about to sign a deal estimated by $1.3 bn for exporting goods to Iraq, pointing out that the details of the deal include storing and exporting activities starting from next October.

A Donation of One Million US Dollars for Supporting Water Sector and Decreasing the Jordanian Debts

The Jordanian government, represented by the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation, signed yesterday two agreements with a total value of $141 m granted by the USA, within the program of the American economic aids to Jordan for 2007, estimated by $255 m.
The ministry said that the first donation estimated by $116 m will be invested in financing a number of developmental, social, and economic projects, whereas the second donation estimated by $25 m with the invested for financing a number of water and environment projects of high priority.

Kuwait Grants the Qatari "Doha Bank" a License for Working in It

The Governor of the "Central Bank of Kuwait", Sheikh Salem AbdulAziz Al-Sabah announced that the administrative board of the bank has approved on granting the Qatari "Doha Bank a license to open a branch in Kuwait.

"Capital Towers" Sells its Share of "Septec Shares"

"Capital Towers" said that it sold its share in the limited holding "Septec" company achieving an average of an internal revenue by 36% within three years after the date of acquisitions. The Executive Chairman of Capital Towers, Aref Naqfi said that "Septec" company was in 2004 a preferable nominee for acquisitions due to its high profitability and its distinctive market potentials, as well as its exceptional management.

The Two Iranian "Abu Rihan" and "Farabi" Companies Take Part in the International Tajik Peace Exhibition

Iran is expected to participate for the first time in the International Tajikistani Peace Exhibition, through Abu Rihan and Farabi companies for medicine industry the exhibition aims at exhibiting the latest equipment and modern technologies in the field of drugs and health equipment, as well as supporting the attraction of the foreign investments to the Tajik markets.

Small Indexes

- The Egyptian Minister of Petroleum said on Tuesday that the international oil prices we exceed the limit of 100 dollars in the near future after they reached more than 80 dollars per barrel.
- Official figures showed that Tunisia’s exports of olive oil have reached 120.700 tons during the first half of 2007 compared to the same period of last year due to the increase world demand.
- The administrative board of International Monetary Fund is due to hold a hearing session this week in which the French Dominique Strauss-Kahn and the check Josef Tosovsky will present themselves as two nominees for the position of the General Director of the International Institution.
- Economists expected the surplus in the Euro area to reach 6.8 billion Euro. The statistics bureau added that the volume of exports has increased by 15% in July, whereas the volume of imports have increased by 12%.

Companies Indexes

- Chairman of the Commission of Boursaid sea ports said that the commission has received demands of 85 companies from many countries like France, Germany, America, Singapore, Kuwait, Emarat, Jordan and Libya for investing, building and operating multi purpose ports for exchanging containers and building stores at a seaport north of Boursaid, the biggest sea port in Egypt, the Arab world and Africa.
- The American giant "Hearts" has opened a branch in Algerian in partnership with the Algerian company "Caronline". "Hearts" allocated an investment estimated by 100 million dinars for expanding its net work in Algeria.
- A group of Middle Eastern companies, led by The Gulf Limited Oil Company, are considering investing about $1.4 bn in Malaysia.

Bids & Contracts

- A consortium led by "Royal Bank of Scotland" said that it has been granted the approval of the Dutch Ministry of Finance for acquiring the Dutch "ABN Amro" bank.
- The Syrian Investment Commission has approved on including 12 projects with a total investment value of 3.7 billion Syrian pounds in the investment law.

Exhibitions & Conferences

- Abu Dhabi National Company expects more than 1.5 million visitors to visit the exhibitions and activities to be held in the new "Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Center" during the coming year.

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