To Whom Who Dares Only

A Survey carried out by HSBC on 1014 executive chairmen of companies in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, and the UAE showed that 39% of them think that canceling the engagement between the local currencies and the US dollar, which is witnessing a decline, will have positive effect on their activities, whereas 18% only said that this will have negative effect. Despite the fact that Kuwait abandoned the policy of engagement last April with the decline of the dollar’s prices to record levels in the international markets, and despite the pressure exercised on the Saudi riyal and the Emirati Dirham by markets which bet on the allowance by the two central banks for them to increase, yet Saudi Arabia and the other four Gulf states which produce oil are still saying that it is unlikely to follow the steps of Kuwait on the pretext that the engagement of the local currency with the US dollar is considered the corner stone for the economic stability. But until when these countries will be able to procrastinate in taking this urgent step, especially that it is not a secret that the engagement of the local currencies with the US dollar limits the ability of the Central Banks to contain inflation which has reached its highest levels ever since many decades in the Gulf countries? It is a question that requires a brave heart to answer so who dares to answer it?

The Crisis of the Real Estate Mortgage is Dangerous for the American Economy

The American industries have witnessed a decline in September due to the strike by workers in General Motors Company for Cars which led to a great decline of cars production.
For his part, the American Minister of Finance Henry Paulson called for dealing firmly with the crisis of real estate which he described as a very dangerous crisis on the American economy.

The Emarati al Ghurier Group Discusses Investment Opportunities in Syria

The Syrian Minister of Finance has discussed with the Chairman of the Emirati Investment Group "Al Ghurier" Abdullah al Ghurier the investment opportunities in Syria and the possibility of entering the Syrian market by the group. Sana said that the group is studying holding investment projects in Syria.

The Iraqi Ministry of Transportation Buys Two Boeing 737 Planes

The Iraqi cabinet has approved lately on the demand of the Ministry of Transportation to buy two modern planes, Boeing 737 in return for $100 m. The minister has revealed that his ministry is about to sign an agreement with a French company to buy the modern planes of Turbo Prob model to be used in the internal flights.

$5.33 billion, the Volume of Gold Trade Via Dubai

Dubai Center for Multi Goods said that the volume of Gold trade via Dubai has reached $5.23 bn during the third quarter of 2007 with a growth great estimated at 55% compared to the same period of 2006.

Turkey Expects an Increase of the Direct Foreign Investments of 2007

The Turkish Prime Minister Rajab Tayeb Erdogan said that his country expects an increase of the direct foreign investment this year, as well as implementing a number of privatization activities by 2009 like the privatization of electricity generating, the Turkish airlines, and governmental banks.

Algeria Allocates 900 million Euros for its Space Program

The Algerian Minister of post and telecommunications technology said that his country has allocated 900 million Euros for its space program stretching between 2006-2020. Ansa news agency quoted the General Director of the Algerian Space Agency Mr. Izz al Din Osadek as saying that two satellites will be launched starting from 2008 and 2009.

Small Indexes

- Algeria announced that allocated about $12 bn for reforming and building seaports and airports during the coming years.
- The Tunisian Prime Minister expressed his country’s wish to invest in the Mauritani oil during his meeting with Mohammad al Mukhtar Wild Mohammad al Hassan the Mauritani Minister of Oil who is paying Tunisia a visit.
- Well informed Jordanian sources expected an increase in the exports of the kingdom to Iraq by 50% after signing the agreement of free trade between the two countries.

Companies’ Indexes

- The Executive Chairman of Ittihad Telecommunications Company "Mobile" Khalid al Kaf said that the company has increased its share in the Saudi market by 40% in less than one year.
- Pope Johnson, the Executive Chairman of Dubai Company for Aviation Industries expected "Standard Aero" company to gain investment revenues estimated at $1.3 bn during this year.

Exhibitions

- The Palestinian Trade Center and the Union of the Palestinian Information Systems Companies have announced that the preparations for holding the activities of Palestine Fourth Exhibition for the telecommunications of information and telecommunications 2007 have finished. The exhibition will be held between 30/10-1/11/2007.

Bids

- China Industrial and Trade Bank is getting ready to buy 20% of the South African Standard Bank in return for $5.6 bn in cash.
- The Palestinian Minister of Telecommunications and Economy Kamal Hasouna said that the national Kuwaiti company for mobile telecommunications "Watanyia" has been granted frequencies from Israel toward in the Palestinian territories.

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.