China Turns its Eyes on the Gulf’s Oil

The Volume of the Middle Eastern Investment in China has reached about $20 bn annually, whereas the volume of the Chinese Investments does not exceed half of this sum of money, but the Chinese Giant has recently turned its eye to the Gulf, with the aim for its share of the big oil cake in the world. China is no longer hiding its desire in enhancing its relations with the region for securing its oil needs, and the Chinese projects have found their way to the region, as exploration companies are doing their job in Algeria and Qatar, a joint Chinese-Saudi Energy Project is being carried out, and a Chinese Oil Refinery is being built in Syria. This led to the increase of the Chinese in the region as the UAE said that 200.000 Chinese are living in the country ranging between workers and experts compared to a few thousands 15 years ago.

The Russians Discuss Oil Investment in Syria

A delegation of Russian businessmen will pay Syria a visit to discuss a number of economic and investment projects. Al-Thawra newspaper said that among the delegation the Chairman of the Group of Oil Companies within the Commonwealth Group. The delegation will discuss a number of project among them the rehabilitation of the oil pipelines in addition to building a factory for the re-use of wastes.

Iran is the Best Route To Export Turkmenistan’s Gas to Europe

The General Director of the International Affairs in the Iranian Ministry of Oil said that Iran is considered the best route for exporting Turkmenistan’s Gas to Europe. He further said at the conclusion of the activities of the international meeting of oil and gas held in Asheq Abad that the pipeline Nakka-Jasck comes within this framework, adding that a new refinery with a total capacity of production of 300.000 barrels daily will be built north of Iran.

Greece and Turkey Open a New Joint Gas Pipeline

Greece and Turkey will open tomorrow a pipeline for natural gas with the aim of pumping gas from the Caspian Sea to Europe. The pipeline will transform about 12 billion cubic meters of gas annually, three billion of them to Greece and the rest will re-exported to Europe from Shah Denies field in Azerbaijan.

The Profits of Orascom for Hotels Jump to 26% in Nine Months

Orascom Company for Hotel and Development, the biggest real estate development company in terms of assets in Egypt, announced that it profits during the first nine month of this year have increased by 26% reaching $44.3 m. The company said in a statement published by Reuters that the group is expecting an annual growth rate of profits estimated by more than 50% till 2010.

8.7 Billion Emarati Dirhams, the Revenues of Dubai Hotel

The Directorate of Tourism and Trade Promotion in Dubai has revealed that Dubai has witnessed great success in the tourist field during this year. The number of tourists who visited the Emirate during the first nine month of this year has reached 5.1 million persons with a growth rate estimated at 7% compared to the same period of 2006. Moreover, the revenues during the first nine months have reached 8.7 billion dirhams with a growth rate estimated at 20%.

Small Indexes

- Prices of the American dollar have declined to opposite with the Japanese Yen, and dealt with by 110.17 Yen, which is less than of its exchange rate for yesterday which was 110.39 Yen.
- The White House welcomed on Thursday the decision of The International Monetary Fund, the International Bank, and the African Development Bank to drop all the debts of Liberia.
- Official statements asserted that of inflation average in Euro zone during last October has risen by 2.6%, whereas the utmost limit targeted by European Central Bank is 2% which means that more pressures will be exercised on the bank to increase the rates of the European interest.

Companies’ Indexes

- The Egyptian Mina Pharm for Medicine and Chemical Industries have achieved during the first nine months of the fiscal year 2007 a growth rate in terms of the company’s profits by 16.4%, gaining a profit estimated at 33.08 million Egyptian pounds compared to about 28.425 million Egyptian pounds for the same period of 2006.
- A consortium led by Virgin Group said that it intends to pay back its debts for England Central Bank in accordance with a proposal it offered to acquire Northern Rock.
- A statement issued by the Egyptian Company for Mobile Telecommunications showed that the company’s net profits during the first nine months of this year have risen by 12.3% after cutting the taxes reaching $308.5 m.

Bids & Contracts

- Moubadala Development Company said that it bought 8.1% of the American advanced Micro Devices Company, which is the second biggest company in the world in the industry of computer processors in return for $622 m.
- The Russian Alushen Finance Co. intends to sign an initial contract with the Iranian Iran Air Tour for exporting 30 Russian air planes of 2-204-100 model to Iran during the activities of Dubai Air Show-2007.

Conferences & Exhibitions

- The activities of the Fourth International Exhibition for Renewable Energy and Water Technology, held by Chamber of Trade, Industry, and Services in Rabat in cooperation with the Spanish Chamber of Trade, Industry and Navigation “Almeria” will be concluded today.
- The UAE would take part in the conference and exhibition of energy generating in the Middle East 208 to be held between 4-6 in al Manama for discussing the challenges facing the increasing demands.

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.