Middle East Business News Review – 24 May

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A look at today’s important financial news and business updates from the Middle East region:

Doha 2020 Olympic bid eliminated

The chase to host the 2020 Summer Games was cut down to a three horse race between Istanbul, Madrid and Tokyo after Doha and Baku were dropped from the running by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Wednesday. Doha, capital of the Gulf state of Qatar, and Baku, capital of Azerbaijan, were rejected for a second time in a row after failing to make the final list for the 2016 Games. Click here to read more…

Iraq struggling to save old treasures amid rush for new ones

The ancient city of Babylon was once home to the fabled Hanging Gardens, but now an extended oil pipeline popping out from dirt has dug up a conundrum: what is more valuable? Iraqi heritage or oil wealth? Click here to read more…

Jordan MPs agree 15% pay cut; proceeds will go to Treasury

Jordanian MPs on Wednesday announced they have agreed to deduct 15% of their salaries and give it to the Treasury as the country passes through a difficult economic situation. Click here to read more…

GCC $46bn ports expansion spending risk creating glut – report

Gulf states risk creating a glut in container capacity amid multi-billion dollar spending on port projects, a report published by Bloomberg said. More than 35 ports of the six Gulf states plan to add space for as many as 60 million standard containers in little over a decade, more than doubling capacity from the current 50 million boxes. Click here to read more…

MENA Telecoms Are Underinvesting in IT – Oliver Wyman Study

MENA telecommunications firms are spending half as much on IT investments as their European counterparts, a difference that jeopardizes their future competitiveness. According to an Oliver Wyman International Telecommunications Benchmark study, MENA telecoms operators allocated just 7% of operating expenditures to IT, while European operators allocated 14% to IT. Click here to read more…

Dubai banks eye mortgages for foreign buyers

A number of Dubai banks are close to launching a new mortgage product targeted at overseas investors looking to buy property in the emirate, a broker told Arabian Business. Click here to read more. (Source – Arabian Business)

Dubai crude oil price for August 2012 delivery is less $ 0.10 pb than average daily settlement price

The Department of Oil Affairs in the government of Dubai today announced that it had notified its customers that the official price of Dubai crude oil, which will be delivered next August, will be US$0.10 less per barrel than the average daily settlement price of the DME Oman Crude Oil Financial Contract in Dubai Mercantile Exchange contracts traded during the next month. Click here to read more. (Source – WAM via Zawya.com)

Foreign media filling Arab air

The growing number of foreign Arabic language satellite TV channels is being described as “an ocean of channels” filling the waves of the region, and as “noisy markets”. Click here to read more. (Source – Gulf News)

Dow says wins $2.16 billion in Kuwait arbitration

An arbitrator ruled Kuwait’s state-run chemical company must pay Dow Chemical Co $2.16 billion for wrongly canceling a planned plastics joint venture in 2008, Dow said on Thursday. Click here to read more. (Source – Reuters via Maktoob Yahoo!)

HSBC’S Oman unit merger halted on creditor suit

Oman has temporarily halted a merger between HSBC’s operations in the Gulf Arab state and Oman International Bank due to a lawsuit against the British lender, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday. Click here to read more. (Source – Reuters via ArabianBusiness.com)


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