Middle East Business Review – 8 Mar

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S KOREA TO HELP UAE BUILD 4 MORE NUCLEAR REACTORS

According to a South Korean newspaper report, the UAE is seeking to place orders for four new nuclear power generators in addition to the four already under construction. “I heard that the UAE is planning orders for about four additional nuclear power stations. Since all the neighbouring infrastructure will be built based on the Korean standard nuclear power plant, there is a good chance Korea could win the additional orders,” Korea Herald quoted South Korea’s Knowledge Economy Minister Hong Suk-woo as saying during a press conference in Abu Dhabi this week.

4 EMIRATI BUSINESSMEN FEATURE ON FORBES’ ANNUAL RICH LIST

Four businessmen from the UAE have made it into the Forbes’ annual list of the world’s billionaires. Carlos Slim Helu, Mexican telecom mogul topped this year’s list which comprises of 1,226 individuals from around the world. Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, chief executive of Mashreq Group and speaker of the UAE’s Federal National Council, is listed as #410 with a fortune of around $2.9bn. He’s joined by his uncle Saif Al Ghurair, chairman of the Al Ghurair Group – a retail, real estate and manufacturing conglomerate based in Dubai – with an estimated worth of $2bn. UAE’s other two billionaires are Abdulla and Majid Al Futtaim worth $1.6bn and $1.1bn respectively.

ETIHAD AIRWAYS SEEKING COMMERCIAL TIE-UP: AIR FRANCE-KLM

Air France-KLM Group has claimed it has been approached by the UAE national flag carrier for a possible tie-up and other commercial options. “Etihad’s leaders have been asking for a commercial partnership with Air France. I asked for an opening of informal talks to see if we could develop such a cooperation,” Chief Executive Officer Jean-Cyril Spinetta told newsmen.

TNT AIRWAYS, EMIRATES SIGN CODE-SHARE AGREEMENT

Emirates SkyCargo has entered into an agreement with TNT Airways, a subsidiary of TNT Express, under which the Dubai-based carrier will place its aircraft on TNT Airways’ B777 freighter flights on the New York JFK to Liege and Hong Kong-Dubai-Leige routes. “The code-share agreement of TNT Airways with Emirates SkyCargo will allow TNT Express to continue to offer excellent international delivery services to its customers, while optimising use of the long-haul fleet. This is an important step towards reducing TNT’s intercontinental fixed capacity. TNT Airways is the operating airline, which gives us and our customers the required visibility and control,” said TNT Express CEO Marie-Christine Lombard.

QATAR DELAYS STATE BUDGET PUBLICATION

Qatari state news agency announced it is pushing back the deadline for releasing the state budget till the end of May because of changes to the government’s accounting system and budgetary preparations. The government will operate under the terms of the current fiscal year’s budget which is usually announced on 1st of April every year. “In future, budget estimates will be given for three-year periods and then ratified each year during the period,” the statement said.

DOHA, TIRANA SIGN TWIN CITY AGREEMENT

Both Qatar and Albania have signed an agreement to twin their capital cities amid booming property ties. “We are pleased to express here the bond of friendly relationship and co-operation with the Albanian people. Through this agreement the good relations between the municipalities and establishments in various fields are confirmed,” said Mohamed Al-Sayed, director of Doha Municipality. Lulzim Basha, mayor of Tirana, thanked the Qatari initiative and welcomed the Gulf nation’s property developers to invest in the southern European city. “Doha is a friendly city and the people and the environment are welcoming. The Albanian community, though still small in Qatar, has increased fivefold in the past two years,” the Albanian official added.

(By Moign Khawaja – Editor: Arabian Gazette)

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