Main headlines

August 1, 2013

The occupancy rate for hotel apartments stood at 85.8 per cent, an increase of 6.5 per cent
07:36 GMT

Dubai attracted more than 5.5 million visitors during the first half of the year, increasing by 11.1 per cent year-on year.

July 31, 2013

13 sectors showed a collection of 656.3 points for the day
14:55 GMT

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark stock index (TASI) recorded a handsome gain of 0.90 percent, closing at 7,863.83.

Iraqi tourists topped the list of visitors to the country, comprising 36 percent of tourist arrivals to Lebanon
13:55 GMT

Faced with an immense decline in tourists over the past two years, Lebanese hotels are resorting to discounts and promotions to lure in more visitors from Iraq and Syria.

Several countries experiencing socio-political upheaval at worst, and fragile economies at best
11:55 GMT

Confidence amongst business leaders in the Mena region rose more than two points in the second quarter of this year to 62.6, its highest level in more than a year, according to a report.

The South Pars gas field holds 8 percent of total gas reserves of the world and half of the country's proven gas reserves
10:55 GMT

Gas production will start in two phases of the South Pars gas field in the near future.

The overall fresh food prices rose 2.3 per cent in July 2013 compared with June 2013
08:55 GMT

Dubai's economists and businesses attributed the upward trend of fresh food prices to a combination effect of increasing demand, decline in the value of US dollar as well as to the political tension in the region.

Oman Cement's total sales declined 2.6 per cent to RO27.33mn from RO28.06mn
08:43 GMT

Oman Cement Co posted a 3.1 per cent growth in net profit for the first half of 2013 to RO9.3mn against a net profit of RO9mn in the same period last year.

The majority of suppliers and specialist contractors appear to be holding their prices to protect market share and profit margins
07:45 GMT

The construction sector is currently facing a range of obstacles, including increased prices of industrial fuel, higher taxes and high foreign exchange costs.

July 30, 2013

Saudi officials said Riyadh’s population was projected to grow from 6 million to over 8 million in the next 10 years
14:55 GMT

The Saudi Arabian government awarded $22.5 billion (Dh82.6 billion) in contracts to three foreign-led consortia on Sunday for the design and construction of the first metro rail system in the capital, Riyadh.

17 kilograms of gold could leave the borders of Eastern Equatoria state on a daily basis
13:55 GMT

South Sudan has been losing an estimated $200 million a year in illegal gold mining, according to an official from the ministry of petroleum and mining.

Subsidies of fuel products, which include natural gas and fuel oil as well as gasoline and diesel, for years have been a major drain on the finances of successive governments
11:55 GMT

The new Egyptian government will press ahead with a smart card program for distributing fuel products that its predecessor had started before it was ousted by the military.

Jordan’s exports to Pakistan totalled JD10 million last year whereas imports from Pakistan totalled JD40 million
09:55 GMT

Jordan Chamber of Commerce President Nael Kabariti and Pakistan’s Ambassador Ahsan Azhar Hayat on Monday discussed ways to develop commercial and economic relations between the two countries.

GCC nations are dependent on imported machinery, raw materials and labour - could lead to lower net profit margins in the industry
08:55 GMT

The GCC contracting industry is witnessing strong growth, which is projected to increase further in the years to come, according to a research report.

The 13 banks booked $90.06 million in credit loss provisions during the period, down from $141.12 million in the same quarter of 2012
06:47 GMT

The Lebanese banking sector could see profits drop by up to 20 percent over the next year if the political stalemate in the country persists, the head of the Association of Banks in Lebanon warned.

The oil marketing companies are also expected to continue their track record of high dividend payouts as their balance sheets and cash positions stay strong
06:41 GMT

The total sales revenue of Oman's three oil marketing companies grew by just 3.1 per cent to RO510mn in the first six months of 2013 against RO494.3mn in the corresponding period last year.