Saudi Milk Producers Consummate Agreement, Regulate Market
The "price war crisis" in the Saudi milk market, which has spanned four months, appears to be nearing its end. In their 15th meeting yesterday, the 24 market players reached a two-year agreement regarding pricing that will take effect next week, Al-Sharq Al-Awsat Daily reported.
Under the terms of the agreement, the price of 1 gallon of milk will hit SR12. A 3-liter package will cost SR10; a 2-liter package will cost SR7; a 1-liter package will be priced at SR4, SR2 will be charged for a half-liter package. (SR3.75=$1).
The agreement also set the rules for marketing and promotion, and established a period of 30-40 days to be permitted for the promotion of a new product. Furthermore, the deal set the guidelines for absorbing the milk production surplus, which in the last season reached 150,000 liters.
Following the signing, the Saudi Agriculture and Water Minister, Dr. Abdullah ben Abd al-Aziz ben Mu'amar, announced support for the move and denied reports that the local milk industry is suffering from saturation. He added his conviction that much potential exists for dairy projects, in light of the annual 3.7 percent population growth rate.
According to the Minister, this agreement is critical, because it provides an appropriate solution for the huge milk surplus that characterizes the winter season. Currently, Saudi milk output reaches approximately 1.8 million liters per year.
New Hotel Opens in Lebanon, Baalbeck to Host Tourism Festival
Lebanon is continuing in its drive to reconstruct the local tourism infrastructure and to restore its pre-civil war reputation as a leading regional tourist destination. As part of these efforts, the Starwood chain opened its new Four Points hotel in Bahamdoun. The owner of the new hotel is businessman Nasir al-Khorafi, A-Safir Daily reported.
Starwood Africa, Middle East and India manager, Mr. Zoubi stated, "Starwood maintains a strong commitment to the Lebanese market, that enjoys a special importance in the Middle East region and the Mediterranean basin."
The new Four Points hotel consists of 70 rooms and suites, 5 restaurants, a health club, massage facilities and a beauty salon. Located in the heart of Bahamdoun, the hotel is close to the popular tourist outlets, with the panoramic landscape providing a scenic view.
Meanwhile, the Business Owners and Commercial Bodies Association in the Lebanese Valley announced the launch of the second Baalbeck marketing and tourism festival to be open July 1 of this year. In a recent planning meeting for the upcoming event, participants agreed that the festival boasts the potential to greatly benefit the local economy. Baalbeck has much to offer visitors, notably the Acropolis in Lebanon's Valley, which is the largest and most well-preserved group of Roman temples in the world. The temples were dedicated to Jupiter, Venus and Bacchus, the three Gods of Heliopolis (the Greek name of Baalbeck).
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