News – 2012.07.18

July 18, 2012

ARABIALINK Daily News – Excerpts from International Media Reports</strong>
/Provided as a service from the Saudi-US Trade Group, Washington, DC/

Moving forward with nationalisation in Saudi Arabia

‘Nitaqat represents an effort to introduce more incentives for companies to employ Saudis and in that sense it is an improvement on what went before,’ says James Reeve, an economist at the local Samba Financial Group. ‘The reason you are hearing more complaints is probably because the system is …

Attack Kills Syrian Defense Minister in Damascus

A suicide bomber attacked a building used by security chiefs in central Damascus on Wednesday, state media said, killing the defense minister, Daoud Rajha, the first assassination of a prominent official in 17 months of revolt against President Bashar al-Assad. With tensions already high in …

Analysis: Egypt’s Outreach to the Saudis

In a way, it was remarkable that he traveled anywhere outside his country this soon after taking office, given that he is in the middle of a constitutional crisis in which he is at loggerheads with the judiciary and the military over whether parliament can meet, not to mention the huge …

Oil falls on Fed’s gloomy economy outlook

Oil retreated slightly on Wednesday, snapping five days of gains as U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke offered few signs of further monetary stimulus and a gloomy view of the economy of the world’s top oil consumer. Bernanke in his testimony to the Senate Banking Committee …

Saudi plans to start cross-listing foreign firms

Saudi Arabia plans to start cross-listing foreign companies on its exchange within a year, with a focus on Gulf Arab firms, as it moves closer to opening up its market to foreign investors, a senior stock market offical said on Tuesday. Waleed al-Bawardi, director of cash and markets at …

Polls Show Support for Tougher Sanctions against Iran, But not for Military Force

As the confrontation over Iran’s nuclear program intensifies–with stronger sanctions against Iran coming into effect and the United States beefing up its forces in the waters around Iran–international public support for sanctions on Iran is fairly strong, but not for the use of military …

UAE-Saudi trade volume hits Dhs178.7bn in 12 years

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is the UAE’s first partner in the GCC region. Based on the UAE’s non-oil trade statistics, KSA is one of the major trade partners in the Middle East, while the UAE is deemed the Kingdom’s main trade gate. From 1999 to 2011-end, KSA maintained its position on …

Ministry assures public of reasonable prices of basic goods during Ramadan

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has assured the public that commodities of high demand in Ramadan are available in local markets in sufficient quantities. This came in a report the ministry issued after its officials toured the markets in a number of cities to make sure there are enough …

In the new Egypt, beards appear where they were once banned

All over the country, Muslim men are demanding to wear beards — and Muslim women the hijab hair covering — in police stations, banks, airliners, television news programs and other places where they have long been banned by law or custom. For many, it’s a blooming of self-expression that was …

US, Pakistan close to signing deal to regulate NATO troop supplies to and from Afghanistan

The U.S. and Pakistan are close to signing an agreement regulating the flow of NATO troop supplies in and out of Afghanistan, codifying a somewhat informal arrangement that has fueled the Afghan war over the past decade, U.S. officials said Tuesday. Pakistan pushed for a written pact in …

Saudi editor faces charges for violating Islamic values

Saudi authorities have detained a Saudi national for setting up a website that ‘harms the public order and violates Islamic values’, court documents and his lawyer said on Tuesday. Saudi Arabia, which follows an austere version of Sunni Islam, shows little tolerance towards public dissent …

Saudi cement: Will it remain a favourite for investors?

Saudi cement companies have performed well this year as demand and supply dynamics in the kingdom have changed to become more favourable to producers. Talks have now shifted from oversupply in cement quantities to shortages, black markets and reaching price caps. With a renewed interest and an …

Sabic Misses Estimates as Second-Quarter Profit Declines 35%

Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC), the world’s biggest petrochemicals maker, posted a 35 percent decline in second-quarter profit on lower product pricing and higher raw materials costs, missing analysts’ estimates. Net income fell to 5.3 billion riyals ($1.4 billion) from 8.1 billion …

Premier Palestinian medical school graduates struggle to work in Jerusalem

Basel Nassar, a young Palestinian doctor from this city, is not allowed to practice medicine here. So he flew to Houston last week to take the last phase of a licensing exam that will qualify him to work in the United States. “I am forced to do this,” Nassar, 33, said on the eve of his …

Kadima quits Israel government over conscription law

Israel’s Kadima party has left Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government in a dispute over military conscription for ultra-Orthodox Jews. Kadima, the largest party in the Knesset, had only joined the coalition in May to avoid an early election. But it failed to reach an agreement …

Questioning the Roots of the Arab Spring

The Arab world’s recent uprising didn’t take place because of foreign hands. It is because many people in the Arab world look at the past, instead of the present and what can be done for their future generations. People see changing governments, and at the end of the day they want changes in …

Smuggled weapons seized in Jazan

Border Guards patrols in the southern province of Jazan have thwarted an attempt to smuggle over 400 weapons into the Kingdom, the Saudi Press Agency reported yesterday. Only one smuggler was involved and he tried to bring the cache into the country by hiding it in his car. Col. Abdullah bin …

Alstom Adds Steam Tail for Saudi Gas Power Plant

Alstom Thermal Power has signed a US$123 million contract with Arabian Bemco Contracting and GS Engineering & Construction of South Korea to provide the steam tail for the Riyadh PP12 gas-fired combined cycle power plant. The Riyadh PP12 plant is located 100 kilometers west of the Saudi …

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/Provided as a service from the Saudi-US Trade Group, Washington, DC/</pre>
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