FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE

SCAVENGING THE INTERNET

Archive for the ‘ISLAMIC BANKS’ Category

AFTER EXTENSIVE AND SOMETIMES USELESS DISCUSSIONS, THE ENTIRE ‘FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE GROUP’, IN FACE OF A POSSIBLE GENERAL STRIKE WITHIN THE GROUP, DECIDED TO TAKE A COLLECTIVE VACATION … SEE YOU FOLKS IN MARCH … AND BY THE WAY, OUR COLLECTIVE VACATION HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS PRESENT GLOBAL FINANCIAL CRISIS …

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on February 1, 2009

Sunday, February 01, 2009

THE FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE GROUP

PUBLISHED BY ‘FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE’

THE FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE GROUP IS ON VACATION 'TIL MARCH

PUBLISHED BY ‘FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE’

Advertisements

Posted in - UNCATEGORIZED, A BOLSA DE VALORES, A CASA CIVIL, A CORRUPÇÃO NO APARELHO DO ESTADO, A CRIMINALIZAÇÃO DOS MOVIMENTOS SOCIAIS, A ENERGIA ALTERNATIVA, A INDÚSTRIA DA COMUNICAÇÃO, A INDÚSTRIA DE ALIMENTOS, A INDÚSTRIA DE CALÇADOS, A INDÚSTRIA DIGITAL, A INDÚSTRIA DO TURISMO, A POLÍCIA CIVIL, A POLÍCIA MILITAR, A PRESIDÊNCIA, A QUESTÃO AGRÁRIA, A QUESTÃO ÉTNICA, A QUESTÃO ENERGÉTICA, A QUESTÃO FEMININA, A QUESTÃO PREVIDENCIÁRIA, AÉREO, ABIN, AC, AERONÁUTICA, AEROPORTOS, AGRICULTURA, AGRICULTURA FAMILIAR, AGRICULTURA SUSTENTÁVEL, AGRICULTURAL PLAGUES, AGRICULTURE, AGRONEGÓCIOS, AGROTÓXICOS, AL, ALIMENTOS PROCESSADOS, AM, AP, ARRECADAÇÃO DE IMPOSTOS E CONTRIBUIÇÕES, AS FORÇAS ARMADAS, AS GANGUES 'MILICIANAS', AS INDÚSTRIAS DE MINERAÇÃO, AS RELAÇÕES DE TRABALHO E EMPREGO, ATIVIDADES CRIMINOSAS - BRASIL, AUTOMAÇÃO DO COMÉRCIO, AUTOMAÇÃO INDUSTRIAL, ÍNDICE DE PREÇOS AO CONSUMIDOR (IPC), ÍNDICE DE PREÇOS AO CONSUMIDOR - AMPLO (IPCA), ÍNDICE GERAL DE PREÇOS - DISP. INTERNA (IGP-DI), ÍNDICE GERAL DE PREÇOS - MERCADO (IGP-M), ÍNDICES DA RENDA SALARIAL, ÍNDICES DE EMPREGO, ÍNDICES ECONÔMICOS - BRASIL, BA, BALANÇA COMERCIAL, BALANÇA DE PAGAMENTOS, BANCO CENTRAL - BRASIL, BANKING SYSTEMS, BIOCOMBUSTÍVEIS, BIOMASSA, BIOMASSA, BNDES, BRASIL, CARLOS DIREITO, CÂMARA DOS DEPUTADOS, CE, CENTRAL BANKS, CIDADANIA, CIDADES, CINEMA, COMÉRCIO - BRASIL, COMBATE AO TRABALHO ESCRAVO E INFANTIL, COMBATE À CORRUPÇÃO - BRASIL, COMBATE À DESIGUALDADE E À EXCLUSÃO - BRASIL, COMBATE À VIOLÊNCIA CONTRA AS MULHERES, COMBATE À VIOLÊNCIA DOMÉSTICA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, CONSELHO MONETÁRIO NACIONAL (CMN), CORRUPÇÃO - BRASIL, CORRUPÇÃO NA POLÍTICA, CRIMES AMBIENTAIS - BRASIL, CRIMES EMPRESARIAIS, CURRENCIES, DANIEL DANTAS, DEFESA DO CONSUMIDOR - BRASIL, DEFESA DO MEIO AMBIENTE - BRASIL, DEPUTADOS ESTADUAIS, DESENVOLVIMENTO SUSTENTÁVEL, DF, DIREITOS HUMANOS - BRASIL, EÓLICA, ECOLOGICAL AGRICULTURE, ECONOMIA - BRASIL, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, EDUCAÇÃO - BRASIL, ENSINO FUNDAMENTAL - 1° e 2° GRAUS, ENSINO UNIVERSITÁRIO - GRADUAÇÃO, ES, ETANOL, EXÉRCITO, EXPANSÃO AGRÍCOLA, EXPANSÃO ECONÔMICA, EXPANSÃO INDUSTRIAL, FARMING DEBTS, FARMING SUBSIDIES, FERROVIAS, FERROVIAS, FERTILIZERS, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAMENTO IMOBILIÁRIO, FLORESTAS PLANTADAS, FLUXO DE CAPITAIS, FORÇA DE SEGURANÇA NACIONAL, FUSÕES E/OU INCORPORAÇÕES EMPRESARIAIS, GÁS NATURAL, GENETICALLY MODIFIED AGRO-PRODUCTS, GILMAR MENDES, GO, HIDRELÉTRICAS, INDÚSTRIA AUTOMOTIVA, INDÚSTRIA DA CONSTRUÇÃO CIVIL, INDÚSTRIA DE ELETRO-ELETRÔNICOS, INDÚSTRIA FARMACÊUTICA, INDÚSTRIA METALÚRGICA, INDÚSTRIAS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INFRAESTRUTURA - BRASIL, INSTITUIÇÕES DE FOMENTO NACIONAL, INSTITUTOS REGULADORES DA ECONOMIA - BRASIL, INTERNATIONAL, ISLAMIC BANKS, JUROS BANCÁRIOS, LAVAGEM DE DINHEIRO, LUIS INÁCIO LULA DA SILVA, MA, MACROECONOMY, MARÍTIMO, MARINHA, MG, MINISTÉRIO DA AGRICULTURA, PECUÁRIA E ABASTECIMENTO, MINISTÉRIO DA CIÊNCIA E TECNOLOGIA, MINISTÉRIO DA CULTURA, MINISTÉRIO DA DEFESA, MINISTÉRIO DA EDUCAÇÃO, MINISTÉRIO DA FAZENDA, MINISTÉRIO DA INTEGRAÇÃO NACIONAL, MINISTÉRIO DA JUSTIÇA, MINISTÉRIO DA PREVIDÊNCIA SOCIAL, MINISTÉRIO DA SAÚDE, MINISTÉRIO DAS CIDADES, MINISTÉRIO DAS COMUNICAÇÕES, MINISTÉRIO DAS MINAS E ENERGIA, MINISTÉRIO DAS RELAÇÕES EXTERIORES, MINISTÉRIO DO DESENVOLVIMENTO, INDÚSTRIA E COMÉRCIO EXTERIOR, MINISTÉRIO DO DESENVOLVIMENTO AGRÁRIO, MINISTÉRIO DO DESENVOLVIMENTO SOCIAL E COMBATE À FOME, MINISTÉRIO DO ESPORTE, MINISTÉRIO DO MEIO AMBIENTE, MINISTÉRIO DO PLANEJAMENTO, ORÇAMENTO E GESTÃO, MINISTÉRIO DO TRABALHO E EMPREGO, MINISTÉRIO DO TURISMO, MINISTÉRIO DOS TRANSPORTES, MS, MT, NARCOTRÁFICO, O BIODIESEL, O CASO JOSÉ DIRCEU, O CRIME ORGANIZADO, O DISCURSO CONTRA AS POLÍTICAS AFIRMATIVAS, O MERCADO DE TRABALHO - BRASIL, O MERCADO FINANCEIRO, O MERCADO IMPORTADOR, O MOVIMENTO DOS POVOS NATIVOS, O MOVIMENTO DOS SEM-TERRA (MST), O MOVIMENTO NEGRO, O MOVIMENTO RURALISTA, O MUNDO DO TRABALHO - BRASIL, O MUNICÍPIO DE NITERÓI, O MUNICÍPIO DE SÃO GONÇALO, O MUNICÍPIO DO RIO DE JANEIRO, O PODER EXECUTIVO, O PODER EXECUTIVO ESTADUAL, O PODER EXECUTIVO FEDERAL, O PODER EXECUTIVO MUNICIPAL, O PODER JUDICIÁRIO, O PODER LEGISLATIVO, O PODER LEGISLATIVO ESTADUAL, O PODER LEGISLATIVO FEDERAL, O PODER LEGISLATIVO MUNICIPAL, O SETOR DOS TRANSPORTES, O SISTEMA BANCÁRIO - BRASIL, O SUPREMO TRIBUNAL DE JUSTIÇA, O SUPREMO TRIBUNAL FEDERAL, O TRIBUNAL SUPERIOR ELEITORAL, ORÇAMENTO ESTADUAL, ORÇAMENTO MUNICIPAL, ORÇAMENTO NACIONAL - BRASIL, OS GOVERNADORES, OS JUDICIÁRIOS ESTADUAIS, OS MEIOS DE COMUNICAÇÃO - BRASIL, OS PREFEITOS, OS TRABALHADORES, OS TRIBUNAIS REGIONAIS ELEITORAIS, PA, PARTIDO COMUNISTA DO BRASIL (PC do B), PARTIDO DA CAUSA OPERÁRIA (PCO), PARTIDO DA MOBILIZAÇÃO NACIONAL (PMN), PARTIDO DA REPÚBLICA (PR), PARTIDO DA SOCIAL DEMOCRACIA BRASILEIRA (PSDB), PARTIDO DEMOCRÁTICO TRABALHISTA (PDT), PARTIDO DO MOVIMENTO DEMOCRÁTICO BRASILEIRO (PMDB), PARTIDO DOS DEMOCRATAS (PD), PARTIDO DOS TRABALHADORES (PT), PARTIDO POPULAR SOCIALISTA (PPS), PARTIDO PROGRESSISTA (PP), PARTIDO RENOVADOR TRABALHISTA BRASILEIRO (PRTB), PARTIDO SOCIAL CRISTÃO (PSC), PARTIDO SOCIAL DEMOCRATA CRISTÃO (PSDC), PARTIDO SOCIAL LIBERAL (PSL), PARTIDO SOCIALISMO E LIBERDADE (PSOL), PARTIDO SOCIALISTA BRASILEIRO (PSB), PARTIDO SOCIALISTA DOS TRABALHADORES UNIFICADO (PSTU), PARTIDO TRABALHISTA BRASILEIRO (PTB), PARTIDO TRABALHISTA CRISTÃO (PTC), PARTIDO TRABALHISTA DO BRASIL (PT do B), PARTIDO TRABALHISTA NACIONAL (PTN), PARTIDO VERDE (PV), PARTIDOS POLÍTICOS - BRASIL, PB, PE, PECUÁRIA, PECULATO, PESQUISAS E PÓS-GRADUAÇÃO, PETRÓLEO, PI, POLÍCIA FEDERAL, POLÍTICA - BRASIL, POLÍTICA EXTERNA - BRASIL, POLÍTICA REGIONAL, PORTOS, PR, PREVARICAÇÃO, PRODUTO INTERNO BRUTO, PRODUTO INTERNO BRUTO ESTADUAL, PRODUTO INTERNO BRUTO NACIONAL, PROGRAMA DE ACELERAÇÃO DO CRESCIMENTO (PAC), PUBLIC SECTOR AND STATE OWNED ENTERPRISES, REAJUSTES SALARIAIS, RECEITA FEDERAL - BRASIL, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, RELAÇÕES COMERCIAIS INTERNACIONAIS - BRASIL, RELAÇÕES DIPLOMÁTICAS - BRASIL, RELAÇÕES INTERNACIONAIS - BRASIL, RESTRUCTURING OF PRIVATE COMPANIES, RESTRUCTURING OF THE PUBLIC SECTOR, RJ, RN, RO, RODOVIAS, RODOVIÁRIO, RR, RS, SAÚDE E ATENDIMENTO MÉDICO, SANEAMENTO BÁSICO, SC, SE, SEMENTES TRANSGÊNICAS, SENADO, SETOR EXPORTADOR, SINDICATOS DAS CATEGORIAS PROFISSIONAIS, SISTEMA PÚBLICO DE SAÚDE, SISTEMA PRIVADO DE SAÚDE, SP, SUPERÁVIT COMERCIAL, SUPERÁVIT PRIMÁRIO, TARSO GENRO, TAXA DE CÂMBIO - BRASIL, TAXA DOS JUROS COMERCIAIS, TAXA SELIC, TAXAS DE DESEMPREGO, TELEFONIA - FIXA E MÓVEL, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE WORK MARKET, TO, USA, VEREADORES | 1 Comment »

GROUPS TO ASSESS THE PERFORMANCE OF ISLAMIC FINANCIAL SYSTEM (Malaysia)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 21, 2009

Wednesday January 21, 2009

The Star

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR’ (Malaysia)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE STAR’ (Malaysia)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ORGANIZATIONS AND FORUMS, ISLAMIC BANKS, MALAYSIA, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

SHUAA SEES BUYOUT OPPORTUNITIES (Dubai)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 20, 2009

January 19, 2009, 23:09

Bloomberg

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GULF NEWS’ (Dubai)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GULF NEWS’ (Dubai)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, DUBAI, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, ISLAMIC BANKS, RECESSION, RESTRUCTURING OF PRIVATE COMPANIES, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

WEATHERING GLOBAL UPHEAVAL – PAMUK: ISLAM NOT IRRECONCILABLE WITH WEST

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 20, 2009

Jan. 17, 2009

The Yomiuri Shimbun

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE YOMIURI SHIMBUN’ (Japan)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE YOMIURI SHIMBUN’ (Japan)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAM, ISLAMIC BANKS, RECESSION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

PIRAEUS BANK BEGINS MONEYGRAM MONEY TRANSFER SERVICE IN EGYPT

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 1, 2009

01/01/2009 01:25:00

WAM/TF

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TRIPOLI POST’

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TRIPOLI POST’

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, EGYPT, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRIES, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAMIC BANKS, LYBIA, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

GULF MINISTERS AGREE ON MONETARY UNION (Lybia)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on January 1, 2009

01/01/2009 01:22:00

WAM/TF

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TRIPOLI POST’

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TRIPOLI POST’

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAMIC BANKS, LYBIA, MACROECONOMY, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

POLITICAL BICKERING, INTERFERENCE IMPERILS KUWAIT’S CRITICAL PETROLEUM INDUSTRY

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 17, 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Agence France Presse

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, ISLAMIC BANKS, KUWAIT, OPEC, PETROL, RECESSION, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

WEATHERING THE STORM – Syrians are quickly realising that the impact of the global financial crisis will be larger than first thought. In an age of globalisation, no country is an island

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 13, 2008

Issue: December 2008

by Brooke Anderson

PUBLISHED BY ‘SYRIA TODAY’

Despite government assurances that their country will weather the storm engulfing markets around the world, Syrians are quickly realising that in the 21st century, no country is immune from a global economic meltdown.

“No country can say it’s unaffected,” Samira al-Masalmeh, managing editor of local affairs at the independent Syrian daily newspaper Al-Watan and the economic weekly Al-Iqtissadiya, said. “It’s true, we don’t have direct economic relations with the United States, but the crisis is affecting Europe. We work with Europe and Asia, so there is an indirect effect on Syria.”

Syria will, however, weather the storm better than most countries, Masalmeh said. “For the most part, 70 percent of investment in Syria is from inside the country,” she said. “Syria has a strong and diversified internal economy that doesn’t depend on oil. We don’t have a stock market.”

The global financial crisis, which originated in the US banking system, hits Syria at a time when the country is opening up its economy after more than 40 years of socialist rule. Many in Syria now believe the country needs to quickly learn the lessons emerging from more developed economies now battling recession. “I hope Syria will learn a lesson from America and it will put into place better laws protecting investment,” Masalmeh said.

Far from the epicentre

To date, the Syrian government has taken a cautious view of the crisis. “The Syrian economy is stable and solid and the Syrian pound is strong and protected,” Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Abdullah al-Dardari said in October. “Syria has an independent banking system. In addition, the Syrian pound has a higher interest rate than other currencies.”

Dardari also said deposits in Syrian banks have increased since the beginning of the crisis because of the stability of the local banking sector. “The government is working day and night for the stability of the economy and to serve the nation and the citizen,” he said, adding there is “no reason at all to be scared or worried”.

Likewise, Syrian Minister of Finance Muhammad al-Hussein has emphasised the limited impact the global financial crisis will have on Syria. “The worldwide financial crisis could have an effect on Syria, but the government- is working with President Bashar al-Assad to make sure the effect is limited,” Hussein told the state daily newspaper Al-Thawra. He said Syria was “far away from the epicentre of the earthquake”.

Indirect impact

One government official striking a different note is Duraid Dargham, head of the government-run Commercial Bank of Syria, the country’s largest bank. In a full-page article published in the Tishreen newspaper in early October, Dargham said the danger posed to Syria by the global financial crisis was real and significant. “The economic crisis will have a big effect on Syria,” he wrote.

Dargham said Syria’s economy would take two main hits. The first will come in a decline in both the price and global demand for oil. Since the crisis erupted, the price of oil has fallen from a record SYP 6,510 (USD 140) per barrel to around SYP 2,557 (USD 55) a barrel and the slide is expected to continue. It’s a drop which could now make growth estimates for 2009 optimistic and will further widen the country’s budget deficit, a fact Hussein pointed out at a recent banking conference.

The second blow will come from remittances from Syrians living abroad who now number a massive 18m; Syria’s internal population is little more than 19m. On average, Syrian expatriates, many of whom earn high wages in the Gulf, inject SYP 37.2bn (USD 800m) annually in remittances into the Syrian economy. With many parts of the world entering recession and unemployment rising, this stream of foreign funds is expected to slow.

Jihad Yazigi, editor of the English-language economic newsletter The Syria Report, said Syria’s links to the Gulf markets make it vulnerable to the ongoing global economic turmoil. “A lot of money comes [to Syria] from the Gulf,” he said. “Some Syrians could be made redundant in the Gulf so we could see a slower pace of remittances and that could lead to more unemployment here.”

Yazigi also points to the possibility of foreign direct investment flows slowing over the next year. Rather than the dramatic blows being landed on the world’s leading economies like the US and Japan, Yazigi said the impact on Syria would come incrementally. “We haven’t seen anything yet, because the impact is indirect,” he said. “It won’t be as dramatic as the price of stocks. It will be an interesting sign if we see the delay of one to two big Gulf investments in Syria. Investors have to prioritise when they want to invest and Syria is not a priority for them. We haven’t felt it yet, but we will. It won’t be a big impact, but there will be an impact.”

Masalmeh points to tourism, an increasingly important money spinner in Syria, as another area likely to be negatively impacted as people around the world tighten their spending habits and cancel overseas holiday plans. “The crisis will affect tourism because there’ll be less money to spend,” she said. “If there’s no money, there’s no tourism.”

Feeling the squeeze

One Syrian company is already seeing the impact of the global financial crisis firsthand. At Muhanna for Sweets, a Damascus-based family sweets business founded in 1935, chief executive officer Mahmoud Muhanna said the global financial crisis could not come at a worse time. The company is already battling the impact of a cut in fuel subsidies which has seen the price of raw materials rise. As a result, the company has had to increase the prices of its goods – 30 to 40 percent for some sweets and 100 percent for others – at a time when foreign buyers in America and Europe are looking to save money. “All of the prices of raw materials – sugar, fat, and pistachios – have increased,” Muhanna said.

Three years ago, exports made up 40 percent of all sales at Muhanna for Sweets. Now they account for just 25 percent of business. Twenty-five percent of total exports go to the US, 5 to 10 percent go to the Gulf, while the rest go to Europe.

Muhanna does not expect any growth in his exports to US and European markets in the short term. As such the Gulf and local market will become all the more important. He said his company has been helped by the steady flow of tourists in the past several years, business travellers from the Gulf and the opening of new hotels such as the Four Seasons. But it’s a customer base that might not be so reliable in the coming months, he admits.

To counter a decline in exports, Muhanna is already thinking of a plan B: creating a line of less expensive sweets. Still, he doesn’t appear to be too worried about the financial turmoil creating a crisis in sweets consumption. “No matter what happens, people always buy Arab sweets,” he said.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘SYRIA TODAY’

Posted in ASIA, BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, ENERGY, ENERGY INDUSTRIES, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAMIC BANKS, JAPAN, PETROL, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, STOCK MARKETS, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, TOURISM INDUSTRIES, USA | Leave a Comment »

AER LINGUS CHIEF LOBBIES DUBLIN TO REPEL RYANAIR OFFER – THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF AER LINGUS BRANDED RYANAIR’S RENEWED TAKEOVER ATTEMPT AS “PATHETIC” YESTERDAY (Ireland)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 12, 2008

December 12, 2008

by Susan Thompson – The Times

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TIMES’ (UK)

Dermot Mannion said that Ryanair’s €1.40 offer per share, made on December 1, fell far short of the Irish flag carrier’s true value. The offer puts a €748 million (£665 million) value on the former state-controlled airline. It is half the amount that Ryanair offered two years ago when it first made a bid.

Mr Mannion, who has been lobbying the Irish Government for its help to repel the hostile bid, called Ryanair’s offered price “a pathetic sum in the context of the €1.3 billion in cash on the group’s balance sheet, the substantial value of our fleet and the value of the Heathrow slots”.

Mr Mannion met Noel Dempsey, the Irish Transport Minister, yesterday to seek government assurances that it would not sell any shares to Ryanair. The Government holds 25 per cent of Aer Lingus, while Ryanair is the top shareholder with 30 per cent.

Firm opposition until now from the Government had helped to blunt Ryanair’s ambitions. So too had a June 2007 ruling by European competition regulators that a takeover would create a near-monopoly in European flights out of Dublin.

However, since December 1, the Government has wavered because it faces a financial crisis involving a sharp drop in tax revenues and soaring deficit spending, and could badly use the cash that Ryanair is offering. Mr Dempsey declined to comment.

Michael O’Leary, Ryanair’s chief executive, has admitted that the €1.40 offer, if successful, would mean that Ryanair acquired its rival for “almost nothing”. However, he argued that the spate of airline bankruptcies caused by the economic downturn had strengthened the company’s position.

Mr O’Leary claimed that Aer Lingus had no medium-term future in the face of competition from Ryanair and Europe’s rapidly consolidating flag-carrier airlines.

Ryanair has sought to defuse opposition to its bid by offering to recognise Aer Lingus’s unions, cut the airline’s short-haul fares by 5 per cent, scrap its fuel surcharge and give control of landing slots at Heathrow to the Irish Government. Mr O’Leary also pledged to increase Aer Lingus’s workforce by 1,000.

If Ryanair is to succeed it must win support from shareholders, including Aer Lingus’s employees. The crew and pilots own about 18 per cent of the airline and have expressed concern about job and pay cuts if they are acquired by the budget carrier.

Aer Lingus shares slipped 0.7 per cent to €1.50. Ryanair shares fell 5.7 per cent to €3.04.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE TIMES’ (UK)

Posted in AIR TRANSPORT INDUSTRY, BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, COMMERCIAL PROTECTIONISM, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, IRELAND, ISLAMIC BANKS, NATIONAL WORK FORCES, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, STOCK MARKETS, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE WORK MARKET, THE WORKERS | Leave a Comment »

U.S. ARMS SALES UNDERMINE HUMAN RIGHTS, GROUP SAYS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 10, 2008

Dec. 10, 2008, 1:31PM

by Barry Schweid – Associated Press

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE HOUSTON CHRONICLE’ (USA)

WASHINGTON — The U.S. arms trade is booming — sales reached $32 billion last year — and more than half of the purchasers in the developing world are either undemocratic governments or regimes that engaged in human rights abuses, a private think tank reported today.

Timed to the 60th anniversary of the U.N.’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the report by the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan policy institute, named 13 of the top 25 arms purchasers in the developing world as either undemocratic or engaged in major human rights abuses.

The 13 listed in the report were Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Egypt, Colombia, Jordan, Bahrain, Oman, Morocco, Yemen and Tunisia.

Sales to these countries totaled more than $16.2 billion over 2006 and 2007.

The total “contrasts sharply with the Bush administration’s pro-democracy rhetoric,” the report said.

Also, the report said that 20 of the 27 nations engaged in major armed conflicts were receiving weapons and training from the United States.

“U.S. arms transfers are undermining human rights, weakening democracy and fueling conflict around the world,” the report said.

William D. Hartung, the lead author of the report, said, “The United States cannot demand respect for human rights and arm human rights abusers at the same time.”

U.S. arms sales grew to $32 billion in 2007, more than three times the level when President Bush took office in 2001, the report said.

The United States is the world’s largest arms supplier. U.S. exports range from combat aircraft to Pakistan, Morocco, Greece, Romania and Chile to small arms and light weapons to the Philippines, Egypt and Georgia.

In 2006 and 2007, the United States sold weapons to more than 174 states and territories.At the beginning of the Bush administration there were 123 arms clients, the report said.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE HOUSTON CHRONICLE’ (USA)

Posted in BAHRAIN, BANKING SYSTEMS, BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA -(DEC. 2008/JAN. 2009), CENTRAL BANKS, CHILE, COLOMBIA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, DEFENCE TREATIES, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, EGYPT, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, FOREIGN POLICIES - USA, FORMOSA - TAIWAN, GEORGIA, GREECE, HUMAN RIGHTS, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION - USA, INDUSTRIES, INDUSTRIES - USA, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, IRAQ, ISLAMIC BANKS, ISRAEL, JORDAN, KUWAIT, MILITARY CONTRACTS, MOROCCO, OMAN, PAKISTAN, PHILIPPINES, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, ROMANIA, SAUDI ARABIA, THE ARMS INDUSTRY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN STRUGGLE, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, THE LEBANESE CIVIL STRUGGLE, THE OCCUPATION WAR IN IRAQ, THE UNITED NATIONS, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES, USA, WAR IN AFGHANISTAN, WARS AND ARMED CONFLICTS, YEMEN | Leave a Comment »

ECONOMIC WOES: ISLAM’S ANSWER (Saudi Arabia)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 10, 2008

9 December 2008 Editorial

PUBLISHED BY ‘ARAB NEWS’ (Saudi Arabia)

Major new ideas or radical change tend not to happen in normal times when systems are running smoothly and people are generally content. It is in times of crisis that great change is usually triggered. We are in a time of crisis. Hardly a day passes without new tidings of financial disaster. The latest grim news is from the German insurance industry that predicts that 200,000 businesses will go bust in Europe and 62,000 in the US next year — which suggests that 2009 will not see the start of an economic recovery. Perhaps, given that we live in such “interesting” economic times, it is not so surprising then that on the same day the German report was published came the suggestion, from Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, that Muslim countries form an economic bloc.

The grand mufti’s comments, made in his address to the nearly three million pilgrims assembled at Mount Arafat for what is the spiritual climax of the annual Haj, has been picked up by the media across the world as if his sermon was political and economic. It was not. The main theme was a call to Muslims to show the world “the bright face of Islam”, to demonstrate forgiveness, love and peace and to shun extremism which can lead to terrorism.

It is far from the first time that the grand mufti has made such calls. What was new, however — and it clearly explains the sudden global interest — is his accompanying comments on the world’s present economic woes, the charge being that they have been brought about by human greed. Specifically it is the use of interest as the foundation of international finance that is to blame. From there has come the proposition that Muslim countries should reject interest, adopt Shariah-compliant economics and unite to form what could become, as he put it, a “formidable economic power”.

The grand mufti is not alone in taking a moral approach to the crisis; other religious leaders around the world have also blamed it on human greed. Nor is the idea of an Islamic economic union new. Calls for one regularly surface. Former Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz is a keen supporter of the idea. But the ideas are timely. The remarkable growth in Islamic banking in recent years was because an increasing number of concerned Muslims with financial muscle could see that many aspects of international banking and finance were inimical to Islamic law. They demanded an alternative. But, growing though they are, Shariah-compliant economics has remained the minority system. The Western economic order dominates — across the Muslim world too. The big difference now, however, is that that old order is seen to have demonstrably failed. In these uncertain times, governments and states are looking for ways to stimulate fresh economic growth. In Muslim countries, it is bound to result in renewed interest in Islamic finance and in an economic union. Given the present circumstances, perhaps such a bloc is an idea whose time has come. Certainly it deserves serious consideration. Of course, it would not be a good thing for the world to be divided into potentially competing blocs. That would be dangerous. Large, collaborating blocs, however, are a different matter. Not that an Islamic economic union could happen overnight. It would have to begin small and grow — the European Union’s path to its present existence. How it might come about is one thing; enthusiasm for it is another. In the present climate, it would indeed be remarkable if support for the notion does not grow.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘ARAB NEWS’ (Saudi Arabia)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAM, ISLAMIC BANKS, ISLAMIC DEVELOPMENT BANK, MACROECONOMY, PAKISTAN, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, SAUDI ARABIA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

LEBANESE ECONOMY EVADES EFFECTS OF GLOBAL CRISIS – REPORT

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 8, 2008

Monday, December 08, 2008

Lebanon This Week, with The Daily Star

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

BEIRUT: In its first report on Lebanon’s economy since the global financial crisis, the Institute of International Finance (IIF) indicated that there were no noticeable direct effects of the global financial turmoil on Lebanon and sovereign spreads have increased less than in other emerging markets in October and November 2008, according to Byblos Bank’s Lebanon This Week.

The report said that Lebanese banks have few direct links to foreign counterparts affected by the current financial market turmoil, and that the sector’s regulatory framework has limited banks’ exposure to structured products that have been at the core of the global crisis.

It added that the banking system remains well-capitalized and highly liquid.

The IIF added that macroeconomic developments have improved significantly since the Doha accord last May, but warned that the main risk to the outlook comes from a potential deterioration in the political and security situation in the run up to the May 2009 parliamentary elections.

It projected economic growth at 5.5 percent in 2008 and at 3.5 percent in 2009, adding that the spillover from the global economic slowdown could adversely affect tourism and construction activity.

It also noted that consumer price inflation peaked in July 2008 at 14 percent year-on-year, reflecting the sharp rise in commodity prices, and then declined to 10 percent in September. It expected inflation to average 12 percent in 2008.

The IIF considered that fiscal performance improved in 2008 and estimated the primary surplus to slightly exceed 2 percent of GDP this year.

But it cautioned that the overall fiscal deficit, while narrowing, remains very large due to the continued large interest payments on the public debt, and projected a deficit of 9.8 percent of GDP in 2008. The report forecast a fiscal deficit of 9 percent of GDP for 2009.

The IIF said Lebanon’s large public debt remains the country’s core macroeconomic challenge. It added that the government faces sizeable gross financing needs of $5.5 billion in 2009.

The report also predicted public debt to decline to 165 percent of GDP by the end of 2008.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in 'DOHA TALKS', BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INFLATION, INTERNATIONAL, ISLAMIC BANKS, LEBANON, MACROECONOMY, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LEBANESE CIVIL STRUGGLE | Leave a Comment »

BEIRUT BOURSE TRACKS LOSSES ABROAD (Lebanon)

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 8, 2008

Monday, December 08, 2008

BlomInvest, with The Daily Star

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

BEIRUT: With the deepening world recession, the Beirut Stock Exchange (BSE) continued to mimic the performance regional Arab stock exchanges that on average have fallen around 43 percent from the start of the year.

On a weekly basis, total volume of trades increased 48 percent to 1.29 million shares as investors rushed to liquidate their portfolios. But the corresponding value decreased 33 percent to $10.29 million on declining share prices that sank the BLOM Stock Index to a 52-week low of 1,183 with a year-to-date drop of 21 percent.

Of the 26 listed stocks on the Beirut Stock Exchange, 11 stocks exchanged hands this past week, of which 2 went up and 9 decreased. Solidere stocks represented 64.9 percent of the total value traded.

The banking sector accounted for the remaining 35.1 percent. In the banking sector, BLOM GDR dropped this week by 2.08 percent to $68.4 after trading 7,830 shares at $533,187. Audi Bank’s GDR stock went down by 3.65 percent to close at $54.1 following trades of 9,460 shares with a value of $518,676. Byblos Bank’s common stock increased slightly this week by 0.61 percent to $1.65 recording a volume of 566,400 shares valued at $939,953. On the other hand, its preferred stock class 2008 dropped by 2 percent to $97.9. Solidere stocks remained vulnerable this week as its A shares dipped 4.58 percent to close at $16.66, Solidere B also dropped 2.65 percent to $16.87.

As described last week, the overall situation on the Beirut Stock Exchange remains volatile and vulnerable to the ongoing financial crisis.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE DAILY STAR’ (Lebanon)

Posted in ALGERIA, BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, COMMERCE, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, EGYPT, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, INTERNATIONAL, ISLAMIC BANKS, LEBANON, LYBIA, MIDDLE EAST, MOROCCO, RECESSION, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, STOCK MARKETS, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »

ARAB ECONOMIES TO GROW DESPITE SETBACKS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 2, 2008

December 1, 2008 at 9:10 AM EST

OXFORD ANALYTICA – Exclusive – PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GLOBE AND MAIL’ (Canada)

SUBJECT: The impact of the world economic downturn on Arab economies.

SIGNIFICANCE: In contrast to the severity of the downturn in other parts of the world, the Arab world appears likely to experience relatively moderate losses. However, certain countries may be particularly vulnerable.

ANALYSIS: The IMF’s latest downward revisions of growth rate projections for 2009 place Arab countries in third place at 5.3 per cent after China and India at 8.5 per cent and 6.5 per cent respectively, although World Bank figures are somewhat less optimistic. Positive growth prospects reflect two key factors:

Macroeconomic fundamentals are positive, in particular the prospects for sustained investment growth, which will be driven by accumulated oil revenues and continuing oil incomes.

Regional capital markets, which have been hit by the crisis, are among the smallest and least significant in emerging markets.

Investment. Buoyant investment activity is now and will continue to be supported by oil income and wealth: The current account surplus of oil economies is expected to double to some $132-billion (U.S.) in 2008 against $77-billion in 2007.

Arab sovereign wealth funds possess at least $1.53-trillion in assets, with considerably more in reserves and accumulated private wealth.

Despite the slashing of oil revenues due to the present fall in oil prices, accumulated assets are likely to make up the difference from a regional standpoint – although particular countries may suffer.

Intra-Arab foreign direct investment has been rising steadily, from $8.8-billion between 1985-1995, to nearly $17-billion between 1995-2002, to $77-billion between 2002-07, with $14-billion in 2007 alone: FDI accounts for 12 per cent of regional capital formation compared to 7.8 per cent in developing countries as a whole.

GCC investors are now investing around 25 per cent of their oil wealth in the region compared to 15 per cent in 2003.

In oil, gas and energy, $520-billion worth of projects are planned for 2009-2013, down from a projected $650-billion before the crisis; even if only $400-billion worth are financed, $8-billion to $10-billion a month of investment will take place.

The crisis in Europe and the United States will strengthen the need for geographic diversification, and will confirm intra-Arab investments as a key category in Arab portfolios.

Investors will likely diversify away from real estate and tourism into other sectors such as food, transport, and medical diagnostics.

There have been official promises to maintain intra-Arab capital and investment flows, although the use of resources in domestic bailouts may limit the fulfilment of such commitments.

Market losses. The four largest markets – Dubai, Egypt, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia – have lost up to half of their value, mirroring heavy losses elsewhere. Another four markets – Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Qatar, and Oman – registered relatively moderate losses of 20-40 per cent. All had fallen from historical highs in summer, 2008.

There are a number of channels of contagion from global financial markets:

Exits by non-Arab investors have most seriously affected the more open Arab stock markets, namely those of Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.

Exposure to the US prime and sub-prime markets has affected players in Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE.

A more significant channel is heightened fear and uncertainty about the unfolding global recession; the region’s markets, whose trends have been dominated by excitement and herd behaviour, joined the global panic.

Negative sentiment overwhelmed the effects of positive fundamentals, including the strong results of many listed corporations for the first half of 2008.

Mitigated impact. Yet there are good reasons to believe that the falls in Arab markets will be less enduring, and have less negative broader impact, than in markets elsewhere:

The fall in OECD financial markets is the most severe in decades; in contrast, wild swings in the region are common.

Arab stock markets are highly volatile, narrow and illiquid; only a small proportion of total capitalization is traded.

The dominance of financial institutions in market indices made their fall in the present crisis inevitable; financials constitute 56 per cent of the S&P’s Pan Arab index, compared to 16 per cent in the Latin America index and 36 per cent for Africa.

Remarkably, the four smallest markets – Beirut, Jordan, Morocco, and Tunis – retained gains, indicating that intra-Arab investments have constituted a successful portfolio diversification strategy.

Arab markets are still constructing operational and regulatory structures. Gaping holes remain in corporate governance rules and practices, and the culture of retail investors is still underdeveloped. In 2007-2008 a series of investigations targeted insider dealings and share manipulation. Fines were handed to listed firms, brokers, and investment companies in Jordan, Egypt, UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Oman. However, the relative unsophistication of markets and their lesser significance in the broader economies has shielded Arab countries from the worst effects of the financial crisis.

Slowdown. The downside risks are not to be underestimated in a deep and complex world crisis: Oil revenues will be dented by declining world demand, forcing oil-rich countries to engage in belt-tightening and possibly threatening FDI flows to other Arab countries.

The cost of finance, in terms of spreads, has already risen to all-time highs, and all types of capital raised are below 2007 levels.

Falls in exports will cause losses across the region; many once-booming industries such as petrochemicals and fertilizers are now faced with sliding markets.

Falls in tourism will hit players such as Morocco, Egypt, and Dubai; falls in remittances will hit North African countries.

Dubai’s fall is likely to be the sharpest, linked as it is to the bursting of an enormous real estate bubble; mortgage lending had quintupled in the last five years, and government debt is high at around $70-billion.

Egypt, which is poor and heavily indebted, is likely to be hit hard by declines in the stock market, oil and gas income, and Suez revenues; even a moderate downturn is likely to feed growing public discontent.

CONCLUSION: Losses on Arab stock markets have wiped out abnormally high returns, but not the prospects of solid positive returns. The region is finally drawing on what has long underpinned East Asian and European growth: domestic and intra-regional investment. Supported by ample reserves and SWF resources, this strength should help the region to weather a world recession. Growth prospects are therefore dented, but remain positive.

From the Oxford Analytica Daily Brief

Copyright 2008 – Oxford Analytica Ltd. All rights reserved.

Founded in 1975, Oxford Analytica’s 1,000+ analysts provide international organizations with monitoring, research and consultancy services that explore the strategic implications of policy, economic, financial, industry, trade and security developments around the world.

www.oxan.com

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘THE GLOBE AND MAIL’ (Canada)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, CHINA, COMMERCE, COMMODITIES MARKET, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, ECONOMY - USA, EGYPT, ENERGY, EUROPE, FINANCIAL CRISIS - USA - 2008/2009, FINANCIAL CRISIS 2008/2009, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, IMF, INDIA, INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION, INDUSTRIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAMIC BANKS, ISLAMIC DEVELOPMENT BANK, LYBIA, MACROECONOMY, MOROCCO, NATURAL GAS, OPEC, PETROL, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, STOCK MARKETS, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS, THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE WALKER BUSH - 2008/Jan. 2009, USA, WORLD BANK | Leave a Comment »

ASSETS OF ARAB BANKS SET TO REACH $2 TRILLION

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on December 1, 2008

Sunday 30 November 2008 (02 Dhul Hijjah 1429)

by Mahmood Rafique – PUBLISHED BY ‘ARAB NEWS'(Saudi Arabia)

MANAMA: The consolidated assets of the Arab banks are set to reach $2 trillion with a projected net profit of $40 Kuwaiti traders follow the dealings of Kuwait's Stock Exchange in Kuwait Citybillion by the year-end, a senior official at the Union of Arab Banks, announced.

Adnan Ahmad Yousef, chairman of Union of Arab Banks, who attended the 2nd Arab-Greek Economic Forum last week in Athens, said that despite the economic upheaval, Arab banks would witness 15 percent annual growth in 2009.

Adnan, who is also chairman and chief executive of the Manama-headquartered AlBaraka Banking Group (ABG), said that the rapid growth of Arab banks had made them one of the most rapidly growing segments within the global banking system. “The balance sheet of Arab banks increased significantly in 2007 rising to $1.69 trillion, an increase of 30 percent over 2006. Our banking sector is made up of 470 institutions forming 267 commercial banks, 45 Islamic banks, 52 investment and national banks, 49 specialized banks and 57 foreign banks,” he said.

This sector, he said, employed more than 370,000 employees scattered across some 15,000 branches around the world. The sector plays a great role in the Arab economy, where it finances production, trade and investment. “It is also considered an essential partner in enhancing economic and social development, and laying the solid grounds of our economy that is always aimed at constant growth and the availability of credit between different Arab economies,” he said.

“As for Islamic finance the number of Islamic banks and institutions operating today in more than 75 countries in five continents is almost 300. Over 120 Islamic banks or 40 percent based in the Arab world and mainly in the GCC and their total assets reached more than $520 billion,” he added.

The Arab banking industry, he said, has shown a sustained growth and development and more Arab banks are making it to the list of the top 1,000 banks. By the end of 2007, 80 Arab banks were on the list, when nine of them made it for the first time.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE

PUBLISHED BY ‘ARAB NEWS'(Saudi Arabia)

Posted in BANKING SYSTEMS, CENTRAL BANKS, ECONOMIC CONJUNCTURE, ECONOMY, FINANCIAL MARKETS, FOREIGN POLICIES, INTERNATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS, ISLAM, ISLAMIC BANKS, ISLAMIC DEVELOPMENT BANK, KUWAIT, REGULATIONS AND BUSINESS TRANSPARENCY, THE ARABIAN PENINSULA, THE FLOW OF INVESTMENTS | Leave a Comment »