United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi, Feb. 21, 2012:  Federal National Council member Ahmed al Azaabi speaks during today's FNC session with the UAE Minister of Energy Mohammed al Hamili (not pictured) at the FNC building in Khalidiya, Abu Dhabi. (Silvia Razgova/The National)

Ahmed Al Zaabi
Federal National Council member Ahmad Al Zaabi speaks during yesterday's FNC session at the FNC building in Abu Dhabi, during which the price of petrol was debated.

Petrol price should be cut, says FNC



ABU DHABI // FNC members yesterday called for the price of petrol to be slashed, to bring it into line with prices in the rest of the GCC.

While drivers in Saudi Arabia pay as little as Dh0.68 for a litre of 95-octane fuel, forecourts in the UAE charge more than double that - Dh1.72 a litre. No other GCC country charges more than Dh1.14.

Members decided at yesterday's FNC session to form a temporary committee to consider the potential consequences of reducing petrol prices, despite protests from the Minister of Energy, Mohamed Al Hamili.

"UAE prices are tied to the global market," the minister said. "Neighbouring countries' prices are different because they subsidise petrol."

Ahmed Al Zaabi (Sharjah) argued that the UAE's oil production, which is greater than some other GCC members, should allow it to sell petrol for less.

"Look at the GCC, in Qatar a litre is Dh1, and in Saudi Arabia around that, and the same in Oman - and it doesn't produce much, less than here," he said.

The minister insisted the UAE was bound by international agreements to tie its prices to the global markets.

He said the Government was already supporting prices, at cost to petrol retailers, who had been losing money since 2003. The four main retailers lost Dh8.5billion in 2011 alone, and this year could lose Dh12bn, he said.

"These petrol companies have been victims of this for a long time. So there is indirect support for people."

Mr Al Zaabi said low-income families were struggling to afford more expensive fuel. "There will be a lot of problems if prices in country stays as they are," he said.

He called for an increase in local production, and for more refineries to be built.

The minister said importing petrol was sometimes cheaper than producing it locally, but Mr Al Zaabi replied: "As a UAE citizen, I should buy from my own country, like other GCC citizens do in their countries. Why are the global prices my problem?"

He suggested the council put a recommendation to the Cabinet that prices should be brought in line with the rest of the GCC.

The Speaker, Mohamed Al Murr (Dubai) said members should bear in mind that Emiratis were a minority in the UAE before making a recommendation that would benefit both Emiratis and expatriates.

Ahmed Al Amash (RAK) suggested bigger subsidies should be given only to UAE nationals - an idea immediately rejected by Salim Al Ameri (Abu Dhabi).

"The recommendation should be for all because in the UAE some expatriates work in the Government, and at the federal level they work for us," he said.

Mr Al Zaabi said cheaper petrol would have wider benefits, reducing the cost of transport and other services. "It is a continuous circle," he said. "We are not looking at a person, local or not, or company - but overall."

Mohamed Al Qubaisi (Abu Dhabi), who sympathised with the minister, suggested a temporary committee could be formed to consider the effect of cheaper petrol, as it was a "sensitive issue".

That proposal secured a majority of the FNC. Six members were elected to the new committee: Mr Al Zaabi, Hamad Al Rahoumi (Dubai), Dr Mona Al Bahar (Dubai), Sultan Al Sammhi (Fujariah), Marwan bin Ghalita (Dubai) and Mr Al Qubaisi (Abu Dhabi).

ROUTE TO TITLE

Round 1: Beat Leolia Jeanjean 6-1, 6-2
Round 2: Beat Naomi Osaka 7-6, 1-6, 7-5
Round 3: Beat Marie Bouzkova 6-4, 6-2
Round 4: Beat Anastasia Potapova 6-0, 6-0
Quarter-final: Beat Marketa Vondrousova 6-0, 6-2
Semi-final: Beat Coco Gauff 6-2, 6-4
Final: Beat Jasmine Paolini 6-2, 6-2

The specs: 2019 Jeep Wrangler

Price, base: Dh132,000

Engine: 3.6-litre V6

Gearbox: Eight-speed automatic

Power: 285hp @ 6,400rpm

Torque: 347Nm @ 4,100rpm

Fuel economy, combined: 9.6L to 10.3L / 100km

Director: Nag Ashwin

Starring: Prabhas, Saswata Chatterjee, Deepika Padukone, Amitabh Bachchan, Shobhana

Rating: ★★★★

The specs: 2018 Maserati GranTurismo/GranCabrio

Price, base Dh485,000 (GranTurismo) and Dh575,000 (GranCabrio)

Engine 4.7L V8

Transmission Six-speed automatic

Power 460hp @ 7,000rpm

Torque 520Nm @ 4,750rpm

Fuel economy, combined 14.3L (GranTurismo) and 14.5L (GranCabrio) / 100km

MATCH INFO

Uefa Champions League semi-final, second leg

Roma 4
Milner (15' OG), Dzeko (52'), Nainggolan (86', 90+4')

Liverpool 2
Mane (9'), Wijnaldum (25')

Building boom turning to bust as Turkey's economy slows

Deep in a provincial region of northwestern Turkey, it looks like a mirage - hundreds of luxury houses built in neat rows, their pointed towers somewhere between French chateau and Disney castle.

Meant to provide luxurious accommodations for foreign buyers, the houses are however standing empty in what is anything but a fairytale for their investors.

The ambitious development has been hit by regional turmoil as well as the slump in the Turkish construction industry - a key sector - as the country's economy heads towards what could be a hard landing in an intensifying downturn.

After a long period of solid growth, Turkey's economy contracted 1.1 per cent in the third quarter, and many economists expect it will enter into recession this year.

The country has been hit by high inflation and a currency crisis in August. The lira lost 28 per cent of its value against the dollar in 2018 and markets are still unconvinced by the readiness of the government under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to tackle underlying economic issues.

The villas close to the town centre of Mudurnu in the Bolu region are intended to resemble European architecture and are part of the Sarot Group's Burj Al Babas project.

But the development of 732 villas and a shopping centre - which began in 2014 - is now in limbo as Sarot Group has sought bankruptcy protection.

It is one of hundreds of Turkish companies that have done so as they seek cover from creditors and to restructure their debts.

How to turn your property into a holiday home
  1. Ensure decoration and styling – and portal photography – quality is high to achieve maximum rates.
  2. Research equivalent Airbnb homes in your location to ensure competitiveness.
  3. Post on all relevant platforms to reach the widest audience; whether you let personally or via an agency know your potential guest profile – aiming for the wrong demographic may leave your property empty.
  4. Factor in costs when working out if holiday letting is beneficial. The annual DCTM fee runs from Dh370 for a one-bedroom flat to Dh1,200. Tourism tax is Dh10-15 per bedroom, per night.
  5. Check your management company has a physical office, a valid DTCM licence and is licencing your property and paying tourism taxes. For transparency, regularly view your booking calendar.

Leap of Faith

Michael J Mazarr

Public Affairs

Dh67
 

 

 

RedCrow Intelligence Company Profile

Started: 2016

Founders: Hussein Nasser Eddin, Laila Akel, Tayeb Akel 

Based: Ramallah, Palestine

Sector: Technology, Security

# of staff: 13

Investment: $745,000

Investors: Palestine’s Ibtikar Fund, Abu Dhabi’s Gothams and angel investors

Results

1.30pm Handicap (PA) Dh50,000 (Dirt) 1,400m

Winner Al Suhooj, Saif Al Balushi (jockey), Khalifa Al Neyadi (trainer)

2pm Handicap (TB) 68,000 (D) 1,950m

Winner Miracle Maker, Xavier Ziani, Salem bin Ghadayer

2.30pm Maiden (TB) Dh60,000 (D) 1,600m

Winner Mazagran, Tadhg O’Shea, Satish Seemar

3pm Handicap (TB) Dh84,000 (D) 1,800m

Winner Tailor’s Row, Royston Ffrench, Salem bin Ghadayer

3.30pm Handicap (TB) Dh76,000 (D) 1,400m

Winner Alla Mahlak, Adrie de Vries, Rashed Bouresly

4pm Maiden (TB) Dh60,000 (D) 1,200m

Winner Hurry Up, Royston Ffrench, Salem bin Ghadayer

4.30pm Handicap (TB) Dh68,000 (D) 1,200m

Know before you go
  • Jebel Akhdar is a two-hour drive from Muscat airport or a six-hour drive from Dubai. It’s impossible to visit by car unless you have a 4x4. Phone ahead to the hotel to arrange a transfer.
  • If you’re driving, make sure your insurance covers Oman.
  • By air: Budget airlines Air Arabia, Flydubai and SalamAir offer direct routes to Muscat from the UAE.
  • Tourists from the Emirates (UAE nationals not included) must apply for an Omani visa online before arrival at evisa.rop.gov.om. The process typically takes several days.
  • Flash floods are probable due to the terrain and a lack of drainage. Always check the weather before venturing into any canyons or other remote areas and identify a plan of escape that includes high ground, shelter and parking where your car won’t be overtaken by sudden downpours.

 

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: Almouneer
Started: 2017
Founders: Dr Noha Khater and Rania Kadry
Based: Egypt
Number of staff: 120
Investment: Bootstrapped, with support from Insead and Egyptian government, seed round of
$3.6 million led by Global Ventures

EMIRATES'S REVISED A350 DEPLOYMENT SCHEDULE

Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates

A QUIET PLACE

Starring: Lupita Nyong'o, Joseph Quinn, Djimon Hounsou

Director: Michael Sarnoski

Rating: 4/5

Inside Out 2

Director: Kelsey Mann

Starring: Amy Poehler, Maya Hawke, Ayo Edebiri

Rating: 4.5/5

Company Profile

Name: Direct Debit System
Started: Sept 2017
Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
Investors: Elaine Jones
Number of employees: 8

Martin Sabbagh profile

Job: CEO JCDecaux Middle East

In the role: Since January 2015

Lives: In the UAE

Background: M&A, investment banking

Studied: Corporate finance

Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices

THE SPECS

Engine: six-litre W12 twin-turbo

Transmission: eight-speed dual clutch auto

Power: 626bhp

Torque: 900Nm

Price: Dh940,160 (plus VAT)

On sale: Q1 2020

The biog

Name: Sari Al Zubaidi

Occupation: co-founder of Cafe di Rosati

Age: 42

Marital status: single

Favourite drink: drip coffee V60

Favourite destination: Bali, Indonesia 

Favourite book: 100 Years of Solitude 

The specs

Engine: 2.0-litre 4-cyl turbo

Power: 247hp at 6,500rpm

Torque: 370Nm from 1,500-3,500rpm

Transmission: 10-speed auto

Fuel consumption: 7.8L/100km

Price: from Dh94,900

On sale: now

Results:

Men's wheelchair 800m T34: 1. Walid Ktila (TUN) 1.44.79; 2. Mohammed Al Hammadi (UAE) 1.45.88; 3. Isaac Towers (GBR) 1.46.46.

Fixtures

Sunday, December 8, Sharjah Cricket Stadium – UAE v USA

Monday, December 9, Sharjah Cricket Stadium – USA v Scotland

Wednesday, December 11, Sharjah Cricket Stadium – UAE v Scotland

Thursday, December 12, ICC Academy, Dubai – UAE v USA

Saturday, December 14, ICC Academy, Dubai – USA v Scotland

Sunday, December 15, ICC Academy, Dubai – UAE v Scotland

Note: All matches start at 10am, admission is free

Asian Cup 2019

Quarter-final

UAE v Australia, Friday, 8pm, Hazza bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain

On Instagram: @WithHopeUAE

Although social media can be harmful to our mental health, paradoxically, one of the antidotes comes with the many social-media accounts devoted to normalising mental-health struggles. With Hope UAE is one of them.
The group, which has about 3,600 followers, was started three years ago by five Emirati women to address the stigma surrounding the subject. Via Instagram, the group recently began featuring personal accounts by Emiratis. The posts are written under the hashtag #mymindmatters, along with a black-and-white photo of the subject holding the group’s signature red balloon.
“Depression is ugly,” says one of the users, Amani. “It paints everything around me and everything in me.”
Saaed, meanwhile, faces the daunting task of caring for four family members with psychological disorders. “I’ve had no support and no resources here to help me,” he says. “It has been, and still is, a one-man battle against the demons of fractured minds.”
In addition to With Hope UAE’s frank social-media presence, the group holds talks and workshops in Dubai. “Change takes time,” Reem Al Ali, vice chairman and a founding member of With Hope UAE, told The National earlier this year. “It won’t happen overnight, and it will take persistent and passionate people to bring about this change.”

Ant-Man and the Wasp

Director: Peyton Reed

Starring: Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Michael Douglas

Three stars

What is a Ponzi scheme?

A fraudulent investment operation where the scammer provides fake reports and generates returns for old investors through money paid by new investors, rather than through ligitimate business activities.

Match info:

Leicester City 1
Ghezzal (63')

Liverpool 2
Mane (10'), Firmino (45')

Traits of Chinese zodiac animals

Tiger:independent, successful, volatile
Rat:witty, creative, charming
Ox:diligent, perseverent, conservative
Rabbit:gracious, considerate, sensitive
Dragon:prosperous, brave, rash
Snake:calm, thoughtful, stubborn
Horse:faithful, energetic, carefree
Sheep:easy-going, peacemaker, curious
Monkey:family-orientated, clever, playful
Rooster:honest, confident, pompous
Dog:loyal, kind, perfectionist
Boar:loving, tolerant, indulgent  

The biog

Favourite colour: Brown

Favourite Movie: Resident Evil

Hobbies: Painting, Cooking, Imitating Voices

Favourite food: Pizza

Trivia: Was the voice of three characters in the Emirati animation, Shaabiyat Al Cartoon

Company profile

Name: Maly Tech
Started: 2023
Founder: Mo Ibrahim
Based: Dubai International Financial Centre
Sector: FinTech
Funds raised: $1.6 million
Current number of staff: 15
Investment stage: Pre-seed, planning first seed round
Investors: GCC-based angel investors

The Pope's itinerary

Sunday, February 3, 2019 - Rome to Abu Dhabi
1pm: departure by plane from Rome / Fiumicino to Abu Dhabi
10pm: arrival at Abu Dhabi Presidential Airport


Monday, February 4
12pm: welcome ceremony at the main entrance of the Presidential Palace
12.20pm: visit Abu Dhabi Crown Prince at Presidential Palace
5pm: private meeting with Muslim Council of Elders at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
6.10pm: Inter-religious in the Founder's Memorial


Tuesday, February 5 - Abu Dhabi to Rome
9.15am: private visit to undisclosed cathedral
10.30am: public mass at Zayed Sports City – with a homily by Pope Francis
12.40pm: farewell at Abu Dhabi Presidential Airport
1pm: departure by plane to Rome
5pm: arrival at the Rome / Ciampino International Airport

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

T20 World Cup Qualifier fixtures

Tuesday, October 29

Qualifier one, 2.10pm – Netherlands v UAE

Qualifier two, 7.30pm – Namibia v Oman

Wednesday, October 30

Qualifier three, 2.10pm – Scotland v loser of qualifier one

Qualifier four, 7.30pm – Hong Kong v loser of qualifier two

Thursday, October 31

Fifth-place playoff, 2.10pm – winner of qualifier three v winner of qualifier four

Friday, November 1

Semi-final one, 2.10pm – Ireland v winner of qualifier one

Semi-final two, 7.30pm – PNG v winner of qualifier two

Saturday, November 2

Third-place playoff, 2.10pm

Final, 7.30pm

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: OneOrder
Started: March 2022
Founders: Tamer Amer and Karim Maurice
Based: Cairo
Number of staff: 82
Investment stage: Series A

BACK TO ALEXANDRIA

Director: Tamer Ruggli

Starring: Nadine Labaki, Fanny Ardant

Rating: 3.5/5


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