Iran’s Rouhani blames fall in oil prices on ‘treachery’



TEHRAN // Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has blamed the sharp fall in global oil prices on “treachery,” apparently referring to Saudi Arabia’s opposition to production cuts.

Oil prices have plunged by more than 40 per cent since June to less than US$70 (Dh257) a barrel, placing severe strain on Iran’s economy, which is already crippled by international sanctions imposed over its nuclear programme. The country’s 2014 budget is based on oil priced at around $100 (Dh367) a barrel.

An Opec meeting failed to reach an agreement on scaling back production last month, mainly because of Saudi opposition.

Speaking at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Mr Rouhani said that the fall in prices is at least partly “politically motivated,” and the result of a “conspiracy against the interests of the region, the Muslim people and the Muslim world.”

“Iran and people of the region will not forget such conspiracies, or in other words, treachery against the interests of the Muslim world,” he said.

Opec controls about 40 per cent of the global oil market and Saudi Arabia, which is the world’s largest oil exporter, produces nearly 10 million barrels a day – a third of the Opec total. Riyadh has thus far refused to go along with Iran, Russia, Nigeria and Venezuela over scaling back oil production to drive prices up.

The fall in prices has mainly been attributed to a US oil boom and lower world demand caused by weakened economies. Saudi Arabia is opposed to cutting production because it fears its market share could erode.

Saudi Arabia and Iran are long-time rivals who have been fiercely divided over the civil war in Syria, where Shiite Iran supports President Bashar Al Assad, while Saudi Arabia backs the mainly Sunni rebels fighting to topple him.

* Associated Press and Reuters

MATCH INFO

Uefa Champions League last-16, second leg:

Real Madrid 1 (Asensio 70'), Ajax 4 (Ziyech 7', Neres 18', Tadic 62', Schone 72')

Ajax win 5-3 on aggregate

How to register as a donor

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2) There are about 11,000 patients in the country in need of organ transplants

3) People must be over 21. Emiratis and residents can register. 

4) The campaign uses the hashtag  #donate_hope

The BaaS ecosystem

The BaaS value chain consists of four key players:

Consumers: End-users of the financial product delivered

Distributors: Also known as embedders, these are the firms that embed baking services directly into their existing customer journeys

Enablers: Usually Big Tech or FinTech companies that help embed financial services into third-party platforms

Providers: Financial institutions holding a banking licence and offering regulated products

Key changes

Commission caps

For life insurance products with a savings component, Peter Hodgins of Clyde & Co said different caps apply to the saving and protection elements:

• For the saving component, a cap of 4.5 per cent of the annualised premium per year (which may not exceed 90 per cent of the annualised premium over the policy term). 

• On the protection component, there is a cap  of 10 per cent of the annualised premium per year (which may not exceed 160 per cent of the annualised premium over the policy term).

• Indemnity commission, the amount of commission that can be advanced to a product salesperson, can be 50 per cent of the annualised premium for the first year or 50 per cent of the total commissions on the policy calculated. 

• The remaining commission after deduction of the indemnity commission is paid equally over the premium payment term.

• For pure protection products, which only offer a life insurance component, the maximum commission will be 10 per cent of the annualised premium multiplied by the length of the policy in years.

Disclosure

Customers must now be provided with a full illustration of the product they are buying to ensure they understand the potential returns on savings products as well as the effects of any charges. There is also a “free-look” period of 30 days, where insurers must provide a full refund if the buyer wishes to cancel the policy.

“The illustration should provide for at least two scenarios to illustrate the performance of the product,” said Mr Hodgins. “All illustrations are required to be signed by the customer.”

Another illustration must outline surrender charges to ensure they understand the costs of exiting a fixed-term product early.

Illustrations must also be kept updatedand insurers must provide information on the top five investment funds available annually, including at least five years' performance data.

“This may be segregated based on the risk appetite of the customer (in which case, the top five funds for each segment must be provided),” said Mr Hodgins.

Product providers must also disclose the ratio of protection benefit to savings benefits. If a protection benefit ratio is less than 10 per cent "the product must carry a warning stating that it has limited or no protection benefit" Mr Hodgins added.

RESULTS

Bantamweight:
Zia Mashwani (PAK) bt Chris Corton (PHI)

Super lightweight:
Flavio Serafin (BRA) bt Mohammad Al Khatib (JOR)

Super lightweight:
Dwight Brooks (USA) bt Alex Nacfur (BRA)

Bantamweight:
Tariq Ismail (CAN) bt Jalal Al Daaja (JOR)

Featherweight:
Abdullatip Magomedov (RUS) bt Sulaiman Al Modhyan (KUW)

Middleweight:
Mohammad Fakhreddine (LEB) bt Christofer Silva (BRA)

Middleweight:
Rustam Chsiev (RUS) bt Tarek Suleiman (SYR)

Welterweight:
Khamzat Chimaev (SWE) bt Mzwandile Hlongwa (RSA)

Lightweight:
Alex Martinez (CAN) bt Anas Siraj Mounir (MAR)

Welterweight:
Jarrah Al Selawi (JOR) bt Abdoul Abdouraguimov (FRA)

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Xpanceo

Started: 2018

Founders: Roman Axelrod, Valentyn Volkov

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Smart contact lenses, augmented/virtual reality

Funding: $40 million

Investor: Opportunity Venture (Asia)

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

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

Rating: 4.5/5

Match info

Premier League

Manchester United 2 (Martial 30', Lingard 69')
Arsenal 2 (Mustafi 26', Rojo 68' OG)

Diriyah project at a glance

- Diriyah’s 1.9km King Salman Boulevard, a Parisian Champs-Elysees-inspired avenue, is scheduled for completion in 2028
- The Royal Diriyah Opera House is expected to be completed in four years
- Diriyah’s first of 42 hotels, the Bab Samhan hotel, will open in the first quarter of 2024
- On completion in 2030, the Diriyah project is forecast to accommodate more than 100,000 people
- The $63.2 billion Diriyah project will contribute $7.2 billion to the kingdom’s GDP
- It will create more than 178,000 jobs and aims to attract more than 50 million visits a year
- About 2,000 people work for the Diriyah Company, with more than 86 per cent being Saudi citizens