Issue : August 2005
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What lies beneathSubscription
Iranians have been mining and digging gold for nearly 2,000 years. The ancient kings of Persia and Medea used to commission beautiful engraved gold rings as symbols of their temporal power and links with the divine.
Beirut still bears the scars of the 1975-90 civil war. Most of the reconstruction of the city centre has been completed, yet oddities remain. A stone's throw from the glitzy five-star Phoenicia hotel Intercontinental in the central district stands the Holiday Inn, a bullet-riddled reminder of darker days. A debate still rolls on about whether to redevelop the site of the hotel or preserve it as a memorial. But across the capital there are similar buildings still waiting to be restored.
After the speechesSubscription
Those hoping for political and economic change in Egypt have often been disappointed in the past. For many years, Cairo has been quick to talk about reforms but slow to implement them. So when a new cabinet was appointed in July 2004, many Egyptians saw new faces but expected the same old policies.
Shortlist drawn up for Hidd IWPPSubscription
About 15 developers are understood to have been prequalified by the Finance Ministry for the Hidd brownfield independent water and power project (IWPP). The request for proposals (RFP) was issued in late July, with bids due on 2 November.
Muscat issues RFQ Sharqiyah IWPSubscription
Requests for qualification (RFQs) are due from developers by 26 September for the sultanate's first independent water project (IWP), to serve the Sharqiyah region. A request for proposals (RFP) is expected in October. The estimated $80 million project calls for the installation of about 15 million gallons a day of desalination capacity. Among the international companies so far to have picked up tender documents are Marubeni Corporation, Mitsui & Company, Sojitz ...
Bids studied for Ras Abu Fontas B2Subscription
Qatar Electricity & Water Company (QEWC) is evaluating bids from about four companies for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract on the planned B2 project to expand capacity at the existing Ras Abu Fontas power and desalination complex. The submissions are understood to have come from France's Alstom Power, South Korea's Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Company, Italy's Fisia Italimpianti and the US' General Electric. ...
IMF cautious on Iraq economySubscription
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) issued a warning to Iraq in mid-August, shortly after its leaders postponed an agreement on the draft constitution until 22 August. In its first economic review of the former Baathist state in 25 years, the IMF urged Iraq to forge ahead with economic and political reforms after the ongoing insurgency and the slow rate of construction had resulted in the country achieving limited economic progress over the last 18 months.
Abu Dhabi opens up to expatriatesSubscription
Abu Dhabi has gone some way to resolving issues surrounding the question of property ownership in the federation, after issuing on 11 August a new property law for the emirate. Under the new law, foreigners will now be able to buy property in specific investment areas in the emirate, although the authorities have not gone as far as offering freehold. The law enables expatriates to own property under a 99-year land title agreement or a renewable 50-year surface area ownership deal. For ...
Padico establishes two new companiesSubscription
Palestine Development & Investment Company (Padico) will establish two new companies by the end of August. A $100 million enterprise, provisionally named the Gaza Palestine Investment Company, will invest in industrial, agricultural and housing projects in Gaza. The second company, with a paid-up capital of $60 million, will be based in Jenin in the northern West Bank and finance the same sector projects. Padico will retain a 25 per cent stake in both companies after it stages a ...
RFP nears on Qatargas 3Subscription
Banks have been informed that the request for proposals (RFQ) is due to be issued on 22 August for the financing package on the integrated Qatargas 3 liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, being carried out by a joint venture of Qatar Petroleum (QP) and the US' Conoco. However, a delay is expected. The financing is likely to be worth about $2,900 million and to closely mirror in structure the funding of the Qatar Liquefied Gas Company II (Qatargas II)project ...