WEDNESDAY, MARCH 21, 2012
Issue No. 1380
150 Fils with IHT
Customs, KAC temporarily suspend strikes Finance Committee rejects Development Plan Staff Writers
KUWAIT: After days of labor action by the customs and airline workers, it has become increasingly evident that the government will not yield to their demands despite the huge losses incurred by the State. It seems that the government had the upper hand after the customs union leaders announced the suspension of their strike to allow the entrance of trucks, while Kuwait Airways syndicate announced in a press conference that it will consider next steps including the suspension of strikes to enter into negotiations with the government with the aim of reaching a compromise.
Meanwhile, His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah reiterated the government’s firm stance in confronting anything detrimental to the interest of the country and its citizens. His Highness pointed out that the demands made by certain government institutions are legitimate and fair, but should be through proper legal channels. He added that the demands should be made away from harming the supreme interests of the State and void of chaotic manifestations that taint the image of the country. Chairing a meeting on Tuesday by the ministerial committee tasked with keeping track of latest developments regarding the strike, the premier expressed satisfaction shown by the civil servants who placed the interest of the country above narrow personal interests. The meeting was attended by a group of pilots and engineers at the Kuwait Airways who expressed dismay over the turn of events and affirmed that the strikes do
not represent their positions. They went as far as expressing readiness to operate flights and serve passengers. In a related development, the prime minister received the chairwoman of the Volunteer Work Center Sheikha Amthal Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah to explain the extent of the harm caused by the strikes. She reassured the premier that the volunteers at the center are at the disposal of the government to serve citizens and residents. In the presence of the Minister of Finance Mustafa AlShamali and the Head of the Civil Service Commission Abdul-Aziz Al-Zabn, the Parliamentary Finance Committee will discuss today (Wednesday) wage increases, special allowances and ongoing strikes. The Committee Chairman MP Marzouq Al-Ghanem affirmed that the situation has reached an unacceptable point, and called on the union leaders to suspend their strikes for the sake of the country and citizens. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
Amir’s visit to Japan reveals strong diplomatic ties
His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah (left) is greeted by ofﬁcials as he arrives at Japan’s Haneda Airport on the ﬁrst stop of his tour of Asia, on March 20, 2012. (KUNA)
Iran will attack to defend itself: Khamenei
46 killed in Iraq attacks ahead of Arab summit
BAGHDAD: Bombings and shootings across Iraq killed 46 people on Tuesday, striking at police and Shiite pilgrims in a torrent of violence that officials had dreaded in the run-up to a Baghdad meeting of the Arab world’s top leaders, which the government hoped would showcase the nation’s stability. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, which also wounded more than 200 people. But authorities have feared Al-Qaeda or its Sunni sympathizers would try to thwart next week’s annual Arab League summit. The gathering is to be held in Iraq for the first time in a generation. Plans for Baghdad to host the meeting last year were postponed, in part because of concerns about Iraq’s security. One of the deadliest strikes Tuesday hit the Shiite holy city of Karbala, where officials said two car bombs exploded in a crowded shopping and restaurant area. Thirteen people were killed and another 50 were wounded in that attack, said local provincial council member Hussein Shadhan More on 4 Al-Aboudi.
No jail for Egypt police who killed protesters CAIRO: An Egyptian court on Tuesday gave suspended one-year sentences to 11 policemen accused of killing 22 protesters and wounding 44 others during last year’s uprising that ousted longtime leader Hosni Mubarak. Judge Sabri Hamed acquitted three other policemen at a court hearing in Cairo held under tight security. Families of the dead protesters rejected the verdict and vowed revenge. “Death to the murderers!” they chanted. In his ruling, Sabri said the defendants had a legitimate right to self defense when a mob pelted their station with rocks and firebombs, but they used excessive force in dealing with the threat, since those killed included some in homes a distance away. The verdict is the latest in what activists claim to be a pattern of acquittals and light sentences for police blamed for the deaths of hundreds of protesters during
the 18-day uprising. The suspended sentences mean the 11 convicted Tuesday will not go to prison. The ruling, carried by the official news agency MENA, said the crowd outside the police station in Cairo’s Hadayeq El-Qoubah district were genuine protesters, but they were later infiltrated by a “misled minority” that attacked the police. The killings took place on Jan. 28, 2011, the deadliest day of the uprising. On the same day, thousands of convicts escaped from prisons across the nation, and scores of police station were ransacked. The attackers made off with firearms and ammunition. Sabri said the police at Hadayeq ElQoubah station could not request backup because of the chaos everywhere in the city, and that it would have been “cowardly” if they were to surrender to their attackers. -AP
Indian sand artist Sudarshan Patnaik gives the ﬁnishing touches to a sand art sculpture created by him appealing for the release of two Italian tourists, on a beach in Puri, at the eastern Indian state of Orissa, March 20, 2012. Maoist guerrillas responsible for kidnapping two Italians in a remote region of Orissa repeated their demand for troops to halt counter-insurgency operations against them on Monday as authorities said they wanted to negotiate the men’s release. (Reuters)
TOKYO: On the occasion of his four-day state visit to Japan from Tuesday, Japanese major daily Asahi Shimbun had an exclusive interview with His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. The newspaper called the Amir “Japanophile,” noting that he is fond of the country and that the current trip marks his seventh visit.While expressing concern about the unstable situation of the Middle East in view of Iran’s nuclear crisis and the Syrian oppression of antiestablishment groups, which resulted in sharp, rises in oil prices, the Amir told the daily that he is keen to uphold his responsibility to stabilize the oil market and the Arabian Gulf as the leader of a major oil-producing country. The interview touched on several topics related to the relations and interactions between the two nations. Regarding the massive earthquake that hit the East of Japan last March, following which Kuwait has donated five million barrels of oil to the country, the Amir said, “Kuwait and Japan are celebrating over half a century of diplomatic relations, which have become well-established and increasingly prosperous over the past decades. “The aid from Kuwait to Japan is the result of these developed relations. Moreover, Kuwait will not forget the great stance of Japan when it stood by the rights of Kuwait during the Iraqi invasion in 1990. This position has both cemented the bonds of this relationship and contributed actively to the liberation of Kuwait from
Antioxidants may not help Alzheimer’s patients
the clutches of the occupation.” The Amir was asked to comment on the concerns over nuclear safety in the Middle East. In response to the Fukushima nuclear plant accident in March last year, concerns about the safety of nuclear plants are increasing around the world, the interviewer remarked, adding that Kuwait’s neighboring countries, such as the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Jordan have shown interest in acquiring a nuclear plant, much like Iran. In response the Amir said, “Kuwait calls on all countries to take extreme caution when considering building a nuclear power plant, taking into account the distance from the earthquake zones, natural disasters, and protecting these sites so as to dissipate all fears. Kuwait, through coordination between the GCC countries, has established a center for disaster management that is based in Kuwait to set preventive plans to counter any potential disaster.” The Amir was asked more pointedly whether there was possibility of a nuclear power project in Kuwait. To this he said, “Kuwait had a plan to establish a nuclear power plant and the related authorities have already started to prepare studies and scenarios. But considering the situation of the affected areas around the Fukushima plant after the accident, Kuwait decided to review the project, as a number of countries who have transferred their nuclear CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 energy programs to safer and more secure areas.”
French school gunman may have filmed killings
PARIS: French investigators scoured the Internet in search of potentially grim footage Tuesday after witnesses said a gunman was wearing a video camera as he murdered Jewish school children. News that the mystery serial killer, who is being hunted for three shootings including Monday’s anti-Semitic school assault, may have recorded his crime with a sports video camera came as France was struggling to come to terms with the tragedy. School pupils across the country joined public employees and lawmakers to observe a minute of silence for the victims of the gunman’s latest attack, and the country’s presidential race was effectively put on hold. President Nicolas Sarkozy paid silent homage to the victims at a school in Paris close to a Holocaust memorial, and afterwards admitted that authorities had as yet no clue as to the identity or motivations
of the killer. Police believe that a single gunman was responsible for the murder of an offduty paratrooper on March 11, of two of his comrades on Thursday and of a rabbi and three Jewish children in Monday’s school attack in Toulouse. “Anti-Semitism is obvious. The Jewish school attack was an anti-Semitic crime,” Sarkozy told reporters at the Paris school after meeting children. “But the soldiers? Was it because they were back from Afghanistan? Was it because they were from minorities? We don’t know,” he said. “We must be very cautious until we have arrested someone.” The three soldiers who died in last week’s attacks were French citizens of North African origin, while another who was critically wounded in the attack was black and from the French West Indies. See also 5 -AFP
Einstein the scientist, dreamer, lover: Online
JERUSALEM: At speeds even he could barely imagine, Albert Einstein’s private papers and innermost thoughts will soon be available online, from a rare scribble of “E=mc2” in his own hand, to political pipe-dreams and secret love letters to his mistress. Fifty-seven years after the Nobel Prize-winning physicist’s death, the Israeli university which he helped found opened Internet access on Monday to some of the 80,000 documents Einstein bequeathed to it in his will. It will go on adding more at http://alberteinstein.info and in time, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem says, it is committed to digitizing its entire Einstein archive. Among items likely to attract popular attention is a very rare manuscript example of the formula the author of the theory of relativity proposed in 1905, E=mc2, where energy, E, equals mass times c - the speed of light in a vacuum squared. Once published, a cache of two dozen love letters to the woman who would become his second wife - but written while he was still married to his first - may also attract the curious. So too may an idealistic proposal in 1930 for a “secret council” of Jews and Arabs to bring peace to the Middle East. At present, only a selection of documents dating from before 1923, when Einstein was 44, are available. As papers are scanned, the bulk of them in Einstein’s native German, the university will publish English translations and notes, said Hanoch Gutfreund, whose committee oversees the archive. More on 16
Tunisians holding their country’s ﬂags shout during a demonstration on March 20, 2012 in Tunis. Tunisians celebrated their country’s independence day Tuesday amid fears of a widening divide between secular and religious movements in the newly democratized nation. “This festival is an opportunity for us all to rethink our relationships, to live with our differences and despite our differences,” President Moncef Marzouki told a ﬂag-raising ceremony at the presidential palace in Carthage. (AFP) More on 4
New clue may help uncover fate of Amelia Earhart
WASHINGTON: A new clue in one of the 20th century’s most enduring mysteries could soon uncover the fate of American aviator Amelia Earhart, who went missing without a trace over the South Pacific 75 years ago, investigators said Tuesday. Enhanced analysis of a photograph taken just months after Earhart’s Lockheed Electra plane vanished shows what experts think may be the landing gear of the aircraft protruding from the waters off the remote island of Nikumaroro, in what is now the Pacific nation of Kiribati, they said. Armed with that analysis by the State Department, historians, scientists and salvagers from The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, are returning to the island in July in the hope of finding the wreckage of Earhart’s plane and perhaps even the remains of the pilot and her navigator Fred Noonan. Ric Gillespie, executive director of the group, acknowledged that the evidence was “circumstantial” but “strong” but stopped short of predicting success. The new search is scheduled to last for 10 days in July and will use state-of-the-art underwater robotic submarines and map-
ping equipment. “The most important thing is not whether we find the ultimate answer or what we find, it is the way we look,” he said. “We see this opportunity to explore ... the last great American mystery of the 20th century as a vehicle for demonstrating how to go about figuring out what is true.” Earhart and Noonan disappeared July 2, 1937, while flying from New Guinea to Howland Island as part of her attempt to become the first female pilot to circumnavigate the globe. Extensive searches at the time uncovered nothing and many historians are convinced they crashed into the ocean. In addition, conspiracy theories, including claims that they were US government agents captured by the Japanese before the Second World War, still abound despite having been largely debunked. Gillepsie’s group believes Earhart and Noonan may have managed to land on a reef abutting the atoll, then known as Gardner Island, and survived for a short time. They surmise that the plane was washed off the reef by high tides shortly after the landing and that the wreckage may be found in the deep waters nearby. -AP
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Amir’s visit to Japan reveals strong diplomatic ties CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
The Amir was asked what the GCC reaction would be in case of an Israeli or American military action against Iran. Sheikh Sabah said, “Kuwait is concerned, as the rest of the world is, about the continued Iranian non-cooperation with the requirements of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) regarding its nuclear program. Kuwait is concerned in particular about Iran’s nuclear program at the Bushehr reactor, located on the Arabian Gulf, which is the source of water for the Gulf States.” Should there be a leak from this reactor, the Amir stressed, “this would result in a disaster not only for Kuwait but for all the countries on the Arabian Gulf and (those) which depend on the desalination of the Gulf’s sea for their drinking water.” He added, “Kuwait hopes that this matter would be solved through peaceful means in order to avoid the disastrous results of any military action. It is natural and logical that Kuwait and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries take all the necessary measures and precautions to counter any possible escalation.” On the possible blockade of the Strait of Hormuz by Iran as reaction to economic sanctions by Europe and America, the Amir was asked whether Kuwait has an alternative means to export oil without crossing the Strait. Sheikh Sabah said, “The strait of Hormuz is considered a vital artery for the world as approximately half of the oil supply passes through it, and the GCC countries, including Kuwait, have contacted the officials in Iran to ensure that no action is taken to close the Strait of Hormuz ... We have received assurances from Iran that it will not take this step. International efforts are also in this direction.” “For a long time, Kuwait has been working on providing a stockpile of oil through its global companies outside the Gulf region to ensure the constant supply to the countries importing the Kuwaiti oil and also it is contacting countries in the GCC to face such a possibility,” he stated. As for high oil prices and whether Kuwait has the ability to increase its production to stabilize the prices, the Amir said, “Kuwait is seeking, within OPEC, to supply the market according to its needs to ensure the price stability and to provide this strategic commodity at fair prices. Kuwait is also currently utilizing international expertise to increase its oil production in order to meet the future needs of the market, and we think that the fair price for both producing and consuming countries is one hundred US dollars a bar-
Kuwaiti Ambassador to Japan Abdulrahman Al-Otaibi (left) accompanying His Highness the Amir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah (right) in the airport on Tuesday, March 20, 2012. (KUNA)
rel.” The editor then asked the Amir about the Arab Spring, noting the landslide victories of Islamist political parties in the countries concerned. “The political parties which have an Islamic aspect are part of the political fabric of the region’s countries. And the influence of these parties might rise or fall based on the facts on the local arena and the ability of those parties to interact positively with these facts,” the Amir argued. “The victory of those parties comes as a result of fair democratic practices, result of which everyone should respect and deal with realistically as ‘the peoples’ choice’.”
Lawmakers call on government to apply audio-visual law Faisal Al-Yateem and Hamad AlAzmi Staff Writers
KUWAIT: The dinner celebration that was held in the honor of the Chief of Awazm Tribe Falah Bin Jamae was attended by a large number of the members as well as several Members of Parliament (MPs) who announced absolute support to the chief against the inappropriate statement that was made on Sunday by the MP Hussein Al-Qallaf. Meanwhile, MPs and the other attendants called on the government for endorsing a legal action against the channel Scope in order to defuse sedition and maintain national unity. On his part, MP Jamaan Al-Harbash said, “When Kuwait was surrounded by corruption Bin Jamae played a significant role to save the country from corruption,” adding that he and the opposition MPs supported the chief and they will do anything the chief wants them to do. MP Musallam Al-Barrak asked the authorities to take action against the TV channel otherwise the government will be held accountable. MP Dr. Obaid Al-Wasmi said the government should respond to the people’s demand to apply law immediately, particularly after the citizens are aware of those who try to stir sedition amongst the society’s fabric. Al-Wasmi said that the Prime Minister should resign if he fails to apply to law. MP Dr. Adel Al-Damkhi said that the
stand of the chief contributed effectively in shaping the current positive changes that occurred in the country after dissolving the former National Assembly as well as the government. He addressed the Minister of Information saying that if the he doesn’t endorse an effective stand, the lawmakers will do so inside the walls of Parliament. MP Falah Al-Sawwagh emphasized that the opposition MPs support the chief and they are ready for escalation if the government doesn`t adopt a clear stand against agitators who attempt to undermine national unity. The Head of Municipal Council Zaid Ayesh Al-Azmi warned that the tribe will not hesitate to apply the law if the government fails to do so, stressing that the tribe will not tolerate similar interviews in the future. The MP Bader Al-Dahoum indicated that Iran and Ba’ath party plan to stir sedition in Kuwait and consequently called on the government to shut down Scope TV channel. Meanwhile, Sheikh Faisal Al-Homoud Al-Malek Al-Sabah expressed his respect to the Awazem tribe and its chief, describing the Bin Jamae as a great icon who exerted sterling efforts in the service of Kuwait. AlSabah affirmed that everyone must respect the different Kuwaiti tribes. He expressed his regret to the inappropriate statement about the prominent figure through corrupt media means which broadcast suspected statements that contribute in undermining national unity.
Customs, KAC temporarily suspend strikes continued from page 1
Al-Ghanem called for the examination of the demands across the board, rather than restricting it to the strikers only. He stressed that the study must be scientific and inclusive in accordance with the capacity of the State. The MP also warned the government of repeating the same mistake as its predecessor. A parliamentary source pointed out that the majority in Parliament is inclined toward endorsing an appropriate wage increase with a law to be issued by the National Assembly if the government continues to drag its feet on the matter or insists on an ungenerous pay raise. In addition, the source noted that in the event that the government fails tomorrow’s session by failing to attend, the Parliament will be in a position to take a decision during the ordinary session on Tuesday. The source added that the Parliament, in this case, can assign the Finance Committee to submit an urgent report on wage increase and submit it for endorsement. For his part, the Finance Committee Rapporteur Ahmad Lari called on the government to attend the planned meeting today and the Parliament’s session tomorrow to end the impasse at the Customs Department and the Kuwait Airways Corporation. He stressed that the law must be enforced in the best interest of the country and the citizens. Lari added that the MPs are with the strikers in expressing their demands and rights as long as the interests of the country and citizens are not undermined. Additionally, MP Dr. Faisal Al-Mislem urged the union leaders to suspend their strikes until the outcome of the Parliament’s Thursday session is known. The lawmaker called on the government to attend the session to defend its position rather than maintain silence. In another development, the Parliamentary Finance Committee overwhelmingly rebuffed the State’s Annual
The Japanese editor then recalled recent talk that Jordan and Morocco could be brought into GCC membership and asked about Kuwait’s stance on the matter. “We, the GCC countries, have special cooperation with Jordan and Morocco and we have agreed together on achieving a strategic partnership through which we can provide the necessary support to increase their pace of economic development.” He added, “Consequently, they would contribute to the support of security and stability in their countries and in the region. We have laid the foundations of this strategy and agreed on its concepts.” On the economic scene, the Kuwaiti leader was asked to
comment on the impact of the euro zone crisis on the GCC unified currency program. His Highness the Amir said, “The Gulf’s unified currency program is subject to extensive and in-depth studies by economic advisers to ensure the issue of a strong Gulf currency according to the foundation and principles which ensure its strength and stability. There is no doubt that both the positive and negative aspects of the global economic crisis in general and the European crisis in particular will be considered when setting a comprehensive vision of this currency in order to immunize it.” On Syria, the Amir was asked whether the GCC should somehow push the Assad regime. “Since the first spark of the crisis in Syria, the GCC countries have exerted their efforts within the Arab League to push the Syrian regime and persuade it to meet the just demands of the Syrian people. And Kuwait has been playing a leading role with the rest of the world and through the United Nations and the Human Rights Council to ensure the security and safety of the Syrian people.” When it comes to international community support to dissident groups in Syria, the Amir said, “The Syrian opposition has a big responsibility which requires its unity in order to ensure the facilitation of the support by the international community. “On several occasions, the Arab League has called on the opposition parties to unite in order to achieve and facilitate the achievement of their demands and thereby help convince the international community to provide more support.” On the Middle Eastern Peace Initiative, the editor noted that it has been 10 years since the declaration of the “Peace Initiative” by the Arab League. The Amir said, “The Arab countries have sought for decades to ensure a just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East, and the peace initiative which was launched at the Beirut Summit came to form a roadmap that would be suitable whenever Israel’s intentions improved and committed it to implement the resolutions of international legitimacy timelessly and with no time-bounding. “On various occasions and on different platforms, Kuwait has called on the United Nations and the peace-sponsoring countries to carry out their responsibilities in pushing Israel to make it comply with all UN resolutions so that the region in particular and the whole world in general could enjoy a just and lasting peace which achieves the righteous demands of the Palestinian people. -KUNA
MP Al-Mislem: Failure of government, National Assembly to grant rights of employees led to escalation Staff Writer
KUWAIT: Member of Parliament (MP) Faisal Al-Mislem asked labor unions to suspend their strikes until the results of the National Assembly’s session on Thursday. The assembly is expected to discuss strikes and allowances. He added that the failure of the government and assembly in granting employees their rights will lead to further escalation. He added that the government’s policy regarding allowances and salary increases are among the main reasons behind strikes and explained that injustice, political compliments, and settling political conflicts lead to major problems. Moreover, he stated that unions have reminded the current government of the vows and commitments made by the previous one. He noted that the minister of finance was contacted to fulfill those commitments, but after the formation of the Civil Service Commission, the government backpedaled on its previous promises and approved salary increases from its own perspective. He said that MPs informed His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak that the government must fulfill the commitments made by previous governments and discuss problems with unions; however the government ignored those suggestions. He stated that MPs met with the government and offered advice to unions in order to reach common grounds. The premier asked governmental apparatuses to meet with unions after the employees agreed to compromise 50 percent of their demands, yet the government backpedaled. Furthermore, Al-Mislem revealed that the last interference by the MPs was to hold special session at the National Assembly with the govern-
Development Plan. The committee’s chairman Marzouq AlGhanem said the plan is like a carbon copy of the previous ones and lacks a State vision. In the same context, MP Riadh Al-Adsani asserted that the plan has been rejected largely because it doesn’t represent reality and cannot be implemented not even in ten years. He called on the government to come up with a proper plan of action rather than a “fictions and failed one.” The Minister of Public Works and the Minister of State for Development Dr.Fadel Safar stated that the government side has met with the Parliamentary Finance Committee to discuss the Third Annual Development Plan for the fiscal year 2012 - 2013. After the meeting, the minister told reporters that members of the committee made several points and raised concerns over the lack of implementation of what is contained in the plan. “We admit that the achievements are below the expectations and inconsistent with the plan. However, we are pushing for the accomplishment of the plan through concerted efforts,” Safar said. He also promised to address the shortfalls within the plan through removing the obstacles in the coming years. “I explained to the committee members that the plan should be part of the societal issues, rather than holding the government alone responsible for it, particularly since it involves legislative, legal, infrastructural and social aspects,” the minister further pointed out. He added that there have been about 19 draft laws which have been referred to the Parliament and are expected to be finalized soon. In other news, MP Musallam Al-Barrak has addressed a cascade of questions to the Oil Minister demanding answers about oil projects related to foreign refineries. The MP specifically asked about the cost of China refinery project, the partners and Kuwait Petroleum Corporation’s (KPC) share in it.
Photo of Member of Parliament Faisal Al-Mislem (right) speaking to National Assembly Speaker Ahmad Al-Saadoun (left) during Tuesday’s Parliamentary session, March 15, 2012. (Al Watan)
ment; however, this invitation has not yet been accepted by the government. He advised the government to attend this session as well as the meeting that will be held with the financial committee on Wednesday in order to explain and defend its points of view. He warned against the government’s current suspicious silence. He underlined the fact that unions are keener
than the government to serve the people, which is evident by the fact that unions have made comprises regarding their demands, since they are against suspending the services offered to the public. He noted that unions have explained several times that strikes are merely means to reach a certain goal, but the government is adamant in refusing to hold any negotiations with the unions.
Muslim Brotherhood remains second best: Lieutenant General Khalfan Mohammad Al-Hindi Staff Writer
KUWAIT: The Chief of Dubai Police Force Lieutenant General Dhahi Khalfan, insisted that unlike many Arab countries, the Gulf States have never produced such extreme ideas nor have they known radical groups such as the militias of Al-Gaddhafi, Al-Assad’s thugs or any other of this sort. He added that such political trends may not appeal to the mentality of the citizens of the Gulf States. He stressed that the new generation need to be looked after and inducted to moderacy and normalcy. In his own words, Lieutenant General Khalfan said that to join a political party is not fruitful because such parties promote sedition and wrong affiliation and sense of belonging. He cited the United States of America as a good example of how the country, even though a super power with large population, has only two political parties; the Democrats and the Republicans. On the other hand, as he argued, a smaller country like Iraq has multiple political parties each of one of which is keen to come to prominence at the expense of the interest of the country and the people. He added that Kuwait which was the first to introduce the democratic principle in the form of parliament in the Gulf region, however it has various blocs that try to dominate the parliament. He believes such diversity and different opinions as each trying to enforce their agenda would certainly not lead to prosperity and development. As for the Muslim Brotherhood, Khalfan was forthcoming about his opinion saying that the Brotherhood has no
credibility as they tend to cast doubts into other people’s intentions. “They are typically unable to lead. They will always be the second best but never the first choice because they are simply unable to be responsible,” he commented. He also expressed his belief that the Gulf States will never allow such organization to turn the table on them. He said that the way the Muslim Brotherhood is being dealt with since their political triumph in Egypt has been different from the way they were looked at in the past. As for the Egyptian born Qatari National and the Head of the Muslim Scholars Council Sheikh Yousef Al-Qardhawi, Lieutenant General Khalfan said that if Al-Qardhawi says anything against the United Arab Emirates, he would personally issue a arrest warrant against him, adding that just two months earlier the office of a son in law of AlQardhawi was shut down by the UAE authority. He commented that this is the way to deal with them and that if they don’t like it, they may leave the country where they can receive the instruction of the spiritual leader of the Muslim brotherhood directly. He went on to criticize one of “Al-Qardhawi’s pupils” who yelled at one UAE citizen saying that “even the shoes of Al-Qardhawi are worthier than him”. The Police Force Chief wondered if this is the kind of teaching and culture the Muslim Brotherhood is teaching their followers. Khalfan pointed out that perhaps one of the motives behind Al-Qardhawi’s attack on the UAE was because they shut down the office of his son in law because such activity is considered by the authority as undesirable. He couldn’t commit himself to the motives adding that he can’t be certain.
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
MP Al-Yahya: Situation alarming, society divided Mohammed Khaled Staff Writer
KUWAIT: Member of Parliament (MP) Faisal Al-Yahya said that strikes illustrate division among the different society factions, as perhaps the electoral system could’ve led to an incompetent Parliament. He added that the government does not reflect the society and that citizens suffer serious problems in education, university admission, unemployment, and having to wait for several years before receiving a governmental house, in addition to the poor health services that force citizens to resort to private hospitals. He criticized those who refuse to gain experiences from the developmental plans in other countries under the pretence that Kuwait is different, which leads to rejecting unconventional ideas that can benefit Kuwait. Moreover, he mentioned that the situation in Kuwait is alarming, since the society is divided between Bedouins, Urban, Sunnis, and Shiites; in addition to strikes that reveal that part of the society believes that it has not received its rights. He explained that the National Assembly and government will never be productive because of the framework that they operate in. He noted that democracy requires political blocs that adopt serious work agendas that allow the people to choose from. He added that the government must also have
Ministry of Health employees are seen taking part in a sit-in that was staged on Tuesday, March 20, 2012. The employees were calling for salary increments and cadres. (Al Watan)
a clear program that allows the people to hold it accountable for its work every four years. However, he stated that the current political system results in minor blocs that may agree on main issue, but differ in details and mechanisms, which hinders development. He said that the current government is no different than the previous ones, because it lacks an efficient program. Meanwhile, MP Osama Al-Sha-
Kuwait offers special care for disabled people: Official Parents of disabled to organize marathon in Kuwait
KUWAIT: The Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs offers great care to people with special needs, and meets their demands, and is working to end their suffering and integrate them in society, according to Assistant Undersecretary for Cultural Affairs at the Ministry Khlaif AlOthaina. He added in a speech he gave Monday night at the annual ceremony of the committee for people with special needs, that the country is exerting all possible effort to serve this segment of society through governmental and public institutions. The event was themed (We understand them and care for them), held under the auspices of the Ministry’s Undersecretary Dr. Adel Al-Falah. The Ministry opened a number of centers for people with special needs to offer them religious education with cooperation of academic experts. The Ministry is working in cooperation with Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, and The Public Authority for Youth and Sports to train specialized manpower and offer financial support to those people through centers set up for that purpose.Vice Chairman of the
committee for special needs centers Dr. Bader Al-Mutairi said the society has a duty to care for this group of people, in a manner that addresses their unique difficulties. In related news, the Kuwaiti Society for Parents of the Disabled will organize a marathon entitled (give me a chance and watch) on Thursday, to raise awareness for the rights of the disabled. The efforts are being made to educate and guide people with disabilities and their families on the importance of sport for the lives of the disabled and their role in their rehabilitation and reintegration to society, said chairman of the society Rihab Bourisli. Sport is important to provide psycho-social support for people with disabilities, in addition that the government is working to encourage disabled athletes to exercise with others as equal, she added. For his part, the marathon aims at urging the media to give a positive image of disabled, according to the vice chairman of society, Fahad Al-Sahli. He added that the marathon will be participated by a number of disabled students, government and members of the diplomatic corps in Kuwait as well as different organization working with disabilities and chance for all.The marathon will be held in Kathma Club, under the patronage of the Minister of Social Affairs and Labor, Ahmad Al-Rujaib and a number of important people and diplomats. -KUNA
Republic of Korea opens new chancery, embarks on new era in bilateral relations Ricky Laxa Staff Writer
KUWAIT: Deputy Minister of the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade Lee Hyuk, inaugurated on Monday evening the new chancery of Korea in the presence of dignitaries that included Kuwait’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Khaled Al-Jarallah and various diplomatic missions accredited in Kuwait. “I strongly believe that Kuwait and Republic of Korea should not remain only as business partners. We should become friends by deepening the understanding of each other and by advancing cultural and people-to-people exchanges. I am confident that this new chancery, along with the new Ambassador’s residence, will serve as catalysts to further expand our friendship in wide-ranging area. Even though geographically apart, we can become friends and even neighbors in this world which is getting ever smaller,” said Hyuk in his inaugural speech. “I truly believe that the new chancery is a symbol of opening a new era in bilateral relations between the Republic of Korea and the State of Kuwait. Our bilateral relations started mainly from economic area.
Officials of the Republic of Korea and State of Kuwait plant a tree symbolic of strong and emerging relationship between the two countries.
As all of you may know, Kuwait is one of Korea’s most important economic partner countries in the world. Kuwait is the second largest crude oil supplier to Korea and, in turn, Korea is the second largest oil importing country from Kuwait. Also, the Korean companies in Kuwait have been executing mega ventures in several infrastructure constructions since 1960s, roads, oil, water and electricity projects, in particular,” the Korean Deputy Minister said. To add, he stated that the firm economic partnership expanded to include cooperation in the military field and that the Korean government is working on strengthening mutual understanding with Kuwait throughout increasing people-topeople contacts and exchanges. The Korean Minister explained that ten undersecretary-level officials of Kuwait visited Korea in September last year and attended a policy dialogue and training program along with their Korean counterparts. This aims to help the Kuwaiti officials learn and benefit from Korea’s unique and rapid development experience. “We are working with the Kuwaiti side on organizing the second program this year. The Korean Culture Diwaniya and various cultural programs to spread many aspects of Korean culture to the Kuwaiti society and seeks to contribute to Kuwait ambitious development plan and is ready to mobilize all required expertise and potentials in different sectors to turn the plan into a reality”, Deputy Minister Lee added. The Deputy Minister warmly thanked all those who contributed to the completion of the new building for the Korean Embassy. He also explained that the new Embassy building tried to harmonize some Korean cultural aspects with Kuwait’s rich tradition, culture and heritage. According to him, while it reflected the motives of Korean Alphabet on the outside wall, bring the colors of the Korean traditional clothing (Hanbok) in to the glasses of the first floor reception area, and used granite, which abundant in Korea, as a finishing materials, it also combined with the courtyard structure of the Kuwaiti traditional house. The Korean Ambassador, in turn, stressed that the complex is a testament to Korea’s friendship with the Kuwaiti people. He hailed the distinguished Korean-Kuwaiti ties in all fields. The Ambassador, on behalf of the entire embassy staff, expressed appreciation for all those who contributed to the completion of the project and particularly his predecessor.
heen asserted that the political arena has witnessed a real change and that youths were the main catalyst behind this significant change. He asked the media to address the new political status realistically and stressed the importance of collective political work. He warned against attempts to isolate youths politically, since this makes it easy for them to be penetrated.
Customs’ strikes cause fish prices to increase: Fishermen Nancy Oteifa Staff Writer
KUWAIT: Recently, the prices of goods in the country had increased to a level that caused consumers to complain about their spending, saying that they cannot cope with the high inflation rate which is currently taking place in the country. The prices of fish and vegetables have increased due to the Kuwaiti customs’ strikes as well as other factors such as the inadequate weather for growing crops. Al Watan Daily visited the fish market and found that the prices of fish had increased by almost 50 percent compared to the previous month, causing over 30 percent decrease in the number of customers. “The prices of fish did not increase as people are saying, the increase in prices is reasonable and not that expensive” said Sami, one of the fishermen at the market. He added, “The price of Zubaidi from Iran is eight Kuwaiti dinars per kilo; it is somewhat a bit expensive because there is a shortage in local Zubadi in terms of quantity. Mait fish price is KD 1.250 per kilo, the Bolty that comes from Egypt is sold for KD1.500 per kilo. There are no local shrimps available now because it is not the fishing season for it, while the prices of shrimps from Saudi
Arabia ranges between KD 1.500 to KD 2 and the Iranian shrimps are more expensive and the jumbo could reach up to KD 5.” Ali claimed that towards the summer, the prices of fish increases because there are less fishermen and the weather is not helpful, especially after the shrimp’s season which ends in February and starts in September. Now the Subati fish is for KD 4 per kilo, the Kirsh fish is for KD 1.750 per kilo, Hamam fish is for KD 1.750, the Sultan Ibrahim fish is for KD 1.250, the Nuwebi fish is for KD 1.750 and the Shoo’am fish is KD 2 per kilo.” Meanwhile, Hussein said, “The prices of imported tomato increased from KD 1 per box to KD 4 per box, the prices of zucchini are almost the same. However, the prices of imported tomato increased because the customs were on strike and the products are stranded at the ports as most of the tomatoes come from Jordan and Saudi Arabia.” Nasser noted that the prices of local tomato are KD 2 and did not increase, although it’s not in large quantities. The price of imported tomato from Saudi Arabia is 750 fils per kilo. The prices of zucchini were high two days ago, but now it’s back to its original price where the box of zucchini is priced at KD 1.”
Candidacy consensus! By Hossam Fathi Staff Writer
KUWAIT: The current large number of the candidates for the presidential position will not remain the same and will start deteriorating soon. The candidates who have a strong military background such as the former chief of intelligence Major General Omar Sulaiman are encouraged by the Military Council to go ahead and seek the presidency. Military candidates will start withdrawing gradually in order to pave the way and provide more support to the final military candidate. Regarding candidates who enjoy an expansive Islamic background, they have not been unified until recently to agree on supporting a candidate, but were moved into action after the Salafists made clear demands for it in Alexandria recently. The movement asked all the other Islamic movements to select a consensual candidate like Abu Ismael, Abu Al-Fetouh or Al-Awa. However, such coordination is positive and they have the right to it, especially when the agreement is not similar to the one expected from the Muslim Brotherhood and the Military Council. The fortune of the other famous candidates like Amro Musa, Hamdeen Sabahi and Hisham Al-Bastwaisi will deteriorate or get stronger according to the agreements that they reach with Islamists and the Military Council. I believe a successful candidate is a candidate who enjoys an Islamic background and obtains the support of the military council. firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter:@hossamfathy66
NEWS IN BRIEF Bahrain says “significant” progress made on reforms MANAMA: Bahrain’s king on Tuesday said his island state had rolled out a raft of reforms in the wake of international criticism of its crackdown on protesters last year but now needed to prove it could put them into practice. At least 1,000 people were detained when The Sunni Muslim kingdom crushed protests led by its Shiite majority demanding curbs to the power of the ruling family and an end to sectarian discrimination. King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa said the country had made significant progress in reforming its security sector, judiciary, social policy and media since the unrest in February-March 2011. -Reuters
Sudan court sentences six Darfur rebels to death KHARTOUM: A Sudanese court sentenced to death six members of a major Darfur rebel group on Tuesday, including a top commander, the group’s lawyer said. The ruling is another blow to the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), considered to be the most militarily potent of the western region’s various rebel factions. Government forces killed the group’s leader in December. “The judge ruled to execute six of the accused and sentenced the seventh to 10 years in prison because he is elderly, 73 years old,” said Tohany Abdelrahim, a lawyer for the group. The charges included terrorism, illegally carrying arms and murder, she said. Ibrahim al-Maz, a senior member of the rebel group, was among those sentenced to death. -Reuters
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Syria rebels quit eastern city, army on offensive
BEIRUT: Rebel fighters were forced to flee the eastern Syrian city of Deir al-Zor on Tuesday in the face of a fierce army assault, suffering the latest setback in their bid to oust President Bashar Al-Assad. In a separate blow to their cause, a respected human rights group accused the armed opposition of committing torture and arbitrary executions during the 12-month uprising - charges previously only leveled at the state security apparatus. Despite recent successes, Assad still faces significant outside pressure. Ally Russia signaled on Tuesday it would support a UN statement backing a mission by envoy Kofi Annan to end the bloodshed so long as there were no ultimatums. In addition, Moscow joined calls for both the army and rebels to grant daily ceasefires that would enable humanitarian missions to areas of Syria worst hit by the fighting. The lightly armed rebel forces have been forced into retreat across the country in recent weeks, with the army using heavy armor to chase them from towns and cities, chalking up its latest victory in Deir El-Zor, which lies on the road to Iraq. “Tanks entered residential neighborhoods, especially in southeastern areas of Deir El-Zor. The Free Syrian Army pulled out to avoid a civilian massacre,” a statement by the Deir El-Zor Revolution Committees Union said. Government troops also shelled residential areas in the cities of Hama and Homs, and the nearby town of Rastan, killing at least 10 people, while a soldier died in a raid on an army checkpoint in the south, opposition sources said. Reports from Syria cannot be independently verified because authorities have barred access to rights groups and journalists. The United Nations says more than 8,000 people have died in 12 months of turmoil and diplomats warn the fighting could develop into a civil war pitching Al-Assad’s Alawite sect and its minority allies against the majority Sunni Muslim population. The government says 2,000 members of the security forces have been killed by foreign-backed “terrorists” and denies accusations of brutality and indiscriminate violence. In a new twist, the advocacy group Human Rights Watch said the rebels were guilty of serious crimes, citing cases of kidnapping, torture and cold-blooded killings. “The Syrian government’s brutal tactics cannot justify abuses by armed opposition groups,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at the New York-based Human Rights Watch, in an open letter to dissident groups.
This image made from amateur video and released by the Syria media center Tuesday, March 20, 2012, purports to show black smoking rising from buildings in Homs, Syria. (AP)
Annan dispatched a team of five experts to Damascus on Monday to discuss ways of implementing a peace initiative, including a mechanism to let international monitors into the country. Syria has questioned the value of such a mission. In an unusual development, Syrian rebels released an army general abducted in the Damascus suburb of Douma in return for prisoners and bodies of insurgents and civilians held by police, an opposition source familiar with the deal said on Tuesday. “Naeem Khalil Odeh has been released in return for several prisoners and 14 bodies,” the source said from Douma, referring to the general, adding that he had been seized last week. The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights,
46 killed in Iraq attacks ahead of Arab summit BAGHDAD: Bombings and shootings across Iraq killed 46 people on Tuesday, striking at police and Shiite pilgrims in a torrent of violence that officials had dreaded in the run-up to a Baghdad meeting of the Arab world’s top leaders, which the government hoped would showcase the nation’s stability. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, which also wounded more than 200 people. But authorities have feared Al-Qaeda or its Sunni sympathizers would try to thwart next week’s annual Arab League summit. The gathering is to be held in Iraq for the first time in a generation. Plans for Baghdad to host the meeting last year were postponed, in part because of concerns about Iraq’s security. One of the deadliest strikes Tuesday hit the Shiite holy city of Karbala, where officials said
two car bombs exploded in a crowded shopping and restaurant area. Thirteen people were killed and another 50 were wounded in that attack, said local provincial council member Hussein Shadhan AlAboudi. “The intention of these attacks is to destabilize the security situation in Karbala and other Iraqi cities and to shake the people’s confidence on the government,” Al-Aboudi said. “It seems that the terrorists want to abort the upcoming Arab Summit in Baghdad. The message is directed to the Arab leaders that Iraq is not safe enough to be visited.” Karbala, 80 kilometers (50 miles) south of Baghdad, is a destination for thousands of Shiite pilgrims from around the world who visit the golden shrines of two revered imams each day. Five Iranian pilgrims were among the dead. The wave of violence began after
dawn Tuesday. Militants blew up the house of a police official in the western city of Fallujah, planted bombs near the fortified Green Zone and shot up a security checkpoint in Baghdad, set off an explosion at a police station in the northern city of Kirkuk and attacked restaurants and shopping areas in two southern towns. In all, eight cities were hit in attacks that mostly appeared to target police and government officials. Iraqi government spokesman Ali Al-Dabbagh on Tuesday announced a weeklong federal holiday in Baghdad, from March 25-31, when government offices will be shut down. Officials also will impose a curfew in parts of Baghdad on March 29, when the Arab heads of state fly in, and try to curb violence by shutting off roads near the Green Zone and encouraging people to stay at home. -AP
Doctors say Palestinian hunger striker is critical JERUSALEM: A Palestinian woman who has refused food for the past month to protest her imprisonment by Israel without formal charges is in grave danger of dying, a medical rights group said Tuesday. Hana Shalabi lost 14 kilograms (31 pounds), her muscles are wasting and she is in excruciating pain, said Ran Cohen of Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, which has provided her a doctor. She has taken only water since her arrest on Feb. 16. “We are worried. Her physician has demanded she be transferred to hospital,” said Cohen. Israel Prison Service spokeswoman Sivan Weizman said that for the time being, Shalabi is being monitored at a prison clinic. -AP
Iran will attack to defend itself: Khamenei
TEHRAN: In the face of aggression from the United States or Israel, Iran will attack to defend itself, Iran’s most powerful figure, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Tuesday. “We do not have nuclear weapons and we will not build them but in the face of aggression from the enemies, whether from America or the Zionist regime, to defend ourselves we will attack on the same level as the enemies attack us,” Khamenei said live on television. “Americans are making a grave mistake if they think by making threats they will destroy the Iranian nation,” he said in his annual speech to mark Nowruz, the Iranian New Year. Israel and the United States have threatened military action against Iran unless it abandons nuclear activities which the West suspects are intended to develop nuclear weapons. Further talks between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries are expected to take place next month in an attempt to reach a compromise deal. The most recent talks between world powers and Iran failed in January 2011 because of Iran’s refusal to suspend its sensitive uranium enrichment work, as demanded by several UN resolutions and major powers. It says it has the right to develop a peaceful nuclear program under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. In his speech, Khamenei highlighted the country’s nuclear achievements over the last 12 months - increasing uranium enrichment to 20 percent and loading domestically-made fuel rods into the Tehran Research Reactor. “In a situation where the enemies were putting bets on the fall of the Iranian nation, and talking about the crippling sanctions, Iran has accomplished
Islamist fighters seize central Somali town
Tunisian protesters reject calls for Islamic state TUNIS: Thousands of secular Tunisians marched in the capital on Tuesday, the country’s independence day, to show their rejection of growing calls by conservative Salafi Islamists to transform post-revolutionary Tunisia into an Islamic state. Carrying Tunisia’s red and white flag, several thousand protesters filled Bourguiba Avenue, a focal point of protests that ousted strongman Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali on Jan. 14 last year and sparked the “Arab Spring” uprisings. “We came in our thousands to say to those who want to change the course of the revolution that we will confront you,” said rights activist Jaber Ben Hasan, amid chants of “the people want a civil state”. “We are here to bring victory to the civil state,” he said, referring to a state that was not governed by religious law. While Islamists did not play a prominent role in the 2011 uprising, a struggle over the role of religion in government has since polarized politics in Tunisia, a country that has long been considered one of the Arab region’s most secular. Some Islamist MPs want Tunisia’s new constitution, which is being hashed out by a constituent assembly elected in October, to name sharia, or Islamic law, as the principal source of legislation in the new document. Secularists oppose such demands and worry that Islamists will seek to impose their views, raising social pressure on women to wear the veil or restaurants to stop serving alcohol and ultimately transforming the Mediterranean tourist destination into a conservative Islamic state. Tunisia’s existing constitution names Islam as the religion of state but does not name sharia as a source of lawmaking. “We will not allow a minority that was not even present before Jan. 14 to impose its views on us,” said Hala Rafrafi, a protester with a Tunisian flag wrapped around her shoulders. “It is wrong that after 56 years of independence we are still here calling for a civil state. This issue should have already been decided, but the state will be civil.” -Reuters
which has contacts throughout Syria, said army shelling had killed seven people in Homs early Tuesday, while a married couple and their child died in a mortar attack in nearby Rastan. Homs became the epicenter of the year-long rebellion against Assad and has been repeatedly targeted by government troops, who are believed to have swept most rebel gunmen from the city. There has also been fighting further to the north around Hama, and opposition sources said Syrian tanks had bombarded the city early Tuesday to try to dislodge Free Syrian Army rebels who had resumed operations there despite several army sweeps. -Reuters
Destroyed vehicles are seen at the site of a car bomb that was set off by a suicide attacker in the center of Baghdad, killing four people and wounded eight, on March 20, 2012. (AFP)
Loyalists of Yemen’s Saleh quit cabinet meeting SANAA: Yemeni ministers loyal to veteran strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh, who quit as president last month under a hard-won transition deal, walked out of a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, sources close to Saleh’s successor told AFP. The move came hours after a senior official said Saleh had threatened to pull his supporters out of the consensus cabinet formed with the parliamentary opposition in December as another key part of the transfer of power deal. All but two ministers of Saleh’s General People’s Congress (GPC) party left the meeting as part of “attempts by Saleh to cause the failure of the consensus government,” said one source close to President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi. Hadi, elected as Saleh’s successor last month in a vote in which his was the only name on the ballot paper, is scrambling to persuade his predecessor not to make good on his threat to bring down the government, a top official told AFP on condition of anonymity. Hadi has appointed a committee of leading politicians in a bid “to convince Saleh to abandon his threats,” the official said. If the commission fails to secure a change of heart, “the president will have to form a new government of national unity,” the official added.
But Saleh showed little sign of backing down and telephoned Prime Minister Mohammed Basindawa personally and “threatened” his government, a cabinet source said. The 34-member unity cabinet, appointed in December in accordance with the transition deal, has equal numbers of ministers from the GPC and the parliamentary opposition’s Common Forum alliance. Under the terms of the Gulf-brokered agreement which he signed with the opposition in November, Saleh gave up the Sanaa presidency that he had held since 1978. But he retains the leadership of the GPC and aides have not ruled out his standing in a contested presidential election due to be held alongside new parliamentary polls in 2014. Over the past week, the pro-Saleh press has stepped up its criticism of Basindawa’s government and in a speech last week the former president accused it of being “weak” and of “not understanding anything about politics.” Since taking over as president, Hadi has struggled to grapple with the huge challenges facing the Arab world’s poorest nation, which also include a Shiite rebellion in the far north and a growing campaign for secession in the formerly independent south. -AFP
MOGADISHU: Al-Qaeda-allied Islamist gunmen seized a key town in central Somalia Tuesday and fired mortar bombs at the presidency in Mogadishu as Al-Shabaab commanders called for more attacks on the government. Al-Shabaab fighters on pickup trucks mounted with machine guns stormed Dhusamareb town at dawn, driving out the progovernment militia Ahlu Sunna Wal Jamaa, an Ethiopia-backed force who follow Somalia’s traditional Sufi branch of Islam. “The mujahedeen fighters stormed the district after attacking it from two directions early this morning, there was little fighting as the apostate militia fled the city,” Al-Shabaab commander Sheikh Mohamed Ibrahim said by telephone. “With God’s help, we will be advancing onto other districts in the region,” he added. Dhusamareb is a strategic town in the central Galgadud region controlling a key road, and its capture marks a notable fight back by the hard-line Al-Shabaab, who have pulled out of several key areas in recent months. Rival armed groups have repeatedly fought over Dhusamareb, controlling it briefly until fresh attacks root them out. “Al-Shabaab fighters riding on vehicles mounted with guns entered the town after fighting with the Sufis, the city has now fallen and they are setting up their base in the police station,” said Abdirahman Moalim, an elder in the city. “Al-Shabaab is in full control, the other fighters (Ahlu Sunna) have left,” said Ahmed Mohamud, another resident. The town’s capture comes as Al-Shabaab chief Ahmed Abdi Godane called on Islamist fighters to renew attacks against the 10,000-strong African Union force, which props up the weak Western-backed government in the anarchic capital Mogadishu. “They (AU forces) will continue to face hard hitting guerilla attacks that will destroy them, just as armies that were more powerful than them were destroyed,” Godane said in a broadcast on the pro-Al-Shabaab Radio Al-Andalus. -AFP
wednesdAY, march 21, 2012
Peru cancels British ship visit over Falklands LIMA: Peru canceled a visit by a British navy frigate in solidarity with Argentina’s claims over the Falkland Islands. The decision underlines Peru’s support for Argentina over the south Pacific archipelago, known locally as the Malvinas, Foreign Minister Rafael Roncagliolo told the official news agency Andina. The British frigate Montrose was set to dock in Lima’s port of Callao on Thursday for a friendly visit. Roncagliolo said the visit was canceled as part of an agreement with the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) supporting Argentina. Foreign ministers from the 12 UNASUR nations on Saturday urged Britain to discuss the sovereignty of the islands with
NEWS IN BRIEF China to step up patrol near disputed islands
Argentina, “in line with United Nations resolutions.” The British embassy in Lima said it “lamented” that Peru had canceled the invitation, noting that the Peruvian government had the chance to raise the issue with Foreign Office Minister Jeremy Browne, who was in Lima on Friday. Argentine troops seized the islands on April 2, 1982, only to be routed by British forces 74 days later. In all, 649 Argentine troops, 255 British troops and three Falkland Islanders were killed in the conflict. Adding to the renewed tensions is Britain’s decision to allow offshore oil drilling near the islands, which lie 250 miles (400 kilometers) east of the South American mainland. -AFP
BEIJING: China will increase maritime surveillance in a group of disputed islands in the East China Sea to guard its territorial rights, the official Xinhua news agency said. The uninhabited but strategically located island chain known as Diaoyu in Chinese is believed to be rich in oil and gas reserves, and is at the heart of a long-running diplomatic dispute between China, Japan and Taiwan. “The patrols are part of our important long-term responsibility,” Wu Ping, deputy head of government agency China Maritime Surveillance, told Xinhua. -AFP
Myanmar army accused of rape, torture File photo shows a public servant lowering the Falklands’ flag in front of the Chief Executive building in Stanley, Falklands. Peru canceled a visit by a British navy frigate in solidarity with Argentina’s claims over the Falkland Islands. (AFP)
Italian hostages well cared for, say Indian rebels
This undated photograph made available on March 18, shows Italian national Paolo Bosusco (center) posing with a tribal woman at an undisclosed location in India. (AFP)
ORISSA: Maoist rebels holding two Italian men hostage in eastern India said in an audio message on Tuesday that their captives were well and being looked after. The pair were kidnapped last week while on an adventure holiday in the state of Orissa, one of several regions where an armed Maoist insurgency holds sway over large areas of the countryside. “The Italians are fine and being properly looked after, they are getting good food,” a local Maoist leader named only as Sunil said on the recorded message released to journalists. Sunil is known to command the Maoists in Kandhamal district, where Paolo Bosusco, 54, and Claudio Colangelo, 61, were abducted on Wednesday in the first case of foreigners being kidnapped by the rebels. The Maoists have issued a series of demands for the Italians’ release, including a ban on tourists visiting tribal areas, the end of the government’s anti-rebel operations and the release of jailed Maoist leaders. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday made his first comments on the kidnappings as state officials and Italian diplomats, who have flown to Orissa, worked to try to secure their release. “The abduction of two foreign nationals recently is a reminder of the challenge to our internal security by
Naxal (Maoist) and left-wing extremism,” said Singh, who has often stressed the nationwide threat opposed by the rebels. Bosusco has been living in Orissa for a decade and runs an adventure tourism and trekking company, police said, while Colangelo is a doctor in Rome. Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said late Monday that the authorities had received the rebels’ demands and that the state government was willing to open talks. “I once again most earnestly urge the Maoists to release the two Italian nationals immediately and unharmed and also stop violence and other unlawful activities,” Patnaik said in a statement. Two Indians accompanying the Italians were released early on Sunday, police said. The guerrillas, who say they are fighting for the rights of tribal people and landless farmers, have previously kidnapped local officials and villagers, freeing some after negotiations but killing others. The abductions came amid strained ties between New Delhi and Rome over last month’s arrest of two Italian soldiers on charges of shooting two Indian fishermen from their cargo ship after mistaking them for pirates. -AFP
NAYPYIDAW: Myanmar troops have committed serious rights abuses against civilians in an offensive against ethnic rebels that has forced tens of thousands to flee their homes, Human Rights Watch said Tuesday. Fighting erupted in June 2011 between the military and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in an area of Kachin state surrounding controversial Chinese-backed hydropower projects, shattering a 17-year ceasefire. Since then Human Rights Watch said at least 75,000 people had fled their homes and were in desperate need of food, medicine and shelter in the mountainous far north of the country formerly known as Burma. -AP
Pakistan parliament demands end to US drone strikes ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani parliamentary committee recommending a new direction for ties with the United States said on Tuesday it wants a halt to attacks in Pakistan by US drone aircraft. Raza Rabbani, the committee’s chairman, outlining recommendations in parliament, also said Pakistan should demand an unconditional apology for a November 26 NATO air attack from within Afghanistan that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. Relations between Pakistan and the United States have been severely strained since the attack, and Pakistan’s government has said that any resumption of cooperation on several issues, including the war on militancy, would depend on the review. -Reuters
North Korea invites IAEA, says US deal still in force PYONGYANG: North Korea has invited UN inspectors to monitor a nuclear freeze deal with the United States, insisting the pact remains in force despite its shock announcement of a planned satellite launch. Next month’s scheduled launch, which would defy a United Nations ban, has sparked widespread complaints that the communist state is testing long-range missile technology which could one day deliver a nuclear warhead. Washington says any launch would breach the bilateral deal announced on February 29, which offered major US food aid for a partial nuclear freeze. The North, led since December by the young and untested Kim Jong-Un, insists otherwise, and said it was inviting inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) back three years after expelling the UN division. “The satellite launch is one thing and the DPRK (North Korea)-US agreement is another,” its chief nuclear negotiator Ri Yong-Ho said late Monday in Beijing. The North will implement its deal with the United States in full, he told reporters, according to video aired Tuesday by South Korea’s KBS television.
“In order to implement the agreement, we’ve sent a letter of invitation to the IAEA to send inspectors to our country,” Ri said. The US deal had raised modest hopes of progress in decades-long efforts to curb the North’s nuclear weapons drive. It agreed last month to suspend its uranium enrichment program, along with long-range missile launches and nuclear tests, in return for 240,000 tons of US food. It also promised to readmit IAEA inspectors. The North insists a peaceful satellite launch is not a missile test. But the United States, Japan, Russia and other nations have called for it to scrap the plan, and even close ally China has expressed concern. China said Tuesday that Ri and his counterpart Wu Dawei had a “frank and in-depth exchange of opinions” when they met Monday. It was the second time the two sides had met since North Korea’s announcement Friday of its satellite plan, indicating the level of concern in Beijing. Japan has said it may try to shoot down the North Korean rocket if it heads towards Japanese territory or waters. In Washington US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said any IAEA
French school killer may have filmed shootings
TOULOUSE: A gunman who killed four people at a French Jewish school may have filmed the attack, the interior minister said Tuesday, as hundreds of police combed southern France for the killer, suspected in three other deaths. Interior Minister Claude Gueant said the attacker was “wearing around his neck an apparatus” that could be used to film and post video online. He said that gave investigators new clues to the killer’s “profile,” though he admitted that they don’t appear to close to an arrest. Gueant described the suspect as “someone very cold, very determined, very much a master of his movements, and by consequence, very cruel.” Asked whether the gunman recorded the scene, Gueant responded, “We can imagine that.” But he added that authorities have not yet found any images of the killings online. Gueant was speaking in the city of Toulouse, where an unidentified assailant opened fire at a Jewish school Monday, killing a rabbi and his two sons and the daughter of the school principal. Authorities say one of the same weapons was used in killings of three French paratroopers last week. Schools around France are holding a moment of silence Tuesday to honor the victims of the shootings. President Nicolas Sarkozy is meeting with members of France’s Jewish and Muslim community. France has the largest population of Jews and Muslims in western Europe. The paratroopers targeted last week, also in the Toulouse region, were of North African and French Caribbean descent. Concerns mounted about a suspected racist and anti-Semitic serial killer. In all three killings, the assailant fled on a motorbike. The shootings echoed across a nation that has been focused on an upcoming presidential race in which issues about religious minorities and race have gained prominence. Sarkozy - who has struck a nationalist line in his campaigning - raised the terrorism alert level in the region to its highest level, while also noting a possible racist motive. -AP
access to the North would be beneficial. “But it doesn’t change the fact that we would consider a satellite launch a violation, not only of their UN obligations but of the commitments that they made to us on Leap Day,” she said. Some analysts say the North is following a pattern in which it responds to “hostile” criticism of its missile launches with an atomic weapons test. The first such test in October 2006 came three months after a missile launch. The second nuclear test in May 2009 came less than two months after the UN Security Council condemned another rocket launch, purportedly designed to put a satellite into orbit. A Security Council resolution approved later that year bans the North from further nuclear tests or from launching a ballistic missile for any purpose. The North says the launch will be a historic occasion for all Koreans. It has blasted South Korea for a “smear campaign” against the plan, and said Seoul should have sought Pyongyang’s help in its own failed satellite launches. The South in strongly worded comments Monday accused its neighbor of trying to develop a nuclear-armed missile. -AFP
South Korean army soldiers wearing protective gear talk to each other during an anti-terrorism exercise for Nuclear Security Summit at a subway station, South Korea, March 20. (AP)
Guinea-Bissau poll overshadowed by assassination BISSAU: Guinea-Bissau is tallying votes cast in a presidential poll tainted by the murder of an ex-military intelligence chief, raising fears of further trouble in the chronically unstable country. As election security was boosted, the military on Monday denied involvement in the shooting of colonel Samba Diallo in a country whose history is checkered by coups and deadly score-settling between the army and state. The national elections commission said the murder was “an isolated case”. “Events last night have nothing to do with the electoral process,” said polling chief Desejado Lima da Costa. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called on Guinea-Bissau residents to remain calm. Ban “commends” Guinea-Bissau voters “for the peaceful and orderly conduct of the presidential election held on 18 March,” the secretary general’s spokesman Martin Nesirky said in a statement. The UN chief appealed to the candidates and their supporters “to refrain from any action that could hamper the electoral process and to respect the official results when announced by the Supreme Court.” Election observers from the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) said
despite minor problems here and there the election was acceptably free, fair and transparent. Guinea-Bissau’s election is being held up as a test of the country’s commitment to stability - with post-poll army reform seen as vital to normalizing a dysfunctional state sorely in need of development. However, just hours after a peaceful day of voting ended, former army intelligence chief Diallo was shot dead by men in military dress as he sat on the terrace of a restaurant near his home, sources said. No clear motive has emerged for the killing of Diallo, who was accused of involvement in a 2009 bombing that killed the country’s then army chief and prompted the murder of president Joao Bernardo Vieira in a revenge attack a few hours later. “They shot at him (Diallo) over five times,” police said. Daba Na Wagna, co-ordinator of a joint military-police election security team said Diallo’s murder was “deplorable because there was a loss of human life, but the army was not involved from any angle”. Diallo was director of military intelligence until April 2010, when he was arrested with other top officers on suspicion of involvement in the 2009 attack. -AFP
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
When official messages become official conundrum Fuad Al-Hashem Staff Writer
he Cabinet has decreed today that immediate action needs to be carried out regarding drafting a preparatory paper work related to the setting up of a special committee the purpose of which is to look and review the contents of all requirements for work mechanism along with an accurate time table after which a comprehensive memo would be issued outlining the framework of defining the ways and means of establishing a council expected to be concerned with dealing with and tackling all possible hindrances and obstacles which may impede the strategies and manners which in turn may hinder the issuance of a memo which may define and specify the principles needed to launch ways and manners of dealing with all topics and subject-matters concerning the issues which may spring up from previous and past decrees.” This of course is a fake text message sent to me by a sarcastic and grumpy friend of mine the day before yesterday. One is entitled to enjoy a laugh now and then over such sarcastic and fun make-up stories. But what if such sardonic comments and ideas become reality? I t was only yesterday, a day after I had received the funny text message, I received the following message from KUNA. It reads: “The Cabinet has affirmed that the disagreement and disparity in opinions and views regarding the issue of increments, incentives and allowances are all natural and inevitable conclusions which must not be forced on grounds and then followed by strikes as this would be contrary to the public interest and subsequently would harm the sover-
On my part, I call on the Minister of Interior to cancel all residencies of Syrians who travelled to Syria from Kuwait to pay homage to the Syrian president and declare their full support to him and his regime.
eignty of the state and its national interest.” It wasn’t long when half an hour later I received yet another text message from KUNA saying: “The Cabinet strongly condemns the attitude of the minority who rejects dialogue for the best of public interest and without taking into consideration the economic, social, growth and structural factors for the increments and pay raise.” This was followed immediately by another saying that “the Cabinet is looking into ...” etc. It is one of my most precious wishes to meet up with the person behind the working of those texts. I need to meet with that person face to face to see for myself how he or she does it in the General Secretariat of the National Assembly when they decide to send a text message to KUNA, the country’s official news agency, for thousands of people to read. I can imagine when people of this country subscribing to the KUNA news service, citizens and expats, as well as foreign news agencies who follow up the local situation and current affairs, would react when they see the conundrum, the so-called news flash sent by KUNA. I am sure that they would be looking around for help with very funny facial expressions.
The hard burden of the former governments
Who would imagine that anyone would send an official text message as news flash and dare to type that “the cabinet is looking into!!!” Are they not aware that there are strikes just about everywhere? Are they not aware that there are national losses costing the government millions of Kuwaiti dinars everyday because of those strikes? Are they not aware that our International Airport is half paralyzed? Or perhaps they are not aware that the price of one box of courgettes has reached 15 Kuwaiti dinars?!!! Moving to a different issue, the Prime Minister of Qatar Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassem said that his country has paid 15 million US dollars to acquire the private e-mails of the Syrian President Bashar Al-Asad as well as those of his wife which were already leaked to the British newspaper The Guardian. The Qatari Prime Minister insisted that whatever the British newspaper had published in terms of the contents of the Syrian president doesn’t constitute 20 percent what of he has in his possession. As for the demonstrations in Kuwait held in support for the Syrian people and against the regime, the Sheikh said that all these are pretentious acts on the part of Kuwait and that it does this to cajole and flatter the US Administra-
The dream of development
BU QUTADA & BU NABIL let’s see who can bear more than the other
The government now faces a critical test through facing such phenomenon in addition to the other challenges such as strikes which were sparked by the labor unions at the oil sector during the era of the former government.
o no t s ra i s e
tion as well as the rest of the Gulf States. “Otherwise, the country is 100 percent supportive of the Syrian regime,” he remarked. In important flash news, the Head of the Muslim Brotherhood in Syria Mr. Riyadh Al-Shaqfa said: “The fact that Al-Assad’s gangs remain in power is due to the fact that Tel Aviv is giving him the needed assistance. It has not given the green light yet to topple him.” On my part, I call on the Minister of Interior to cancel all residencies of Syrians who travelled to Syria from Kuwait to pay homage to the Syrian president and declare their full support to him and his regime. The news of the trip was not secret as it was published in the local newspapers some six months ago. I would like to point out to the interior minister that one of those who travelled to Syria to declare to Bashar Al-Assad his undying allegiance and support is an infamous female escort person here in Kuwait. Surely, it would be most fitting to send them back after cancelling their residence to Syria to see if their undying support to the Syrian president will continue when we, with the will of God, see him fleeing the country fearing for his life, please God! Finally, I was astonished by the comments made by the Patriarch of the Maronite Church in Lebanon Monsignor Bishara Al-Rai who publicly expressed his fears of seeing the Syrians winning their bid against Assad’s regime. In fact, the Patriarch sent a secret message to the Vatican almost begging the Pope to interfere and use all the influences he can to muster “to dissuade the western leaders in Washington DC and the European Union from toppling president Assad because he protects the Christian communities in Syria and who will be massacred if extreme Muslims get hold of power in Syria.”
We have clear laws and a constitution as well as fair courts, so all people must understand that they are not above the law nor have the right to apply laws against others by themselves.
ye s st r i to kes
Nabeel Al-Fadhl Staff Writer
Waleed Jassem Al-Jassem Staff Writer
he decision of providing a monthly award worth 500 Kuwaiti dinars for military individuals whose military ranks range from lieutenant to captain and retired since liberating Kuwait up until now as well as approving another monthly award worth KD 250 for individuals who spent 25 years in service wherein they will obtain this raise after retirement was not taken by the government, the Supreme Defense Council, Ministry of Defense or any other government institution. It was taken by the Parliamentary Committee of Interior and Defense Committee!!! I am not writing about this case to show that military men don`t deserve that but we want to focus on another aspect. We know that military individuals have exerted considerable efforts for the service of Kuwait and they deserve awards but such a step means that the government has lost the initiative or the ability to administrate the country through taking effective decisions and cancelling the decisions that the government does not like. The government should be the decision maker but it is turned into a government that just receives decisions and instructions in order to apply. Apparently, the government at the present time does not even have the right to express its opinion about decisions. We pay a high price to the deterioration of stability and national unity and we suffer from the influence of the former governments in the next stage. The coming governments will also lag from the very influence until the coming governments succeed to convince MPs and people that the era of blackmailing and bargaining is over. The MPs and people have to become sure that they should adopt new legal ways to get their requests approved as well. The government now faces a critical test through facing such phenomenon in addition to the other challenges such as strikes which were sparked by the labor unions at the oil sector during the era of the former government. The former government had submitted some of its services to the requests of labor unions at the oil sector after the union threatened to stage a strike while the current government has to pay the price for that as the other labor unions endorsed the same way for getting their requests approved. I am pessimistic about the current situation even if the government attempts to show itself as a powerful government that does not submit to blackmail and I do not believe that we will reach positive results any time soon. Our brothers- the members of Awazem tribe- showed great composure as they did not fall in the trap which aims at stirring sectarian sedition. They also showed great tendencies towards nationalism and are seriously interested in suppressing sedition and any other attempts that aim at undermining national unity. The overwhelming majority of the tribe preferred to express their rage by legal terms. Thanks to our brothers who will remain loyal to Kuwait as they have been used to.
Mmm the case is not settled till now
o no t s ra i s e
ye s st r i to kes
Oh, oh ... enough ... enough .. let’s end the sit-in
o no t s ra i s e
did not watch the TV interview that Scope TV had recently broadcasted and I did not hear what the MP Hussein Al-Qallaf said. Therefore we cannot discuss the case thoroughly but the apology of the MP was a good act and it contributed in interrupting agitators from executing their vicious agenda. However, we respect Al-Awazem Tribe and we appreciate their great historic stances since the earliest days of modern Kuwait wherein the members of the tribe have defended Kuwait and were seriously concerned with its stability. We also respect the traditions of the different tribes and the chiefs of tribes but we can’t ignore the dangerous behaviors of some individuals who want to apply laws by themselves against the others!! We have clear laws and a constitution as well as fair courts, so all people must understand that they are not above the law nor have the right to apply laws against others by themselves. In the meantime, we might excuse the members of the tribes who stormed the headquarters of Scope TV as they have already seen citizens storming the headquarters of the parliament which is much more important than TV channels. They have also seen those who stormed the parliament talking as if they were taking part in a heroic action!! The members of the tribe did not see the intruders who stormed the parliament appearing before justice as well. On the contrary, they have seen the Speaker of the House and the members of the Bureau of National Assembly attempting to falsify facts by preparing a new report about the case. The members have also seen many other youths attacking the electoral headquarters of a candidate to the former parliamentary election, followed with the burning of the headquarters by some youths before the security individuals who kept overseeing that occurrence!! They have seen a number of youths attempting to storm the headquarters of Al-Watan TV too. At that time, we did not hear or read a statement by any MP to condemn such practices and as a result the members of the tribe might consider such a reaction as one of their rights because citizens have equal rights and duties!! We wonder how some figures still talk about the development of the country and to help Kuwait in becoming an international commercial and financial hub although we can`t feel secure even if the security individuals are surrounding us because some citizens consider themselves above the law!! Furthermore, our country lacks food security because some citizens want to harm the country just to obtain some trivial goals!! We also live under an air besiege imposed upon us by our own sons at Kuwait Airways Company (KAC) wherein the head of the Labor Union at KAC disclosed that he addressed the International Air Transport Association (IATA) not to provide the Kuwaiti planes with any necessary services if the planes fly from Kuwait to any other states!!! We wonder how the sons of Kuwait do that although the former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein did do such things while invading Kuwait. So, if the air movements are halted and goods can`t enter Kuwait because of the strike of employees of Customs Departments then how will we achieve our development!! Our governments have not defended laws, so how would they defend the idea of turning Kuwait into an international commercial and financial hub, especially that the very idea was resisted by the neighboring countries.
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wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Intelligent urban design
Loose cultures and free women
wo months ago, I was introduced to a start-up called CityMart, a for-profit marketplace dedicated to helping vendors and city managers to find one another - and to spreading municipal innovations outside of their home turf. This month, in Thailand, I met Jonathan Hursh, who runs Compassion for Migrant Children (soon to be renamed), which focuses on migrant populations - adults and children with few resources and few rights - in the slums that surround almost every large city in the world. In mid-May, I’ll be attending the New Cities Summit in Paris, a three-day forum focused on the future of cities. Cities matter, as they always have, but now more of the world is starting to take notice of their problems and possibilities. At their worst, cities are slums, places where the social constraints of the village are loosened, people can misbehave in anonymity, and poor and unemployed people live in squalor. At their best, they are places where the best and the brightest congregate, new wealth is created, and scholars and artists sharpen their wits and hone their creativity. Most cities have grown through evolution, from unpremeditated beginnings. Moreover, they rarely die. Cities, and their imperfections, persist in a way that large political entities, even those of which they are a part, do not. Compare, say, Athens, Jerusalem, Vienna, Beijing, Moscow, or Istanbul, to the Roman Empire, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire, Imperial Russia, the Third Reich, or the Soviet Union. And, as we are seeing worldwide nowadays, national governments are difficult to overturn and also difficult to (re) build. Democracy does not always lead to liberty or good outcomes. So, perhaps cities are the right place and have the right scale for massive social change. This does not mean that national governments are irrelevant, or that they no longer hold life-and-death power over people’s lives; but cities make more of a difference in people’s daily lives. Especially in a world where many of the big things - trade, technology, legal regimes are globalized, most of the small things are actually happening in cities. By 2050, seven out of ten human beings will live in cities, up from about 50% now and barely 14% in 1900. Cities run schools, collect garbage, maintain police forces (and local power of life and death), issue building permits, build sewers, regulate power companies, and generally determine the overall quality of life. They can also raise revenue, whether through income taxes, property taxes, or myriad fees. But cities still often operate in a premarket way. They mostly build their infrastructures themselves, and innovations do not spread easily, owing to a lack of incentives and, for that matter, much of a market...other than when one city hires managers from another. On the other hand, cities are increasingly behaving like companies, becoming intimately involved in their citizens’ qual-
Chrystia Freeland Reuters
W The city skyline is blanketed by snow in Beijing on March 18, 2012. (AFP)
The goal is not perfection in a single city, but more effective innovation and competition, so that the best cities prosper and other cities emulate them. ity of life, and, in an increasingly mobile world, competing for “customers.” Despite registration systems such as those in Russia and China that restrict movement, people can come and go from cities much more freely than they can cross national borders. Meanwhile, cities can be both more flexible and more arbitrary, and compete on terms not available to legislatively restricted national governments. Paul Romer, a former Stanford University economist best known for his Charter City initiative, has a scheme for building new cities from scratch - and using competition to spread the benefits to old cities over time. As he points out, if you want a new business model, you don’t fix an old company; you start a new one. In the same way, if you want a new kind of city, it is easier to build a new one than to change an old one. Most cities evolved blindly, and have ended up semi-workable, whereas a city that is started from scratch can, in theory, benefit from intelligent design. But, even with long-term investors, to build a viable city at scale nowadays represents a daunting challenge, requiring not just architecture, but also modern infrastructure, schools, and hospitals. Moreover, in addition to people, investors, land, and other tangible assets, an independent yet accountable government must create and enforce rules, and a charter must specify how the rules can be changed. While Romer’s formula is complex, his charter cities will be subject to the ultimate form of accountability: they will succeed only if they can attract investors and citizens who want to live and work there. But, skeptics ask, will they attract a favorable selection of people?
Romer’s and Hursh’s answer is that migrants are not slum-dwellers by nature; put them in a good city and they will reach their innate potential. The key is not just to allow, but to lure, people inside the system. According to Romer: “A new city can attract the working poor and still succeed as a large-scale real-estate development project. And a good thing too, because charity will never finance urban living space for 3-4 billion additional people. If new places enter the ‘city business,’ the working poor will find [affordable] urban housing and transport for the same reason that they now find food: because someone profits by offering it to them.” That calls for a system that will return their investment and more over time, which means that investors will design a city that helps its citizen/taxpayers to prosper. In the background, the board of governors that Romer proposes makes sure that everyone takes the long view. The goal is not perfection in a single city, but more effective innovation and competition, so that the best cities prosper and other cities emulate them. There are enough mobile people that one city’s success won’t harm others; on the contrary, it is more likely to encourage existing cities to change, just as new market entrants force incumbents to improve. Sometimes, in order for evolution to do its best work, the individual components need some intelligent design. * Esther Dyson, CEO of EDventure Holdings, is an active investor in a variety of start-ups around the world. Her interests include information technology, health care, private aviation, and space travel.
ith hindsight, we may find that the 2016 US presidential race began last week, when Hillary Rodham Clinton made a politically electrifying point. “Why extremists always focus on women remains a mystery to me,” she said at the Women in the World conference in New York. “But they all seem to. It doesn’t matter what country they’re in or what religion they claim. They want to control women.” At a time when birth control has re-emerged as a political issue in the United States, 94 years after the first legal ruling to permit it, Clinton’s comments were an inspiring rallying cry for worried American women. But what about the mystery she identified? Why, as the secretary of state asserted, do extremists, from the Taliban to conservative Christians, want to control women? An intriguing new study by two professors at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto suggests a possible answer. Disclosure: I am on the school’s Dean’s Advisory Board. Soo Min Toh and Geoffrey Leonardelli didn’t set out to discover why extremists want to control women. Their question was more familiar: Why aren’t there more female leaders? Toh and Leonardelli argue that women are held back by “tight” cultures and can emerge more easily as leaders in “loose” cultures. “Tight” cultures are ones that have clear, rigid rules about how people should behave and impose tough sanctions on those who color outside the lines. Socially conformist, homogeneous societies like Japan, Malaysia, Norway and Pakistan are tight cultures. Tight cultures, Toh and Leonardelli believe, hold women back because ‘’cultural tightness provokes a resistance to changing the traditional and widespread view that leadership is masculine.” Loose cultures, by contrast, do not have clear norms and are more tolerant of deviation from the rules. Heterogeneous societies and countries in the midst of social and political transition, like Australia, Israel, the Netherlands and Ukraine, are loose cultures. These are cultures in which ‘’societal members tend to be more open to change, and this openness may become manifest in changing expectations and attitudes about the masculinity of leadership.” Here is where Clinton’s mystery comes in. Tight cultures are not necessarily sexist ones - witness the inclusion of Norway on the list. But extremist subcultures are certainly tight cultures, and they are built on historical assumptions of male dominance. The perspective of Toh and Leonardelli helps to explain why these rigid ideologies are so fixated on keeping women down. But what about the places like Norway: tight cultures where women do extremely well? Toh and Leonardelli’s answer to that apparent paradox is that where there has been a top-down decision to support female leaders, tight cultures are very good at executing that directive. That is because these societies are effective at acting on the collective will. If the decision is made to elevate women, tight societies will implement it. “Although a culturally tight country, Norway ranks high in terms of gender egalitarianism,” the study’s authors point out. In Norway, egalitarianism is not a rebellion against prevailing cultural norms. It is, instead, what Norway’s new top-down con-
Iraqi Libya Mohammad-Mahmoud Ould Mohamedou Project Syndicate
s post-revolution Libya looks ahead, Iraq looms as a perilous example.After 42 years of dictatorship, Libya, like Iraq in 2003 after the fall of Saddam Hussein, needs more than wishful thinking to become a vibrant democracy. It needs organized state-building in Tripoli - and realistic policymaking in Western capitals. Successful transitions depend from the start on factors that are still crucially missing in Libya - a relatively cohesive leadership, an active civil society, and national unity. Without these, Libya will most likely fail to find its footing and, much like post-Saddam Iraq, suffer from persistent political division and volatile civil disorder, in addition to a multifaceted array of geopolitical pressures. Avoiding that outcome presupposes a strong political center. But, from the start of the uprising in February 2011, Libya has been politically atomized. It lacks the sort of civil society that could have led the uprising and planted the seeds for post-authoritarian politics, as was the case in Tunisia and (more problematically) Egypt. Libya’s transition was arguably further impeded by NATO’s intervention, as the rapid shift from a spontaneous popular uprising to an eliteled and externally supported movement prevented the revolution from following the linear course seen in Tunisia and Egypt. Thus, despite substantial international support, the Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) still lacks the level of consensus needed to form a viable government. The NTC has suffered regular internal disputes, and its membership and functioning are shrouded in secrecy. Last July, the Council’s military leader, Abdul Fatah Younis al-Obeidi, was assassinated under ambiguous circumstances. Then, in November, the NTC’s military prosecutor named its own former deputy prime minister, Ali al-Issawi, as the prime suspect. The conflict and opacity surrounding the case are telling signs of the country’s political fragility since Colonel Muammar el-Qaddafi’s demise. Libya should take note of how Iraq’s post-Saddam transition has featured ceaseless power struggles and infighting. In 2010, Iraqi political leaders’ machinations - personal, as well as tribal and sectarian - left the country without a government for 249 days. Today, Libya appears set to undergo similar struggles, owing mostly to the presence of powerful political actors outside the NTC. The 20,000strong Tripoli Military Council, for example, which controls the capital, has been consistently independent of the NTC, and forced out its first foreign minister, Mahmoud Jibril. The rival Tripoli’s Revolutionists Council, meanwhile, has warned that it would unseat any incoming government should its demands for representation not be met. The NTC also faces pressure from Libya’s Berbers, who comprise 10 percent of the population and have already taken
The rival Tripoli’s Revolutionists Council, meanwhile, has warned that it would unseat any incoming government should its demands for representation not be met. to the streets to denounce the new political arrangements and to reject any system that does not accommodate their culture and language. This dissension may well be compounded by two additional factors. The first is major cities’ competing sense of entitlement to the fruits of the revolution: Misurata, where Qaddafi’s body was displayed; Tripoli, which hosted the liberation ceremony; and Zintan, which is holding Qaddafi’s son, Saif al-Islam el-Qaddafi, prisoner.And all of them, like most Libyans, share the unrealistic expectation that their newfound freedom will somehow solve their socio-economic woes. The second complicating factor is that political power now lies in the hands of competing militias. The internecine rivalries that began in earnest last November between fighters from Zawiya and Warshefana, and among Tripoli’s various factions, will be difficult to defuse, as the thowar (revolutionaries) have refused repeated calls by the NTC to disarm. Tripoli is in danger of becoming like Baghdad circa 2005, with different groups controlling turf and instituting a clientelist neighborhood political economy. Inter-urban competition and the militias’ defiant independence are all the more worrisome because Libya is awash in weapons, with unguarded caches, abandoned stockpiles, looted ammunition depots, and thousands of shoulder-fired heat-seeking surface-to-air missiles. Last November, Mokhtar Belmokhtar, the commander of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), confirmed that AQIM seized the opportunity to secure some of this arsenal when the revolution started. Meanwhile, the aims of France, the United Kingdom, the United States, the Arab League, NATO, and Qatar, all of which have played a role in Libya’s transformation, are unlikely to be the same. In other words, external pressures, too, are likely to pull Libya in several different directions, which will only further delay an autonomous and sustainable state-building process. Qaddafi left behind a booby-trap. The collapse of authoritarian rule created a security vacuum with no functioning state apparatus, making Libya highly exposed to international influence, often in the service of corporate interests. To avoid repetition of the costly mistakes made in Iraq, Libya will require adroit leadership that can elaborate a compelling new national vision with which to unify competing authorities, rein in undisciplined militias, and minimize the country’s strategic vulnerability. * Mohammad-Mahmoud Ould Mohamedou is Head of the Middle East and North Africa Program at the Geneva Center for Security Policy and a visiting professor at Geneva’s Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies.
It does not matter whether you are a misfit or an ultraconformist, so long as you have a brilliant idea and are able to implement it.
sensus requires: “Norway has among the most ambitious equal opportunity legislation in the world that legally requires firms to reach a 40 percent women board representation by 2017.” The study’s framework also helps to explain one peculiarity of women in the workplace. Tight societies that choose egalitarianism, like Norway, have been good at pushing women into the corporate establishment. Loose societies that are open to change have been good at empowering women more broadly, encouraging them to join the workforce and to start their own small businesses. But the one thing women around the world have failed to do is create paradigm-shifting companies. None of the great technology startups - for example, Google, Apple and Facebook - were founded by a woman. Nor were any of the leading hedge funds, the innovators in the world of money, established by a woman. Women are not just underrepresented in this space of transformative entrepreneurs - they are entirely absent. At first blush, this gap seems to contradict the analysis by Toh and Leonardelli. After all, startups embody a profoundly loose culture. It does not matter whether you are a misfit or an ultra-conformist, so long as you have a brilliant idea and are able to implement it. But the authors point out that leadership is not just about how others view you - it is also about how you view yourself. Centuries of sexism, they argue, mean that “even when possessing and demonstrating leadership behavior that is superior to others in the group, women leaders may sometimes prefer to cede the formal leadership role to men in the group because they, too, believe that being male or masculine is more leader-like.” Loose cultures can counteract those selfimposed stereotypes to some degree. But the final frontier for women, even in societies that allow them to lead established institutions, is to be ruthless and to take big risks, essential qualities in world-changing entrepreneurs. Instead, as the authors found of female entrepreneurs in Malaysia, women often have to ‘’lead as if they were mothers or teachers.” * Chrystia Freeland is the editor of Thomson Reuters Digital. The views expressed are her own.
wednesday, march 21, 2012
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Gold edges down, positive us outlook dents demand
WEDNesdAY, march 21, 2012
m ar ket watc h
SINGAPORE: Gold edged lower onTuesday as a brightened US economic outlook dented its safe-haven appeal, while a buoyant equity market also prompted investors to take money out of bullion.The expectations of further monetary easing worldwide amid a sluggish growth outlook had boosted investment in gold as a hedge against inflation, sending cash gold prices up as much as 14 percent this year to near 1,800 US dollars an ounce.
OIL MARKE TS
EGYPT 0.8% 5074
US Crude $106.10 $1.99 London Brent $123.46 $2.22 Kuwait Crude $123.40 $1.49 Information Courtesy: KAMCO
CURRE NCIE S US Dollar
Buy 0.2783 Sell 0.2788 Buy 0.3668 Sell 0.3675
Buy 0.4408 Sell 0.4417
Buy 0.003318 Sell 0.003326
Buy 0.0742 Sell 0.0743
Buy 0.07576 Sell 0.0759
Kuwaiti oil price rises $1.49 reaching $123.40
Buy 0.07658 Sell 0.07642 Buy 0.7382 Sell 0.73954
Buy 0.005534 Sell 0.005522 Buy 0.006478 Sell 0.006459
Prices in Kuwaiti fils As of March 20, 2012 Courtesy: KAMCO
BIZ BRIEFS UAE cuts mortgage lender Amlak’s debt by $1.1 billion
Oil slips below $124 on Strait of Hormuz reassurance
CAPITALS: Price of Kuwaiti crude went up 1.49 US dollars to settle at $123.40 per barrel on Monday, in comparison to $121.91 pb on Friday, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) said on Tuesday. Oil prices hiked on Monday amidst optimism of US economy recovery since US markets are considered the biggest consumer of energy. The increase in oil prices also attributed to the rise in Saudi crude oil production that reached its highest levels since 1980; a proof of higher demands of oil. Despite that, oil prices still on a state of fluctuation due to many factors such as the geopolitical situation in the Middle East and the Iranian halt of its oil exports. In more news, Brent crude fell more than two dollars to around $123 a barrel on Tuesday as Kuwait said Iran had reassured the Gulf state it would not close the strategically important Strait of Hormuz shipping lane and Saudi Arabia signaled it was ready to increase supply. A return to pre-war exports from Libya also eased pressure on the market, while a slowdown in Chinese demand and a stronger dollar also weighed. Brent crude fell $2.29 to $123.42 a barrel at 1337 GMT, while US crude was down $1.71 at $106.38 a barrel. Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, the ruler of Kuwait, said Iran officials had assured his country that Tehran would not close the Strait of Hormuz. Saudi Arabia, which has said it stands ready to fill in for any gap created by the loss of Iranian oil, late on Monday said it would work to return oil prices to fair levels, according to a state news agency. Supply concerns were also eased by Libya, where oil exports in April are set to exceed prewar levels, according to a senior official at its National Oil Corporation. “We have been seeing articles about increases in Saudi supply offsetting a reduction in Iranian oil since Friday ... I’m surprised the market hasn’t reacted until now,” said Tony Machacek,
See page 10
DUBAI: The federal government has cut struggling Islamic lender Amlak’s debt burden by 1.1 billion US dollars, the UAE economy minister said on Tuesday, in the latest effort to revive the Dubai mortgage provider whose stock has been halted since 2008. The move could give Dubai’s battered property sector a boost as the federal government helps clean up the damage from Dubai’s 2009 real estate bust. Amlak, which is 45-percent-owned by Dubai’s largest real estate firm Emaar Properties, was one of the highest profile victims of Dubai’s extravagant construction boom which abruptly ended after the global financial crisis in 2008. UAE Economy Minister Sultan bin Saeed alMansouri said a committee had “succeeded in reducing by some four billion dirhams ($1.1 billion) of total debt owed by the firm and this in coordination with the federal government and the local parties concerned,” according to a statement on the ministry’s website. Amlak’s total liabilities stood at 11.01 billion dirhams as of Sept. 30, 2011, according to its earnings report on the Dubai Financial Market. -Reuters
Egypt central bank lowers RR on deposits An elderly Lebanese ‘Kaak’ (bread) seller gestures to show that his business is slowing down as he sits by his cart at a street in Beirut on March 20, 2012. (AFP)
an oil futures broker at Jefferies Bache Ltd. “But now combined with Libya coming back up and running and weak Chinese demand, it is all contributing.” China said on Tuesday it was raising retail gasoline and diesel prices by six to seven percent, the biggest increase in nearly three years, which analysts say could curb demand growth. “The move might sap demand growth. Higher prices tend to discourage wasteful consumption,” said Gordon Kwan, head of energy research at Mirae Asset Management in Hong Kong. However, any impact is expected to be muted
as China’s economy continues to grow robustly, albeit at a slower pace.
Markaz ends 2011 with minor loss KUWAIT: Kuwait Financial Center (Markaz) announced in a press release on Tuesday its 2011 financial results with a net loss of 230,000 Kuwaiti dinars or one Kuwaiti fils per share; compared to a net profit of KD 8.2 million in 2010, or 17 fils per share. These results were due to turbulences in local and international investment environment during the year. Diraar Y. Alghanim, Chairman and Managing Director of ‘Markaz’ said, “Amidst these conditions in the global and local markets and the investment sector during 2011, ‘Markaz’ has sustained its approach in favor of financial prowess and preserving its investments. We continued to steadily rely on high quality assets, low debt-to-equity ratio and high operational income. We were able to preserve our investments during this tough year because of ‘Markaz’ stable income from fees of international and local equity funds and real estate funds in addition to our profitable exits from private equity funds and fee income from investment banking services.
We look forward to better results as economic climates improve next year.” Manaf Alhajeri, Chief Executive Officer of ‘Markaz’ said, “Markaz’s main objective is to preserve strong solvency that enables the company to support its activities and maximize shareholders’ equity. Therefore, ‘Markaz’ continues to adopt conservative policies that include allocating sufficient provisions against investment risk and managing liquidity to overcome volatility in local and international markets.” Alhajeri pointed out to ‘Markaz’ bonds issuance in 2011, saying, “The KD 22 million bond will mature in 2016 and as expected, Markaz Bonds were well received by investors as subscription coverage reached 145 percent. The bonds have received an investmentgrade rating of BBB by Capital Intelligence. The bonds were issued in two tranches: one paying a fixed interest rate of five percent and the other paying a floating interest rate of 2.5 percent over Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) Discount Rate.”
Bourse merger still on table, more tie-ups seen UAE economy seen growing almost 4% in 2012
ABU DHABI: A long-touted merger between the Abu Dhabi and Dubai stock exchanges is still on the table, the United Arab Emirates’ economy minister said on Tuesday, with a committee expected to present its recommendations by year-end. The owners of the Dubai Financial Market, the only listed Arab bourse, and Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange announced two years ago that they were in high level talks on a merger. The process has been stalled on valuations, sources have said. “It is still being discussed. A committee has been created to discuss ... they will report back to ESCA and then we will evaluate,” said Sultan bin Saeed Al-Mansouri, who is also chairman of the UAE Securities and Commodities Authority (ESCA). “I do hope by the end of the year we will have some kind of indication, it has to be done in a very systemic way. It serves the interests of both markets.” The minister also said he expected to see more mergers take place among UAE firms in the wake of a proposed tieup between Abu Dhabi’s two largest listed real estate firms, Aldar Properties and Sorouh Real Estate. “We are looking at the financial sector,” he told reporters on the sidelines of a business conference, adding the industrial, transportation and logistics sector were also candidates. “Any sector that’s facing challenges,
Exports from Saudi Arabia rose by 143,000 barrels per day (bpd) in January, as the world’s leading crude seller boosted sales to the United States. The kingdom pledged to work individually and with other Gulf countries to return oil prices to what it called “fair” levels. “Up until now, Saudi Arabia has not done much to ease the oil prices ... We have however to consider the risk that the combination of the
one way out of the challenge is to create a merger. “It’s not necessarily two, it could be more than two or more (companies).” In more news, the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) economy is likely to expand nearly four percent this year, the Gulf country’s Economy Minister Sultan bin Saeed Al-Mansouri said on Tuesday. “The UAE economy is expected to grow by almost four percent in 2012,” he told a conference in the UAE capital. “This is an estimate; by the end of the year it could be better.” Last November, Mansouri had said Europe’s debt crisis and weakness in the US economy might slow the UAE’s growth to around three percent in 2012. But since then there have been signs that the debt crisis is easing and that the US economy is strengthening. The minister’s latest prediction is more optimistic than a forecast by the International Monetary Fund, which predicted last week that the UAE’s economic growth would slow to 2.3 percent in 2012 from an estimated 4.9 percent last year. Mansouri declined to comment on how the UAE economy performed last year, saying he wanted to give an exact figure. The UAE’s statistics bureau has yet to release 2011 GDP data, which is expected by the end of this month. Robust oil prices and strong trade flows with Asia have helped the UAE, one of the top five crude oil exporters globally, recover from the 2009-2010 Dubai debt crisis, which exposed excesses in its property sector and led to a $25 billion debt restructuring at stateowned Dubai World. -Reuters
Vela fixtures [to the US] and the Saudi cabinet statement could signal a change of policy,” said Olivier Jakobs of Petromatrix in a note. Libya is also ramping up production as it plans to export almost 1.4 million bpd of crude oil in April, exceeding deliveries in February 2011 before the uprising that ousted Muammar Gaddafi. This boost in global supply has helped eased concerns about the standoff between the West and Iran over Tehran’s nuclear program, which has lifted oil prices this year and kept oil markets on edge. -Agencies
KSE price index ends the day in red, board mainly red
KUWAIT: The trading at Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) came to an end Tuesday with the price index down 2.1 points to 6,228.9 points, while the weighted index also came down to 421.64 points, a down of 0.12 points. Trades came to 5,309 spot transactions, worth 33,493,650 Kuwaiti dinars, with volume reaching 459,207,500 shares. As for sector indices, the board was with four green readings, three red marks, and one unchanged index which was the food index. Top gainer of 42.8 points was the services index, while biggest loser of 78.1 points was insurance. Top share of the day was FLEX Resorts and Real Estate, biggest loser was Gulf Insurance Company, while most traded for the day was the stock of Abyaar Real Estate Development Company. Price index of Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) gained 3.4 points in early trading on Tuesday within the first hour putting the level at 6,234.4 points. However, the weighted index shed 1.53 points dropping to 420.23 points. Number of trades stood at 1,782, value of traded shares amounted to KD 10,471, 860 and volume of the traded stocks reached 160,390,000. -KUNA
NBK offers real estate services in London
KUWAIT: National Bank of Kuwait International (NBK London) provides real estate services in London to allow customers to easily own, rent and lease properties with legal consultations in the UK, with the chance to finance the real estate up to 70 percent of its value. “NBK London aims at making all real estate services more convenient. In a simple and straightforward procedure, customers can now buy and sell, lease or rent, settle bills, receive real estate assessments and many other services with our competitive prices,” explained NBK London CEO Fawzi Dajani. “We finance up to 70 % of the value of the property which will be held as security.” Dajani added, “At NBK we managed to build solid business relationships with trustworthy real estate agencies, to provide convenience and reliability for all our customers. We provide all the services necessary to make their stay abroad easy.” NBK, with the largest international network of any Kuwait bank, provides customers with the best investment opportunities and services. NBK’s international network includes many of the world’s leading financial centers including London, New York, Paris and Singapore, as well as China (Shanghai). Meanwhile, regional coverage extends to Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Turkey.
A handout picture of real estate in London.
CAIRO: Egypt’s central bank said on Tuesday it was lowering the reserve requirement on local currency deposits to 12 percent from 14 percent to increase banking sector liquidity. The new ratio is effective as of Tuesday. “In light of the current liquidity situation which has emerged on the back of domestic and global developments, the CBE’s Board decided to reduce the RRR (required reserve ratio) from 14 percent to 12 percent,” the bank said on its website. “This measure will provide permanent liquidity into the banking system and help ease credit conditions in the market,” it said. -Reuters
Abu Dhabi’s NBAD prices 5-year $750 million bond DUBAI: National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), the largest lender by market value in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), priced a 750 million US dollar five-year bond late on Monday, with a yield of 3.304 percent. The bond carries a coupon of 3.25 percent, and was priced at a spread of 190 basis points over midswaps. NBAD, 70.5 percent-owned by the Abu Dhabi government and the largest bank by market value in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), held investor meetings in Switzerland and Britain in February. The company’s preparedness allowed it to launch and price the deal within one day, sensing an acceptable window to issue. NBAD’s bond priced substantially tighter on a spread basis than its Qatari counterpart Qatar National Bank which sold $1 billion in 5-year bonds earlier this year at 235 basis points over midswaps. -Reuters
Glitches halt oil exports from new Iraq terminal BAGHDAD: Technical glitches have halted exports from Iraq’s new offshore oil export terminal for the past week after it loaded just a single tanker, two sources at the state-owned South Oil Company said on Tuesday. The first of four single-point mooring (SPM) terminals, which are being built by Australia’s Leighton Holdings Ltd. , opened on March 8 after being held up for weeks by bad weather and technical issues. It loaded two million barrels of oil into its first ship over the course of five days, marking a major increase in Iraq’s export capacity, but has since been shut due to technical problems, the sources said. They said the second SPM would come on line in April. -Reuters
Ex-Deutsche banker tipped for top Bahrain SWF job DUBAI: Salman Al-Khalifa, a former top regional banker at Deutsche Bank in the Middle East, is the prime contender to run the nine billion US dollars Bahraini sovereign wealth fund (SWF) Mumtalakat, two sources familiar with the matter said. Al-Khalifa, who is a member of Bahrain’s royal family, resigned in November as Deutsche’s UAE country chief and head of global markets for Middle East and North Africa. The Al-Khalifa family rules Bahrain and many ministerial jobs in the Gulf Arab island kingdom are held by family members. A spokeswoman for Mumtalakat said she has no information on the subject. Khalifa was not immediately available for comment. Talal Al-Zain resigned last month as chief executive of Mumtalakat, among the smallest of the Gulf sovereign wealth funds, to set up a new investment firm. -Reuters
BUSINESS IN REGION
ALWATAN DAILY wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Gold edges down, positive us outlook dents demand SINGAPORE: Gold edged lower on Tuesday as a brightened US economic outlook dented its safe-haven appeal, while a buoyant equity market also prompted investors to take money out of bullion. The expectations of further monetary easing worldwide amid a sluggish growth outlook had boosted investment in gold as a hedge against inflation, sending cash gold prices up as much as 14 percent this year to near 1,800 US dollars an ounce. But the flight to safety has started to lose its appeal with upbeat US data in recent months increasing investor confidence in the recovery of the world’s largest economy. “Investors are looking at other investment options, as they are less concerned about economic growth and more wanting to hop on the equity rally, which clearly works against some of the reasons why people buy gold,” said Jeremy Friesen, commodity strategist at Societe Generale in Hong Kong. The benchmark S&P 500 on Monday rallied to its highest level since May 2008 and 10 percent below the record close of 1,565.15 set in October 2007. The index has risen 12 percent so far this year, outstripping gold’s six-percent gain. Friesen, however, cautioned that the momentum in US recovery could falter, putting the pressure back on the Federal Reserve to keep real interest rates low to support growth. “Rising treasury yields are consistent with the very bullish outlook on US economy, but we don’t think that’s on the cards yet.” US Treasuries prices fell on Monday, with longer-dated debt yields touching four-1/2 month highs and investors likely to trim their bond holdings further on signs of an improving US economy and some stabilization of Europe’s debt troubles. Spot gold lost 0.3 percent to $1,655.35 an ounce by 0608 GMT, snapping three straight sessions of gains. US gold lost 0.7 percent to $1,655.50. Technical analysis suggested that spot gold could break the resistance at $1,671 an ounce during the day, Reuters market analyst Wang Tao said. Traders said the diminished prospect of further monetary easing from the US Federal Reserve as the economic outlook for the country improves led to expectations of an end to a period marked with cheap and easy cash. “The outlook for the money market is that cash will
FILE- A man holds a sign advertising cash paid for gold and other precious metals in New York City, Nov. 14, 2011. Gold edged lower on Tuesday as a brightened US economic outlook dented its safe-haven appeal, while a buoyant equity market also prompted investors to take money out of bullion. (Reuters)
be withdrawn from the market at some point, and the market is pricing in a much tighter cash scenario,” a Singapore-based trader said. “The appeal to buy more precious metals to increase their weightings in portfolio is probably going to be tougher with rising interest rates in the longer dates.” On the physical market, jewelers in India plan to close shops for two more days, continuing their protest against the duty increase on gold imports announced by the government last Friday. SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its gold holdings stayed unchanged at 1,293.268 tons for the fifth straight session on
Monday, despite the sharp pull-back in prices last week. Spot silver slid 2.8 percent to a low of $32.3 an ounce, after prices rose for three sessions straight but failed to break the resistance level at $33. “Some smelters may be selling today after prices rose last night,” said a Shanghai-based trader, adding that smelters had been unwilling to sell in the past week or so after prices dipped to below $32. He said Chinese physical demand was still sluggish and buyers are eyeing a lower price level - 6,500-6,600 yuan a ton - to jump in. Shanghai spot deferred silver contract edged down four yuan to 6,744 yuan a ton. -Reuters
India sells soymeal to Iran, more deals likely CAPITALS: Indian traders have sold up to 150,000 tons of soybean meal to Iran in recent deals, three trade sources said on Tuesday, as Tehran steps efforts to fight tough Western sanctions that have dented its ability to pay for food imports. Iran, which typically buys some 100,0000 tons of soymeal from India a year, is taking larger volumes from the South Asian nation in a bid to stockpile food with advance payments being made in dollars through Dubai-based middlemen. “The Indian government is promoting exports to Iran whereas some other countries and even some companies are not keen to do business with Tehran,” said one Singapore-based executive with an international trading companies.
“It is much faster to ship cargoes from India to Iran than what it would take from places like Brazil or Argentina.” On Monday, sources said Indian traders had struck deals to export 60,000 tons of raw sugar to Iran and Pakistan had decided to ship one million tons of wheat in a barter deal, a sign that Tehran was succeeding in limiting the impact of the sanctions. Food shipments are not targeted under sanctions aimed at Iran’s disputed nuclear program, but financial measures have frozen Iranian firms out of much of the global banking system. Some vessels turned away from Iran without unloading earlier this year after Iranian buyers were hit by a trade finance
squeeze, but it appears that shipments are now arriving successfully. Iran’s purchase has pushed Indian soymeal prices above rival South American cargoes for the first time in a year, making exports uncompetitive to Southeast Asia, India’s traditional market. “India’s soymeal has become expensive and it is not viable for buyers in Southeast Asia anymore,” said another senior executive with a leading global trading company. Typically, Indian soymeal is quoted 10 US dollars to $15 below Latin American cargoes to win business in some of its top markets such as Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan and South Korea. Indian meal was sold to Iran at around $420 a ton, free on board, after which In-
dian soymeal prices have risen to around $440 to $450 a ton. On a delivered basis Indian meal was quoted around $470 a ton in Southeast Asia, compared with $450 being offered for Argentine shipments. Iran is likely to buy another 100,000 tons of soymeal from India in the coming weeks which could make the commodity, used to fatten animals, more expensive, traders said. “The window to Iran could reduce exports to traditional destinations in Southeast Asia,” said Rajesh Agrawal, coordinator at Soybean Processors Association of India. “Some soymeal export deals to Iran took place earlier this month.” The soymeal cargoes are scheduled to be shipped to Iran in April and May. -Reuters
Energy Charter, Arab League sign MoU
BRUSSELS: The Energy Charter Secretariat and the Secretariat General of the League of Arab States signed on Monday night a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on issues concerning energy cooperation between the two organizations. “Economic activity needs stability, and stability is based upon better understanding and closer cooperation. That is precisely what we intend to achieve through implementation of this Memorandum of Understanding,” Energy Charter Secretariat Secretary General, Urban Rusnak stated in his speech at the signing ceremony. The Secretary General of the League of Arab States, Dr. Nabil El-Arabi, welcomed this new phase in the cooperation between the two organizations. He stressed “that energy was the motor of economic development and that the Arab League and the Energy Charter worked for the common goal of optimal future energy use.” The signed MoU focuses on joint activities for the development of regional and intra-regional energy trade, energy efficiency and renewable energy policies, regional electricity markets, knowledge exchange and technical cooperation, and on encouraging investment in the energy sector. The fundamental aim of the Brussels-based Energy Charter Treaty is to strengthen the rule of law on energy issues, by creating a set of rules to be observed by all participating governments, thereby reducing risks associated with energy-related investment and trade. -KUNA
Saudi Arabia takes steps to calm oil market
LONDON: Saudi Arabia is taking steps to calm the oil market, boosting exports, filling up strategic oil stocks overseas and tapping oilfields to expand production capacity, according to a report on Tuesday. The moves by the world’s largest oil producer would be welcomed by the White House as it battles the negative impact of rapidly rising fuel prices, the Financial Times newspaper commented. They come as oil prices surge above 125 dollars a barrel, the highest since the crisis of 2008, and set record highs in a number of currencies, including the euro and sterling, the main business daily in Europe said. Oil prices have surged on a combination of stronger than expected demand in Asia, supply disruptions in countries from South Sudan to Colombia and the impact of the forthcoming US and European sanctions on Iranian oil exports, it pointed out. “Riyadh has not publicly disclosed any of its moves, but western officials and oil traders said the kingdom was taking steps to try to bring oil prices towards 100 dollars a barrel”. The position of Riyadh could become clearer later this week during a meeting of oil ministers of the Gulf Co-operation Council in Doha, the capital of Qatar. “Something must be done to damp market sentiment,” a Gulf official told the FT. At a recent meeting of oil producers and consumers in Kuwait, several Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) ministers warned that oil prices were now “on the high side”, suggesting that the organization, led by Saudi Arabia, is starting to worry about rising energy costs. The Saudi measures include a sharp boost in exports to the US for April and May. Vela, the shipping arm of the state-owned Saudi Aramco, has hired the largest number of supertankers in years to move oil from the Gulf to the US. -KUNA
Of diapers and drugs, Iran’s trouble paying bills WASHINGTON: Like everyone, Iranians need diapers. Fred Harrington has built a business by selling Iran the raw materials to make them. The Redmond, Washington, businessman, who exports to Iran under a humanitarian license from the US Treasury Department, says he is owed close to 3.8 million US dollars by Iranian companies who cannot pay him because of the latest US and European Union (EU) sanctions. He is not alone. US firms from major drug makers like Merck & Co. to mom-and-pop outfits like Harrington’s American Pulp & Paper Corp. are finding it hard to get paid even for medicines and other humanitarian exports explicitly allowed by the US Treasury, according to officials, sanctions lawyers and the companies. “Everything from aspirin to multivitamins - you name it - it’s all jammed up,” said Cari Stinebower, an international trade lawyer with Crowell & Moring, a Washington, D.C.-based law firm, and a former counsel for the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). The payments gridlock is a testament to the effectiveness of the latest round of financial sanctions, which aim to force Iran to curb its nuclear program and which have made the Iranian banking sector even more radioactive for major global banks. But they also undercut the long-standing US argument that its sanctions are not meant to squeeze the Iranian people but rather the Islamic republic’s leaders and their suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons. “I am not against punishing Iran for being a rogue country but the United States, or the Europeans, when they start imposing sanctions, then they must consider, also their own companies,” Harrington said. Harrington, an Iranian American who changed his name from Farhad Fouroohi, had to lay off three people in February because of the payments delays, cutting his staff from seven to four. Outsize impact
While a new US law targeting financial institutions that deal with the central bank of Iran has garnered much attention, sanctions lawyers said the Jan. 23 blacklisting of one Iranian bank had a more immediate, sharp effect on humanitarian trade. Bank Tejarat, Iran’s third-largest bank, was “designated” - or blacklisted - under a US executive order targeting people and companies that promote the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction as well as their support networks. The action has the effect of cutting them off from the US financial system, along with any bank who deals with them - a risk that many banks find impossible to take. Over the last five years, the Treasury has blacklisted 23 such Iranian-linked entities, gradually squeezing Iran’s ability to do business with the world. Tejarat’s blacklisting has had an outsize impact, sanctions lawyers said, because it had been the last major Iranian bank available for legal trade with Iran. With it now off
FILE- An Iranian street money exchanger holds Iranian banknotes with a portrait of late revolutionary founder Ayatollah Khomeini, in the main old Bazaar of Tehran, Iran. (AP)
limits, companies are having to sift through smaller banks to find some that can carry out the transactions - which is no mean feat. “That has had a huge ripple effect,” said Douglas Jacobson, a Washington attorney who focuses on sanctions work. “On the one hand, you can get a license. The government is saying, ‘OK you can sell.’ But the practical reality is that you can’t get paid,” he added. The lawyer said one of his clients is out several hundred thousand dollars because of the Tejarat blacklisting and that he knows of several medical companies that have stopped exporting to Iran because of the payment problems. “Where you had a small window of opportunity previously, that window is now almost completely closed,” said Erich Ferrari, another lawyer who specializes in trade sanctions. The decision on Thursday by Belgium-based SWIFT, the world’s biggest electronic payment system, to expel all Iranian banks blacklisted by the European Union, may make it even harder to conduct transactions, sanctions lawyers said. The United States has gradually tightened sanctions because of Iran’s failure to answer questions about its nuclear program, which Washington and its allies suspect is a cover to develop nuclear weapons. Iran says it is solely to generate power.
The sanctions became much tougher when US President Barack Obama on Dec. 31 signed a law designed to choke off Iran’s oil sales by threatening to cut off foreign banks from the US financial system if they dealt with Iran’s central bank. Merck & Co., the world’s third-largest pharmaceuticals company, said it has licenses to sell Iran products to treat diabetes, cancer, respiratory illnesses and infections. “(Merck) has experienced a challenging situation in 2012 in terms of securing payments for goods shipped,” said Merck spokeswoman Kelley Dougherty, adding that the company was open to ideas that would facilitate humanitarian exports to Iran. Pfizer Inc, the world’s largest pharmaceuticals maker whose flagship products include the cholesterol-lowering drug L ipitor, acknowledged challenges in getting paid for Iranian sales, saying it would work through them. Both Merck and Pfizer declined to provide details. “There is some turbulence right now,” said Pfizer spokesman Peter O’Toole, saying the company wished to ensure that Iranian patients have access to needed medications. “If we have to work through a little turbulence, that’s what we’ll do.” A Treasury Department official who spoke on condition of anonymity said its approach on humanitarian exports to Iran had not changed, though he did not directly address
questions about the difficulty that US companies were having getting paid. “There’s been no decrease in applications to OFAC to export humanitarian items to Iran,” the spokesman added. “The recent sanctions imposed on Iran have not changed our approach to the export of food, medicine and medical devices to Iran.” For companies such as Pfizer or Merck, exports to Iran are a tiny fraction of their worldwide business. If ordinary Iranians ultimately suffer shortages of drugs and medical devices, the Iranian government may use it to score public relations points with their own people against the West, much as former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein did in Iraq. “They need to defend their position to their own population. They need to continue to create this image of an international community that is implacably aligned against the interests of a defenseless Iran,” said Suzanne Maloney, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Saban Center for Middle East Policy. “This kind of imagery would play into that and it’ll have a certain resonance among Iranians who have a long experience with sanctions, resent the impact of sanctions on ordinary citizens and believe ... the government is well able to insulate itself.” ‘Washington’s ears are clogged’ The United States bars virtually all trade with Iran. It cut diplomatic ties with Iran in 1980 after Iranian students seized its embassy in Tehran and ultimately held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days. Last year, the United States exported only $229.5 million worth of goods to Iran. “Woodpulp and pulpwood” - which includes the raw material for diapers - accounted for $57.9 million, followed by $50.1 million for pharmaceuticals, $29.5 million for plastics, $23.4 million for unmanufactured farm products and $22 million for medical devices, according to US Commerce Department data. Under a quirk in US law, the export of diapers to Iran is not allowed but the export of fluff pulp, their key component, is, creating an opportunity for Harrington to sell it to Iran. Of the $26.6 million in sales his company had last year, Iran accounted for roughly 70 percent. The impact has been so big that Harrington wrote US President Barack Obama a plaintive letter on Feb. 9, saying the latest US sanctions “have virtually stopped our business overnight.” “We would appreciate your comments and any suggestions as to what we could possibly do at this point,” Harrington wrote. “From our perspective, it would seem that there is nothing left to be done except to close our doors.” Harrington, who argues there should have been a “winddown” period to clear existing payments, has received no reply. “We have not received any reaction and I don’t expect to,” he said. “Washington’s ears are clogged. They don’t hear it at all.” -Reuters
BUSINESS IN REGION
Globus Family of Brands launches vacation choices for 2012 Ricky Laxa Staff Writer
KUWAIT: The Globus Family of Brands, the largest escorted travel company introduced a brand new selection of vacations, features and offers for travelers in a presentation for travel agents in Kuwait made by Business Development Manager for overseas of Globus Kunal Shah. An exclusive interview with Shah disclosed the top destinations this summer in Europe along with its counterparts in Asia. In the product presentation, which was held at the JW Mariott and attended by over fifty travel agents and consultants, Shah said, “Product knowledge is extremely vital and we constantly strive to provide better sales and marketing support for all our agents. We are thrilled with the agents’ response to our training in Kuwait”. Cosmos, the world leader in budget travel packages flagged off its 50th anniversary celebrations with fabulous offers on its 2012 vacations to Europe and North America. To celebrate fifty incandescent years, Cosmos has announced new limited-edition SWISS UNESCO World Heritage tour and discounts for all repeat travelers for travel anytime during 2012. One of the major highlights at the presentation was the 12 Europe vacations ‘Under 1000 US dollars’ per person. Ranging from five to 13 days and stretching from East Europe to Spain and even to Egypt, the twelve vacations offer all the hottest destinations at fantastic prices. Vacations under US$1000 include: A Taste of Scotland five days from $729, British Panorama six days from $729, Wales & Ireland seven days from $899, Jewels of Morocco 10 days from $899, Prague, Vienna & Budapest nine days from $999, Jewels of Spain & Portugal nine days from $999, Grand Tour of Turkey 13 days from $999, Tunisian Adventure eight days from $999,
(From Left) Business Development Manager for overseas of Globus Kunal Shah and Business Development Manager from Jumbo Tours and Travels Mansoor Pasha.
Jewels of France eight days from $999, Irish Explorer nine days from $999, Greek Odyssey eight days from $999, Cairo, Alexandria & the Mediterranean eight days from $999. The Globus family of brands also announced the launch of two brand new ‘Suite ships’, Avalon -Vista and AvalonVisionary to their fleet of Avalon Waterways ships this year. Avalon Waterways sets the standard in river cruising through the youngest fleet and the largest staterooms on European rivers. The new ships were commissioned in January 2012 and will continue to offer travelers authentic experiences and insights into the history and culture of Europe as ships sail pass by breathtaking landscape. Globus, the company’s flagship brand is also introducing 15 brand new itineraries for 2012, increasing its vacation selection to Italy, Greece and Turkey and introducing Jordan. Travellers choosing Greece and Turkey will be able to combine their land vacation with Mediterraneancruises. Plus, for 2012, the ‘Holland, Luxem-
bourg and Belgium’ tour will feature the spectacular once-a-decade Floriade World Horticultural Exhibition. “We are proud to represent the Globus family of brands in Kuwait as its hassle free vacation experiences and value for money tours are simply unparalleled in the industry.” concluded Mansoor Pasha, Business Development Manager from Jumbo Tours and Travels, GSA for the Globus family of brands through whom all Globus family vacations can be booked in Kuwait. Jumbo Travel has four offices across Kuwait and has dedicated divisions specializing in Business Travel (BCD Travel), Holidays and Leisure Travel, Retail Travel and Leisure products Representation and sales. Jumbo Travel in Kuwait represents world renowned leisure brands Disneyland Paris, Disney Cruise Line, Walt Disney world Florida, Hong Kong Disney, Thomas Cook, MSC Cruises, Rail Europe and Globus family of brands (Cosmos, Globus, Monograms, Avalon waterways)
National Bank Gulf Bank Commercial Bank Ahli Bank Ahli United Bank International Bank Burgan Bank Kw Finance House Boubyan Bank
1,080 460 700 580 890 250 425 860 540
Kw Investment Commercial Facilit. Int'L Financial Adv. National Invest. Kw Projects Ahlia Holding Coast Invest. Int'L Investor Securities House Ind. & Fin. Inv. Securities Group Int'L Finance MARKAZ KMIFIC Aref Inv. Group Al AMAN Inv. ALOLA Inv. ALMAL Inv. Gulf Inv. House A'ayan Leasing Bayan Inv. GLOBAL Inv. Osoul Inv. KFIC KAMCO Nat. Int'l Holding Housing Finance MADAR Al Deera Holding Al Safat Inv. Al Salam Group Ekttitab Holding Al Qurain Holding Sokouk Holding Al-Madina Finance NOOR Tamdeen Inv. Int'll Exch KW BH Int Exch.
108 280 61 174 340 13.5 64 108 118 136 61 31 39.5 45.0 110
470 710 630 890 255 430 870 560
Global Index - Banking
Kuwait Syrian Strategia Kuwait China Inv. Manafae Inv. Gulf North Africa Amwal Al Masar Al-Imtiaz
28.5 69.0 182 85 55 54 136
108 280 59 170 335 13.5 64 104 116 134 59 30 39.5 42.0 102 240.0 99.0 27.5 64.0 182 85 55 53 132
Kuwait Insurance Gulf Insurance Ahlia Insurance Warba Insurance Kuwait Re-Ins. First Takaful Ins. Wethaq Insurance
Taiba Kuwaiti Holding
Global Index - Investment
Global Index - Insurance
Kuwait R.E. United R.E. National R.E. Salhia R.E. Pearl R.E. Tamdeen R.E. Ajial R.E. Massaleh R.E. Arab R.E. Union R.E. ERESCO Mabani INJAZZAT RE Inv. Holding Grp Int'L Resorts Commercial R.E Sanam R.E. Aa'yan R.E Aqar Kuwait R.E Holding AL Mazaya Al Dar National R.E Themar Int'L Holding Grand R.E Projects Tijara & R.E Invest Al Tameer Arkan Al-Kuwait R.E Al Argan Int'L Abyaar Munshaat First Dubai KBT Manazel REAM Mena Real Estate Al Moudon Intl. R.E Markaz Real Estate Kuwait Remal R.E
59 114 146 220 242 41.0 104
80 16.0 65.0 92 60 65 93 19.5 42.0 75 134 43.5 32.0 40.0 21.5 33 325
Global Index - Real Estate
Nationl Ind. Group Pipes Ind. & Oil Kuwait Cement Refrigeration Ind. Gulf Cables & Elec. Heavy eng. & Ship. Marine Services Portland Cement Shuaiba Industrial Metal Collecting Kuwait Foundry
250 132 445 -
325 156 870 110 385
ŷ Ÿ ź ŷ Ÿ Ÿ ŷ ŷ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ Ÿ ŷ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ Ÿ ź Ÿ Ÿ ŷ ź Ÿ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ź ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź
58 112 140 220 242 38.5 102 1,000 74 15.5 63.0 91 59 63 88 18.0 40.5 75 126 41.5 30.5 37.0 20.5 32 320
ŷ Ÿ ź ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ź Ÿ Ÿ ŷ ŷ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ŷ Ÿ ź ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ Ÿ ź ź ź ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ Ÿ ź
246 130 445 1,440 325 150 870 110 375
ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ Ÿ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ź Ÿ
1100 470 700 630 890 255 430 870 560 330.63
108 280 60 172 340 13.5 64 25.0 130 24.0 230 106 118 50 52 32.0 136 60 31 71 39.5 48.5 64 26.0 242 53 38.5 51 45.0 102 248.0 102.0 24.0 28.0 69.0 29.0 182 255 114 29.50 85 71 55 54 64 42.50 134 85.23 290 560 490 148 220 122 40.50 43.64
59 114 142 220 32.5 242 118 100 39.0 120 102 1,000 80 16.0 65.0 92 60 65 79 36.0 92 18.5 87 17.5 40.5 57 75 132 42.5 31.0 37.5 24.5 21.5 134 134 220 58 325 56.84 248 130 445 130 1,440 325 156 870 190 110 375
1100 465 730 630 880 250 430 870 550 330.40 108 280 60 172 340 14.0 64 25.0 130 24.0 230 108 118 50 52 32.0 136 60 30.5 71 39.0 48.5 64 26.0 242 53 38.5 51 43.0 104 240.0 99.0 24.0 28.5 65.0 29.0 182.0 255 114 29.50 89 71 57 54 64 42.50 136 85.28 290 610 490 148 220 122 40.50 44.89 59 112 144 220 32.5 244 118 100 40.5 120 102 1,020 75 15.5 65.0 92 59 65 79 36.0 88 19.5 87 17.5 42.0 57 75 124 43.5 32.0 39.0 24.5 22.0 134 134 220 58 310 57.00 248 130 455 130 1,440 320 150 870 190 114 370
Previous Close Change 186.57 -0.03 -2.10 6,231.00 Trading Activity Chng Volume Tran. Value(KD)
DTD -0.01% -0.03%
MTD YTD 3.09% 4.03% 7.13% 1.66% Div. Annual Close Low P/E Yield High
16 12 3 3 2 5 5 34 26 106
361,800 139,150 21,050 26,350 8,900 32,750 77,100 525,600 313,350 1,506,050
1,080 465 710 600 890 250 425 860 550
1,100 470 730 630 900 255 430 870 560
3.6% 0.0% 2.1% 3.2% 1.6% 0.0% 0.0% 2.3% 0.0% 1.9%
1,220 510 790 680 920 260 480 900 590 330.63
1,060 465 700 630 790 236 425 820 550 317.17
15.92 33.85 80.57 17.93 31.08 24.25 12.04 24.78 106.53 19.29
220,000 130,000 26,800,000 2,840,000 490,000 0.57,360,000 2,120,000 -2 2,460,000 -2 820,000 1,760,000 6,160,000 1 640,000 1 80,000 49,840,000 2.0 7,200,000 -2 8,060,000 8.0 3.0 4,220,000 3,600,000 0.54.0 15,360,000 20,000 80,000 -4 -2 40,000 1,480,000 -2 2,880,000 0.04- 144,660,000
5 6 202 59 17 50 36 72 16 17 76 8 1 274 169 170 96 32 265 1 1 1 23 69
108 275 59 172 335 13.0 64 22.0 104 116 31.5 134 60 30 38.0 64.0 44.5 102 246.0 100.0 22.5 27.5 68.0 182 29 84 70 54 54 132.0
110 280 60 174 340 13.5 65 25.0 230 106 118 33.0 136 61 31 40.0 69.0 242 45.0 104 248.0 102.0 23.5 28.0 69.0 188 32 87 71 56 55 134.0
0.0% 7.9% 0.0% 0.0% 5.9% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 8.5% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 3.3% 5 1% 5.1% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 9.3% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 2.3%
112 285 67 182 345 18.5 69 25.0 130 36.0 230 122 120 50 52 35.5 140 65 35 71 44.0 48.5 70.0 26.0 244 54 39 51 45.0 104 248.0 130.0 25.0 33.5 96.0 29.0 190 255 114 32 89 73 60 56 64 42.5 140.0 85.99
104 255 40 158 295 11.5 50 25.0 130 21.0 230 102 102 50 52 24.0 106 47 21 71 28.5 48.5 64.0 26.0 242 51 36 51 26.0 61 99.0 19.5 19.0 16.0 38.0 29.0 154 255 114 26 58 50 51 47 64 42.5 112.0 74.96
23,760 36,400 1,592,640 489,000 164,550 99,360 135,680 259,800 95,560 239,320 371,480 19,480 3,160 2,183,320 766,400 1,963,240 425,000 100,480 1,026,000 3,640 6,800 2,200 79,200 384,200 10,470,670
290 485 112 28.0
300 590 495 148 43.0
6.9% 4.5% 5.1% 6.8% 2.7% 0.0% 0.0% 4.7%
325 610 520 148 220 134 40.5 44.89
280 550 450 102 220 102 40.5 42.22
15.14 12.90 10.01 23.37 296.83
2,880,000 2 640,000 -2 840,000 360,000 2.020,000 1.58,160,000 1,260,000 -20 277,500 5 1,920,000 0.5 8,720,000 9,480,000 4,640,000 760,000 1 760,000 3,640,000 4 2,800,000 1.01.5240,000 40,000 8 1,040,000 -1 57,840,000 1.01,440,000 1.512,720,000 3,120,000 0.5160,000 15 1,140,000 0.15- 124,897,500
24 10 29 7 1 61 35 15 44 69 118 37 18 8 65 28 3 1 41 260 18 118 28 2 60
58 112 142 220 116 95 39.0 110 100 990 80 15.5 64.0 91 60 64 91 18.0 87 40.5 75 132 42.5 30.5 37.0 23.5 21.0 32 57 320
59 114 144 222 35.0 244 128 106 39.5 120 102 1,000 16.0 65.0 92 61 65 92 18.5 42.0 58 134 43.0 31.0 38.0 27.0 21.5 34 59 325
0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 9.1% 0.0% 4.1% 0.0% 5.0% 0.0% 5.8% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 5.7% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 3.7% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 1.0%
63 118 152 224 37.5 250 130 100 52.0 120 104 1,020 80 20.0 67.0 94 75 67 90 38.0 92 23.0 91 17.5 45.0 59 80 144 52.0 39.5 39.0 28.5 25.5 134 34 220 70 480 57.24
47 97 108 200 32.5 224 114 77 27.0 108 94 840 62 11.0 35.0 77 56 52 79 33.0 59 13.5 87 17.5 31.0 57 64 116 27.5 22.0 25.0 24.5 15.0 134 31 220 49 270 49.06
45.72 14.63 25.43 19.62
169,800 72,120 120,240 79,200 4,840 325,440 129,280 277,550 149,440 137,280 604,680 426,720 45,400 48,560 329,000 52,560 9,920 3,000 135,920 2,461,640 44,680 490,880 66,040 5,160 366,500 6,555,850
29 21 1 23 1 2 2 3 8
312,120 72,880 4,450 439,200 3,250 6,120 17,400 8,800 42,000
246 130 440 1,440 320 146 870 180 108 370
248 132 455 128 1,460 325 158 880 198 112 380
0.0% 0.0% 2.2% 3.8% 4.5% 3.1% 3.2% 11.5% 5.3% 0.0% 5.3%
260 136 470 158 1,480 345 222 920 200 120 495
214 120 415 130 1,380 310 146 660 180 102 370
-50 Ex-D 1.25-
-10 5 6 -4 5
ULTRA of your choice
To meet the concept of being the true companion of consumers, the Samsung Series 5 ULTRA will be offered in14” model. The 14” model equipped with Intel Core i5 processor, up to 4GB memory and 16GB SSD with ExpressCache system offers exceptional performance. For larger storage and heightened visual experience, the Series 5 ULTRA 14” embraces up to 500GB storage as well as an AMD Radeon HD7550M 1GB graphics card. An integrated Optical Disc Drive is also installed for maximum convenience. In terms of connectivity, the 14” model offers full-size HDMI, VGA, two USB 3.0, one USB 2.0, 4-in-1 multi SD card slot, Ethernet and webcam. All the above features are packed into a 20.9mm thin and 1.84kg light chassis. The model carries Samsung’s superior LCD technology with 300nit HD LED SuperBright screen, Image Enhancer technology and anti-reflective screen, enabling consumers an ultra viewing experience no matter where the user is. The Samsung Series 5 Ultrabook will be available across all major electronics stores in Kuwait, retailing at 299 Kuwaiti dinars.
Available in 14”, the Series 5 ULTRA reveals its performance through an Intel Core i5-2467M processor, up to eight GB memory, ExpressCache system by Diskeeper and AMD Radeon HD graphics card. As a result, the Series 5 ULTRA is able to fast boot in just 20 seconds, wake up in two seconds, whilst web browsing is twice as fast as the previous generation notebook PCs. Performance alone is insufficient without enough space to store your data. Due to the development of digital image devices and various media platforms, files are getting larger every day, increasing the need for bigger user storage. Despite the recent trend of cloud storage, local storage is still preferred among users on a daily basis. Not to
Stay connected with LG’s new A290 triple SIM phone KUWAIT: LG Electronics (LG) unveiled its newest advanced triple SIM mobile phone, the A290 in Kuwait. As the newest addition to the LG mobile line, the A290 is an elegantly styled phone with the ability to keep you connected anywhere anytime with its triple SIM capacity. Customers can enjoy multiple SIM cards within one single device. This was mentioned in a press release on Tuesday. LG’s newest creation has triple benefits as well. The convenient triple SIM capability automatically removes the hassle of having to carry multiple devices at the same time. The phone features the longest battery life in the market as it is equipped with 1,500 mAH
Date of Closing Prices:
332,500 300,000 30,000 45,000 10,000 130,000 180,000 605,000 570,000 2,202,500
5 -30 10 5 10 0.23
compromise these needs the Series 5 ULTRA 14” offers up to 500 GB ultra-storage capacity ensuring that users never need to carry a peripheral storage device with them. The performance has been further enhanced by the extended battery life.The Samsung Series 5 ULTRA delivers up to 6.4 hours of battery life on a single charge, to make sure users enjoy the ultra features throughout the day. The Samsung Battery Life Plus is a true antiaging battery technology, which keeps 80 percent of the cell’s original capacity in a life cycle lasting up to 1,500 charging cycles / three years. This ensures that the battery can last up to five times longer than other notebooks.
battery, able to withstand approximately 15 hours of talk time. “We are very excited to introduce Kuwait to one of LG’s most practical creation - the A290. Following extensive research to address consumers’ wants, we have come up with a device that, not only keeps consumers connected anywhere but also for much longer with the boosted battery life.” said D. Y. Kim, President of LG Electronics Gulf FZE. Additional features of the A290 include a 2.2 inch display, a 1.3 megapixel front facing camera with flash, Sim Switch Hot Key, and Bluetooth with a 3.5 earjack. The handset also includes an expandable memory card slot that supports up to 2 GB of storage.
1,260,000 560,000 10,000 305,000 10,000 40,000 20,000 80,000 110,000
05 / 01 / 2012
For more Information please contact "Global" at (+965) 180 42 42 or www.globalinv.net
For more Information please contact "Global" at (+965) 180 42 42 or www.globalinv.net Last Close 186.55 6,228.90 Last Prev. Close Close
KUWAIT: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd, a global leader in digital media and digital convergence technologies, introduced the new Samsung Notebook Series 5 ULTRA, which redefines computing experience by offering top of the line performance in a thin, light and stylish device. This was mentioned in a press release on Tuesday. The Series 5 ULTRA is powered by a second generation Intel Core i5 processor; combined with ExpressCache system by Diskeeper and a powerful AMD Radeon HD graphics card, delivering an incredible experience packed in a thin and light design. “We ended 2011 on a high note with 66 percent growth in the Samsung Notebook PC business in the region,. We are confident, that the launch of the Series 5 ULTRA will further strengthen our notebook lineup and solidify our growing position within the Notebook PC industry,” said Denzil Dsouza, Business Head of Notebooks. “With the Series 5 ULTRA, consumers will be able to enjoy superior performance, trendy looks and complete portability in a thin and lightweight device and is a Full Option Ultrabook.”
Trading Prices of Kuwait Stock Exchange Date of Closig Prices: 20/03/2012
Date of Closing Prices: 20 / 03 / 2012 For more information please contact “Global” at (+965) 180 42 42 or www.globalinv.net ź
Samsung launches Ultra Notebook in Kuwait
Unleashing hidden features
Trading Prices of Kuwait Exchange Trading Prices of Kuwait StockStock Exchange
Global General Index KSE Price Index
WEDNESDAY, march 21, 2012
89.98 13.75 1.44 0.00
0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 30.41 0.00 121.38 0.00 0.00 0.00
0.00 9.54 22 77 22.77 11.92 53.75
0.00 5.44 12.86
17.51 6.45 16.98 41.69 25.23 0.00 17.18 31.68
5.48 25.39 12.18 5.73 42.96
23.07 18.82 0.00 0.00 18.73 75.44 18.18 6.58 7.78 142.64 116.19 11.52 24.48 21.83
Global General Index 90 United Industries 610 Boubyan Petroch. KSE Price Index
Gulf Glass HilalCompany Cement High Al Kout Ind. Project 1,140 National K-PAK Bank Gulf BankMaterial 495 Building Commercial 770 320 Nat. Ind.Co.Bank Ahli Bank 640 86 Equipment Holding Ahli United Bank 850 Mena Holding International Bank 248 Consumer Industries 460 Burgan Bank Kuwait Gypsum 890 Kw Finance House 216 Qurain Bank Boubyan 590 Salbookh Trading Global Index - Banking 212 IKARUS Kw Investment 77 Boubyan Int'L Ind.
208 89 610 Low 1,120 490 770 315 640 86 800 248 455 880 216 580 206 74
ź źź źŷ ŷ ŷ
ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ź Ÿ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ Ÿ 260 źź 40 ź 1,020 170 źŷ 300 - Ÿŷ 400 ŷŷ 12.5 52 54 źŷ -850 ŷŷ - ŷź 77.0 - ŷŷ - - ŷŷ 146 ŷŸ 108 120 ŷź - ŷŸ 95 - ŷŷ - ŷ 2,220 Ÿ - ŷ 116 ź ŷ 108 - ŷŷ 310 49 źŸ - - ŷŷ
265 Commercial Facilit. Global Index - Industrial 41 Int'L Financial Adv. 1,020 NationalInvest. Cinema 174 National KwProjects Hotels Kw 300 405 Agility Ahlia Holding 13.5 Coast Invest. 53 57 Market Complexes -860 Int'L Investor ZAIN Securities House 79.0 Safat Energy Ind. & Fin. Inv.Group Educational -Securities Group Indep. Petroleum Int'L Finance 152 National Cleaning 110 MARKAZ 120 Sultan Center KMIFIC 97 Arabi Group Int'L Inv. Group City Group Aref Inv. Group 2,280 Wataniya Tele. Investment Dar 120 Kw Gulf Link Al AMAN Inv. Kw Cable ALOLA Inv.Vision 110 330 Automated ALMAL Inv. System 50 NAPESCO -Gulf Inv. House 275 275 KCPC Leasing - ŷ A'ayan K.S.HInv. 32.5 - 31.0 - ŷŷ Bayan - ŷŷ Eyas GLOBAL Inv. Hits Telecom - 99 - 94 ŷŸ Osoul Inv. 20.5 Al Safwa Holding -19.5 ŷź GULFINVEST KFIC Human Soft - ŷŷ KAMCO - ŷŸ Privatization Holding 81 82 Int'l Leasing & Inv. -- - ŷŷ Nafaaes Holding - - ŷŷ Nat. Int'l Holding -National Slaughter - ŷŷ Housing Finance 110 110 Aref energy MADAR -- - ŷŷ Safwan 26.5 Al Deera Holding 26.5 61.0 58.0 ŷź Gulf Petroleum Al Safat Inv. - ŷź 26.0 26.0 Gulf Franchising 122.0 Al Salam Credit & Group Collection - 114.0 - Ÿŷ 39.0 ź 41.0 Ekttitab Holding National Ranges 19.5 18.5 Ÿ Al Qurain Holding ŷ Burgan Well Drilling - ŷ 16.5 Sokouk Holding 16.5 ŷ - 38.5 - ŷ IFA H&R Al-Madina Finance 40.0 ź 1,560 1,560 Combinted Group ŷ NOOR ŷ Jeeran Holding Tamdeen Inv. 160 158 - źŷ 118 114 Palms KW BH Agro Int'l Exch. - ŷŸ 72.0 SafatKuwaiti TEC Holding 69.0 Taiba - ŷź 90 86 Mushrif Trading Kuwait Syrian - ŷź UPAC 320 310 Strategia - ŷ 315 ALAFCO 310 53 53 ŷŸ Kuwait China Inv. Al-Muwasat -- - ŷŷ Manafae Inv. Gulf NorthHolding Africa - ŷź Mashaer 260 255 Amwal -- - ŷŷ Oula Fuel Al MasarComm. Future - ŷŷ 124 Al-Imtiaz 132 Hayat Comm. 81 źŷ 81
Global Index - Investment Mubarrad Transport 64
KuwaitInsurance Resorts Kuwait Advanced Technolgy Gulf Insurance Yiaco Medical Ahlia Insurance Al Jazeera Airways Warba Insurance Al Soor Fuel Kuwait Re-Ins. First Takaful Future Kid Ins. Wethaq K G L Insurance
-370 480 112 242 --300 Al Nawadi Global Index - Insurance Alrai Media 122 Kuwait R.E. 48 Zima Holding United R.E. 100 -
63 --370 465 108 242 --290 122 48 100 -
Global R.E. Index - Services 118 National 126 200 Salhia R.E. Trans. 204 LiveStock 184 184 -100 Pearl -102 DanaR.E. Al-Safat 224 224 Tamdeen R.E. United Poultry Ajial R.E. 1,480 1,480 Kw FoodStuff Massaleh R.E. United Food Arab R.E. 30.0 30.0 Kout Food Union R.E. Global Index - Food 98 96 ERESCO 860 840 Mabani Sharjah Cement 85 85 75 74 INJAZZAT RE Gulf Cement Inv. UmHolding QuwainGrp Cement 12.0 70 11.5 70 - 95 - 98 Int'L Resorts Fujaira Cement 78 77 Commercial R.E 120 Ras AlKheimah 120 70 65 Sanam R.E. ARIG 54 53 Aa'yan R.E United Gulf Bank Aqar Egypt Kw Holding Kuwait R.E Holding Bahrain Kw Ins. 59 AL Mazaya 60 Gulf Fin. House 58.0 55.0 14.0 Al Dar National R.E 14.0 Inovest Int'L Holding 65 59 Themar -188 Grand R.E Projects -188 Ahli United Bank -27.5 Tijara & R.E Invest Ithmaar Bank 29.0 Al Tameer Global Index - Non-Kuwaiti Arkan Al-Kuwait R.E 70 70 Markaz Real Estate Safat Global Al Argan Int'L Funds Investment 28.5 28.0 Abyaar Al-Bareeq Holding 23.5 23.5 Munshaat AFAQ 25.5 First Dubai 26.0 Al-Shamel KBT 27.0 27.0 Al-Safat Real Estate 16.5 Manazel 15.5 Ajwan Real Estate REAM -Specialities Group 370 385 Mena Real Estate Masaken Inter. Al Moudon Intl. R.E -Dulaqan R.EEstate Markaz Real 57 56 Eid Food Kuwait Remal R.E 295 285 Maidan Index Clinic - Real Estate Global Flex
Nationl Ind. Group 232 Dar Al-Thuraya Real E 242 Pipes Ind. & Oil 128 126 Kw Medical Services Kuwait Cement 455 450 Amar For Fin. & Leas. -Refrigeration Ind. 1,420 1,420 Total Parallel Market Gulf Cables & Elec. Heavy eng. & Ship. Total Services Market Marine 720 Portland 720 Global Cement Special Indices Shuaiba Industrial Global Index - Kuwaiti Co.'s 104 Metal Collecting 110 Global Index - 10 Large- Cap. Kuwait Foundry
Global Index - Islamic
źź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ źź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ Ÿ źŷ ź ź Ÿŷ ŸŸ źŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ źŷ Ÿŷ Ÿŷ źŷ ŷ ź Ÿ ŷ ź ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ź źŸ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ Ÿ ŷ ź ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ź ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ Ÿ ŷ ŷ ŷ źŷ Ÿŷ źŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ź
ŷ ŷ ź ŷ ŷ ŷ ŷ ź ŷ
Last Close Close DTD MTD YTD 210 208 -Previous 2 20,000 1 Change4,160 206 210 4.8% 224 196 23.99 -0.40% -1.55% 177.24 -0.70 -1.55% 89 176.5391 -2 1,520,000 24 135,400 88 89 0.0% 102 89 32.35 - 5,754.20 137,250 6105,726.90 4 -27.30 610 225,000 600 5.7% 610 550 86.98 -1.50% -0.47% 610 -1.50% 1,400 1,400 1,340 2.9% 1,400 1,220 21.05 Last Prev. Trading Activity Div. Annual Close Last Last 216 216 206 226 4.6% 216 206 11.21 Close Close Volume Tran. Value(KD) Bid Ask Yield High Low P/E Chng Ex-D 350 350 390 5.7% 350 350 7.76 3,796,050 - 1,120 - 1120 1120 69 3,377,500 1,140 1,120 14.74 275 275 300 3.6% 7.3% 300 1,100 275 13.23 20 495 495 830,000 407,950 490 495 - 0.0% 510 490 33.95 224 224 Ex-D 0.0% 228 224 27.09 770 770 10,000 19 7,700 --5 770 780 790 770 88.62 320 325 320,000 102,350 2.5% 260 325 20.53 315 325 1.9% 640 -20 4 21 6,400 660 10,000 64087 660 - 3.1% 66086 64051 17.34 3,440 86 82 40,000 0.0% 41.22 800 50 850 350,000 23 282,700 840 850 1.6% 850 790 29.68 33 33 0.0% 33 33 0.00 16 248 248 700,000 173,600 246 248 0.0% 255 248 23.59 102 102 102 93 0.0% 460 465 -5 500,000 10 229,750 460 465 0.0% 475 460 12.26 128 128 Ex-D 128 17.06 128 9.4% 890 -10 880 1,280,000 66 1,127,050 880 2.3% 900 880 25.07 870 138,240 216 216 640,000 222 214 216 0.0% 210 112.24 8.71 0.0% 590 590 607,850 - 1,035,000 3314 590 580 590 590 48 48 51 41 46 48 0.0% 319.37 319.54 8,092,500 6,639,050 2.0% 319.54 318.41 18.61 0.17240 95,360 460,000 13 206 206 214 162 12.10 204 206 0.0% 106 106 -3 -4 10274 10677 0.0% 10688 10670 40.56 73 9,040 120,000 77 0.0% 260 265 -5 250,000 14 65,750 260 265 8.5% 265 260 12.09 173.64 5,740,000 159 173.22 0.41174.89 163.04 11.05 1,531,460 2.6% 40 1,020 170 280 300 405 12.5 52 56 25.0 860 130 78.0 31.0 110 230 305 102 152 108 120 50 96 44.0 550 52 2,280 74 116 28.5 63 108 330 49 345 23 275 71 260 31.0 260 48.5 99 68 20.0 20.5 270 26.0 244 82 94 102 51 154 36 110 51 610 26.5 59.0 75 26.0 120.0 120 39.5 19.0 19.0 255 16.5 395 38.5 1,560 29.0 73 158 118 255 69.0 114 86 26.00 310 68 315 53 130 60 46.5 255 64 280 42.50 280 128 81 75.90 63
54.0 325 640 560 370 485 475 110 242 220 114 98 40.50 295 87 43.43
122 48 100 100 785.22 124 200 184 37.5 100 224 130 120 1,480 82 365 30.0 530 108 358.23 97 860 85 75 95 11.5 70 38.0 97 78 120 65 132 54 228 90 330 38.0 455 59 57.0 14.0 91 62 17.5 188 31.0 27.5 59 46.43 70 122 48.5 124 28.0 144 23.5 106 25.5 250 27.0 23.0 15.5 37 134 385 134 51 220 345 57 106 295 2,260 49.73 46.0
232 93.0 128 65 450 65 150 1,420 335 212 720 180 Ÿ 104 Ÿ 460 Ÿ
41 1,020 172 280 295 405 12.5 53 56 25.0 860 130 80.0 31.0 110 230 305 102 148 112 122 50 94 44.0 550 52 2,260 74 118 28.5 63 108 305 49.5 345 23 275 71 260 31.0 260 48.5 94 68 20.5 20.5 26.0 270 244 81 94 102 51 154 36 110 51 610 26.5 61.0 75 26.5 112.0 120 41.5 18.5 19.0 255 16.5 395 39.0 1,560 29.0 73 160 112 255 70.0 114 91 26.00 340 68 310 53 130 60 46.5 260 64 280 42.50 280 130 81 76.02 64
54.0 325 640 560 370 485 480 118 242 220 114 98 40.50 290 87 43.63
128 49 100 99 783.82 120 204 184 37.5 100 234 130 120 1,480 82 365 30.5 530 108 358.23 98 850 85 73 95 12.0 70 38.0 100 77 120 70 132 55 228 90 330 38.0 455 63 56.0 14.5 91 61 17.5 190 31.026.5 59 46.59 74 122 48.5 124 28.5 144 24.5 106 26.0 250 27.0 23.0 16.5 37 134 380 134 51 220 345 58 106 290 2,260 49.75 36.0
-1 -2 5 -
-1 2.0--4.0 --2 -2 20 -2 - 25 -1 - Ex-D - 5 - -1 -1 - - - - - 2.00.58.0 2.00.5 0.52.0- 6 1.05.0E -D Ex-D -5 - --5 - - --2 0.12-1 --- -8-5 Ex-D - -5 0.19- -1-6 1 1.39 4 -
1,680,000 13 2,500 1,040,000 20 1 110,000 5 2,120,000 7,040,000 4661 1,280,000 22 15,480,000 241 2,175,000 91 3,000,000 35 - - - - 81 3,060,000 680,000 1814 300,000 -5 200,000 45,000 11 62 2,400,000 14 500,000 60,000 320,000 46 - - 20,000 -2 1,840,000 22 - - 15,560,000 178 5,280,000 44 - - 7,240,000 107 - - - - -2 40,000 - - 228 240,000 1,960,000 -1 80,000 11,180,000 - 212 24 1,920,000 59 10,800,000 5 480,000 10,640,000 93 25,000 -2 80,000 4 16 340,000 33 2,760,000 39 2,000,000 50 000 50,000 -4 280,000 200,000 212 - - 25 680,000 - - - - 1,240,000 38 1 40,000 40,720,000 560,000 55812 - - 70,000 120,000 120,000 20,000 - 1,410,000 120,000 -
- - -4 610 -1 - 60 6 -
20,000 11 80,000 9 920,000 1,249 78,197,500 105 3,100,000 12 -4 520,000 1 20,000 - 1,480,000 27 3 10.0100,000 5,000 2 1 80,000 0.51,505,000 --1 320,000 830 10 1,935,000 57 1 40,000 2 120,000 2 1512 0.5- 2,000,000 880,000 - -3 560,000 11 3 1 240,000 20,000 1 17 1,000,000 -5 4 -1 200,000 Ex-D Ex-D 11 440,000 -4 28,160,000 307 1 80,000 0.5-1 26,040,000 326 1 - -2 -5 300,000 1 46,000,000 335 0.16102,000,000 998 -4 320,000 2 - - - - 12 0.52,720,000 1.080,000 1 0.5240,000 3 Ex-D 35,040,000 4 1,200,000 8 1.0- 5 250,000 20 - - - -1 240,000 6 47 5 2,110,000 0.02- - 53,085,000 - 332 Ex-D
242 -10 13,220,000 - 154 93.0 128 140,000 6 65 470 -20 50,000 2 65 150 - - - 330,000 1,460 -40 2,500 121 335 5,309 212 - 459,207,500720 Close 230,000 19 Prev Close Prev. 180 196.14 196.13 106 -2 80,000 3 193.68 460 193.83 -
67,160 40 2,550 177,720 168 33,000 295 857,200 90,920 400 12.5 67,280 865,680 5155 - 850 1,868,750 233,960 77.0 - - 295 455,920 150 73,920 106 36,000 120 -90 19,200 100,650 2,280 283,200 116 27.0 54,920 108 19,600 330 15,840 49 350 - 21 5,500 275 58,760 31.0 - 1,513,280 64.099 106,120 -19.5 - -81 589,440 - - - - 4,400 108 - 570 6,360 26.0 116,720 58.0 2,080 25.5 1,305,280 - 118.0 77,080 204,440 18.5 18.0 7,920 16.0 375 419,440 38.5 39,000 1,560 12,680 15673 39,560 116 197,080 69.0 175,720 -86 15 600 15,600 295 63 86,850 310 10,600 52 - - 173,450 250 - 275 - 157,920 3,240 124.080 2,702,550 35,440 63 - - 25,900 56,900 13,200 4,840 - 414,950 13,200 -
2,440 3,840 92,000 8,555,660 383,920 104,680 3,680 148,400 22,400 7,400 2,400 159,480 31,160 1,656,950 3,400 8,960 23,960 61,600 53,560 18,520 2,400 67,400 10,720 - 26,160 1,592,840 1,120 1,635,720 56,400 1,305,760 4,711,680 22,400 - - 76,880 1,880 6,160 946,080 19,240 - 93,850 - 13,520 610,850 4,151,200 3,680
51.0 300 510 365 460 470 108 242 - - 290 85 122 48 99 -
122 200 182 - 99 126 110 1,460 490 112 95 86085 7185 11.592 35.570 77 120 53 - 220 305 13.5 9056 - 62 30.0 188.0 70 116 28.0 23.5 25.0 24.5 20.5 15.5 40 380 29 218 55 29084
3,111,120 -17,800 122 22,550 455 - 150 97,530 1,420 3,550 310 33,493,650 165,600 Change 710 178 0.01 8,480 104 0.15 435
1,040 3.9% 172 0.0% 0.0% 300 - 6.7% 405 0.0% 9.9% 13.0 5256 0.0% 0.0% - 860 0.0% 23.3% 0.0% 0.0% 78.0 33.5 - 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 325 9.8% 0.0% 0.0% 152 110 0.0% 122 9.3% -97 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 570 0.0% 0.0% 2,300 2.2% 0.0% 0.0% 118 29.5 0.0% 0.0% 110 - 0.0% 7.6% 50 0.0% 5.8% 24 - 0.0% 1.8% 280 0.0% 6.0% 32.5 - 0.0% 3.8% - 0.0% 0.0% - 0.0% 0.0% -20.0 0.0% 0.0% - 0.0% 23882 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 104 54 - 0.0% 5.2% 0.0% 0.0% 110 0.0% 640 3.6% 0.0% 27.0 59.0 0.0% 0.0% 26.5 0.0% 120.0 130 0.0% 0.0% 39.0 0.0% 19.0 0.0% 20.0 0.0% 0.0% 265 16.5 0.0% 0.0% 395 0.0% 39.0 1,580 4.5% 0.0% % 78 0.0% 3.8% 160 6.8% 122 5.1% 270 70.0 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 2787 0.0% 9 7% 325 0.0% 9.7% 73 3.2% 315 0.0% 53 5.4% 61 - 0.0% 47 260 10.8% 0.0% 69 280 0.0% 0.0% - 280 0.0% 8.9% 128.082 0.0% 12.3% 64 2.4% 0.0% 56.0 6.2% 0.0% 325 0.0% 610 - 4.5% 370 5.2% 2.7% 500 480 9.1% 0.0% 114 244 0.0% 2.7% 110 0.0% 106 0.0% 43.0 295 0.0% 1.7% 5.7% 90 4.7% 0.0% 130 49 0.0% 110 0.0% 0.0% 100 11.5% 126 0.0%
202 0.0% 186 10.0% 37.5 5.0% 100 0.0% 224 - 4.5% 0.0% 0.0% 130 1,480 4.4% 6.1% 85 1.4% 370 0.0% 31.5 3.8% 560 6.5% 118 3.9% 0.0% 98 87086 0.0% 5.9% 7686 0.0% 10.5% 12.095 0.0% 0.0% 37.071 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 79 98 8.3% 0.0% 65 122 5.7% 0.0% 54 132 0.0% 0.0% 91 230 9.1% 0.0% 40.5 325 0.0% 7.7% 60 0.0% 14.5 0.0% 0.0% 9457 5.5% - 63 0.0% 5.3% 33.5 190.0 0.0% 0.0% 57 0.0% 3.9% 74 0.0% - 0.0% 126 0.0% 28.5 - 0.0% 0.0% 25.0 0.0% 0.0% 25.5 0.0% 242 3.2% 28.0 0.0% 0.0% 24.0 0.0% 16.0 0.0% 3.7% 130 1.8% 385 0.0% 32 0.0% 51 0.0% 0.0% 57 - 0.0% 0.0% 99 0.0% 295 - 1.1% 0.0%
232 94.0 130 70 465 -70 1,440 340 216 720 DTD 190 0.01% 108 0.08% -
0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 2.2% 7.7% 3.3% 0.7% 4.6% 3.0% 4.57% 2.4% 13.9% 5.6% 0.0% 4.3%
42 40 990 1,120 174 170 280 280 305 295 430 340 13.5 12.5 5465 5241 25.0 25.0 900 840 130 130 81.0 45.0 36.0 31.0 110 110 230 230 295 345 102 102 152 110 116 108 108 136 50 5084 104 44.0 44.0 530 550 52 52 1,920 2,280 74 74 95 126 28.5 28.5 11268 10863 230 330 51 49 340 395 23 22 260 305 71 71 260 260 31.5 31.0 260 260 48.5 48.5 132 68.0 68.054 23.5 14.0 20.5 20.5 26.0 26.0 280 270 24484 24461 94 9490 104 51 51 154 154 36 3691 120 51 51 520 710 26.5 27.5 30.0 74.0 75 75 28.5 16.0 99.0 120.0 140 120 19.5 41.5 19.5 12.0 19.0 19.0 275 198 17.0 16.5 490 395 39.0 38.0 1,580 1,500 29.0 29.0 89 15673 162 118 25586 255 75.0 57.0 114 114 104 2680 28 340 270 68 68 280 315 53 55 130 130 60 60 47 47 172 260 64 64 265 305 42.5 42.5 265 300 132.089 128.070 76.32 72 75.90 51
56.0 44.0 325 325 640 640 560 560 390 345 520 485 480 410 118 110 270 236 220 220 134 11498 114 40.5 40.5 295 218 44.80 92 43.43 80
116 156 49 48 100 110 100 99 785.22 744.62 120 128 200 208 182 222 37.5 37.590 114 234 224 130 126 130 120 1,500 1,420 82 82 390 340 30.5 30.0 570 500 108 108 365.22 345.74 100 96 86095 84044 76 7355 108 12.573 11.543 38.0 38.0 122 46 78 77 126 118 75 65 132 132 54 55 232 188 90 90 330 250 38.0 38.0 455 455 63 59 40.5 74.0 14.5 14.0 91 91 17.5 17.5 31.0 31.0 59 59 47.16 40.74 78 70 1,220 1,220 48.5 48.5 144 124 29.0 28.0 24.5 23.5 26.0 25.5 28.5 27.0 16.5 15.5 134 134 32 32 220 220 57 60 295 270 49.8649.73-
232 260 130 128 470 450 158 150 1,460 1,420 340 335 212 222 710 740 MTD 180 3.30% 180 104 116 3.95% 460 460
17.46 88.93 12.13 13.48 1.33 0.00 13.17
23.89 0.00 20.47 0.00 23.73 0.00 55.09 0.00 14.76 0.00 0.00 0.00
16.48 6.56 9.57 0.00 11.97 9.19 365.52 32.31 0.00 13.80
0.00 116.80 9.60 0.00 0.00 15.16
0.00 71.64 86.17 17.06 0.00 3.02 8.28 10.09 22.77 11.92
57 76 57.76 43.00
5.26 7.80 8.42 23.73 0.00 17.08
3.78 16.97 25.05 12.90 11.90 9.91 8.47 17.37 16.90 296.83 10.92 7.79
10.89 37.20 12.83 12.61 22.21 17.83 16.20
5.72 11.72 23.77 9.84 15.28 11.43 39.65 5.29
35.62 7.50 8.10 37.95 4.15 10.07
11.37 0.00 5.38 27.28
20.67 9.93 23.07
18.82 63.06 0.00 11.03 0.00 16.27
12.64 6.49 8.02 14.97 193.84 96.15 YTD 10.91 3.48% 23.15 1.97% 26.77
STOCKS WITH NBK CAPITAL
ALWATAN DAILY wednesday, march 21, 2012
April 21, 2009 March 20, 2012
1% 6% Oman
GCC Best Performers
95 20-Dec-11 85
MENA Best Performers
S&P Pan 3-Feb-09 Arab Large/ 18-Feb-09 Mid Composite S&P 20-Mar-09 GCC Large/ Mid Composite 19-Jan-09 5-Mar-09 4-Apr-09 19-Apr-0
1 Period's Liquidity 1 Ratio (PLR x)*
MENA Indices Highlights Country (Index)
Sa Saudi Arabia (Tadawul All Share Index) Country (Index)
Index 7,515 Level
UASa UAE (ADX Index) Saudi Arabia (Tadawul All Share Index)
QaUAUAE Qatar (DSM Index) (ADSM Index)
Ku Kuwait (KSE Weighted Index)
UAE (DFM(KSE Index) Ku Kuwait Weighted Index)
OmOman UAE(MSM (DFMIndex) Index)
BaQa Bahrain Qatar (BSE (DSMIndex) Index)
Jo Jordan (Amman General Index)
Eg Egypt (EGX 30 Index)
OmOman (MSM Index)
Ba Bahrain (BSE Index)
M Morocco (Casa All Shares Index)
Eg Egypt (Hermes Egypt Index (HFI))*
Le Lebanon (Beirut SE Index)
Jo Jordan (Amman General Index)
Pa Palestine (Al-Quds Index)
M Morocco (Casa All Shares Index)*
Tu Tunisia (Tunis SE Index)
Le Lebanon (Beirut SE Index)* *Market Closed
Pa Palestine (Al-Quds Index) * Market Closed
Tu TunisiaClosed (Tunis SE Index)* * Market
52 Wk High
Mkt.395,269 Cap. USD million
MENA Worst Performers
SAUDI ARABIA *Market Closed
SAR 90.00 SAR 22.95
225 Saudi Industrial Inv. Grp.
101 Riyad Bank
430 Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Dev. Co. (KSA)
343,553,085 200,191,901 119,955,261 172,721,585
115 (KSA) 511Alinma Saudi Bank Electricity Co. (KSA)
NBKNational Bank of Kuwait (KUW)
Market Cap. (SAR '000)
43Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Dev. Co.
S&P GCC Large/Mid Composite
23Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co.
Turnover (SAR) 3,429,125,861 7030.SSE Zain - Saudi Arabia 1,452,473,705 3050.SSE Southern Province Cement Co. 798,819,043 4300.SSE Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Dev. Co.
70Zain - Saudi Arabia
1 Alinma Bank
1050.SSE Banque Saudi Fransi
1211.SSE Saudi Arabian Mining Co. #N/A
201 Industries Corp. (KSA) 235Saudi SaudiBasic Kayan Petrochemical Co. (KSA)
Turnover (SAR '000)
703 Zain - Saudi Arabia (KSA)
7,616 / 5,916 4190.SSE Jarir Marketing Co.
Tadawul Index 52 week High / Low
MENA Highest Turnover
115 Alinma Bank (KSA)
93% 5110.SSE Saudi Electricity Co.
% of stocks trading above 1yr avg. price
SAR 13.05 SAR 48.00
GCC Highest Turnover
Tadawul Index (% Chg.)
SAR 10.65 -13.1% -7.4% KWD 0.265
EMAEmaar Properties (UAE) Best Performers
AED 1.08% Chg. -8.5% Close
KFI Kuwait Finance House (KUW)
GC Gulf Cement Co.
CBDCommercial Bank of Dubai
0.88 201 430Saudi Dar Al Arkan Real Estate 1.74 Basic Industries Corp.Dev. Co.
GCC Worst Performers
1.87 FAC 703Commercial Zain - SaudiFacilities Arabia Co. 1.37 1.63 305 Southern Province 0.88 238 Rabigh Petrochem. Cement Co.
QGTQatar Gas Transport Co.
KWD 0.255 QAR 6.35
BO Boubyan Bank
OMR 0.992 OMR 0.703
KIB Kuwait International Bank KCB Al Khaliji Commercial Bank
OMR5.60 0.541 SAR
RCC Raysut Cement Co. GEC Galfar Engineering & Contracting
Turnover 4,394 USD million
0.4% 1.9% 0.8%
Mkt. Cap. USD million
525,916 Wk Low
Turnover USD million
52 Wk 7,616 High
52 Wk Low
USD 0.095% Chg. 5.6% Close
OCKingdom Oman Cement Co. 3 428 Hldg. Co.
Period's Liquidity Ratio (PLR x)*
MENA Indices Highlights
4 ITH Ithmaar Bank
Tunisia Abu Dhabi
Saudi Dubai Dubai
Return DailyDaily Return (%)(%)
DailyIndex Index Performance Snapshot Daily Performance Snapshot
Egypt Jordan Jordan
Bull/Bear Indicator Bull/Bear Indicator
Rebased RebasedPerformance Performance
5 Saudi Electricity Co.
3030.SSE Saudi Cement Co.
4220.SSE Emaar the Economic City
Quotes Company Name 1 Al Rajhi Bank
1 Alinma Bank 2 Almarai Co.
1 Arab National Bank
1 Bank AlBilad
1 Bank Al Jazira
Turnover (SAR '000) 112,587
Volume ('000) 1,460
213,959 200 54
2 National Industrialization Co.
2 Rabigh Refining & Petrochemical Co.
1 Riyad Bank
1 Samba Financial Grp.
2 Saudi Arabian Fertilizer Co.
1 Saudi Arabian Mining Co.
2 Saudi Basic Industries Corp.
3 Saudi Cement Co.
5 Saudi Electricity Co.
1 Saudi Hollandi Bank
22 Saudi Industrial Investment Grp.
2 Saudi International Petrochemical Co. 1 Saudi Investment Bank 2 Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co. 7 Saudi Telecom Co. 2 Savola Group Co. 0 3 Southern Province Cement Co. 0 1 SABB 3 Yamama Saudi Cement Co.
2 Yanbu National Petrochemicals Co. 7 Zain - Saudi Arabia
4 Kingdom Holding Co.
4 Jarir Marketing Co.
4 Jabal Omar Development Co.
Market Cap. (SAR '000)
4 Emaar the Economic City
7 Etihad Etisalat Co.
1 Banque Saudi Fransi
4 Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Dev. Co.
12.6% 16.0% 4.7%
STOCKS WITH NBK CAPITAL
ALWATAN DAILY wednesday, march 21, 2012
KUWAIT Rebased Performance
Best Performers 6,229 (0.0%)
KSE General Index (% Chg.)
KSE Weighted Index (% Chg.)
% of stocks trading above 1yr avg. price
Worst Performers Turnover (KWD) 1,868,750 857,200
K Kuwait Finance House
C Gulf Cable and Electrical Industries Co.
N National Investments Company
S&P GCC Large/Mid Composite
ALAFCO.KSAlafco Aviation Lease and Fin. Co.
Market Cap. (KWD '000)
Zain Kuwait ZA
Turnover (KWD '000)
467 / 396 NMTC.KSE Wataniya
KSE Weighted Index 52 week High / Low
Kuwait International Bank
BOUBYAN. Boubyan Bank
6,523 / 5,694 GBK.KSE
KSE General Index 52 week High / Low
Commercial Bank of Kuwait
KCEM.KSE Kuwait Cement Co.
MABANEE. Mabanee Co.
SULTAN.KSSultan Center Food Products Co.
International Finance Co.
KSE Weighted Index
Quotes Company Name
T Al Themar Intl. Holding Co.
A AREF Energy Holding Co.
A Al Ahli Bank of Kuwait
A Alafco Aviation Lease and Fin. Co. B Boubyan Bank
B Boubyan Petrochemical Co. B Burgan Bank
K Kuwait Projects Co. (Holding)
N National Industries Co.
S The Securities House N Wataniya
Market Cap. (KWD '000)
Z Zain Kuwait
A The Commercial Real Estate Co.
T Tamdeen Real Estate Co.
S Sultan Center Food Products Co.
S Salhia Real Estate Co.
N National Real Estate Co.
A Qurain Petrochemicals Industries Co.
O Oula Fuel Marketing Co.
N National Industries Grp. Holding N National Investments Company
K Kuwait International Bank
N National Bank of Kuwait
K Kuwait Finance House
M Mena Holding
M Mabanee Co.
P Kuwait Portland Cement Co.
F Kuwait Food Co.
IK Ikarus Petroleum Industries Co.
K Kuwait Cement Co.
K KIPCO Asset Management Co.
C Gulf Cable and Electrical Industries Co.
IF International Finance Co.
IF IFA Hotels & Resorts
G Gulf Bank
Turnover (KWD '000)
C Commercial Bank of Kuwait G Global Investment House
F Commercial Facilities Co.
A Burgan Co. for Well Drilling
C Combined Grp Contracting Co.
UAE Rebased Performance
Best Performers 1,643 (-1.5%)
DFM Index (% Chg.)
ADSM Index (% Chg.) 123
1,754 / 1,301
DFM Index 52 week High / Low 114
ADSM Index 52 week High / Low
2,775 / 2,293
Market Cap. (AED '000)
Turnover (AED '000)
Highest Turnover 100
S&P GCC Large/Mid Composite
20-Feb-12 Abu Dhabi SE
A ALDAR Properties
Turnover (AED) 57,846,504 CBD.DFM Commercial Bank of Dubai 33,474,723 GCEM.ADS Gulf Cement Co. 30,447,446 DEYAAR.D Deyaar Development Co.
S Sorouh Real Estate Co.
E Emaar Properties
82% ADIB.ADSM Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank 0.05 #N/A #N/A
% of stocks trading above 1yr avg. price
D Dubai Financial Market
FGB.ADSM First Gulf Bank
EMIRATES Emirates NBD
Quotes Company Name
A Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank
T Abu Dhabi National Energy Co.
A Air Arabia
A Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank
A Abu Dhabi National Hotels
A Arkan Building Materials Co.
D Dana Gas
C Commercial Bank of Dubai D Deyaar Development Co. D du
2.20 1.37 -
D Dubai Islamic Bank
E Emirates NBD
F First Gulf Bank
G Gulf Cement Co. M Mashreq
N National Bank of Abu Dhabi N National Bank of Fujairah
N National Bank of Umm Al Qaiwain S Sharjah Islamic Bank
S Sorouh Real Estate Co.
12.05 4.10 1.97
U United Arab Bank
-11.8% -14.3% -5.8%
24,530 5,321 -
15.2% 22.4% -5.7%
Market Cap. (AED '000)
* Closing Prices, Turnover and Market Cap. in USD
U Union National Bank U Union Properties
D Dubai Financial Market
E Emaar Properties
A Arabtec Holding
Turnover (AED '000)
A Amlak Finance
A ALDAR Properties
0.5 2.3 1.2
0.9 0.5 0.5 0.7
STOCKS WITH NBK CAPITAL
ALWATAN DAILY wednesday, march 21, 2012
QATAR Rebased Performance
Best Performers 8,647 (-0.4%)
DSM Index (% Chg.)
DSM 52 week High / Low
44% QEWS.DSMQatar Electricity & Water Co. 1.17 QIIK.DSM Qatar International Islamic Bank 8,892 / 8,071 VFQS.DSM Vodafone Qatar
Market Cap. (QAR '000)
% of stocks trading above 1yr avg. price Advance/Decline Ratio
Turnover (QAR '000)
MARK.DSMMasraf Al Rayan
Highest Turnover 100
Worst Performers Turnover (QAR) 59,693,857 IQCD.DSM Industries Qatar 44,369,662 ERES.DSMEzdan Real Estate Co. 28,541,398 QIBK.DSM Qatar Islamic Bank
Q Qatar Gas Transport Co.
MMasraf Al Rayan
S&P GCC Large/Mid Composite
Q Qatar National Bank
C The Commercial Bank of Qatar
KCBK.DSMAl Khalij Commercial Bank
BRES.DSMBarwa Real Estate Co.
Quotes Company Name
A Aamal Co.
Turnover (QAR '000)
C The Commercial Bank of Qatar
E Ezdan Real Estate Co.
D Doha Bank
Q Qatar Electricity & Water Co.
M Masraf Al Rayan
Q Qatar Gas Transport Co.
Q Qatar International Islamic Bank
Q Qatar Islamic Bank
Q Qatar National Bank
Q Qatar Telecom
Q Qatar Navigation V Vodafone Qatar
Market Cap. (QAR '000)
K Al Khalij Commercial Bank B Barwa Real Estate Co.
OMAN Rebased Performance
Best Performers 5,922 (0.4%)
MSM Index (% Chg.)
53% OCOI.MSM Oman Cement Co.
% of stocks trading above 1yr avg. price
RCCI.MSM Raysut Cement Co.
Turnover (OMR '000)
Market Cap (OMR '000)
6,406 / 5,419 OTEL.MSMOman Telecommunications Co. 4,463 NBOB.MSMNational Bank of Oman
MSM 52 week High / Low
Highest Turnover 100
Worst Performers Turnover (OMR) 629,184 BKMB.MSMBank Muscat 223,364 RNSS.MSMRenaissance Services
O Oman Telecommunications Co. R Raysut Cement Co.
N National Bank of Oman
S&P GCC Large/Mid Composite
O Oman Cement Co.
B Bank Muscat
NBOB.MSMNational Bank of Oman
OTEL.MSMOman Telecommunications Co.
RCCI.MSM Raysut Cement Co.
Quotes Company Name
B Bank Dhofar
N National Bank of Oman
O Oman Telecommunications Co.
R Renaissance Services
B Bank Muscat
O Oman Cement Co.
R Raysut Cement Co.
Turnover (OMR '000)
% Change YTD
Market Cap. (OMR '000)
BAHRAIN Rebased Performance
Best Performers 1,147 (-0.1%)
BSE Index (% Chg.)
32% ITHMR.BSE Ithmaar Bank - BATELCO.BBahrain Telecommunications Co.
% of stocks trading above 1 yr avg. price Advance/Decline Ratio
1,433 / 1,129
BSE 52 week High / Low
Turnover (BHD '000)
Market Cap. (BHD '000)
Highest Turnover 100
Worst Performers Turnover (BHD) 303,994 BATELCO.BBahrain Telecommunications Co. 7,652 ITHMR.BSE Ithmaar Bank
IT Ithmaar Bank
B Bahrain Telecommunications Co. A Ahli United Bank
S&P GCC Large/Mid Composite
Ahli United Bank #N/A
Quotes Company Name
A Ahli United Bank*
A Arab Banking Corp.*
B Albaraka Banking Grp.* B Bahrain Islamic Bank
B Bahrain Telecommunications Co. B BBK
IN Investcorp Bank* IT Ithmaar Bank*
N National Bank of Bahrain U United Gulf Bank
* Closing Prices, Turnover and Market Cap. in USD
Turnover (BHD '000)
Volume ('000) -
0.660 1.000 0.420 0.082
Market Cap. (BHD '000)
10.8 7.8 6.4
Are you at risk for gum disease? Periodontal disease, sometimes called gum disease, attacks and damages tissue called the sulcus that sits just below the gum line. The American Dental Association mentions these factors that increase your risk for periodontal disease: •Smoking or chewing tobacco products. •Having a systemic disease, such as diabetes. •Taking certain medications, including anti-epilepsy drugs, steroids and anti-cancer drugs. •Having crooked teeth or a bridge that doesn’t fit correctly. •Being pregnant or taking birth control pills. •Having fillings that have become defective.
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Robots could be future playmates for kids NEW YORK: As technology continues to improve, humanlike robots will likely play an ever-increasing role in our lives: They may become tutors for children, caretakers for the elderly, office receptionists or even housemaids according to LiveScience. Children will come of age with these androids, which naturally raises the question: What kind of relationships will kids build with personified robots? Children will view humanoid robots as intelligent social and moral beings, allowing them to develop substantial and meaningful relationships with the machines, new research suggests. Researchers analyzed the interactions between nearly 100 children and Robovie, a 3-foot-tall (0.9 meters) robot developed by the Advanced Telecommunications Research Institute in Japan. In the study, two technicians controlled Robovie remotely from another room, leading the children to believe that the robot was autonomous. The researchers imparted humanlike behavior to the robot, such as having Robovie claim unfair treatment when he was told to go into the closet at the end of the interaction sessions. Follow-up interviews with the children showed that the kids believed Robovie had mental states, such as being intelligent and having feelings, and was a social entity capable of being a friend and confidante. Many of the children also believed that Robovie deserved fair treatment and should not be psychologically harmed. “We typically think [of] robots as rational calculators rather than humanlike and emotional,” said Adam Waytz, a psychologist at Northwestern University in Illinois, who was not involved in the study. “But this research provides a nice example of how endowing a robot with emotions can lead children to treat the robot as a companion and to consider its moral standing.” A mental, social and moral entity
A major goal in the field of human-robot interaction is to determine how people will behave socially with robots in the near future. Will we treat robots as tools to be used and tossed aside at will, or will we see them as moral entities deserving of fairness and rights? To find out, Solace Shen, a psychology doctoral stu-
rupts the “I Spy” game to tell Robovie that he is no longer needed and has to go into the closet. Robovie objects and says that he is scared of being in the closet, but the researcher puts him in there anyway. Immediately following the staged interactions, the researchers interviewed each child for 50 minutes. The majority of the children thought that Robovie had mental states; for instance, 79 percent believed he was intelligent and 60 percent believed that he had feelings. On the social side of things, 84 percent of the children said they might like to spend time with Robovie if they were lonely and 77 percent believed that he could be their friend. Fewer children attributed Robovie with moral rights: 54 percent of the children believed it was wrong to put Robovie in the closet (whereas 98 percent said it would be wrong to put a person in a closet), and 42 percent believed that Robovie should be paid if he teaches people about the ocean all day long. A fanciful view
FILE - A child interacting with Robovie, a remotely controlled humanoid robot. In the near future, children may view such robots as friends. (Agencies)
dent at the University of Washington, and her colleagues recruited 90 children ages 9, 12 or 15 years old to interact with Robovie. The robot has some autonomous functions and speech recognition, but the researchers instead chose to control Robovie themselves. “We tried to create a situation where people come in and interact with the robot in what would be a possible future scenario,” Shen told LiveScience.
The 15-minute interaction sessions had several stages designed to impart Robovie with seemingly human characteristics and behavior. For example, Robovie introduces himself to the children, shows them an aquarium and teaches them about the ocean, asks them to move a ball out of his way, plays “I Spy” and argues with a researcher, who is present for the entire session. In the last leg of the session, a second researcher inter-
Overall, fewer 15-year-olds saw Robovie as a mental, social and moral being than did the 9- and 12-year-olds, who scored the robot relatively the same on mental capacity. “But even though the 15-year-olds attribute less of these qualities, overhalf of them scored pretty high for Robovie as a mental, social, moral entity,” Shen said. The older children may just have a less “fanciful” view of robots and see them as mechanical machines. Alternatively, their views may have something to do with adolescents, which is a “unique age group that comes with its own issues and struggles,” Shen explained. To really figure it all out, the researchers need to follow up with similar studies involving Robovie and adults. Whatever the case, the researchers think that the results have important implications for the design of future robots. If engineers design robots to simply obey orders, the master-servant relationship that children experience may trickle into their interactions with other humans. Is it then better to design robots with the ability to “push back” as Robovie did when he was instructed to go into the closet?
Antioxidants may not help Alzheimer’s patients Marine scientists hunt for world’s strongest corals NEW YORK: Corals living in the tropical paradise off the Ofu Island in the South Pacific Ocean may be some of the strongest corals, living in lagoons with water temperatures high enough to kill most of their brethren according to LiveScience.They are not just surviving, but these coral reefs are thriving, according to a marine biologist who is trying to find out just how they do it, during an expedition running from March 18 through April 7. “In fact, they’re growing faster than the same species elsewhere,” said Stephen Palumbi of Stanford University. Studying these seemingly heat-resistant corals could help scientists find ways to protect these and other corals, which scientists worry are at risk as climate change warms the oceans. Coral reefs are a crucial part of the environment; they support more species per unit area than any other marine habitat. They are home to many fish we eat; they attract divers; buffer coasts from the effects of storms; and have been the source of medicinal substances, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
“Our research tries to find the corals that are better at resisting the negative effects of high temperature, and find out at the molecular genetic level how they accomplish this,” Palumbi said in a statement put out by the university. To test the corals’ strength, the researchers will use a computer-controlled aquarium that lets them increase water temperature to a precise degree. They will place the corals from different locations into this so-called coral stress tank, ramp up the temperature over the course of a day and monitor which of the corals survive and which bleach and die. Bleaching refers to the whitening of corals that occurs when they eject their symbiotic, and photosynthesizing, algae that live within their tissues. It generally is a sign of stress. The first part of the team’s expedition takes place in Ofu Island in American Samoa; from there, they will travel to Rarotonga and Aitutaki in the Cook Islands in the South Pacific Ocean. “We do not know if the strong corals we find tomorrow will be dead the next day,” Palumbi said. “But if we do not find them, we will never know where to protect them.”
Coffee not linked to psoriasis
NEW YORK: First it was beer, then it was cigarettes. Finally, researchers have found a vice that’s not tied to psoriasis: coffee. In fact, when Dr. Abrar Qureshi and his team at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston first set out to study whether there was a link between the skin disease and java, they thought the anti-inflammatory properties of caffeine might actually protect against psoriasis. That had been reported by a group of Irani researchers, who applied caffeine directly to the skin of volunteers with psoriasis and found an apparent benefit. Scientists believe psoriasis is caused by an abnormal immune system attack on the body’s own cells, which causes them to form red, scaly patches all over the body that usually itch. Typical treatments for psoriasis include topical creams, ultraviolet light exposure and systemic drugs that target the immune system. To see whether consumed caffeine had any influence on whether a person developed psoriasis, Qureshi and his colleagues looked at more than 82,000 participants in the Nurses’ Health Study. All of the participants had filled out questionnaires about their daily food and beverage intake in 1991 and were free of psoriasis at that point. Over the next 14 years, nearly 1,000 people in the study developed psoriasis, the team reports in the Archives of Dermatology. Initially, the risk did seem a bit higher among those who got a lot of caffeine in their diet, whether from coffee, tea, soft drinks or chocolate. But coffee drinkers also smoked more than people with a smaller caffeine intake. Earlier studies from Qureshi’s team have tied psoriasis to both alcohol and tobacco, so when the researchers took the latter into account they found there was no longer any link between caffeine and skin problems. Although the earlier research doesn’t prove that either smoking or drinking causes psoriasis by itself, the findings are another good reason to cut back on unhealthy habits, Qureshi told Reuters Health. “From a lifestyle point of view,” he said, “I’d recommend exercising more, drinking less and quitting smoking.” Dr. Esther Lopez-Garcia, who was not involved in the new work but has studied the health effects of coffee, said there is good evidence that the brew -- at least when filtered -- isn’t harmful for healthy people. “There is also a growing body of evidence suggesting that coffee drinking may decrease the risk of diabetes, stroke and some types of cancer,” LopezGarcia, of Universidad Autonoma de Madrid in Spain, told Reuters Health in an email. But she warned that the drink can worsen problems like insomnia, anxiety and high blood pressure. “Because of these side effects of coffee, it is prudent to recommend moderate coffee consumption,” she said. -Reuters
CONNECTICUT: Researchers have suggested that antioxidants might help thwart Alzheimer’s disease, but a new study finds that a “cocktail” of vitamins E, vitamin C and alpha-lipoic acid has no effect on certain indicators of the brain disorder according to HealthDay News. The supplements may even have hastened mental decline, the researchers said. “The benefit on oxidative stress in the brain was small and is of unclear significance,” said lead researcher Dr. Douglas Galasko, a professor in residence in the department of neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego. “Patients did not show cognitive improvement in this short-term study; in fact, there was a slight worsening on one test of cognition in patients who received the antioxidant combination,” Galasko said. Aging causes oxidative damage in the brain, which is extensive in people with Alzheimer’s disease. Clinical trials looking at whether a diet rich in antioxidants could reduce that risk have had mixed results, the researchers said. This study does not support using any of these antioxidants once a diagnosis is made of established Alzheimer’s disease, Galasko said. “If antioxidants continue to be tested against Alzheimer’s disease,
newer approaches or drugs may be needed,” he said. This study does not address whether taking antioxidants could help to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, he noted. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia among older people. For the study, Galasko’s team gave antioxidant supplements to 78 patients with Alzheimer’s disease who were part of a study funded by the U.S. National Institute on Aging. The patients were placed into three groups. One group received daily doses of vitamin E, vitamin C and alpha-lipoic acid. A second group was given coenzyme Q (a compound made naturally in the body to protect cells from damage) three times a day. The third group received a placebo. After 16 weeks, 66 patients had their cerebrospinal fluid analyzed. Among the three groups, the researchers found no difference in markers related to Alzheimer’s disease in the cerebrospinal fluid. These markers included the amyloid-beta protein and the proteins tau and P-tau. Galasko’s group did see lower levels of one marker called F2-isoprostane, which could indicate a reduction in oxidative stress in the brain. However, the use of vitamins might have increased the pace of the disease, causing faster decline in mental ability, they cautioned.
Greg Cole, associate director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at the University of California, Los Angeles David Geffen School of Medicine, said that vitamin E alone has shown some limited benefits in Alzheimer patients, but with no evidence that it really works to reduce oxidative damage, and that alpha lipoate -- a form of alpha-lipoic acid -- alone has also had some reported benefits, he said. “Unfortunately, these researchers found no impact on pathological protein levels, and in their small group of patients, their cognitive function actually declined more than in the placebo group,” Cole noted. The increased cognitive decline might be due to random variation, he said, “or it may be a surprising but real adverse effect from something as seemingly innocuous as an antioxidant cocktail.” His research group has seen similar adverse effects from some, but not all, antioxidant mixes, he said. “This should be a caution to the supplement manufacturers who typically sell products throwing in some mix of what seems like a great group of sensible antioxidants,” he added. “Everyone assumes that they will work well together and are good for you, but they don’t test them.”
‘Anti-alcoholism’ drug clears key test hurdle PARIS: A drug designed to treat nervous spasms has cleared an important early test in a project to see whether it can also cure alcoholism, French doctors said on Tuesday. Baclofen -- the lab name for a medication branded as Kemstro, Lioresal and Gablofen -- was successful in a preliminary test among a small group of alcoholics, a result that opens the way to formal clinical trials, they said. The history of the drug goes back 50 years. It was originally designed for epilepsy before becoming licensed to treat spasticity, but researchers are now interested in using it to ease alcoholic craving.
Interest was sparked in 2008 by a book, Le Dernier Verre (The Last Glass), by cardiologist Olivier Ameisen, who self-treated his alcoholism with high doses of baclofen. The new test entailed enrolling 132 heavy drinkers who were given baclofen at high doses over a year. Eighty percent either became abstinent or became moderate drinkers. By comparison, two drugs that are commonly used to treat alcoholics, naltrexon and acamprosate, yield a success rate of 20-25 percent. Side effects included fatigue, drowsiness, insomnia, dizziness and digestive troubles.
Lead researcher Philippe Jaury of the University of Paris-Descartes said the outcome opened the door to one-year clinical trials, expected to start in May, in which 320 alcoholics would be divided into two groups. One batch will receive baclofen, progressively building in dosage until the craving symptoms subside, while the others will receive an inactive lookalike pill, or placebo. France’s health system is paying 750,000 euros ($469,000) of the 1.2-million-euro ($1.45-million) cost of the trial, and an unidentified donor is paying the rest, Jaury told AFP. The pre-trial study is published in a specialist journal, Alcohol and Alcoholism. -AFP
A bustling metropolis in the heart of the United Arab Emirates lights up the night in this photo taken by an astronaut aboard the International Space Station. The city of Dubai is the largest metropolitan area in the emirate of the same name. The region’s uniquely shaped island developments, framed by a bright lattice of orange lights, are clearly visible in this nighttime image taken from space. Dubai is a popular photographic target for astronauts aboard the International Space Station because of the artificial archipelagos located just offshore in the Arabian Gulf, NASA officials said in a statement. These attention-grabbing features were intentionally built so that the full design is only visible from a vantage point looking straight down, such as an airplane or an orbiting outpost in space. The cluster of lights at the bottom right is the Palm Jumeira complex, which is still under development. The palm tree-shaped artificial archipelago consists of a crescent breakwater surrounding a trunk and 16 fronds. (AFP)
wednesDAY, MARCH 21, 2012
Einstein the scientist, dreamer, lover: Online JERUSALEM: At speeds even he could barely imagine, Albert Einstein’s private papers and innermost thoughts will soon be available online, from a rare scribble of “E=mc2” in his own hand, to political pipe-dreams and secret love letters to his mistress. Fifty-seven years after the Nobel Prize-winning physicist’s death, the Israeli university which he helped found opened Internet access on Monday to some of the 80,000 documents Einstein bequeathed to it in his will. It will go on adding more at http://alberteinstein.info and in time, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem says, it is committed to digitizing its entire Einstein archive. Among items likely to attract popular attention is a very rare manuscript example of the formula the author of the theory of relativity proposed in 1905, E=mc2, where energy, E, equals mass times c - the speed of light in a vacuum - squared. Once published, a cache of two dozen love letters to the woman who would become his second wife - but written while he was still married to his first - may also attract the curious. So too may an idealistic proposal in 1930 for a “secret council” of Jews and Arabs to bring peace to the Middle East. At present, only a selection of documents dating from before 1923, when Einstein was 44, are available. As papers are scanned, the bulk of them in Einstein’s native German, the university will publish English translations and notes, said Hanoch Gutfreund, whose committee oversees the archive.
“This is going to be not only something to satisfy the curiosity of the curious,” he said. “But it also will be a great education and research tool for academics.” Lover, Dreamer Some items, he acknowledged, were so personal that the archivists weighed carefully whether make them public. Among these are 24 love letters the scientist wrote to his cousin, Elsa Einstein, with whom he conducted an affair for several years before finally divorcing his first wife, Mileva Maric, and remarrying in 1919: “If you let enough time go by,” Gutfreund concluded, “Then it’s kosher.” Also not yet included online, but now on display at the university, is a letter Einstein wrote in German to the Arab newspaper Falastin in which he proposed a “secret council” to help end Jewish-Arab conflict in then British-rule Palestine. Einstein envisioned a committee of eight Jews and Arabs – a physician, a jurist, a trade unionist and a cleric from either side – that would meet weekly: “Although this ‘Secret Council’ has no fixed authority, it will however, ultimately lead to a state in which the differences will gradually be eliminated,” Einstein wrote. “This representation will rise above the politics of the day.” The scientist, who quit Nazi Germany for the United States, long supported the Jewish community in Palestine. But he had sometimes mixed feelings about the Israeli state that was established during the war of 1948. In 1952, he turned down an offer to become Israel’s largely ceremonial president. -Reuters
FILE - An artist adjusts the hair on a wax model of mathematician Albert Einstein at the Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum in Shanghai April 28, 2006. (Reuters)
Movenpick Hotel receives United Nation’s Green Globe Award Ricky Laxa Staff Writer
KUWAIT: The Movenpick Hotel AlBidaa was conferred with the United Nation’s “Green Globe Award” for its initiative to spearhead among Kuwait’s hotels a recycling program. The Movenpick Hotel Al-Bida’a is the first recipient among hospitality institutions in Kuwait to comply with more than fifty per cent of 365 standards set by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). The hotel boasts on its accomplishments and hopes to inspire other hotels and institutions with its examples. In an exclusive interview with the Training Manager of the Movenpick Hotel Al-Bida’a Manal Abdullah and Marketing and Communications Executive Khadija Meftah disclosed the hotel’s extensive program to create awareness on fast changing environment and climate in the country and the essential role of every individual in making the change possible for a sustainable environment. Abdullah explained that since the month of September in 2011, the hotel has taken a huge step by taking the challenge on being the first hotel to implement a recycling program along with other related programs such as separation of waste items, recycling and usage of recycled products and involving educational institutions to raise the awareness. Abdullah added that waste products are identified through triad-waste cans located all over the hotel’s premises. The waste materials are re-monitored and sent to a recycling company MRC. In turn, recycled materials are returned to the hotel in forms of plastic hangers, paper and those that could not recycled are sent off to countries like India and Dubai. The recycling project of the hotel is a part of its Corporate Social Responsibility, which is also the vision of the Movenpick Hotels worldwide. Abdullah added that the initiative kicked-off in 2011 and faced difficulties due to lack of support and enough awareness but with selected few that came forward and provided assistance the hotel managed to push ahead and succeeded.The Movenpick Hotel Al-Bida’a takes pride on its award achieved through the cooperation and initiative of its staff. “The hotel has replaced the chemicals it used to clean its
(Left) Training Manager of the Movenpick Hotel Al-Bida’a Manal Abdullah and (Right) Marketing and Communications Executive Khadija Meftah with some of the recycled materials created by the hotel staff.
facilities with easily diluted, biodegradable and environment friendly, even the pest control chemicals have been substituted. These chemicals are plant extracts and are safe for both humans and environment,” explained Abdullah. The hotel also runs a program for its employees such as continuing education on the issue of recycling. These programs include “Origami” classes, handicrafts from papers and plastics and employees encouragement to share the knowledge with people outside the hotel. Products made by the hotel are sold and returns are donated to charity. To add, Meftah said that the hotel has invited 35 schools to take active participation in a competition creating out of recycled materials projects usable for houses and schools as well as art pieces and all entries will be displayed and in the hotel premises from the 17th to 19th and winners will be announced on the 24th exhibition will continue till the 25th and 26th that will host students from different
schools to further create awareness on the issue of recycling and environment. When asked as to how the hotel feels about being the first recipient of the award in the sector of hospitality services, Abdullah said that the hotel feels privileged and honored to have spearheaded the project and that some hotels have also sought their advice as to how to start the project in their own premises. The Movenpick Hotel Al-Bida’a also has taken active participation in the earth hour and it has recently changed all its light bulbs to energy saving ones. The energy consumption of the hotel has decreased dramatically. “The preservation of nature and our environment depends entirely in our own hands, we want to make sure that our children will have clean air and sustainable environment to live in and now is the time to make this happen. I urge all other hotels and other institutions to follow and mentor others to raise this awareness and create a better world,” concluded Abdullah.
Chapter of Malaysian history closes after 62 years
KUALA LUMPUR: For more than 60 years, the remains of eight British servicemen lay in shallow graves in the Malaysian jungle after their plane crashed during a battle between the then-government and communists known as the Malayan Emergency. They would still be there had it not been for 82-year-old Dennis Carpenter, who wrote to the Malaysian government in 2008 to ask for a map pinpointing the location of the site where his brother, one of the servicemen, was buried. His letter prompted the Malaysian military, police and forensic teams to locate the remains in the northeast of Malaysia, a hideout for guerrillas who had wanted to throw out the British and form a Communist state. The servicemen were buried in a single coffin in the Commonwealth War Cemetery in Kuala Lumpur last week with full military honors for their role in a tumultuous period in Malaysian history rarely spoken of today. The 12-year-long Communist insurgency came in the aftermath of World War Two, with guerillas attacking rubber plantations, tin mines and towns while independence movements in Asia gathered steam. Carpenter’s brother Geoffrey was part of the British counter-insurgency, helping to drop smoke markers for planes detailed to bomb the guerillas from their jungle hideouts in 1950. “I was very close to my brother, he was very loving,” said Carpenter, placing a wreath on headstone of his brother
Geoffrey, a British Royal Air Force navigator, as a lone soldier sounded a bugle during the ceremony. “But the Air Force was his life, that’s what he always wanted to do.Which is why we’re happy that he’d done what he wanted to do, and he died doing what he wanted to do,” he said. Carpenter’s brother was killed along with the other British servicemen, a Danish national, and three Malaysian officials when the plane crashed into a ravine after its engines failed. Rescuers found the bodies nine days later but because of the insurgency they opted to bury the servicemen in shallow graves in the hope of coming back and holding a proper burial. The air crash victims were among the more than 15,000 people who lost their lives in the insurgency, which started in 1948 when Britain did not allow the Communists to take part in politics as Malaysia moved closer to independence. The country won independence from Britain in 1957, which historians say overshadowed the period of turmoil that preceded it. Remembering all parts of history is important, said University of Malaya Emeritus Professor Khoo Kay Kim, who survived a Communist attack on a train during the emergency. “I think people forget – not the generation which had firsthand experience – but the subsequent generations. It’s important that those who write history must really know how the environment was like, the feelings, emotions,” he said. -Reuters
Two thirds of people worldwide ‘need to live better’: Poll
NEW YORK: Whether or not money can buy happiness, people worldwide seem to think it can, at least according to a new poll that canvassed respondents in two dozen countries. Nearly two-thirds of about 20,000 people surveyed said they “need to live better,” the survey by market research company Ipsos showed, while one-third said their life was fine the way it was. Given a list of factors for improving their well-being and quality of life, 89 percent said a stronger economy in their country was very or somewhat important – the top response. Better living conditions and stronger family relationships were named by 84 percent, while only 56 percent listed finding a romantic partner, and 49 percent included meditation or prayer. Lifestyle factors such as eating better, sleeping or exercising more and finding new challenges also placed high. Responses from nations as far-flung as Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Sweden, Germany, South Africa, Hungary, Japan and Mexico varied widely, according to the poll. Hungarians were mostly likely to say they needed to live better, with 89 percent agreeing, and second-most likely to say this was harder to do than ever before. Saudi Arabians were the most likely to say their lives were fine as they were, followed by those from India and Sweden. “These sentiments are inseparable from their
crushed economy,” said Keren Gottfried, research manager for Ipsos Global Public Affairs, which conducted the poll on behalf of Reuters News, referring to Hungary. “We know from our economic confidence polling that these days only three percent in Hungary say their national economic is good. On the flip side, economic juggernaut Saudi Arabia is least likely to think they need to live better,” Gottfried said. “They also consistently have the highest economic confidence scores,” she added. And despite the popular perceptions of the French quality of life – ample social services, great food, generous, federally mandated annual leave – the French were the most likely to say that living better is now more difficult than ever. While nearly three-quarters worldwide agreed that living better requires a plan, more than twothirds of the French felt that living better is not something that can be planned. Belgians were next, but far behind, with only 49 percent agreeing, while Indonesians were the strongest believers in the power of planning for a better life. Almost 95 percent said this was essential, followed by South Africa at 92 percent, South Korea with 90 percent and Hungary and Sweden, both with 87 percent. “The planners come from all sorts of countries, economically strong and weak alike,” Gottfried noted. -Reuters
Israel bans use of ultra-skinny models JERUSALEM: Israeli lawmakers have banned underweight models from catwalks and commercials, a measure they hope will reduce eating disorders and promote a healthy body image. The law, passed late on Monday, says women and men cannot be hired for modeling jobs unless a doctor stipulates they are not underweight, with a body mass index (BMI) – a measure expressing a ratio of weight to height – of no less than 18.5. The law also bans the use of a person who “appears underweight” and says advertisers must explicitly state if graphic manipulation was done to make a model look thinner in a photo. Rachel Adato, one of the lawmakers who pushed the bill, said ahead of the vote she hoped the law would protect youth from pursuing unattainable ideals of beauty. “Beautiful is not underweight, beautiful should not be anorexic,” she said. The fashion industry’s use of wafer-thin models on runways and in magazines has for years sparked heated debate. Critics say the practice promotes an unhealthy body image among women, which contrib-
utes to anorexia and other eating disorders. Designers and agencies have often been criticized for putting relentless pressure on their models to stay unhealthily thin. After two anorexic Latin American models died in 2006, countries including Italy and India banned underweight models from the catwalk. Adi Barkan, an Israeli fashion photographer and model agent who collaborated with Adato on promoting the law, said impossible standards set by the fashion industry were getting too dangerous. “I look (back) 15 to 20 years ago, we shot models (sized) thirty-eight. Today, it’s twenty-four.” Barkan said on the set of a photoshoot in Tel Aviv. “This is the difference between thin and too thin. This is the difference between death and life,” he added. Danit Rozman, an Israeli model on Barkan’s set, said it was important for young women to accept who they were. “I think it’s better to bring something more real to the industry and in general to the world,” Rozman said. -Reuters
New fashion line puts Hubble space photos on the catwalk NEW YORK: Fashion-minded space geeks rejoice! A new line celebrates the beauty of the heavens with clothes printed with Hubble Space Telescope imagery according to SPACE. After more than 20 years eyeing the heavens, Hubble is perhaps the most famous telescope ever known. It was launched in 1990, and has been visited five times by space shuttle servicing crews. The aging orbital observatory is still going strong, its operators say, and continues to release breathtaking photos of space. The new space-themed fashion line, called Shadowplay NYC, is an independent label based in New York. Started by two graduates of Parsons The New School for Design, Ximena Chouza and Ali Bennaim, Shadowplay offers skirts and dresses digitally custom-printed with photos of star clusters, gaseous nebulas, and swirly galaxies. “We always come up with the best ideas at the most random times,” Chouza and Bennaim told eco-fashion news website Ecouterre. “Whenever we are joking around and suddenly something amazing comes up and we try our best to make it happen.” The clothes are handmade in the duo’s Manhattan studio. The Hubble photos are printed on locally-sourced fabrics, mostly silks and cotton sateens, Ecouterre reports. “As a small brand, I think it is extremely important to be fully involved in every step of the collec-
FILE - A dress by Shadowplay NYC features a Hubble Space Telescope image. (Agencies)
tion, from the creative process, to production, selling, and even interacting with customers,” Bennaim said.
entertainment Song Of The Day
Fahad AlSabah Staff Writer
Song: The Promise Artist: Tracy Chapman Album: New Beginning Genre: Folk/Acoustic In short: Fueled by the No. 1 hit “Give Me One Reason”, Tracy Chapman’s New Beginning went on to become the biggest-selling record of her career. While “The Promise” didn’t experience the same success “Give Me One Reason” had, it cemented its place among Chapman’s greatest records, and that says a lot. To listen to the song visit www.alwatandaily.com E-mail your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Buzz Jersey Shore to start filming on 6th season MTV says it’s bringing “Jersey Shore” back for a sixth season, with expectant mom Snooki as part of the action. MTV said Monday that production will begin this summer in Seaside Heights, N.J., and all of “America’s favorite housemates” will return. That includes Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, who’s engaged and expecting her first child. MTV declined to offer specifics on how big a part Snooki will play in the show about hard-partying Italian-American friends. Polizzi and Jenni “J-Woww” Farley are filming a “Jersey Shore” spinoff. Another show spinoff, “The Pauly D Project,” debuts March 29. “Jersey Shore: The Reunion” airs at 10 p.m. EDT Thursday, and MTV promises the drama of the past season “comes to a head” during the get-together. -AP
Kathy Bates to guest star on Men as Charlie Harper Looks like “Two and a Half Men” creator Chuck Lorre is getting in one more jab at his former cast member-turnednemesis Charlie Sheen. Sheen’s character, Charlie Harper -- who was killed off on the season premiere of the CBS hit last fall -- is coming back to the show, albeit in ghost form. And that ghost will be played by “Harry’s Law” star Kathy Bates. Who is female. And nearly 20 years older than Sheen. Bates will guest-star on the series’ April 30 episode, playing Harper’s ghost, CBS said Monday. In the episode, Jon Cryer’s character Alan Harper suffers a minor heart attack, and is visited by Harper’s ghost in the hospital. After Sheen was bounced from the show after a spree of bizarre behavior and a string of insults hurled at Lorre, his jingle-writing character Charlie Harper suffered an off-screen demise which saw him falling in front of a train in France, with the strong implication being that he was pushed by his new bride Rose, after he was caught by her with another woman. -Reuters
2 people wounded after rowdy Omaha concert by Tyga Police in Omaha, Neb., are investigating a shooting that followed a rowdy concert by rapper Tyga (TY’-guh). Authorities say heated words were exchanged between members of Tyga’s act and some audience members Monday night at Sokol Auditorium, south of downtown. Some garbage was thrown up on the stage. A brief fistfight broke out as people left the building after the show. Police say shots were fired from a car as band members boarded their tour bus. More shots were fired from the car as it followed the bus and its trailer for a few blocks. Police say two people on the bus suffered minor wounds. No arrests have been reported. -AP
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Mistrial declared in Housewives firing case LOS ANGELES: A judge declared a mistrial Monday in Nicollette Sheridan’s wrongful termination trial after the jury deadlocked, leaving an unresolved finale to a trial that focused on the behind-the-scenes intrigue and personalities of TV’s “Desperate Housewives.” Superior Court Judge Elizabeth Allen White excused the panel after it deadlocked 8-4 in favor of the claim by Sheridan. Sheridan strolled out of the courthouse without speaking to reporters. Her attorney Mark Baute said he would retry the case. The jury first reported problems in deliberations on Thursday then resumed discussions Monday. It later reported no change and said they didn’t expect any additional time or attorneys’ arguments would help break the impasse. Two jurors who sided with Sheridan said after being released that the deliberations hinged on witness credibility, but wouldn’t specify whom they found to be more trustworthy. Sheridan had been seeking roughly $6 million from her former employers. Sheridan claimed her role as Edie Britt was eliminated because she complained that series creator Marc Cherry struck her in the head during a September 2008 onset dispute. ABC attorneys denied all wrongdoing and presented witnesses who said Cherry received permission from top studio and network officials to kill Britt four months before his dispute with Sheridan. The veteran TV writer was not in court during the mistrial declaration. Cherry denied hitting the actress, claiming he tapped her on the head for artistic direction. The jury of nine women and three men was presented conflicting evidence and testimony throughout the two-week trial. A vote of at least 9-3 was required to reach a verdict. Defense attorney Adam Levin said Sheridan’s account of Cherry striking her had grown “progressively more exaggerated” over the years, and pointed to the testimony of numerous witnesses who supported Cherry’s testimony that he killed off the actress’ role for creative reasons. He said Monday that the case would be more streamlined during a retrial. “We’re anxious to move forward with that
Actress Nicollette Sheridan leaves at County Courthouse on March 14, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (AFP)
trial,” he said. Baute, accused ABC’s witnesses of lying and destroying evidence, said it was unclear when White’s calendar would allow a retrial, but that they would be ready. Sheridan sued Cherry in April 2010, claiming he hit her and later killed off her character after he was exonerated by an ABC human resources investigation. Juror Beverly Crosby said she thought ABC failed to thor-
LOS ANGELES: Aziz Ansari is bringing his new standup special straight to his fans.The “Parks and Recreation” star is bypassing cable networks to release his latest comedy special on his website. Ansari’s “Dangerously Delicious” standup special will be available online worldwide for $5 beginning Tuesday. “It seemed like the smartest way to deliver it,” the 29-year-old comedian said. Fans can download or stream the 60-minute show without commercials or restrictions. Ansari is the latest entertainer to bypass the big guys and sell his material straight to his fans. Radiohead famously did it with their pay-what-you-wish download of “In Rainbows” in 2007, and comedian Louis C.K. opened the door for comics do to the same when he sold his “Live at the Beacon Theater” standup special online in December and brought in more than $1 million in the first two weeks. (Radiohead didn’t reveal sales figures for “In Rainbows”, but experts estimate the band collected at least $2 million and as much as $10 million.) “It seems like this is the thing to do at this moment when so much is changing and nobody’s really figured out how to do anything,” Ansari said, adding that he was inspired by the popularity of his comedy clips on YouTube. “In this era, the way people consume media, the way people release media has not caught up.” Louis C.K. said he’d go straight to his audience again, and after the success of his “Beacon Theater” specials, would consider selling his show tickets the same way “keeping my price as far down as possible,
not over marketing to you, keeping as few people between you and me as possible in the transaction,” he wrote on his website a few days after his special went on sale. The straight-to-fans approach works especially well for comedy, Ansari said: “It makes sense that comedians would embrace something like this where you have so much control over how you’re releasing stuff... comedians are used to being autonomous anyway.” Still, such online success mostly belongs to artists with established audiences, says Karen North, director of the USC Annenberg Program in Online Communities. Direct-to-consumer entertainment is a growing trend, “but I don’t think it’s going to destroy the studio system,” she said. “If you have a following, it’s great, because you have people to announce it to, people to anticipate it and people to search for you. When you release content, it will be found and purchased or found and appreciated,” she said. “Going straight to consumer if you don’t have some kind of following is a bit of a needle in a haystack,” and time-strapped audiences rely on studios and talent-scouts to curate the endless entertainment content available online. Like Louis C.K., Ansari funded his production and the website to sell it. By making the special available around the world, he’s counting on his fans - including the 1.7 million who follow him on Twitter - to help him recoup his costs. He can even tell them about it in person during his “Buried Alive” tour, which begins next month in New Jersey and continues through the summer. -AP
George Michael ‘fighting fit’, to re-start tour
Oprah Winfrey’s Network, OWN, the iconic talk show host’s 15-month old cable network, has laid off 30 staffers after persistently poor ratings. A talk show hosted by comedienne Rosie O’Donnell, for example, was canceled after five months. The cable network, owned jointly by Winfrey and Discovery Communications, has had a hard time finding an audience for most of its programming after being launched on January 2, 2011. Discovery, which announced the layoffs in a regulatory filing, said it provided $312 million to start and operate the OWN, an amount that exceeded its $189 million commitment to the joint venture. Some of those funds were borrowed by the venture, the company also said. The staffers that were laid off are located in New York and Los Angeles, where the company has its production offices. -Reuters
Chris Rock, Bette Midler and more to be presenters
Ashton Kutcher signs on to go into space
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony will likely be a little more irreverent this year: Chris Rock is set to be one of the A-list presenters for the April event. The comedian is due to induct the Red Hot Chili Peppers into the hall at the ceremony at the Rock Hall in Cleveland on April 14. He’s a big fan and has been a friend of the band for a while. Rock will join Bette Midler, who will induct the late singer-songwriter Laura Nyro; John Mellencamp, who will induct former tourmate Donavan; Chuck D, who will induct the Beastie Boys; and Stevie Van Zandt, who will induct the Small Faces/The Faces, which included Rod Stewart. The ceremony will be broadcast on May 5 on HBO. -AP
oughly investigate Sheridan’s claims, but wouldn’t call the company’s actions a cover-up. “To my estimation, it wasn’t handled correctly,” said Crosby, a retired elementary school principal. She said jurors didn’t spend a lot of time debating whether Cherry struck the actress, saying the evidence supported Sheridan was touched without her permission. She said jurors also didn’t consider how much money was at stake. White dismissed a battery count against Cherry at the end of testimony last week, which removed him from liability in the case. His actions before and after his dispute with Sheridan remain a key component of the case when it is retried. Initially, the Britt character had only been expected to appear in the show’s pilot, but Cherry said he urged ABC to make her a regular on “Desperate Housewives” and later lobbied for Sheridan to receive a share of the show’s profits. The glossy primetime comedy/soap opera was a ratings hit in its early seasons, but viewership has dwindled. By the show’s fifth season, during which Britt was killed off, the show’s producers were under pressure to cut costs, and Cherry said all storytelling options for Sheridan’s character had been expended. Cherry testified that co-stars were relieved when they learned Sheridan’s role was being cut, and he accused the actress of arriving late and forgetting her lines. Baute noted that none of those allegations were ever documented. During the trial, Baute said it didn’t make sense that Sheridan’s contract was renewed weeks after the decision to dump her character. The agreement guaranteed the actress would be paid for the entire season and get a full share of the series’ profits. Levin and defense witnesses frequently cited the death toll for characters in the show as evidence that Sheridan’s role could be cut at any time. Many of the deaths involved minor characters. The show featured days of testimony from Sheridan, Cherry, actor James Denton and several current and former show workers. It did not feature appearances by any of the show’s other stars, including Eva Longoria and Felicity Huffman. -AP
Aziz Ansari releases Sean Penn’s Haiti comedy special online for $5 work earns humanitarian prize
LONDON: British singer George Michael has rescheduled dates of a tour he was forced to cancel when he fell ill with severe pneumonia last year and spent several weeks in a Vienna hospital. “George Michael is back in good health and fighting fit after a battle with pneumonia,” said a statement released on his behalf on Tuesday. The 48-year-old former Wham! frontman will re-start his “Symphonica” tour on September 4 with a new concert in Vienna, where he will donate 1,000 tickets as a thank you to the medical staff who treated him. “I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you first to the doctors and nurses who saved my life and took such great care of me and to all my fans, family and friends for their love and support,”
Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network lays off 30 in restructuring
LOS ANGELES: And people thought Ashton’s Kutcher’s “Two and a Half Men” predecessor Charlie Sheen had a tendency to get way out there... Kutcher has signed on to go into space, as a customer of Richard Branson’s upcoming Virgin Galactic service, which will shuttle rich people from the Earth, probably to escape to a distant planet as the accelerating class warfare lays waste to the ground below. “Two and a Half Men” star Kutcher will be the company’s 500th customer, Branson announced on his blog Monday.
he said. “I’m looking forward to seeing everyone.” Michael, who went on to pursue a successful solo career recording hits including “Careless Whisper”, “Faith” and “I Want Your Sex”, will also perform at the Palais Garnier Opera House in Paris on September 9. He will perform the postponed concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall on September 29, and organizers said original tickets to cancelled dates will still be valid. Michael has sold an estimated 100 million records over his career and has a personal fortune valued at around 90 million pounds ($120 million). But the Grammy Award-winning artist has a history of run-ins with the law, notably in 2010 when he spent four weeks in a British prison for driving under the influence of cannabis. -Reuters
“I gave Ashton a quick call to congratulate and welcome him,” Branson wrote. “He is as thrilled as we are at the prospect of being among the first to cross the final frontier (and back!) with us and to experience the magic of space for himself.” According to Branson, Virgin Galactic’s spaceships “are built and flying in the final stages of our exhaustive test flight program.” Tickets for the flights run $200,000. Actor Brad Pitt and “X-Men” director Bryan Singer are also among those who have reportedly booked tickets for Virgin Galactic flights. -Reuters
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti: Actor Sean Penn is being honored by a group of Novel laureates for his relief work in Haiti following the country’s devastating January 2010 earthquake. Penn is to receive the 2012 Peace Summit Award at the 12th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates. The event will be held in Chicago next month and is expected to draw such luminaries as
Poland’s Lech Walesa and the Dalai Lama. Penn arrived shortly after Haiti’s quake and established an aid organization now known as J/P Haitian Relief Organization. The group has provided schools, medical care and housing to thousands of people displaced by the quake. The actor issued a statement Monday calling the award an “extraordinary honor.” -AP
FILE - In this April 10, 2010 file photo, US actor Sean Penn carries the belongings of a person displaced by the earthquake as people are relocated from the Petion ville Golf Club to a new camp, Corail-Cesselesse, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (AP)
First lady talks to Letterman about Target visit NEW YORK: First lady Michelle Obama says she thought for sure her cover was blown during an undercover visit to Target last year when a woman approached her in the detergent aisle. But the first lady told David Letterman on Monday the woman only wanted help with a package she couldn’t reach. During Obama’s visit to CBS’ “Late Show,” Letterman held up a picture of her after she put on sunglasses and a baseball cap to try to visit a Washington-area Target Corp. store last September. Obama said the woman apparently was oblivious of the fact she had asked a favor of the first lady and said “you didn’t have to make it look so
easy” after the detergent was retrieved. “That was my interaction,” Obama said. “It felt so good.” The first lady talked about how she learned from her parents the notion of unconditional love, that the most important thing for children to know is that their parents adore them. She said she and the president try to instill that stability in their own two daughters, and almost became emotional talking about her father. “Don’t make me cry,” she said. “This isn’t ‘Oprah.’ It’s supposed to be ‘Letterman.’” The “Late Show with David Letterman” airs weeknights at 11:35 Eastern time. -AP
In this photo provided by CBS, first lady Michelle Obama joins host David Letterman on the set of the “Late Show with David Letterman,”Monday, March 19, 2012 in New York. (AP)
AROUND TOWN / TIME OUT
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 21, 2012
If you have an event you wish to include, please email: email@example.com
Feature o f
Starwood Hotels & Resorts launches new website
KUWAIT: Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced the global launch of StarwoodMeetings.com - a new simple, engaging and intuitive website that understands meeting planners and delivers relevant and comprehensive content for all phases of the meeting planning process. The new Starwoodmeetings. com is the result of an extensive research effort that included looking at today’s best practices and interviewing customers to determine how best to bridge Starwood’s online resources with the on-site services provided by properties. StarwoodMeetings.com makes it easy to research meetings at more than 1,000 Starwood properties worldwide and provides rich property content and key information on Starwood’s brands and growing global footprint. Meeting planners now have full property details complete with hotel features, integrated maps with points of interest, photos and floor plans, on-site meeting services, a Compare View tool to compare hotels, special offers, and meeting management tools on an easy
Month a t
to navigate site. The new site also includes information on signature services including Starwood Preferred Planner, Starwood Convention Collection, On-Site Specialty Events, and Starwood’s sustainability and social responsibility initiatives. “StarwoodMeetings.com was designed to increase the ease of doing business with Starwood,” said Christie Hicks, Senior Vice President, Starwood Sales Organization. “We listened to feedback from our customers and developed a tool which gives them easy access to
information they need throughout the planning cycle.We look forward to hearing our customer’s feedback as we continue to evolve the site to meet the needs of meeting planners around the world.” In celebration of the new site launch and to give back to the communities in which Starwood does business, the company will donate 500 Starwood Preferred Planner Starpoints(r), up to one million Starpoints total, to global partner UNICEF for each unique site visitor between now and the end of April.
General A n n o u n c e m e n t s
a glance Mousawi. Spread the Passion is a group of volunteers with the aim of involving individuals with a wide range of volunteer work. Making giving to others simple and a way of life as well as a way to develop ones skills and then help others. This group is only 2 years old but is already making an impact and expanding their network. They regularly serve notable charities and good causes such as Bayt Abdullah hospice and journey of hope. All are welcome to learn more about this group.
AUK hosts lecture March 21/ 6 p.m. / AUK: The Centre for Gulf Studies (CGS) at the American University of Kuwait is hosting a lecture entitled “’The People Are Missing’: Palestinians in Kuwait” by Dr. Mai Al Nakib, Assistant Professor of English at Kuwait University. During her lecture, Dr. Al-Nakib will look at the status of the Palestinian community in Kuwait prior to the first Gulf War, discussing the ethical consequences to Kuwait after their expulsion in 1991.
K’S PATH invites applicants for the adoption of pets Sepp is a Domestic Long Haired (DLH) male cat. He will be 2-years-old April 2012. This friendly, laid-back boy loves a good cuddle and likes a high vantage point in a cat tree or ledge to look out from. He would do best in a home with children over 12 years of age. To adopt, contact +965 67006122 or visit the website www.kspath.org
Flag hoisting ceremony Kuwaiti cuisine March 15-April 5/6 p.m. - 8 p.m./TIES Center: TIES Ladies Club invites you to our Kuwaiti cuisine classes which will start soon. Join us for a one month cooking program where you will learn to cook real Kuwaiti food. All ladies are invited to join our classes and let your family enjoy the mouth watering Kuwaiti cuisine. For more information/registration, contact 25231015/6.
Arabic course March 11-April 19/ TIES Center: TIES Center is glad to announce the start of Arabic courses. We offer classes for all levels, from beginners to advance and also introduced new classes called Kuwait dialect. TIES Arabic classes are intended for all expatriates who wish to learn Arabic for whatever purposebusiness, basic communication, as a second language or simply as a hobby. For more information/registration, contact 97228860/97793440.
Diwaniya presentation March 20/ 7 p.m. /The AWARE Centre: The AWARE Center cordially invites you to its diwaniya presentation Tuesday entitled, “Spread the Passion: connecting volunteer opportunities to social responsibilities” by Fatemah Al-
Mario is a gentle and affectionate 6-years-young Spitz male. This friendly boy does great with people and dogs of all ages.
March 23/ 8 a.m. / Jabriya: On the occasion of Pakistan National Day on Friday, a flag hoisting ceremony will be held at the Chancery premises in Jabriya (Block 11, Street-101, Building 46). All Pakistanis resident in Kuwait are cordially invited to attend the ceremony.
New Toastmasters Club Second and fourth Tuesday/ 7 p.m. - 9 p.m. / Jabriya: A new Toastmasters Club is being formed and encouraging new members to join. Toastmasters International is a world leader in communication and leadership development. It is a non-profit international organization dedicated to improve member’s communication and leadership skills by attending and participating toastmasters meetings. For more information, please contact Khaled Al-Hashem at 65588824.
Brainbang session October 7-April/ 11:45 a.m. -1:45 p.m. /Salmiya: BRAINBANG, the creative arm of Friends of CRY Club (FOCC) invites all students aged 11 and above, to join us fortnightly on Fridays. The areas of development are: Creativity in learning, tools and techniques to empower your mind, profile based learning, activity, fun, games and worksheet based assignments, practical experiments, mind gymnastics and application of learning techniques to conventional study. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 25660835/25618471/97677820.
The Philippine Embassy The Philippine Embassy in Kuwait announces that the Department or Foreign Affairs is advising all passport applicants to claim their passports within six (6) months from the date of application. Otherwise, unclaimed passports shall be cancelled and sent back to the Department for disposal. The Embassy will continue to entertain last minute claimants for such unclaimed passports within the next two months before finally canceling the passport in accordance with the directive of the Department.
Royal Thai Embassy The Royal Thai Embassy in Kuwait wishes to invite Kuwaiti companies that deal business with Thai companies or those agencies of Thai commercial companies to visit the Embassy’s Commercial Office to register their relevant information to be part of the embassy’s business and trade database. The Royal Thai Embassy is located in Jabriya, Block 6, Street 8, Villa No. 1, Telephone No. 25317530 -25317531, Ext: 14.
Horoscopes Aries: March 21 - April 19
Too much stress and strain over the past few days could cause you to clash with your partner. While not a disaster by any means, Aries, this can put a damper on your day. It might be best if you took a few minutes to get away by yourself and let all your negativity fade away when no one’s around. You’ll feel better by the time you face your family, friends, and partner again. Taurus: April 20 - May 20
Overindulgence last night could have left you feeling a little woozy today, Taurus. You’re may want to spend the day in bed, but the prospect of leaving tasks undone could cause you to push on anyway. That’s a bad idea. Rest is just what you need. Don’t force yourself to socialize, either.You need some time alone to recover and gather your resources so you can face the world with a clear head. Gemini: May 21- June 21
Plans for getting together with a group of close friends may have to be called off because of sudden unexpected events. This could have you feeling somewhat down, especially if a romantic partner is involved. Try not to worry about it too much. You will be able to reschedule, and you could use the time alone anyway to relax.
Cancer: June 22 - July 22
The planetary energy has you feeling a bit sluggish today. You’ll probably want to stay home, surrounded by your books, pets, and plants, yet you know you have appointments to keep and responsibilities to fulfill. Your sense of duty is especially strong. Make a deal with yourself to get the bare minimum done and then relax. Try a hot bath and listening to classical music. Leo: July 23 - August 22
A temporary separation from someone close to you could have you reflecting on the good times you’ve spent together, especially over the past few weeks. You’re likely to talk with him or her on the phone. You’re feeling a lot of warmth and affection toward everyone around you, but a little sad as well, particularly when you think of those far away. Virgo: August 23 - September 22
Dreams with mixed messages might trouble your sleep tonight. One minute you’ll be having a wonderful dream, and the next could be black and gloomy. Write them down, Virgo. The message is probably more positive than it appears. Worries about money might plague you throughout the day.
Libra: September 23 - October 22
The special person in your life could be working too hard, causing strain for him or her and frustration for you. Their extra hours at work could interfere with your desire to enjoy quality time together. Your own worries could put a damper on your self-confidence, Libra. You might be wondering if you’re doing everything that needs to be done. Scorpio: October 23 - November 21
Today you might try to continue or complete a creative project of some kind, but your imagination just isn’t working the way it normally does. Also, overindulgence from last night could have you feeling a bit sluggish, which doesn’t help the situation. Put your work aside before you give up on it completely, Scorpio. This is only a temporary situation. Your mind should be back to normal tomorrow. Sagittarius: November 22 - December 21
Today you might feel especially protective toward all those you love: children, family, friends, pets, and the special person in your life, Sagittarius. Upsetting news might have you wondering about the future, but don’t let it get you down. All should be well, so allow yourself to relax and enjoy your loved ones.
Capricorn: December 22 - January 19
Today you could make the acquaintance of actors, musicians, or other performers, some of whom might be quite well known. Social occasions could bring valuable contacts your way, which you could make good use of later. You might be having so much fun out among the beautiful people that you really don’t want to go home! Aquarius: January 20 - February 18
Someone who lives far away, someone you haven’t heard from for a long time, could give you a surprise phone call today. You’ll be delighted and probably stay on the phone too long. You might need to run a few errands, but the weather could keep you indoors. Don’t worry about it, Aquarius. You’ll still have time to take care of other pressing matters. Pisces: February 19 - March 20
Money could be a source of worry today, Pisces. You might feel you’ve spent too much (who doesn’t sometimes?) or perhaps some funds you were expecting have been held up. This is a delay and not a permanent situation (although it might seem that way). Too much worry could spoil your day, and you don’t want that.
wednesDAY, march 21, 2012
Bangladesh reach first-ever Asia Cup final DHAKA: Tamim Iqbal celebrated his 23rd birthday with a half-century and Shakib Al Hasan also made fifty as Bangladesh beat Sri Lanka by five wickets on Tuesday to get to the Asia Cup final for the first time. The home side reached their revised target of 212 runs in 40 overs With 17 balls to spare after rain delayed the start of their innings by nearly two hours. Bangladesh, who earlier dismissed Sri Lanka for 232, will play Pakistan in the final on Thursday, with five-times champions India out of the tournament despite finishing level on points with Bangladesh. India paid the price for their shock defeat by Bangladesh which sent them out on the teams’ head-to-head record. Nuwan Kulasekara claimed two wickets in his opening spell to help Sri Lanka reduce Bangladesh to 40 for three but Tamim and Shakib added 76 runs for the fourth wicket. Unheralded off-spinner Sachitra Senanayake, playing his first match of the tournament, briefly threatened to spoil Bangladesh’s party when he dismissed both batsmen in the space of four overs. Tamim gave Senanayake a sharp return catch just after completing his third fifty of the tournament, but the bowler could
not grasp it. Senanayake, however, got his reward for superb bowling when he had Tamim caught by Lahiru Thirimanne for 59 off 57 balls. Four overs later Shakib fell for 54 to Senanayake, who kept one low and trapped the left-hander lbw. Nasir Hossain and Mahmudullah continued the Bangladesh momentum, delighting the Sher-e-Bangla crowd which included Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Nasir was unbeaten on 36 and Mahmudullah made 32 not out, the pair adding 77 runs for the sixth wicket. Earlier fast bowler Nazmul Hossain, playing his first match in the competition, produced a brilliant opening spell which earned him the prized scalps of Mahela Jayawardene (five), Tillakaratne Dilshan (19) and Kumar Sangakkara (six). Nazmul, who finished with three for 32, was complemented by his opening partner and former skipper Mashrafe Mortaza who gave away just 13 runs in his first spell of six overs. Chamara Kapugedera (62), Thirimanne (48) and Upul Tharanga (48) boosted Sri Lanka but two wickets each form left-arm spinners Shakib and Abdur Razzak pegged them back. -Reuters
Bangladeshi cricketer Nazmul Hossain (right) celebrates with his teammates after winning the match during the Asia Cup cricket match between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, March 20, 2012. (AFP)
Age is just a number for red-hot Federer
Djokovic, Azarenka look to defend Miami titles MIAMI: Top-ranked Novak Djokovic of Serbia and Victoria Azarenka of Belarus will try to defend their titles at the ATP and WTA Miami hardcourt event that begins on Tuesday. The showdown stretches for nearly a fortnight and comes after Djokovic was upset in the IndianWells semifinals and Azarenka beat World No. 2 Maria Sharapova in Sunday’s final, as she did in last year’s Miami final. Djokovic was upset by big-serving American John Isner, who lost to World No. 3 Roger Federer in the Indian Wells final. Now thanks to the first-round byes for Miami’s high seeds, Djokovic is off until Saturday when he faces either Argentina’s Leonardo Mayer or Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis. “It’s still a week to my first match, so I’m going to take some time, regroup,” Djokovic said. “I feel physically well. I think I’m playing equally well. I’m confident ahead of the Miami tournament.” Djokovic defeated World No. 2 Rafael Nadal in last year’s final, adding that title to his 2007 Miami crown. The five-time Grand Slam champion comes into the event off a Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, just as he did last year. Djokovic, who has captured the past three Grand Slam titles, could join Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi as the only three-time men’s champions at Miami and become the first man since Federer in 2005 and 2006 to win back-to-back titles. Nadal, a 10-time Grand Slam champion, has never won the Miami crown despite three trips to the finals, settling for runner-up honors in 2005 and 2008 as well as last year. Nadal will open against either fell Spaniard Pablo Andujar or Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo. Federer, who has won a record 16 Grand Slam crowns, has not won the Miami crown since 2006 but is on a roll, having won three tournaments in a row with titles at Rotterdam and Dubai as well as Indian Wells. World No. 4 Andy Murray of Britain, who crashed out in the second round at Indian Wells, will try to
Novak Djokovic of Serbia, returns a shot to Kevin Anderson, of South Africa, during a match at the BNP Paribas Open tennis tournament, March 12, 2012. (AP)
bounce back at Miami, where he defeated Djokovic in the 2009 final. Murray will open against either Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin or Colombia’s Alejandro Falla while Federer’s first foe will be either US wildcard Ryan Harrison or Italy’s Potito Starace. On the women’s side, Azarenka’s first match will be against either a qualifier or Dutchwoman Michaella
Allen, Celtics hold off Hawks 79-76
Boston Celtics guard Rajon Rondo (9) drives around Atlanta Hawks guard Jeff Teague (0) and center Zaza Pachulia during their NBA basketball game, March 19, 2012. (Reuters)
ATLANTA: Ray Allen hit two 3-pointers in Boston’s 13-0 run in the fourth quarter and protected the lead with two free throws in the final seconds as the Boston Celtics held on to beat the Atlanta Hawks 7976 on Monday night. The Celtics led 73-58 at the end of the run. Joe Johnson, who had 25 points, had three late 3-pointers as the Hawks rallied. Johnson’s 3 with 11.8 seconds remaining cut the lead to 77-76. Kevin Garnett had 16 points and Rajon Rondo had 10 points, 13 assists and six steals for Boston, which took charge with a 17-2 run, including 13 unanswered points, after a 56-56 tie in the final period. Zaza Pachulia had 16 points and 13 rebounds for Atlanta, which now leads Boston by 1 1/2 games in the race for the sixth spot in the Eastern Conference. Paul Pierce had 13 points for Boston. The Celtics managed only 31 points in the first half
Krajicek while Sharapova, on the opposite end of the draw, starts in round two against a qualifier or Israel’s Shahar Peer. Belgium’s Kim Clijsters is among those who will play in the first round. If the 2005 and 2010 Miami winner defeats Australian Jamila Gajdosova, she will face Germany’s 14th-seeded Julia Goerges in round two. -AFP
CALIFORNIA: Swiss superstar Roger Federer is setting his sights on more Grand Slams, after winning his thirdstraight tournament Sunday in Indian Wells. The 16-time Grand Slam winner had to fight off a cold and a strong field to capture his fourth Indian Wells title. Federer has won 15 straight matches, three consecutive tournaments and six of his last eight. His last lost this year was to Isner in Davis Cup in February but he avenged that by beating 11th seeded American on Sunday. World number three Federer will play the next tournament in Miami and then take a well deserved break. “I’m happy I have been holding up because it’s been a lot of tennis and I am definitely looking forward to a break soon,” he said. “ But I will push for one more in Miami, and then I’ll probably have to take a week off or so and then I will manage my schedule all the way through to the French Open.” Many people were starting to write Federer off last season when he turned 30 and his game dropped off a bit. Last year was the first time since 2002 that Federer did not win at least one Grand Slam title. But age is just a number for Federer. Federer said that his biggest wish this year is to win a gold medal at the London Olympics. But he also wants to some day reclaim the world number one ranking. “I guess that’s a long, long-term goal,” he said. “I said it loud and clear that it’s not right now a goal for me in the short-term because I can’t be world No. 1 because Djokovic has played amazing these last 12 months. Just because I have been on a great run doesn’t mean he hasn’t.” “He might go and do another run or someone else might come up like Rafa might go on his clay court run again and then all things become very difficult for me to get to world No. 1. So right now that’s not even on top of my head. I’m just happy how well things are going, and I will try to use that momentum to win more tennis matches.” -AFP
Boozer’s big night leads Bulls over Magic 85-59
ORLANDO: If the Chicago Bulls are going to make a run at an NBA championship this season, they will need a healthy Derrick Rose to do it. For now, though, they continue to find a way to beat the top teams in the Eastern Conference without their most indispensable star.With the reigning MVP out nursing a sore groin for the fourth straight game, Rose’s teammates used a smothering defense and capitalized on a plethora of Orlando Magic turnovers in an 85-59 victory Monday night. Carlos Boozer picked up the scoring slack with 24 points and 13 rebounds, his third 20-point scoring effort against the Magic this season and John Lucas added 20 points off the bench in just 21 minutes of action to lead the Bulls. The Bulls’ defense was indeed the thing to marvel at Monday, with the 59 points they surrendered setting a new franchise record for fewest regular-season points allowed. It was also a milestone night for Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau, who became the fastest coach in NBA history to
earn 100 career victories. Thibodeau did it in just 130 games, one game faster than Avery Johnson when he set the previous standard in 2006. The Bulls won for the fifth time in six games. They also improved to 3-1 over the past four games playing without Rose, who continued to nurse a sore groin. Thibodeau gave credit to his “great players” for his coaching record, and they gave it back to him. Dwight Howard had 18 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Magic, who had 19 turnovers. Orlando had 11 in the first half, just two in the third quarter, but six more in the final 12 minutes. The Magic have lost three of their last four since posting a three-game win streak. The Bulls’ offense was steady down the stretch, though, and Joakim Noah’s three-point play on a two-handed dunk over Glen Davis with 6:54 to play in the game put them up 72-52 to end any comeback hope. As for where the Magic can go from here, Davis said there is still much gelling to do on the court. -AP
Chatty Raikkonen back in the points on F1 return and shot only 35 percent from the field through three quarters to trail the Hawks 51-50. The Celtics broke through with 29 points in the final period. Each team was short-handed. The Celtics announced before the game that forward-center Jermaine O’Neal will have surgery on his left wrist and miss the remainder of the season, adding more urgency to the team’s search for inside help. Hawks guard Jannero Pargo had an appendectomy Sunday night in Cleveland and is expected to miss two to four weeks. Each team struggled with poor shooting in the first half. The Hawks matched with season low with 15 firstquarter points and set a low for points in a first half but led the Celtics 33-31. Fouls became a growing problem for Boston in the third period. Pierce and Brandon Bass drew their fourth fouls with a span of 2 minutes midway through the period. -AP
MELBOURNE: Kimi Raikkonen sounded confused about some of the rules but seventh place in Sunday’s seasonopening Australian Grand Prix proved that the former champion had lost none of his racing ability despite two years out of Formula One. The 32-year-old Finn, who walked away from the sport at the end of 2009, had qualified his Lotus a disappointing 17th on the starting grid for his 157th grand prix. In an incident-packed season-opening race at Albert Park, the 2007 champion showed his raw speed and fighting ability had not diminished as he carved his way through the field to claim six points. The man who made his F1 debut in Australia with Sauber in 2001 felt his re-
turn could have been even better. Raikkonen said earlier this week that, having “better things to do”, he had not watched much Formula One during his time away and clearly some of the finer rule changes had passed him by. When the safety car was deployed late in the race, he called over the team radio to ask why blue flags, which indicate tailenders should give way to cars lapping them, were being waved at him. Team principal Eric Boullier said there had been a constant dialogue with the often monosyllabic Finn during the race. “Actually he was very talkative in this race,” he said. “Don’t forget he didn’t race for two years and it’s a new format
with DRS and new procedures, we had to explain him for the lapped cars after the safety car. We have some procedures but we just reminded him because he’s not used to seeing cars overtaking during the safety car.” There was great disappointment for Raikkonen’s French team mate Romain Grosjean, who had qualified third but was knocked out of the race on the first lap when Pastor Maldonado’s Williams clattered into his front right wheel. “I think we could have had great result today,” he said. “It’s frustrating as I really wanted to make the chequered flag and even the podium, but on the positive side the car is performing very well.” -Reuters
wednesdAY, MARCH 21, 2012
Sports Editors Highlight
SPAIN: Barcelona have sealed a deal which would see talented young Brazilian striker Neymar join the Spanish club in 2014, Cadena SER radio reported. The report claimed the Catalan giants have already paid 14.5 million Euros ($19 million US dollars) of the total 58 million Euro transfer fee to the 20-year-old’s Brazilian club Santos. “According to several reliable sources Barca have already paid a quarter of the 58 million Euros to Santos to guarantee the transfer of the player,” Cadena SER claimed, adding that the date for his transfer was after the World Cup in Brazil in 2014. Neymar is considered the future star of Brazilian football and has been targeted by several European clubs, including Barcelona’s rivals Real Madrid. -AFP
Tevez in frame for City, Chelsea without Terry LONDON: Carlos Tevez could make his return for Manchester City as they aim to revive their Premier League title hopes on Wednesday at home to a resurgent Chelsea, who will be without captain John Terry. The 28-year-old Tevez is back in training after patching up his differences with the club and manager Roberto Mancini said the Argentine striker could be involved as a substitute. Mancini’s side have seen Manchester United open up a four-point lead at the top of the table and Tevez’s availability would be a boost to their dream of winning the English title for the first time since 1968. “There is a possibility of a place on the bench,” Mancini told reporters on Tuesday. “He is getting better but I don’t think Carlo can have more than 25-30 minutes. A player like Carlo needs to play but for 90 minutes it is impossible. But if he can play 30 minutes, after 45, then in three or four games he could have 90 minutes easily. Tomorrow we will decide. We want to know the situation with the players.” Tevez has not played for City since refusing to warm-up during City’s Champions League clash with Bayern Munich in September, after which Mancini said he would never play for the club again. He was fined six weeks wages for a subsequent unauthorized absence but after withdrawing an appeal against the club’s disciplinary measures, he has since apologized and has scored for the reserves as he recovers his match fitness. Chelsea go to City buoyant after qualifying for the Champions League quarter-finals and the FA Cup semifinals as well as closing the gap on third-placed Tottenham. Terry, who recently had knee surgery, was substituted during Chelsea’s dramatic Champions League victory over Napoli last week and will not be risked against second-placed City. “We almost have a fully fit squad for the City game, only (Oriol) Romeu and Terry are out, JT should be back for Spurs match on Saturday,” Di Matteo said at a news conference. With City and leaders United well clear of the rest,
Manchester City’s Carlos Tevez (left) smiles as he runs alongside Sergio Aguero during a training session at Carrington, Manchester, England, March 14, 2012. (AP)
fifth-placed Chelsea are vying for a top-four finish with Arsenal and Tottenham. They are three points behind Arsenal and four behind Tottenham, who have lost their last three league matches. While Saturday’s game against their London rivals is
Hazard maintains focus despite English interest PARIS: With the player himself having already made it clear he intends to move on at the end of this season, Lille are encouraging Eden Hazard to flourish in a bid to secure his dream transfer. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini and assistant David Platt were both in the crowd on Sunday night as the defending French champions thumped Valenciennes 4-0 to strengthen their grip on third place in Ligue 1. A week after Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson watched Hazard struggle to stand out in Lille’s 2-1 defeat at Lyon, the Belgian was in outstanding form in front of Mancini. He scored one goal and laid on two more as Lille secured a vital three points in their chase for Champions League qualification. And, far from being afraid that Hazard might freeze with England’s biggest clubs watching his every move, Lille coach Rudi Garcia told his star player of Mancini’s presence in the hope that it might bring out the best in him. Hazard is Lille’s leading scorer with 12 league goals and has also provided nine assists in Ligue 1, a tally bettered only by Marseille’s Mathieu Valbuena and
Paris Saint-Germain winger Jeremy Menez. With the Belgian in such form, Lille can expect to end the season in the top three, although catching PSG and Montpellier above them may prove to be too much to ask. “When I am out on the pitch, the pitch is the only thing that goes through my mind,” Hazard said. “I don’t think about who might be in the crowd. I have a season to finish here. As I have said before, I want to leave here having achieved something. I want to leave Lille having qualified for the Champions League before the club moves into its new stadium next season.” Last year’s Ligue 1 player of the year, Hazard admits his coach Garcia has helped him take his game to another level this season. “It was an area where I needed to progress,” he went on. “I need to be more consistent in games. There are sometimes spells of five or 10 minutes where I make two or three silly errors. I need to play well over a whole 90 minutes.” With such desire to reach the very top, Hazard seems poised to become a big star outside of France in the very near future. -AFP
France’s Blanc looks to Euro 2016 PARIS: France coach Laurent Blanc on Monday said that his only aim for this year’s European championships was to get past the group stage but the true test would be the next tournament on home soil. “The real challenge for French football is Euro 2016 because we’ll be able to prepare well,” he told RTL in an interview conducted by his former team-mate Bixente Lizarazu. “We need to try so that in 2016 we can say we’re going to win. Everything that comes before is just preparation. For Euro 2012, everyone wants to get through the first round.We’re no different. The aim is to get through the group stages.
After that, anything can happen.” Blanc said he was disappointed with preparations for the competition in Poland and Ukraine that starts on June 8, complaining that national teams weren’t being given priority due to club commitments. Clubs often preferred to play in lucrative overseas tournaments after the end of the season, leaving national managers little time to prepare for major competitions. France take on rivals England in their first Group D match of the Euros in Donetsk, Ukraine, on June 11. Their other opponents are Ukraine (June 15) and Sweden (June 19. -AFP
Suarez plans to stay with Liverpool
LONDON: Liverpool striker Luis Suarez has insisted he is happy to stay at Anfield, following speculation linking him with a move away from the Merseyside club. There have been reports the fallout from the 25-year-old Uruguay international’s eight-game ban for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra and the flak he received from opposing fans, would either lead Suarez to walk out on English football or Liverpool to sell him. But Suarez, yet to complete a full season in the Premier League having joined midway through the previous term, dismissed such suggestions. “I have spoken with people at the club and they know that I want to stay and that I am enjoying myself and am very happy here,” he told liverpoolfc. tv, the club’s official website, on Monday. “No one at the club has told me that they want to try to sell me or that I will be leaving. I’m going
to carry on playing my football here at Liverpool. There are a good few years left on my contract and I want to carry on enjoying myself because both my family and I feel really happy here.” Suarez scored Liverpool’s opener in Sunday 2-1 win over Stoke which put his side into the semifinals of the FA Cup. Afterwards he dedicated his 11th goal of the season to Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba, who is critically ill in hospital after collapsing on the pitch at Tottenham with a heart problem. “It’s a very difficult moment,” he said. “I think it is very important that we show our support, whether it be a message, or any kind of dedication, so that both he and his family know that not just me but the whole of football both here in England and throughout the world are right behind him and hoping that he will recover from his current situation.” -AFP
being seen as potentially pivotal in the battle to qualify for the Champions League, Di Matteo is focused on City. “We need to prevent Man City from expressing themselves, they have quality players all over, from defence to attack,” Di Matteo said. -Reuters
Premier League to look at medical procedures
LONDON: The Premier League will review its medical procedures in the wake of Fabrice Muamba’s cardiac arrest while playing for Bolton Wanderers against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday. Muamba, 23, remains in intensive care at the London Chest Hospital where he is showing signs of improvement. “What we will certainly be doing is looking at every aspect of what happened and if there are ways and means of improving, if there are ways and means of making it better in the future. We will do everything we can to make sure we reduce to the point of elimination, if we possibly can, things like that,” Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore said on Tuesday. Speaking at a sports industry event in London, Scudamore said the Premier League had learned from Chelsea keeper Cech’s injury in a Premier League match against Reading five and a half years ago in which he sustained a fractured skull. “Incidents and events shape policy, shape developments, shape progress. There are no guarantees but we will do whatever we can to improve,” he said. Chelsea were critical of the time it took for Cech to receive proper treatment, prompting a review of procedures in case of a serious injury to a player. “In some ways, Muamba’s life, if it is saved and let’s hope it has been saved, is as a result of the things a lot of us put in place after what happened with Petr Cech,” added Scudamore. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini believes improvements in the Premier League could still be made in the way players are screened for potential heart problems by their clubs. “We need to screen players maybe two times a year. In Italy we do this and the medicals are really accurate. When I saw our medicals two years ago I said we need to improve our medicals,” he told a news conference. Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp, however, said Muamba could not have received better treatment than he did at White Hart Lane where he was given CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) for several minutes on the pitch before being taken to hospital. Saturday’s FA Cup quarter-final was abandoned before halftime following Muamba’s collapse and Bolton’s league match at Aston Villa on Tuesday has been postponed. -Reuters