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From The Chair Welcome to the autumn edition of Forum. Despite the soaring temperatures here in Bahrain over the last few months, coupled with the usual temporary mass exodus of expats and locals alike during the summer heat, we have enjoyed excellent turnouts for our monthly lunch meetings. Moreover, twelve new applications for membership were approved during August alone – historically, one of our quietest months. In July, I was honoured to represent the BBBF at a business briefing event organised by the Middle East Association on behalf of the Government of Bahrain and held in London. The event aimed to promote Bahrain as a destination for British business and judging by the turnout and the specific questions I fielded afterwards, it was a great success. More details can be found on page 16. As a result of our efforts to


promote the BBBF outside of Bahrain (and through the excellent support we receive from the British Embassy in Bahrain), we have also been selected for inclusion in the forthcoming “Market Essentials” folder, which will be published in December as part of the British Government campaign to promote British business in Bahrain. This will reach over 10,000 people over the next 12 months, all of whom will have already expressed an interest in doing business in Bahrain.

the excellent support we receive from the Embassy. In that regard we must say farewell to our Ambassador, Robin Lamb who is leaving Bahrain in November. I would like to offer him my personal thanks for all his help and support for the BBBF. I wish Robin every success for the future and I am sure my sentiments are echoed by the entire membership. His diary permitting, we will be hosting a farewell reception for him so keep your eyes open for details of that.

The schedule of presenters for our lunch meetings is already full for the remainder of this year and we are in the process of organising a number of evening events in an effort to cater for the demand from companies and individuals who want to work with us and reach you, our members.

We also look forward to welcoming Robin’s successor, Jamie Bowden, who will be moving from Kuwait to become the new British Ambassador in Bahrain. We wish Jamie every success in his new role and look forward to developing as productive a relationship with him and we have forged with Robin over the years.

All of this is very encouraging and is a result of the hard work put in by the committee and, as I have already mentioned,

In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the autumn issue of Forum. .

Letter from H.M. Ambassador ............. p3 Diary Dates ....................... p4 Welcome new members .. p5 Member Benefits .............. p6 Application Form ............. p7 AAB-AMH Charity Golf .... p8 Eliminating Poverty ....... p10 Chevening Scholarships .................. p11 Airline News ................... p12 Airport News .................... p1 Bahrain: Business Gateway to the Middle East .......... p16 Bahrain Construction Update ..... p18 So why the Pink Jackets? ................. p20 Bahrain EDB ................... p22 No more Pluto ................ p24 Education UK ................. p26 A bit of Fun ..................... p28 Future Fuels ................... p30 Motoring Snippets ......... p32 Dugong Survey .............. p34 News from KSA .............. p36 Bahrain News ................. p37 And Finally ..................... p40 Registration number SBBB 492

The 2006-7 BBBF Executive Committee

Chairman Steve Ritchie Mob: 3967-3145

Deputy Chairman Linda Jennings Mob: 3962-5004

Treasurer Austin Rudman Mob: 3969-9475

Hon. Secretary Julie Lomas Mob: 3960-6712

Membership Secretary Rob Grey Mob: 3966-3452

Media Coordinator Terri Harwood Mob: 3964-8419

Member Peter Lyall Mob: 3933-5003

Embassy Representative Rebecca Eriksson Mob: 3953-6989

BBBF Tel: +973 1781 3488, Fax: +973 1781 3489, Email: Bahrain British Business Forum, P. O. Box 10051, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain



From Her Majesty’s Ambassador much more which is not captured by these statistics, on services (financial, education and consultancy, to name but a few) and investment. And in September this year, Bahrain and the UK signed a new agreement to work together on the bilateral commercial and economic relationship. Since I became Ambassador in Bahrain three years ago there has been a steady year-onyear increase in the UK’s visible exports. There are many factors underpinning this successful record but I welcome it as a sign of the health of bilateral trade and the wider relationship - and we are doing so

The United Kingdom continues to enjoy a high business profile here and many of our big players have been doing business with Bahrain for many years. But newcomers have also been winning good business in a market which is benefiting from the energy of local

businesses and investors and from the authorities’ focused and determined approach to attract investment, exploit existing assets to the full and build upon Bahrain’s already well diversified economy. Co-operation between the Bahrain British Business Forum and the British Embassy continues to go from strength to strength. I am grateful to the BBBF not only for the work it does to bring together British and Bahraini businesses in Bahrain but also for its support for our Trade Missions and UKTI events such as Britain in the Region. And I foresee

a role for the BBBF in contributing to the agenda set out in the new trade agreement I have already mentioned. I leave Bahrain with regret. I have much enjoyed my three years here. But I am pleased to hand over to my successor not only a bilateral relationship, which is going strong, but also a partnership with a BBBF that is growing in membership and stature. I wish BBBF members every success in their individual business activities and in their collective contribution to growing British business success.

Trade Mission Visitors seek out new business in Bahrain British Ambassador Robin Lamb hosted a reception in September for 11 UK companies visiting as part of a trade mission tour which included the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia as well as Bahrain. Around 150 people attended the event, held at the Embassy’s premises in Manama. The mission was organised by the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce. Most of the delegates were visiting the region for the first time and represented various industry sectors, including the haulage industry, management consulting, crystal manufacturers, vocational training and financial market


the Chamber’s website at

The companies included Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce, the Beulah Consultancy, Trelawny SPT, Point Eight, Targetted Training Projects, Saaf UK, Professional Vocational training, Loaks Bros, Paper, Tutbulry Crystal Glass, UK skills and A1 Paper Stationery.

The trade mission was led by Mark Eaton, Director, Trade Liaison Office, Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce. Eaton has worked in international trade for twenty years and has been a leader of more than 30 trade missions.

Contact details for the companies can be found on

”These market visits differ from the traditional trade

missions in the way that the participants are all either new to exporting or new to the chosen market,” Eaton explained. “We have specifically targeted Saudi Arabia and Bahrain because of the great trading opportunities these markets hold particularly for ‘Women in Business.’ In addition to the direct activities of this Trade Mission, I also plan to liaise with trade associations in both countries to discuss future cooperation.” Forum


BBBF Internal News

Diary Dates

As this magazine went to press, the BBBF were about to hold their second annual golf tournament at Riffa Golf Club in Bahrain on Tuesday 10th October.

Wednesday 8th November 2006 Meet the Chelsea Pensioners Venue: British Club Time: 7pm Cost: TBC

The tournament was to be played in a Stableford format in teams of 4 and the winning team were due to receive a variety of golf prizes donated by Riffa Golf Club. The winning individuals (Male and Female) would collect a KLM Air Ticket each. We hope to bring you pictures of the day in the next issue. We’ll also find out if the “hole in one competition” gave someone the opportunity to win a Jaguar car courtesy of Mohammed Jalal, the Jaguar distributors in Bahrain with support from AXA Insurance. Also planned were nearest the pin prizes on the par 3’s. The event was to be followed by Dinner at the Riffa Golf Club when prizes would be presented, and Michael Braidwood, the General Manager of Riffa Golf Club, was expected to entertain the assembly with an after dinner speech.

Tuesday 21st November 2006 Speaker: Amal Al Dossari (GOYS) and Sandra Hamrouni (British Council) Venue: Gilgamesh Ballroom, Golden Tulip Hotel Time: 12 noon for 1 pm Cost: BD 8 for members / BD 10 for guests Tuesday 12th December 2006 Speaker: Rodney Davies (Motion Works) Venue: Gilgamesh Ballroom, Golden Tulip Hotel Time: 12 noon for 1 pm Cost: TBC Tuesday 16th January 2007 Speaker: from Kalaam Telecoms Venue: Diplomat Radisson SAS Hotel Time: 12 noon for 1 pm Cost: TBC Tuesday 20th February 2007 Speaker: TBC Venue: Mercure Hotel, Seef District Time: 12 noon for 1 pm Cost: TBC Wdnesday 21st February 2007 Team Building Taster Workshop Venue: Mercure Hotel, Seef District Time: 9am to 1 pm Cost: BD23 Also to come: Tuesday 20th March 2007 Annual General Meeting of the BBBF Venue: TBC

Our thanks to all the advertisers. Without their support this issue would not have been possible. Please give them yours. Al Ghalia Group - Mezzaluna ............................. p24 Al Osra Supermarket .......................................... p33 Arencon Security Services ................................ p36 AXA Insurance ...................................... Back Cover BAESYSTEMS ..................................................... p25 Bahrain Airport Services .................................... p15 British Airways ................................................... p13 British Club ......................................................... p29 4


DHL ...................................................................... p17 Diplomat Radisson Hotel .......... Inside Back Cover Euromotors ........................................................... p2 Gulf Hotel ............................................................ p35 HSBC ......................................... Inside Front Cover ISS Bahrain ......................................................... p11 Mansouri Group - The Country Club ................. p39 Mohammed Jalal & Sons ..................................... p9 Royal & SunAlliance ........................................... p23

Welcome to New Members Mariela Borisova Business Development Executive Hasan Mansouri Group PO Box 5185 Manama Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1771-6999 Fax: 1771-6838 Mob: 3932-5113

David McGuigan Senior Engineer Mott Macdonald Ltd PO Box 10471 Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1758-4444 Fax: 1756-4715 Mob: 3959-8797

Tom Wright General Manager Cathay Pacific Airways PO Box 1990 Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1722-8991 Fax: 1722-4641 Mob: 3960-4755

Steven Samson Branch Manager PWS International Flat 12, Bldg 937, Seef Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1758-1187 Fax: 1758-1189 Mob: 3655-5259

Redha Fathalla Director/Owner Bahrain Foundation (BFCC) PO Box 26577 Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1772-7450 Fax: 1772-7512 Mob: 3944-5545

Gerald Lambeth Consultant PWS International Flat 12, Bldg 937, Seef Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1758-1187 Fax: 1758-1189 Mob: 3655-5257

Zane Lambert Business Development Manager Writer Relocations PO Box 38535 Riffa, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1776-9840 Fax: 1776-9845 Mob: 3994-4926

Aroop Takyar General Manager Aeradio Technical Services WLL PO Box 26803 Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1771-8718 Fax: 1771-8705 Mob: 3960-8351

Lianne Falk Assistant Sales Manager Gulf Hotel PO Box 580 Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1771-3000 Fax: 1772-6176 Mob: 3963-1241

Chris Tutty Assistant Director of Sales Gulf Hotel PO Box 580 Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain Tel: 1771-3000 Fax: 1772-6176 Mob: 3941-6302

Corporate Sponsors



Benefits for BBBF Members Benefits for all our members may be obtained on production of their Membership card at the concerned outlet. We would like to hear your feedback concerning these discounts. Please do not hesitate to offer your services to our members by contacting the BBBF office. If any member has any difficulty obtaining a discount, please contact the BBBF office so we can rectify the situation.

Hasan Mansouri 10% discount to members at Mansouri Mansions Hotel and Country Club. Effective until 31st Dec 2006. Contact: Karim Mansouri Tel: 1772 8144 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006.

Al Faris Auto Centre Special discounts on parts and services Contact: Yousif Eid Tel: 1787 7222 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006.

Hertz Hertz now offers BBBF members an exclusive 10% discount on all prepaid rentals processed through their call centre in Bahrain. Simply show your membership card and benefit from the discount on all car rentals in 7,000 locations in 150 countries. Contact: Ali Ebrahim Kashef Alghata Tel: 1729 9147 Email:

Azrek Search Associates 20% discount on search and headhunting services Contact: Rory Adamson Tel: 1771 4709 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006. AXA Insurance Some benefits/discounts to members on personal and corporate insurances. Contact: Richard Morrison Tel: 1758 8222 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006. British Airways BA offer 10% off lowest published fare in World Traveller and World Traveller Plus cabins to UK destinations of London, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Manchester and Aberdeen. Contact: Tracy Cole Tel: 1758 9624 email: Various conditions apply, please check with BA for details. Tickets may be purchased at the BA travel shop on production of BBBF ID Card. This deal is valid until 31 December 2006 Betsy’s Day Spa 25% Discount on all Spa, Beauty and Hairdressing Treatments and 15% Discount on all Spa Shop Purchases. The Spa Treatments are for ladies only but male members can visit and make purchases from the Spa Shop.( Skin Care, Hair Care, Cosmetics, Sun Care, Aromatherapy Oils, etc and Skin and Hair Consultations) They can also purchase Gift Vouchers at 25% off discounted rate. Conditions are: Discount on full price treatments and products only; Discount cannot be used in conjunction with any other special offers. Effective until 31st Dec 2006. Contact: Betsy Mathieson Appointments can be booked on Tel 1774 2222. Conscious Connections 5% discount on Crystal Therapy and Awareness, 10% discount for group bookings and group workshops Contact: Julie Lomas Mobile: 3960 6712 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006.

Morgan Price International Healthcare 15% discount on GlobalHealth Individual Insurance Plans on published rates. Contact: Samy Ebrahim Tel: 1753 3151 or 3940 4160 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006 NHSC 5% on beers, 15% on wines and spirits with the exception of products already on special offer Contact: Bill Beddall Tel: 1753 3764 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006. Riffa Golf Club Exclusive Membership Offer to BBBF Members only Join Riffa Golf Club by the 31st December 2006 and receive, 1 x Complimentary Golf Lesson, 5 x Complimentary Cart Seat Vouchers & 1 x Complimentary Golf Shirt - Please contact BBBF member Anita Ghavami directly on 3943-1310 or Royal Over-Seas League The Royal Over-Seas League has clubhouses in London and Edinburgh which include hotel-style accommodation. A quarterly journal issued to members free of charge. Reduced rates for BBBF members Application forms for membership are obtainable from the Membership Secretary at Royal Over-Seas League, Over-Seas House, Park Place, St James’s Street, London SW1A 1LR Tel: 0044 20 7408 0214 Fax: 0044 20 7499 6738 Email: Effective until 31st Dec 2006. The MakeOver Experience Discounts to corporate members for training courses. Contact: Leila Edwards Tel: 1759 2019 Email:

This edition of the BBBF Forum magazine was compiled by Andrew Mead at Mead Management Services Ltd. email: UK Mob: 0044 7940 559 925 KSA Mob: 00966 506 271 151 Bahrain Mobile: 00973 3910 0113 and produced in cooperation with Krishnan Surendran at Jumana House, Riyadh, KSA Tel 009661 402 4785 Fax: 00966 10 405 9861 If you would like to contribute to a future edition please telephone or send an email to A full page advert is charged at BD300. A half page advert at BD180, A quarter page advert at BD100 A small panel at BD50 Please note: The BBBF nor it’s agents do not warrant the services of any of the individual or corporate members of the BBBF. The views and opinions expressed by independent contributors must not be regarded as those of the BBBF or it’s agents. Publication of any article or advertisement does not imply any endorsement of the views, products or services described therein.



Why Join The BBBF? BAHRAIN The Pearl of the Gulf has had a long standing relationship with Britain and is still a major trading partner. BRITISH Trade with Bahrain is now subject to significant competition in this era of globalization particularly from countries in Europe and from the USA.

Membership directories are distributed to members of visiting Trade Missions and are available to businessmen visiting Bahrain through the Embassy and business centres in five star hotels. Simply click on “Sign Up” on our website complete the application form and click submit. Sounds simple, it is, it must be worth it.

BUSINESS between Bahrain and Britain must be promoted in order for Britain to maintain its dominant position. The BBBF has been formed to help in whatever way it can to do this and through its close cooperation with the British Embassy seeks to promote exchange of trade and good relations between Bahrain and Britain.

Cost of membership Individual Membership: BD 50 per annum, with an additional BD20 once-only registration fee.

FORUM Is defined in the Collins English Dictionary as, “an assembly or meeting to discuss topics of public concern”. The BBBF provides through its monthly meetings a platform for networking amongst its members and the exchange and dissemination of useful business leads and opportunities. In addition, in return for a modest subscription, members receive the benefit of inclusion in an annual directory describing the products and services they have to offer and a listing on the BBBF website again with a description of activities, contact numbers and useful links.

Corporate Sponsorships Three levels of sponsorship are available:

BBBF Membership Application

Corporate Membership: BD150 per annum (up to 5 individuals) plus BD 40 for each applicant up to a maximum of 10, with an additional BD 50 once-only registration fee.

Platinum: BD 5000 Gold: BD 2500 Silver: BD 1000 Sponsor packages include a variety of advertisement opportunities in the Membership Directory, the Forum magazine, the BBBF website and at the regular lunch meetings. Full details are available on request.

Corporate Membership please complete separate form for each applicant

Please complete the membership form and send it to: Individual Membership BBBF Administration Manager, Fax: (00973) 1781 3489, or Email: For further information call (00973) 1781 3488, Web site: Company Name

Website address of business (if applicable)

Title and full name (Surname first)

Describe how you / your company contribute to substantial business interests in Bahrain (Maximum 150 words)

Position in business


Date of Birth

CPR Number

Address of business (P.O.Box & Town)

Business telephone


Home telephone


E-mail address

I agree to abide by the BBBF Constitution & Internal regulations.

Applicants Signature

Please note that the granting of individual or corporate membership is subject to BBBF Committee approval.



AAB-AMH Island Classic charity golf tournament all set for November The AAB-AMH Island Classic charity golf tournament, under the patronage of His Majesty the King, Shaikh Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, is all set to tee off next month at His Majesty’s private golf course in Saffriya.

course, competing for the various prizes and trophies in the flights and side contests, and we are looking forward to the best Island Classic to date, celebrating a decade of commitment by our sponsors.”

The three-day tournament – one of the leading events in Bahrain’s sporting calendar – is now in its 10th year and will take place from 16th – 18th November.

The format of the tournament will be the traditional Texas Scramble with no less than five side contests taking place each day.

The high-profile charity tournament is organized by the American Association of Bahrain and American Mission Hospital and this year will be raising funds for the Hospital’s equipment fund.

Golfing starts with a shotgun tee-off on Thursday 16th November at 7.30am but the Official Opening Ceremony will take place at 12 noon. The traditional 19 th Hole party and Official VIP Closing ceremony will be held this year on Sunday November 19 th at the Bahrain International Circuit and is highlighted by the distribution of winners’ awards.

AAB President William Khouri said: “Over the past ten years, the Island Classic has provided so many people with a unique chance to enjoy golfing on a delightful and challenging course while, at the same time, it has given companies and organisations in Bahrain an ideal opportunity to support the Hospital to ensure that AMH can continue to provide quality healthcare at reasonable prices to the people of Bahrain.” AMH Chief Medical Officer/ CEO Dr. Paul Armerding said: “Once again, we are honored this year by the tremendous support from so many companies and organisations in Bahrain that have consistently supported our cause. This year, more than 50 sponsor’s teams will be playing over three days at His Majesty’s private golf 8


The Island Classic Gala Dinner takes place at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Spa on Thursday November 30 th where sponsoring companies will be honored. For more information about sponsorship please call the Island Classic charity golf tournament Organizer, Bahnaz Abbas on 39688619 or 17248134. Confirmed sponsoring companies for this year include: Platinum Sponsors: BBK and African & Eastern Emerald Sponsors: Al Hawaj Group, Ebrahim K. Kanoo, United Gulf Bank, TAIB Bank Gold Sponsors: Akhbar Al Khaleej, ALBA, AVIS, Bahrain Confidential, Bahrain Television, ChevronTexaco, Gulf Daily News, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, and Xerox.

Silver Sponsors: Securities and Investment Company, Bank Muscat International and Standard Chartered Bank. Hole Sponsors: AerRianta International (Middle East), ASRY, AXA Insurance, Bahrain Duty Free, Bahrain International Circuit, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Caesars, Coca Cola Middle East, Deeko Bahrain Ltd., Dairy Queen, Domino’s Pizza, Fakhro Electronics, Fortune Promoseven, Gulf Translation, Interglobal Insurance, JPMorgan Chase Bank, Mazin Computer Centre, McDonalds, Ministry of Information, National Photo Services, Ramsis Engineering, Riviera Flowers, Swiss Food Specialties, Tele-Gulf, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel & Spa.

Photo: Bahnaz Abbas, AMH Marketing and Development Coordinator and Island Classic Organizer, left, and Dr. Paul Armerding AMH Chief Medical Officer/CEO third from right, with last years winning team from BBK.

Eliminating Poverty making governance work for the poor international organisations, nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) and academics to fulfil the promises made in 2005 to significantly reduce world poverty. The paper highlights four big challenges for international development:  


In 2006 over six billion people live on our small planet. Our human family is more interdependent than at any other point in history. In his book Development as Freedom, economist Amartya Sen suggests that millions upon millions are living imprisoned; by economic poverty; by political tyranny; by sickness and disease; by ignorance and by oppression and violence. What the people of our world really want is a enough food to eat and water to drink; a roof over their heads; a job; school for their kids and medicine and care when they are sick. The chance to live in peace, without fear of violence or war and the opportunity to realise their own potential.

Good governance Security, sustainable growth, education and health for all Climate change Working together in the 21st century.

The White Paper’s main messages are: DFID will deliver the promises made in 2005 by: increasing the development budget to 0.7% of gross national income by 2013; concentrating resources on the poorest countries, particularly sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia; making sure wider UK policies support development; and doubling funding for science and technology. DFID promise to put governance at the centre of their work, tailoring support that is appropriate to individual countries’ needs. They will focus on building states that are capable, responsive and accountable to their citizens, providing aid based on partner

countries’ commitment to reduce poverty, uphold human rights and promote good governance. Efforts to tackle corruption internationally will be stepped up. Efforts to ensure people’s security, incomes through growth and public services will be increased. Fifty percent of all future bilateral aid is committed to public services for poor people social protection will be a major new area of work. DFID intends to work internationally to tackle climate change, by helping developing countries to participate in international negotiations on climate change and to integrate adaptation to climate change impacts into their development programmes. DFID aims to help create an international system fit for the 21st century, focusing on UN reform, a more effective and responsive World Bank, IMF and regional banks, and closer working relationships with EU Member States and the EC to ensure that EU aid is effective and that non-aid policies support development. Under the Section ‘What You Can Do’ DFID promises to: 

The world today is eight times richer than it was 50 years ago and in 2005 millions of people supported the Make Poverty History campaign. During the summer, the UK Government launched their white paper on eliminating poverty, which sets out a new action plan for the next five years.

The White Paper sets out DFID’s (The UK Department for International Development) priorities and explains how they plan to work with the rest of UK Government, partner governments, 10 Forum

Double investment in development education, as they seek to give every child in the UK the chance to learn about the issues that shape their world. Set up a scheme to help other groups - such as faith groups, community groups, local government, business and charitable organisations - build links with developing countries. Expand opportunities for young people and diaspora communities to volunteer in developing countries. Support internship programmes for young people to work in NGOs.

For details on the full report go to

UK Chevening Scholarships 2007-2008 The British Embassy is pleased to announce the start of the 2007-2008 Chevening Scholarships cycle and to invite eligible Bahraini nationals to submit applications to the British Council. The Chevening Scholarship Scheme is the British Government’s premier scholarship scheme for international students. It provides talented young graduates and young professionals with the opportunity to pursue further postgraduate courses or research and to become familiar with the UK and the English language in some of Britain’s finest universities. Most Chevening Scholarships are for one year Masters courses. So far, over 200 Bahraini students have benefited from Chevening scholarships. Chevening targets the future generation of leaders, decision-makers and opinionformers early in their careers. The typical successful applicant is a young professional postgraduate aged 25-35 in early or mid career who displays both intellectual ability and leadership potential. They should have a proven track record of success or excellence in their professional life, something that distinguishes them from their peers and contemporaries. Competition is fierce. There are on average 25 applicants for every scholarship awarded. Visit for more detailed information. Application forms and further information may be obtained from the British Council’s Education UK Section (Telephone 17261555) between 9am and 2pm daily, except Friday. Alternatively visit these websites: or www.british The deadline for applications for the Chevening Scholarships for the academic year 2007-8 is 16 October 2006. The British Embassy would like to extend sincere thanks to the valued contributions of local sponsors of the Chevening Scholarship scheme. The sponsors for 2006/07 were: Bahrain British Business Forum, AXA Insurance, BATELCO, BAPCO, HSBC, Jawad Business Group and Bahrain National Holding. Forum


Airline News British Airways links Bahrain to Canada’s emerging oil & gas hub

Bahrain is to have a new air link with Canada’s emerging energy province of Alberta with the launch, in December, of a five-times weekly British Airways’ service from London Heathrow to Calgary - the gateway to the Canadian Rockies. “The oil and gas industry is one of the largest employers in the GCC and its executives can now link into the Calgary service with a same-day connection at Heathrow via British Airways’ direct flights from the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman,” said the airline’s commercial manager for the Middle East and Pakistan, Paul Starrs. Calgary will join the awardwinning airline’s global network of 140 destinations when the new service comes into operation on December 1st. “Middle East links to Canada are extensive with many Canadian nationals living and working in the region and this new service also brings them closer to home,” added Starrs. 12 Forum

British Airways will operate a Boeing 777 on the HeathrowCalgary route which will feature all four of the airline’s acclaimed cabins – First, Club World (business), World Traveller Plus (premier economy) and World Traveller (economy).

Cathay Pacific receives its 100th Aircraft Rolls-Royce Cathay Pacific Airways celebrated a significant milestone in its 60-year history when it took delivery of its 100th aircraft, an Airbus A330-300, at the Airbus final assembly line in Toulouse, France on the 29th August. It has a three-class configuration featuring Cathay Pacific’s acclaimed First Class and New Business Class cabins and will fly on regional and medium-haul routes. The 100th aircraft arrives as the airline moves into one of the most aggressive periods of expansion in its history, with 36 aircraft currently on firm order. These include five more A330-300s.

Senior Vice President, Asia and Middle East, Mick Forey said: “We’re proud to be sharing this significant milestone with one of our long-standing customers. Over the past 60 years, Cathay Pacific has successfully positioned itself as a leader in the aviation world and showed great foresight when it originally selected the Trent 700 for its A330s in 1990. This decision led to the launch of the RollsRoyce Trent family of engines in 1995, which also heralded a new era for us. Rolls-Royce now powers more than three quarters of Cathay Pacific’s current fleet and we look forward to working together to ensure continued success.”

The Calgary Airport Authority has hailed the new route as integral to a wider campaign of developing more extensive international business and leisure travel links. “This new route opens up huge potential for tourism to Alberta and business travel to the province, particularly for its rapidly developing oil and gas sector,” said Leslie Gavin, Manager, Passenger Air Aervice Department, Calgary Airport Authority. BA0103 will depart Heathrow at 14:55 GMT every Friday, Saturday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and lands in Calgary at 16:55 local time. Calgary becomes British Airways’ fourth destination in Canada. The airline already flies to Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto.

Cabin crew and airport staff, wearing vintage uniforms to mark Cathay Pacific’s 60th anniversary, with the old and new aircraft

Gulf Air rewards Frequent Flyers Gulf Air are running their biggest promotion ever with four lucky members of their Frequent Flyer Programme in with a chance of winning 1,000,000 air-miles in a promotion which will expire at the end of November. All members of the Gulf Air FFP will get a bonus during October when redeeming

their air-miles against flights anywhere on the Gulf Air Network completed before midnight on the 31st Oct. The number of points required to reach their destinations has been halved with a Bahrain to London or Dublin economy return ticket clocking in at only 24,000 miles. Usual conditions apply and taxes and surcharges will be levied.


Airport News Bahrain Airport Services striving for greater Customer Service With the world more focused on airports than ever before and the volume of air travel within the Middle East increasing dramatically year on year, Bahrain Airport Services (BAS) continue to invest and focus on improving the customer experience. BAS staff interact with approximately 100,000 customers on a weekly basis. A new comprehensive training and development program has been commissioned to target and improve the customer’s journey from the moment they arrive at Bahrain International Airport to the point when they board the aircraft. Having completed the research phase, the ‘Design Stage’ to specifically reflect the requirements of BAS, is now underway. Training will commence in early November this year; that includes training for managers, supervisors, and front line staff at the checkin-counters, information booths, transfer areas and departure gates.

CEO Graham Keddie stated, “We are passionate about creating change and ensuring a warm and welcoming experience when you interact with BAS staff. I would value any feedback from customers and visitors to Bahrain International Airport, of both positive and negative experiences, over the coming months and especially once the training is completed early in 2007.” BAS have partnered with

biz-ability, a British owned and managed specialist Training & Development Consultancy founded in Dubai with newly opened offices in Bahrain. Working in a Partnership, this customer service initiative will be custom designed to enhance the true spirit of Bahraini hospitality and ensure that the customers first and last experience of Bahrain (at the airport) is a positive one.

Top Global honour for Bahrain Airport Bahrain International Airport has won a major award as one of the best in the world.

OAG International, has voted it second best in the world of those serving five to 10 million passengers, in terms of marketing and promotions, Deputy Prime Minister and Transportation Minister Shaikh Ali bin Khalifa Al Khalifa announced in September. This major award reflects the airport’s successful promotional and marketing policies, distinguished

14 Forum

facilities and services, he said. Shaikh Ali presented the achievement to Bahrain’s leadership, thanking His Majesty King Hamad, Prime Minister Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa and Crown Prince and BDF Commander-in-Chief Shaikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa for their constant support to the aviation sector.

The training courses will be highly interactive, using brain friendly learning techniques, and will be delivered in Arabic and English. Feedback on your airport experiences can be forwarded personally to: Graham Keddie, Chief Executive Officer, or Andrew Fisher, Manager Internal Audit and Quality Systems of Bahrain Airport Services, PO Box 22285. The award was granted at a “Routes 2006” exhibition in Dubai from September 17 to 19, with 650 international airports and 350 international airlines competing. France’s Nice airport took first place, with Bahrain airport being the only one in the Middle East and North Africa to achieve a standing. Shaikh Ali also praised efforts exerted by Civil Aviation Affairs

Bahrain - Business Gateway to the Middle East MEA Seminar in London in July With the aim of raising awareness amongst British companies of the strength of the Bahraini economy and the trade and investment opportunities there and regionally, through Bahrain as a regional hub, the MEA organised a seminar in London during July. BBBF Chairman Steve Ritchie was among the many speakers on the day with the keynote address being given to a record audience of 240 by Dr Hassan Fakhro, Minister of Commerce & Industry. Dr Fakhro presented a balanced view of the Bahrain economy confirming oil revenue as being responsible for about 1520% of GDP. The Minister also mentioned Bahrain’s success as being partially due to the reputation of trust and the firm belief internationally that the Kingdom can be relied upon. In a comprehensive rundown of Bahrain’s appeal as a regional centre, the Minister recognised the proximity of the markets in Iran and Iraq as being significant commenting that international companies would be impressed with the speed in which companies can be registered to operate in the Kingdom. Rasheed Al Maraj, Governor of the BMA followed the Minister with a speech detailing the free and honest business climate prevailing in Bahrain and detailed many of the current opportunities in the financial sector. He also mentioned that the BMA was the only 16 Forum

Dr Hassan Fakhro, Minister of Commerce & Industry

commenting on her own experience as a newly arrived businesswoman on the island. Ms Deller advised the audience that Bahrain had the fastest Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) growth in the Middle East and with an inflation rate of less than 2% and a low cost of living she expected the opportunities to grow in every sector of business. The role of the EDB, she said, was not only to attract new inward investment but also to support existing business in the Kingdom.

Chairman of the A. K. Al Moayyed Company and Sir Gulam Noon, he of the “rags to riches” fame, both spoke of their personal success in Bahrain inviting the audience to “... come and join us.” Sir Gulam, a British businessman of Indian origin, was knighted in 2002 for services to the food industry. His company now operates one of the largest factories in the world for ready-made Indian meals. Another speaker from the Ministry of Commerce &

agency in the region that had successfully prosecuted individuals for money laundering. Mr Maraj told the audience that there were 350 licensed banks and Insurance companies operating in Bahrain and that the financial sector was responsible for about 25% of GDP. Jane Dellar from the Economic Development Board gave an entertaining presentation explaining the role of the EDB as well as

Mr Rasheed Al Maraj Governor of the BMA

Dr Nizar Al Baharna, from the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry, explained much of the Chamber’s role in facilitating trade & investment opportunities mentioning aluminium, ship repairing and textile industries specifically. He also spoke about Bahrain’s position in the Gulf as being on the doorstep of a 30 million population in the GCC and being only one hour away by air from all the main centres in the Arab world. Before the break, both Farooq Al Moayyed,

Industry, Osama Al Arrayedh spoke about Bahrains target to double GDP from $5,000 to $12,000 and also discussed several specific projects currently underway. These included a marine support area now being planned as well as four projects in the petrochemical arena and several expansion plans for textile factories. Several other speakers underlined Bahrain’s importance as a regional centre and Martin Whitaker, from BIC delivered a case study on the impressive

The new Director General of the MEA, Michael Thomas opened and closed the day’s proceedings thanking both speakers and delegates for their attendance underlining the message that Bahrain should be considered as the financial centre of the future. “Tremendous opportunities are available in every sector and British business needs to be there.” he said

Al Hidd development of the circuit and the way in which the BIC had helped to ‘market’ Bahrain around the world. “Over 450 million people had watched this years Grand Prix in over 120 countries,” he said. “But the BIC is more than just an annual venue for F1, over 450 separate events are planned for the circuit during the coming year with the facilities being

used for a variety of product launches as well as the on and off road driving events.” Dr Ranald Spiers, CEO Middle East & Africa for International Power talked about the Hidd IWPP, the largest privatisation in the Gulf commenting that Bahrain was experiencing a demand for 8% more power and 10% more water every year.

Most projects in the region are designed to offer both power and water he said with the Al Hidd project delivering 910MW power and 30 million gallons of water per day with a facility to deliver a further 60 MIGD under construction. Bahrain currently had a capacity of 2000MW excluding the Alba smelter and had a planned expansion of a further 2000MW.

Sir Roger Tomkys, Chairman of the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce and former British Ambassador to Bahrain, was in the Chair for the seminar, which was held at the Park Lane Hilton. The seminar was sponsored by the Bahrain Government who had commissioned the MEA to organise the event which they hope to repeat annually. Other co-sponsors included International Power, Gulf Air and Bahrain International Circuit.


Bahrain Construction Update BD128 million contract goes to Cebarco-WCT for Bahrain City Centre. been experiencing a booming business in the neighboring UAE. Similarly, the Bahrain City Centre is expected to attract investment to the Kingdom and raise its profile as a major regional shopping destination.

MAF Investments - Bahrain, owners and operators of the upcoming Bahrain City Centre officially awarded the BD 128 million main contract for the BD200 million project to Cebarco – WCT at an official signing in September. The agreement, signed by MAF Shopping Malls CEO – Graham Dreverman and Cebarco– WCT Chairman Khalid A. Rahim, now paves the way for construction to begin on the landmark project, which will be the largest mall in Bahrain and the second largest in the Gulf. Opening in 2nd Quarter 2008, Bahrain City Centre will be the first integrated leisure and shopping destination in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Located in the heart of Manama, on Khalifa bin Salman Highway in the Seef District, the 150,000-squaremetres shopping complex will offer over 360 stores which will appeal to a wide range of shoppers and visitors. These will include two multilevel international department stores, the largest indoor water park in the region, a 5,600 square 18 Forum

meter Magic Planet in-door amusement park and the largest cinema in the Middle East, with 20-screens. Over 40 restaurants and food outlets, offering cuisine from all over the world, will mean that there will be no shortage of choice for visitors. Bahrain City Centre will also incorporate two international hotels with a total of 550 rooms with a combined offering of 5-star and 4-star amenities.

Commenting on the contract, Al Shaer said that Cebarco – WCT has proven itself through its many construction successes, which include the highly commended Bahrain International Circuit, the North Manama Corridor project and Durrat Al Bahrain Highway. “We are confident that Cebarco – WCT is an ideal partner for such a major project, which will improve the standard of living in the Kingdom and provide many jobs for Bahrainis,” he added;

“Bahrainis, residents and visitors will enjoy a unique shopping and leisure experience each time they visit the mall,” said Maher Al Shaer – General Manager of MAF Bahrain. “With a wide variety of outlets, Bahrain City Centre will have something for everyone, young and old. Whether they are shopping for the latest high quality products, dining out or if they are just looking for a good time, City Centre will have it all.” The project is expected to echo the successes of the Deira City Centre and the Mall of the Emirates, both projects of MAF Investments, which have

“We have proven ourselves capable of meeting and surpassing international standards of construction as demonstrated by the success of the Bahrain F1

circuit, we now commit ourselves to MAF Investments – Bahrain and to their team in Bahrain to deliver a truly world class project. This project will be an icon for Bahrain and will boost tourism to the Kingdom,” according to Mr. Rahim Chairman of Cebarco - WCT. Minutes away from the King Fahad Causeway, and with 5500 covered car spaces, Bahrain City Centre will also generate income for the Kingdom from the many Saudi families who frequently visit Bahrain. A new causeway connecting Bahrain to Qatar will provide further opportunities, contributing significantly to the national economy. Bahrain City Centre will be the first entertainment, shopping and leisure resort in the Kingdom and will incorporate both modern designs and ones based on B a h r a i n i tradition. In addition to including the b i g g e s t shopping centre in Bahrain with a large selection of international and local brands, it will have the largest c i n e m a complex and the first Carrefour Hypermarket in the Kingdom. Bahrain City Centre’s indoor water park will be the largest in the Middle East, giving locals, residents and visitors something more to do to while away the summer months

Bahrain World Trade Center The Bahrain World Trade Centre (BWTC) reached a landmark stage in its construction in July to become one of the tallest buildings in the country. Steel work has now been completed on the development’s two 50storey towers and their 60metre spires to leave the building standing at 240 metres. DTZ is the leasing and managing agent for BWTC, which includes the twin commercial towers, a luxury, high-end mall and a new multi-storey car park. The spires, which were manufactured off-site in Bahrain, were installed from the 44th floor of the buildings’ towers, under the supervision of expert engineers and a crane operator. The next stage involves the construction of

an external glass and steel framework on top of the skeleton structure. Upon completion, fullyintegrated SMART technology will provide BWTC tenants with enhanced efficiency and productivity, and three turbines will enable the towers to be the first of their kind to use wind energy to provide approximately 11– 15% of tenants’ electricity needs. A week later, BWTC announced that the National Commercial Bank (NCB) a leading Saudi financial institution was to establish its Bahrain Headquarters in the complex. This news followed a previous announcment that Bank Muscat International (BMI) was to become the anchor tenant of the East tower.

Stunning architecture on new island development. Due for completion in 2009, Lulu Island is a multipurpose development situated on a 563,000m2 man-made island in Manama, Bahrain. The BHD 280 million (US$ 1.25 billion) freehold development project will cover an area of 564 thousand square meters (6.1 million square feet) and be located close to the Pearl roundabout. Lulu Island is being designed in the shape of the number 9 and will contain 39 residential buildings with a total of 1,217 apartments with waterfront or lagoon views. It will also contain one residential tower, 49 chalets, 65 Arabian-designed villas,

a 325 room five-star hotel, marina and yacht club, an aquarium, a medical centre, a shopping mall, and a multifunction exhibition center. All buildings are to be developed in a landscaped garden setting unique to Bahrain. Access for yachts up to 110 metres in length is to be provided. Lulu Island is being built as a joint venture between the Bahrain Government and the Bahrain-based Mouawad Group Real Estate Development Company. The development was designed by Austrianbased Spowers and Pentago. These stunning pictures are taken from the Spowers website. Forum


Financial Times adorned its front page with a picture of Woosnam holding the Cup aloft as his grinning players, who were appropriately wearing pink blazers - the official colour of the Breast Cancer charity, applauded him. In the UK and the States it’s hard to hide the fact that it’s officially Breast Cancer Awareness month. There are fundraising luncheons, races, walks and other activities scheduled throughout both countries. Hundreds of pink items - pins to apparel - are sold with proceeds going to cancer programmes. Even after the skies cleared over Ireland, it kept right on pouring. First came the tears of Darren Clarke, the inspiration of this Ryder Cup, and then a shower of champagne as the Europeans celebrated another romp. Ian Woosnam popped the cork off the first bottle, dousing his team on the 18th green and later drinking it so quickly that it shot up his nose. Clarke toasted the delirious Irish crowd by guzzling a pint of Guinness from a balcony and raising the empty glass like a trophy. There’s no doubt who owns the Ryder Cup - and not just the shiny gold trophy. The Europeans wanted to win this one for Clarke and the memory of his wife, Heather, who died of breast cancer in August. They wanted to win for Woosnam, their pintsized captain who made all the right moves once the tournament started. Mostly as always - they wanted to win for each other. 20 Forum

Clarke didn’t know if he would play - if he could play - in the Ryder Cup so soon after his wife died. But he accepted a captain’s pick from Woosnam and was determined as ever to bring his best game. Only six weeks earlier, teammate Padraig Harrington heard the news they had all been expecting when he was about to board a plane to Chicago, to play in the US PGA Championship. Unsure of what he should do, he was ultimately swayed by Clarke’s insistence that Heather would have preferred their friends to keep playing. And so instead of attending her funeral, Harrington chose to donate his prize money to breast cancer research. Clarke won all three matches he played, carried along by some of the loudest cheers ever heard at this event. Indeed the whole of Ireland appeared to roar Darren Clarke to victory, they shared in his tears as

the heartbroken man from Dungannon saw the Ryder Cup home, and they probably raised a few glasses of the black stuff to one of their own. “It was like an 80,000-seat stadium around one tee box,” Johnson said of the start of their match. “Frankly, it was like that on every tee box for him. Well deserved, too.” “It’s done a lot for me for people to show me how much they care,” Clarke said. “And it’s done a lot to show how much they cared about Heather, and that means a lot to me. It’s been a difficult week. From the minute I got here, I was determined to get myself ready, and I was. I played the way Woosie wanted me to.” “The Ryder Cup is not supposed to be about one man. Yet this one was,” said Britain’s top-selling tabloid newspaper “This one’s for you Heather” trumpeted the Daily Mail. Even the

In the UK each year 38,000 women are newly diagnosed and 13,100 women die from breast cancer and according to the American Cancer Society, more than 40,000 women in the USA will die from it this year and another 212,000 will be diagnosed with it. In Bahrain over 70 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed every year with 15-20 deaths resulting from the disease. The campaign to raise awareness of breast cancer started in 1985, and earlier this year, King Hamed’s wife HH Sheika Sabeeka as Honorary President of the Bahrain Cancer Society led the screening campaign aiming to save lives through early detection. While breast-cancer education has made giant strides, and self-exams and mammograms are routine for many, myths still persist. On the facing page, experts from the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Centre debunk some of the most common:

Myth: You only get breast cancer if you have a family history. Reality: Eighty percent to 85 percent of women with breast cancer have no family history of the disease. Myth: I’m too young to worry about breast cancer. Reality: Breast cancer can affect women of any age. The disease is more common in postmenopausal women, but 25 percent of women with breast cancer are younger than 50. Myth: If I’m diagnosed with breast cancer, it means I’m going to die. Reality: Doctors are doing quite well at treating breast cancer, with 10-year survival rates currently at 85 percent to 90 percent. When caught early, up to 98 percent of women survive at least five years. Myth: I’ve made it five years as a survivor, so my breast cancer won’t return. Reality: Breast cancer can reoccur at any time, although it is more likely to happen within the first five to 10 years: 75 percent of women who will get a recurrence see it within six years, and 25 percent reoccur in the 10 years after that. Myth: Chemotherapy will make me nauseated, and I will be vomiting all the time. Reality: Chemotherapy does cause nausea and vomiting. But in the past 10 years, new drugs have become available that can almost completely control nausea, and very few people have persistent nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy.

Myth: If I have a breast lump, it’s cancer. Reality: Most breast lumps felt are not cancer. They could be cysts or a benign condition called fibrocystic changes or fibroadenoma. But all lumps should be checked thoroughly. Myth: Herbal remedies and dietary supplements can help treat breast cancer. Reality: No herbal remedy, dietary supplement or alternative therapy has been scientifically proven to treat breast cancer. Myth: I eat a healthy diet, which will make me immune to breast cancer. Reality: Diet does play a role in cancer development, but not by itself. No one food or vitamin will prevent breast cancer. Eat a healthy, balanced diet and strive to get a variety of nutrients. Myth: My mammogram was normal, so I don’t have to worry about breast cancer. Reality: While mammography does catch the vast majority of breast cancers, it is only one screening tool. Women should also have a breast exam done by their health care provider each year. Myth: I was called back for ‘’extra views’’ after my mammogram. That must mean I have cancer. Reality: Extra views may be necessary because there’s a shadow on the image. A mass may turn out to be a benign cyst.

Myth: Mammograms are painful. Is it comfortable? Reality: No. But it doesn’t need to be excruciatingly painful, and most women will say it’s not. Pre-menopausal women should schedule their exam for the first two weeks of their menstrual cycle, when their breasts are less tender. If you find mammograms are painful, talk to the technologist performing it. The amount of compression used can vary, so the technologist can ease up on the squishing if it’s unbearable. Myth: If I have a breast biopsy, the surgeon might continue during that operation to remove my entire breast without telling me. Reality: Before the biopsy operation, you will sign an informed consent form that explains exactly what procedure will be performed. Many years ago, surgeons would remove a suspicious mass, biopsy it on the spot and proceed to mastectomy if it showed signs of cancer. Today, it does not happen that way.

Myth: If cancer is exposed to air during surgery, it will spread. Reality: Surgery will not cause the cancer to spread. Myth: Radiation therapy is dangerous and will burn my heart, ribs and lungs. Reality: Current radiation techniques are safe and effective for treating breast cancer, with few complications. Methods used today minimize exposure to the heart, ribs and lungs. Myth: Participating in a clinical trial is fine for others but not for me. Reality: Clinical research can offer high-quality care for everyone. In all clinical trials, the minimum any woman would receive is standard treatment. In some trials, participants receive standard treatment plus a new approach, such as a new drug or a new way to use an old drug.

Myth: My breast lump is painful, so it must not be cancer since cancerous lumps are supposed to be painless. Reality: Generally breast cancers are painless, but pain alone cannot rule out cancer.



The Economic Development Board Making it happen for business in Bahrain Any visitor to Bahrain will be able to tell you that the rate of change and development over the last couple of years has been phenomenal. Landmark developments now nearing completion include the Bahrain Financial Harbour, World Trade Centre and Bahrain Bay on the commercial side; and Durrat Al Bahrain, Amwaj Islands and Al Areen across residential, tourism and leisure sectors. These developments will have a major positive impact on the economy - providing increased space and opportunity for commercial enterprises. But these new buildings and huge development projects are the just visible representations of growth. The drivers that underpin them are changes in legislation, greater diversification, investment in infrastructure, and educational and health reforms. Together, these changes are spurring the economy, and creating a legacy for future generations. A new focus for growth in key industry sectors that reflect the natural and human resources of Bahrain is helping to create highlyskilled, well-paid employment. And support for the private sector, including SMEs, is contributing to the further diversification of the Kingdom’s economy. At the heart of this change is Bahrain’s Economic Development Board – a dynamic public agency with overall responsibility for formulating and overseeing Bahrain’s economic 22 Forum

development strategy. Its commitment to creating the best possible climate for attracting – and retaining – direct foreign investment is clear. Chaired by His Highness the Crown Prince and Commander-in-Chief of the Bahrain Defence Force, Shaikh Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa; and with a forward-looking chief executive, Shaikh Mohammed bin Essa AlKhalifa, at the helm; the agency is committed to ensuring that the private sector becomes a core driver of growth. This commitment is visible from the top down – even its Board of Directors is made up of equal numbers of government officials and leading private sector executives. The EDB has played a key role in some of the most important and impactful economic initiatives of recent years. These include hosting the Middle East’s first and only Formula 1 Grand Prix; becoming the first country in the region to liberalize the telecoms industry; bringing about the privatization law; and establishing the Free Trade Agreement with the United States of America. Such initiatives capitalize on Bahrain’s competitive advantages and provide significant investment opportunities - contributing to the Kingdom’s economic wellbeing. Bahrain’s reputation as a centre for finance is growing. Not only is the Kingdom the financial capital of the Middle East, it is now also the

world’s leading centre for Islamic finance – a huge future market. Bahrain’s lead in these sectors is of real value. Pole position has been gained and retained as a result of the Kingdom’s commitment to transparency; effective and fair regulation; a strong legal system; and the outstanding international reputation of the Bahrain Monetary Agency – which last month became the Central Bank of Bahrain. The importance of the financial sector, and the wealth of opportunities that exist for further growth, is something that has been recognized and understood by the Economic Development Board. To ensure that the needs of financial institutions from both conventional and Islamic sectors - in addition to those of affiliated service industries - are fully catered for, the EDB established the Bahrain Financial Services Development Bureau (BFSD) in May of this year. The BFSD team is dedicated to creating the best possible environment for sector growth and to championing more than 370 licensed institutions already based in Bahrain, as well as those looking to establish operations in the Kingdom. Part of the BFSD’s remit is targeting large international and leading regional companies from all realms of the financial services sector that have yet to build a base in Bahrain. BFSD is not just committed to attracting and retaining the big-name banks and insurance companies, but

also to attracting those secondary sector companies that are essential to supporting and enhancing the working practices of the licensed institutions based in Bahrain. Key sectors identified for growth include international legal firms, accounting firms and IT support and security businesses . The services of these companies provide essential support to financial institutions, and their very presence acts as a siren-call to other institutional investors. The EDB’s partnerships with both the private and public sectors are helping to fuel the growth of what is already the most diversified economy in the GCC. With recent changes introduced by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce - in partnership with the EDB that simplify and expedite new business registration, setting up business in Bahrain has never been easier. And of course, all investors stand to benefit from the lowest taxes in the GCC – with no corporate or personal income or wealth taxes, and few indirect taxes. To make things happen for your business, contact the Economic Development Board – your gateway to investment opportunity in Bahrain. Tel: +973 17 589 999 Email: Web:

My Very Educated Mother Just Said Uh-oh No Pluto The “United Nations” of astronomers has announced a new definition of what a planet is, slightly revising the description preferred by an international panel including an MIT professor that was tasked with the challenge. No longer it appears, will schoolkids the world over be able to use that old favourite mnemonic: My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas to remember the order of the planets. Members of the International Astronomical Union (IAU) voted on August 24 to define a planet as an object that is in orbit around the sun, is large enough for its own

gravity to pull it into a nearly spherical shape, and has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit — in other words, it has no other large bodies crossing its path. The third condition was added to the draft definition of a planet submitted to the IAU about a week ago by MIT’s Richard Binzel and colleagues. Binzel, a professor of planetary science in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, took responsibility for presenting the final version of the resolution at the time of the final vote. This means that while Pluto will still be considered a planet, it will technically be

a dwarf planet because it is smaller than Mercury. It will be joined in that category by Ceres and 2003 UB313 or Eris (a temporary name for an object discovered only three years ago). More “dwarf planets” are expected to be announced by the IAU in the coming months and years. As a result of the new definition, our solar system now contains eight planets:

Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, plus the three dwarf planets led by Pluto. So kids, a change of diet is called for, how about : My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nachos as an alternative or if you want to remember the dwarfs as well:My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nice Paprika Covered Eggs!

Forget what you learnt at school Remember when Cut and Paste meant getting out the scissors?

version is a preview version of software not a VCR format.

Researching the piece above got me thinking about what other things kids today might have different ideas about than those we of the older generation take for granted.

And if I talk about doing the ‘Pools’ they think I’m adding Chlorine!

Consider that for anyone born after 1992 the Soviet Union doesn’t exist. The current generation of teenagers have probably never seen an 8-track let alone owned a record player. My own kids think that a Beta 24 Forum

They can’t imagine supermarket shopping without barcodes and expect the till to tell them what change to give. That’s not to say I don’t like change. This year marks the 20th anniversary of when the IVF officially recognised Beach Vollyball as a sport and the 10th anniversary of it being included in the Olympics.

The World’s Students Look To The UK For Education One of the main places in the world that students flock to for education is the United Kingdom, for its excellence, for its culture, for its interesting and historical locations. And one survey of 5,000 international students found that more than 90% of undergraduates are satisfied with their course study. Recent predictions suggest the global market for international students will grow rapidly. And it is thought that by 2010 there will be more international postgraduate students than undergraduates in the UK. A major study, called Vision 2020, carried out by the British Council, suggests there could be a tripling of demand in the UK in about 14 years’ time. By that estimate that would mean about 850,000 overseas students in the UK by 2020, generating some 13 billion pounds sterling each year to the economy by 2020. The British Council visualises that global demand for international student places in Englishspeaking destination countries is likely to increase from today’s figure of about one million places to 2.6 million places by 2020. Demand for UK higher education student places from the European Union accession states is likely to treble by 2010 and demand for higher education programmes delivered internationally (such as through distance learning, and so on) could quadruple by 2020.

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According to one report, it seems that international student experiences in the UK are highly satisfactory and are to be recommended. The organisation Universities UK - in partnership with the UK Council for International Education, the Standing Conference of Principals and the British Council - has produced a report on student experiences in the UK. The report, called Broadening Our Horizons, is drawn from a survey of nearly 5,000 international students from education institutions across the UK. The survey demonstrates that the UK is providing a high quality experience for students from abroad. And its key findings are: * 91% of undergraduates and 85% of postgraduates are “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their course of study. * 70% of respondents had used their college’s or university’s advice service. * 80% of students attended an induction or orientation session. * 75% of students were offered institutionmanaged housing at the start of their stay. * 89% of respondents are “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their stay in the UK. The most commonly listed benefits included their academic experience, improving their English, becoming more

independent and meeting people from all over the world. The UK is an especially good place for international students to succeed in higher education (HE). There are more than 180 institutions offering degree courses, and more than 500 colleges of further education. All of them welcome students from abroad and many offer accommodation, for the first year at least. As well as that, about 70,000 students (49,250 non-European Union and 20,940 EU) are in further education (FE); about 8,300 are enrolled at independent schools; and about 500,000 international students travel to the UK each year to learn English. Some 200,000 international students are following UK HE programmes delivered in their own countries, online or through partnership arrangements with local providers. According to the British Council there are about 325,000 international

students in higher education (HE) in the UK; this is made up of about 213,500 students from nonEU countries, 104,130 from EU nations and 8,135 from accession countries. Some of the benefits are: * International students enrolled on privatesector training programmes generate more than 1.8 billion pounds sterling a year for the UK. * Education publishing related exports generate nearly one billion pounds a year for the UK. * Educational equipment accounts for more than 500,000 pounds’ worth of exports to the UK economy, up by 15% on previous studies. The other benefits that accrue to the UK from educating overseas students are that international students help to broaden the international outlook and understanding of UK students as they prepare to join a global workplace and make a vital contribution to the domestic research base.

Today, there are more than 35,000 international students undertaking research in UK universities, making a major contribution to the high quality of the UK’s research output.

and training since 1999 has cost 11 million pounds. The additional students in 2004 were worth one billion pounds to the UK education and training exports industry.

International students enhance the range and scope of the UK’s research output; they assist UK business by sharing their expertise and knowledge during their time in the UK and then establishing business links and partnerships after their return home.

Each international student attending a UK university contributes on average, nearly 16,000 pounds a year to the UK. The value of the English language-teaching sector is 1.3 billion pounds a year to the UK.

International students make a great impact in financing the UK education and training industry as well as the UK economy in general. These include students from other EU countries - who pay the same tuition fees as UK students - and from countries outside of the EU who will pay higher “overseas” tuition fees. The broader economic benefits for the UK of education and training exports are that the UK economy benefits by almost 11 billion pounds directly a year from education and training-related exports. International students comprising not only those at universities, colleges, independent schools and English language teaching centres in the UK, but also the large numbers that are following UK courses delivered overseas - make the greatest contribution to the sector, at more than six billion pounds a year. Combined investment in coordinated international marketing of UK education

The interaction with international students ensures that a wider range of programmes remain available in UK institutions – both for UK and other international students. Moreover, they promote quality and efficiency in UK institutions – organisations that are operating internationally are normally more competitive than those only trading domestically. They act as ambassadors for the UK on returning to home – by sharing positive experiences with peer groups and through retaining a lifelong affinity for the UK after returning home. The British Council also estimates that demand for UK further education from non-EU countries could rise to 96,000 in 2010 and to 122,000 in 2015. Demand for overseas-delivered higher education is another expected growth area, predicted to rise from 190,000 students to 800,000 by 2020. And if the UK

improves its investment strategies, it could experience an annual growth rate in demand of 8% across the sector. Robert Boucher, the vicechancellor of Sheffield University and chairman of Universities UK’s international strategy group, has said: “International education is a success story for the UK. We receive the second largest number of international students, after the USA. “The UK benefits from international students in many ways: directly culturally, academically, economically and financially - and indirectly and of no lesser significance, through trade and international relationships. Some of these benefits are directly relevant to UK education institutions … This means that now, around one in seven students in UK higher education comes from outside the UK. “Overseas postgraduate research students contribute directly to Office of Science & Technology objectives in providing an important part, sometimes the majority, of the highly educated cadre needed to conduct leading research to take forward the development of the UK scientific and engineering knowledge base,” he added. Indeed, 38% of all postgraduate research students are international students. According to recent figures, international students formed:

For more information on studying in the UK Tel: 1726 1555 Email:

* 39% of all postgraduate research students in engineering, * 17% of postgraduate research students in physics, * 30% of all postgraduate taught students in chemistry. The successful efforts of all these universities to increase their international student numbers are highly valued by UK Trade & Investment, the leading government organisation that supports overseas enterprises seeking to set up or expand in the UK as well as UK companies doing business internationally. Education and training is one of the UK Trade & Investment’s key sectors for development. The sector incorporates not only universities and colleges but also corporate and company learning providers; further education; vocational training; adult education; basic skills; suppliers of equipment, books, software, and content; suppliers and providers of life-long learning; specialist suppliers of training, (for example, oil and gas, financial services); education and training management, reform and consultancy, and English language teaching. The UK is particularly strong in ICT in education, in educational technology, and in distance and e-learning, a market that is developing rapidly, particularly in the corporate sector. There has been a continual drive to develop new opportunities and build on existing markets.



Want a bit of fun - look no further Best known as the home of the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix, Bahrain International Circuit is host to countless other activities during the year. To experience just one of these, I made my way to the circuit on one blindingly hot and sunny day in early September. Adventure Drive Arabia (ADA) is a unique, state-ofthe-art, off-road 4×4 attraction; the Arabian Gulf’s first purpose built, dedicated off-road four-wheel driving centre. Although the Sakhir Tower, which stands proud above the racing circuit, has become one of the best recognised landmarks by the thousands who attend the Grand Prix, fewer people have yet to experience the often gut-wrenching twists and turns over this amazing off-road course. Comprising some 30 demanding obstacles – including the aptly named Rocky Road, Camel Humps, Reef Climb, Mean Lean, Boomerang Climb, Drastic Drop, Don’t look down! etc., the course is designed to test a vehicle and its drivers ability to handle the extreme. If you feel driving might be too demanding but want to the experience the fun you

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can be driven around the course by one of the circuits specially trained drivers.

David Bloomer (yep...he off the radio) is one of the drivers qualified to take the vehicles around the spectacular course. David proved his abilities by balancing the Hummer on a perfect horizontal as we traversed the See-Saw, yet another of the testing elements on this exciting circuit. “ADA’s off-road course offers a set of diverse, distinctive and demanding attributes designed to challenge a broad range of vehicles and driving abilities.” says the sales blurb and that’s certainly true as the photographs show. But driving at the circuit is not just for fun...tailored courses can teach drivers how to handle the vehicles and hone the specialist skills required to cope with the various situations one might face in neighbouring Gulf Countries or in the Kingdom of Bahrain.

UK based Motion Works was appointed by the BIC to create the regions first comprehensive Off-Road Driving Centre and has also been responsible for a range of specialist defensive driving courses now on offer at the BIC. The BIC has its own Hotel and Transportation Department and can arrange everything from

hotel rooms to flight requirements, airport transfers and restaurant bookings. Together with Bahrain’s leading hotels the Bahrain International Circuit is able to offer year-round entertainment. For those seeking the spirit of adventure in an actionpacked, adrenalin fuelled environment, Adventure Drive Arabia provides the perfect venue.

Future Fuels - still over the horizon Secondly although he managed over 200 miles, the experiment didn’t look at any long term damage to the engine. Finally the diesel engine used was an old one and built like a tank, not one of your highly tuned modern light weights.

In a region which has grown rich on oil, it almost seems sacriligious to talk about fuel alternatives, but around the world the debate is hotting up. The term ‘alternative fuel’ no longer refers to experimental wishful thinking, but a range of commercially viable, safe materials which could feasibly replace petrol and diesel. Many of these fuels greatly reduce, if not eliminate the greenhouse gas emissions of petrol, and will go a long way in cleaning up the environmental image of motoring To improve security of energy supply and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the EU has set itself the objective of a 20% substitution of traditional fuels in the road transport sector (gasoline and conventional diesel) by alternative fuels before the year 2020. Three alternative solutions are seen as promising: biofuels, natural gas and hydrogen. Biofuel is produced from biomass, i.e. plant oils such as sunflower, sugar beets or other crops, organic waste. Biodiesel and bioethanol produce less carbon dioxide emissions than conventional fuels and are biodegradable. Natural Gas can be used 30 Forum

with conventional gasoline engines but there are considerations about storage and injection equipment. Hydrogen can be used in fuel cells but, like electricty, it requires other energy to produce it. But even the experts disagree on the viability of the currently recognised alternatives. In the lab, many gasoline alternatives look good. Out on the road, automotive engineers have a lot of work to do, and energy companies have new infrastructure to build, before very many people can drive off into a petroleum-free future. And, there’s the issue of money. Too often, discussions of alternative energy take place in an alternative universe where prices do not matter. On the UK TV show Fifth Gear, new presenter Jonny Smith set himself the task of driving coast to coast on a couple of gallons of used chip fat! Aparently it’s the perfect substitute for diesel. Millions of litres of the stuff is produced every year, but before you consider cleaning out your own deep fat fryer consider some implications: For a start the car Jonny used was an old Merc which he could afford to write off.

One company in the UK is already refining the product by turning used cooking oil and tallow (animal fat) into biodiesel. The Argent Energy website reveals that Biodiesel can be produced from an array of different oilbased materials, which includes vegetable oil, used cooking oil (UCO) and tallow (animal fat), through a double transesterification process. Methanol, used in conjunction with an appropriate catalyst under controlled conditions allows the oil-based material to be transesterified to a fatty acid methyl ester (FAME). Transesterification basically sees the substitution of methanol (a monohydric alcohol) for triglycerides. The FAME then undergoes a series of washing steps before finally being distilled to produce biodiesel which meets the European standard.

special report in USA today there are 46 alternative-fuel vehicles already on the road including hybrids like the Toyota Prius pictured below which offers an electric motor with a gasoline engine. Toyota plans to introduce a hybrid Camry in 2007 and the report says that in 2007, 31 different types of flexible-fuel vehicles will be on the US roads. Last month General Motors rolled out plans to distribute a fleet of 100 fuel-cell powered vehicles for evaluation in California, New York & Washington, DC. But this hasn’t impressed the detractors.

Transesterification indeed! I got lost with the first sylable!

The problem, these critics argue, is that powering electric vehicles with hydrogen fuel cells is both inefficient and expensive. Hydrogen fuel must be extracted from fossil fuels or water,both energyconsuming processes. Once produced, the gas must be compressed or liquefied for distribution, and this process and the distribution itself take yet more energy. By the time the hydrogen has been delivered to the fuel cell for conversion to electricity, a significant amount of energy has been lost to these processes.

But just how close are the alternatives. According to a

Charging a battery in a plugin hybrid would be around

three to four times more energy efficient than going through the intermediate steps required to make hydrogen fuel from water, using a process called electrolysis, according to Ulf Bossel, organizer of the European Fuel Cell Forum, which supports fuel cells for electrical utilities. Alternative fuel and hybrid powered automobiles are going to compete in the only event of its kind, an around the world rally-race, from New York City, U.S.A., to Paris, France, for a US$1million purse, according to Rally Partners, Inc., the event organizers. “Great Race 2008” will start in New York City, on February 12, 2008; 100 years to the day after the “Greatest Auto Race” began in the same city, and will race 22,000 miles over much of the same route that was traveled in the 1908 race. The “Greatest Auto Race” of 1908 was created to prove the commercial viability of a newfound technology, the combustion engine propelled automobile. Great Race 2008 is designed to achieve the same goal; prove the viability of the latest automotive technologies. It will challenge manufacturers and entrepreneurs to create the next generation of automotive travel.

But what happened to Solar? Theworld’s fastest solar car, built by a team of Dutch students, hit a top speed of 105 mph back in 2004. Nuna 2 (pictured below) then developed into Nuna 3 (pictured right) and by 2005 completed a journey of 3000km across Australia with an average speed in exces of 100kph. Over the last 20 years more than 300 solar car teams from around the globe have made the same journey to share in the spirit of adventure and the challenge of a lifetime. In October 2007 the Panasonic World Solar Challenge will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of the event. Sadly these miracles of science and engineering look unlikely to be very practical as an every day means of transport just yet. Aprt from the problem of only being driven during the day most models have limited seating for one or two and virtually no cargo capacity. Thay are however a useful test bed for emerging technologies. Nuna 3 is becoming Nuna 4 for this years challenge but even though the rules have been changed to encourage more practicality it seems unlikely that the forcourts will

have much to show you for a few more years yet. There was some excitement in 2002 when John Jostins, the creator of R2D2 for the Star Wars movies, launched the solar-powered Microcab. Yet the solar panels alone could only generate 150 watts of electricity and the vehicles have subsequently been modified to a hydrogen fuel cell hybrid. “My guess is that solarpowered cars will be on the mass market within 10 or 15 years,” says Stefan Roest, team leader of Nuna 4. “But the main obstacle is the price.” The solar cells on Nuna 4 cost $500,000 Automotive racing has always pushed the envelope of technology and led the forefront of automotive change. Man’s desire to go faster has led to advances in existing capabilities. In this arena, the trend continues. The British Steam Car Challenge was conceived with the twofold aim of breaking the land speed record for steam powered vehicles as well as creating excitement in the arena of alternate fuels. It is hoped that the project will create interest among the next generation of engineers and designers to work toward cleaner and safer forms of transportation, both public and private. Pictured right is the Inspiration now being built in the UK

While not exactly new in concept, steam powered vehicles have potential that today’s internal combustion engines lack. While the compact size and robust power density figures make the internal combustion engine attractive, its drawback also stems from its popularity. The current reliance of the internal combustion engine on highly refined hydrocarbon based fuels makes the external combustion engine an attractive concept for many applications. External combustion engines such as the steam engine are not fuel specific, meaning that any fuel can be used. This includes the cleanest fuel, direct sunlight. Current progress on the project is delayed following a problem with boiler efficiency but the press release says the team are working as hard as ever in their attempt to beat a top speed of 200mph before the end of 2006.



Motoring Snippets Car of the Year Jaguar’s XK Coupe has been named ‘Car of the Year’ and ‘Luxury Car of the Year’ at the UKTV People Awards 2006. Over 10,000 UK TV viewers voted from a choice of 16 vehicles and chose the new XK as their favourite car overall. The XK has won eight awards in total since its launch, including ‘Car of the Year’ at the Auto Express Awards 2006. Jaguar is to showcase its top achieving new XKR Coupe, XK Convertible and XJR Portfolio at the Paris Motor Show 2006 on 28 September, following strong performances from all three during the key September sales month. Sales of the XJ have rocketed 183% (month on month) over last year, with the latest diesel version accounting for nearly 60% of the total, while the XK continues its amazing success with sales up 81% year-to-date on 2005

C30 launch in Oct

The new Volvo C30 SportsCoupe will take centre stage later this month as it makes its British debut at the MPH ’06 Show. The Volvo C30, which closely resembles the dynamic C30 Design Concept seen earlier this year, is a two-door, fourseater sportscoupe with a glass tailgate and will be the smallest model in the Volvo range. 32 Forum

Lease option now available

Brain Davis from National Motors wrote in to tell us that his company is now offering leasing at their Bahrain Handa and GM dealership. Arrangements can be tailored to suit a single vehicle or a fleet and whatever option is chosen, the package always includes full insurance, maintenance, 24 hour breakdown cover and a substitute vehicle when the leased one is under repair or maintenance. The leasing option, writes Brian, can give your workforce newer, higher quality vehicles that can enhance the your company image. Wen cash-flow is critical, leasing can be more attractive than buying and has the benefit of keeping your motoring costs at a fixed level. Contracts can be written over 1 to 4 years and are available to individuals as well as companies.

BMW Credit Card in Bahrain Two of the world’s most prestigious and recognisable brands, American Express and BMW Group recently launched a new co-branded Credit Card in Bahrain - the BMW Credit Card.

 Double points on all spend at BMW Performance Centre plus redemption vouchers towards unique and challenging driving experiences at BMW Performance Centre.

This initiative marked the first strategic cooperation between both brands in the Middle East for a co-branded Credit Card in the automobile sector. It is also the first automotive cobranded Credit Card of its kind in the region.

 Free flights, hotel nights, shopping sprees, complimentary dining and other lifestyle rewards through Membership Rewards

Mr. Trevor Stokes, President & CEO of American Express Middle East & North Africa stated: “BMW is one of American Express’ global strategic cooperation partners, having launched successful initiatives in other markets worldwide. We are proud to partner with a premium brand such as BMW in the Middle East for a unique product designed to meet the growing sophistication of the region’s consumers.” The new BMW Credit Card has the following features:  Reduced prices on BMW Genuine Parts, BMW Servicing, and BMW Lifestyle Accessory at Euro Motors when paying with the Card  Double Membership Rewards points for all spend at Euro Motors  Redemption of Membership Rewards® points for vouchers to use towards new or used vehicle purchases, vehicle servicing or genuine parts at Euro Motors.

 Up to 9 free Supplementary Cards for friends or family  Membership Rewards bonus points when financing a BMW through BMW Financial Services co-operation partners in Bahrain  Global acceptance at any retail, airline or travel outlet displaying the American Express familiar blue & white logo BMW Group was the first premium vehicle manufacturer to establish its own financial services division in the Middle East in 2001, through financial services co-operation partners, and the BMW Credit Card represents yet another first in the region in the premium automotive segment. BMW Group and American Express have similar cobranded cards in Australia, Thailand, New Zealand, Germany and the UK. Application forms for the new BMW Credit Card are available at Euro Motors or online at:

Bahrain to do first Dugong survey for 20 years protection of dugongs has arisen due to the sharp decline in their numbers in several parts of the world and they face several direct and indirect threats,” said Dr Abdulqader. “The growth rate for the dugong population is estimated to be five per cent, which is low. “One direct threat is from fishing practices, particularly the use of drift gillnets, locally known as hayali. Speaking in 2005, DirectorGeneral and Vice-President of the Public Commission for the Protection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife, Dr Ismail Al Madani, said there was a ministerial order for the protection and conservation of dugongs, but that better implementation of the order was needed. “We also need more extensive scientific research into their lifecycles. Do they breed in Bahrain or not? We don’t know exactly.” he said.

The study will show whether the dugong population has increased over the last 20 years, which will indicate a healthy environment for them, or if it has dropped.

“Boat navigation also has a direct impact and particularly boats travelling at high speed in shallow waters where dugongs are found, putting them at risk of being hit by boats.

If it indicates that the dugongs are under threat, the study will recommend that the authorities concerned adopt methods to minimise the impact of possible threats, said BCSR fisheries studies head Ebrahim Abdulqader.

“Indirectly, dugongs are threatened by dredging and reclamation activities, which reduce the sea grass feeding areas.”

And now his wishes appear to have been granted. Officials from the Bahrain Centre for Studies and Research will soon launch the first survey in 20 years to measure the dugong population in Bahrain waters to determine if the sea mammal is endangered.

He said the dugongs found in Bahrain’s waters and other areas belong to a species scientifically known as Dugong dugon and they are the only living species of the family Dugongidae.

The last study undertaken in 1986 estimated the total number of dugongs in the Gulf to be about 7,000. Other statistics indicate that waters southeast of Bahrain - a core area for the local dugong population - has about 2,500 to 3,500 dugongs. 34 Forum

“Dugongs are also the only mammalian species which feed on sea grass and they spend their whole lifecycle in the same marine habitat,” he said. They are listed as vulnerable to extinction at the global level by the World Conservation Union, added Mr Abdulqader. “Global concern about the

Mr Abdulqader was speaking at the opening of a seminar held at the BCSR, in October. It was conducted by Dr Amanda Hodgson, a dugong specialist and research consultant affiliated to James Cook University, Australia. She talked about the survey to be conducted in cooperation with GEOMATEC Spatial Information and Research as well as James Cook University. The survey is part of a contractual study supported by both Durrat Al Bahrain and the Esterad Investment Company. Dr Hodgson said that once the survey is completed, it

will be necessary to repeat it every three to five years in order to monitor any changes in the dugong population. In Bahrain, hunting and catching of dugongs in addition to other marine wildlife has been banned under Decree 3 of 2003 issued by the Public Commission for the Protection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife. The survey is not however welcomed by all. Indeed it is likely to be a major cause of concern among developers who want to expand Bahrain’s population by reclaming land from the sea. Dugongs are sometimes called ‘Sea Cows’ because they graze on seagrasses. These marine plants look like grass growing on a sandy sea floor in shallow, warm water. Dugongs need to eat large amounts of seagrass and it is this environment which could be damaged by over development, increasing tourism and increasing pollution levels.

Notes from the Eastern Province With an increasing number of BBBF members having business interests across the Causeway there would appear to be some interest in developing ties with other British Business Groups in the region. We asked Geoff Fennah, Chairman of the BBA in Alkhobar to drop us a line for inclusion in the magazine. It was a pleasure to be offered the opportunity to contribute to the BBBF magazine on behalf of the Eastern Province British Business Association, Saudi Arabia. Since being elected Chairman in April, it has become evident to me that there is significant synergy between both business groups. Many BBA members now live in Bahrain and commute to Saudi on a daily basis while others residing permanently in EP often pursue business opportunities in Bahrain. Conversely, numerous BBBF members travel to Saudi routinely for business purposes and this can be expected to increase with the anticipated growth both in Saudi and Bahrain. Clearly there are potential benefits to having BBBF and BBA working closer together in areas of common interest. Initial efforts to boost cooperation involved the simple step of sharing events notices between the members of both groups. As a result, I have been pleased to see a number of BBBF members “crossing the causeway” to attend our monthly Business 36 Forum

Dinners as well as some of our members traveling in the opposite direction. This is very encouraging and on behalf of BBA, I would like to extend a welcome to all BBBF members to attend any of our events and to utilize our network of business contacts. To contact us send an e-mail to and we will be happy to assist. As in Bahrain, the business climate in Saudi and especially Eastern Province is buoyant with many mega projects on the horizon. Jubail Industrial City is scheduled to double in size over the next 10 years with an estimated investment of US$ 70 Billion and the introduction of 25 new major petrochemical complexes. At the same time many existing petrochemical facilities are also in expansion mode with the introduction of additional process plant to produce more downstream products. Saudi Aramco is also indicating a capital commitment of about US$ 50 Billion over the next five years on projects such as Khurais and the two new US$ 6

Billion export refineries in partnership with Total and Conoco Phillips, located in Jubail and Yanbu respectively. Saudi is also looking to diversify its economic base and is developing other major projects such as Maa’den, a major mining project including the development of a major Aluminium Smelter in Ras Azoor. Inevitably, investment of this scale will also have a positive

impact on other sectors such as banking, support services and others. There are clear signs that the “clouds of depression” arising from the internal problems in Saudi Arabia over recent years have started to lift. There seems to be an air of optimism returning to the business arena so hopefully life is starting to return to normal. Long may it last.

Chubb Security Systems can address intrusion detection alarm systems (burglar alarms), access control / card access, video surveillance (CCTV, digital video recording), photo identification and panic attack / hold up systems. Where appropriate, all of these dimensions of security can be fully integrated through a single technology platform to deliver ease of management and administration, standardisation / centralisation, plus reduced operating and expansion costs. The same Chubb expertise is available for residential applications. Advanced electronic security systems leveraging the experience and knowledge acquired in securing banks and other high risk operations are available to home owners, keeping your family safe and secure.

Bahrain News The British School of Bahrain The British School ran its first ever work experience programme in June of this year. Twenty eight students spent a week in various industrial, commercial and business enterprises gaining valuable experience and in particular developing a grasp of work ethic and routines in a business environment. Some of the students on work placement are illustrated here.

The school is particularly grateful to BBBF members who were extremely supportive of this initiative and with their encouragement students were able to gain insight into a wide range of jobs. Feedback from students, who have to produce a portfolio of their experiences, and their placement employers, has been very favourable and this will become an important part of

Marks & Spencer choose Arencon Marks & Spencer Bahrain have awarded Arencon Security Est. a BD30,000 contract to perform a major CCTV upgrade at their flagship store in Seef Mall. Arencon have been maintaining the existing system for several years. In addition to providing a state of the art digital recording system in place of the existing analogue (tape-based) recorders, a major expansion of CCTV coverage will take place to cover the expanded store area presently being constructed at the front of the existing building. Commenting on the award, Store Manager Zaki Al Khozaae noted “Arencon have been maintaining our existing system for some years and we have been

very impressed with their sound knowledge of CCTV systems and their responsiveness to service requests. They were a natural choice for our expansion project, especially as they were able to incorporate most of the existing cameras into the new scheme”. Arencon Security General Manager Richard Monkhouse observed “we are very pleased with this continued vote of confidence by Marks & Spencer Bahrain. M&S is a world-renowned British Brand and we are delighted that M&S Bahrain have chosen to support British CCTV equipment manufacturers by placing this contract with us.”

the school’s annual calendar. Research shows that these schemes have a positive impact, not only on young adult’s general outlook and ambitions but also on their academic results in school. The school’s first ever results at Advanced Level were excellent, recording a 100% pass rate with over 90% of all grades at A,B or C and an impressive 60% of

all grades at A. In an increasingly competitive educational world, students need more than good examination results to guarantee university placements. Work experiences offer students an opportunity to prepare for the challenges they will face after school and so enhance their application profile for higher education.

Bahrain plans new bank-notes Bahrain is to issue a new set of currency notes following the replacement of the Bahrain Monetary Agency (BMA) with the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) earlier this month, an official confirmed in September. The CBB is starting the process of changing the notes, its banking operations executive director Dr Abdulrahman Saif told the Gulf Daily News. He said new notes needed to be designed because the current ones bear the BMA name. “We will be issuing new

notes in the future, but the whole process takes time because we have to create a new design, get security and signatures,” said Dr Saif. “Bahrain’s notes will remain legal tender until the Central Bank issues new ones and they won’t be withdrawn overnight. Even if we issue them, the current ones will be legal for some time. “We want to emphasise to the general public that notes and coins are still legal and they are valid even if new ones are issued.” Coins will not be changed since they do not bear the BMA’s name.



Bahrain News Bahrain to get a new town A new BD300 million town is to be built in Hidd, as a private development, the GDN has reported. It will take five years to complete the first phase of the project, to be built by Al Enma’a House for Real Estate. The



include government and private homes, in addition to a five-star hotel, Al Enma’a General Manager Manaf Hamza told Muharraq Municipal Council members at an extraordinary meeting. It will be linked to two new projects in the Muharraq

Governorate - Galali Housing Project and the Grand Busaiteen Project, said Al Enma’a representative Hisham Zaman, who gave a presentation. “The project includes 533 government homes, 400 luxurious houses, 256 villas, 374 apartment buildings, with storeys ranging from four to seven,” he said.

Alba expansion on the cards Reuters news services reported in September that Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) was looking into expanding abroad for the first time and was hoping to make alliances with other Gulf producers. Acting Chief Executive Ahmed Saleh Al Noaimi said that possible foreign expansion was part of a business plan to be decided within 6 months. He said space for expansion in Bahrain would be limited after the construction of Line 6, an expansion due within five years, for which a feasibility plan has been approved. ‘We are planning to look into the whole strategy again. We will not have a borderline ... At the end of the day it could be expanding outside,’ Al Noaimi said when asked about growth plans. ‘We talked about Line 6, but what about after Line 6? We are limited in space ... We’ve been here for the last 35 years. Our partners in the Gulf have been here long enough and we would like to see alliances, coordination and cooperation,’ he added. Dubai Aluminium Company, another top world smelter 38 Forum

and Alba’s only competitor in the GCC region, in June announced plans to boost output to 920,000 tonnes per year (tpy). Dubai’s Web site put its output at 861,000 tonnes in 2006. Al Noaimi predicted Alba’s output for 2006 to reach 850,000 tonnes, 20,000 tonnes higher than the plant’s rated capacity. He said Alba had raised capacity through modifications and more efficient port handling. He said the company was the largest single-plant producer in the world. Alba is also focusing on more integration of upstream activities, such as sourcing aluminium’s raw materials, as part of any future growth plans, he said. The firm is 77% owned by the Bahraini Government, 20% by Saudi Arabia and 3% by the German group Breton Investments. Al Noaimi said he could not rule out that the firm would be privatised in the future, adding that Bahraini authorities were looking into the issue, along with other state owned companies. However, he ruled out any

flotation within the next two years. Current Gulf output represents 6% of world output, but change is afoot. Oman also expects to start production in 2008 to a level of 325,000 tpy. Qatar is also planning its first smelter with a capacity of 570,000 tpy Earlier this year the Saudi Government approved the construction of a $3.8 billion aluminium smelter at Ras Az Zour. The Saudi smelter will have an initial output of 623,000 tpy but the design allows for this level to be more than doubled. And such is the potential demand for the metal that there are rumours that another 500,000 tpy smelter is being considered by a private Saudi consortium.

Boris backs Riffa

Boris Becker’s visit to Bahrain earlier this year is not going to be his last. The tennis legend will visit Bahrain to promote Riffa Views later this year. The announcement came as Riffa Views is harnessing links with top high-profile international sporting celebrities to propel the residential and lifestyle community to the forefront of the international property market, said developers. The agreement was announced at Mr Becker’s high-profile annual charity event in Munich, Germany, which was attended by Riffa Views’ chief executive officer Richard Browning. Mr Becker said he was delighted that the management of Riffa Views sees tennis as an important component to residential life. “Fast and accurate delivery has been a critical part of my game and I believe that the team I work with at Riffa Views has the same approach,” he said. “Through this project I will endeavour to share much of my experience in tennis with residents and visitors to Riffa Views and Bahrain.” Mr Becker will arrive in Bahrain for an exhibition match in December.

Bahrain News AXA Insurance applies for a trading license in Qatar AXA Insurance, one the region’s largest international insurers is looking to extend its Gulf operations to Qatar and has currently applied for a commercial license to establish its presence in the country. The establishment of AXA Insurance in Qatar will further strengthen its growth in the Gulf and the company looks forward to working closely with the QFC authorities to forge strong ties with Qatar’s already growing corporate world and introduce its products and services to the market. Says Richard Morrison, Country Manager for Bahrain who is coordinating with QFC, “QFC provides an unique environment and world class infrastructure. The new financial community will provide a wealth of opportunities and synergies for bringing new businesses and services to the region and we hope to be part of this growing corporate community.”

Says Andrea Rossi, newly appointed CEO of AXA Gulf, “Our experience in structuring our products to suit local market needs even whilst maintaining our international service standards gives us the advantage to migrate our products to different markets easily.” The Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) is a financial and business centre established by the Government of Qatar and located in Doha. It has been designed to attract international financial services institutions and major multi-national corporations and to encourage participation in the growing market for financial services in Qatar and elsewhere in the region. The QFC operates to international standards and provides a first class legal and business infrastructure for those licensed to operate by the Centre. The QFC was created by Qatar Law No.(7) and has been open for business since 1 May 2005.

New Nightclub for Bahrain open to BBBF members Mansouri Mansions Hotel is to expand its outlets in November by opening a nightclub in the main building of the hotel. A reception on the first Thursday after Ramadan launches the Night Club’s Thursday Night Parties. The

parties will be open to members of Mansouri Mansions Hotel VIP Club, The Country Club members and to all c u r r e n t members of the BBBF. Members need only to present their card to gain entrance..

Kempinski to manage Bahrain City Centre hotel Kempinski Hotels has signed a management deal with the MAF Hospitality (MAFH) for a new five-star luxury hotel at Bahrain City Centre development. The hotel which will be MAFH’s second in the region will open during 2008. The hotel will have 196

rooms and suites plus a city spa and a fitness centre. This agreement follows the successful opening of the Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates earlier this year, the first joint venture between the luxury hotel group Kempinski and the MAF Hospitality group.

Kanoo Corporate Service Centre introduces call-back facility The Kanoo Corporate Service Centre ‘KCSC’ in Bahrain has enhanced its communication platform by introducing a Call Back facility allowing customers to request a ring-back from Kanoo Travel, if all lines are busy. The Call Back service is the first of its kind in the Middle East travel industry, and will help save customers the hassle of re-dialing or

spending valuable time on hold. If you call the KCSC and all phone lines are busy, the system will automatically prompt the caller to choose if he or she wishes to continue on hold or request a Call Back. If the Call Back option is chosen, a Kanoo agent will call you back as soon as they are available on the number from which you made the call. Forum


And the latest word is... ‘cybersquatting’! Conservative Party leader David Cameron’s attempt to harness the power of the internet through his Webcameron blog has led to opponents setting up a spoof rival site. UKIP backers have launched a site with a nearidentical internet address, which launches to show a video parodying his likeness to Tony Blair. The move is the latest example of what is known as “cybersquatting”. An Australian poet with a similar name for his website has also been inundated by people wanting the Webcameron site. Australian Cameron M Semmens has posted a note on the front page of his site saying: “Obviously this isn’t the site of David Cameron’s weblog (leader of the Conservative Party UK), but feel free to have a look around here.” “Politics via poetry - now that’s a way to a better world.” According to Wikepedia, the free online encyclopedia, there’s a U.S. federal law known as the AntiCybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) of 1999, which defines cybersquatting as registering, trafficking in, or using a domain name with bad-faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else. But it’s not the first time “cybersquatting” has entered the world of politics. 40 Forum

During the general election Conservative Party candidate George Hollingbery targeted his rival, Liberal Democrat MP Mark Oaten by seizing the web site and directing visitors to his own site.

And Finally

Jonathan Robinson, from NetNames, which manages the domain name portfolios for several FTSE 100 companies, said: “Politicians are just as vulnerable to online threats as film stars or any major brand. “One of the first steps of setting up a new web site is checking the availability not only of your desired domain name, but also of alternatives including the .com and versions. “Unfortunately in this instance David Cameron has seen his effort to harness the power of the internet stumble at one of the very first hurdles.” So why did he do it? “A young person would no more think of going to a public meeting than boiling an egg, so they do it on the internet,” he told a student website. “Lots of young people now don’t bother with newspapers - they see that as the dead wood industry and they get their news off the internet,” he said. Mr Cameron - whose political opponents accuse him of lacking substance, denied it was a publicity stunt.“It’s not a gimmick at all. I’m going to give a lot of time to it.” For those of you who might like to see David in (various) action(s), his blog address is

Quite how a particular book gets to the top of any list is a bit of a mystery at the best of times but Google who were exhibiting at the Frankfurt Book Fair in early October used the occasion to publish their own literary “Top 10 List” based on the Google Book Search facility. And this weeks winner was: ‘Diversity and Evolutionary Biology of Tropical Flowers’! Meanwhile on the New York Times Hardcover Fiction Best Seller List was ‘The Thirteenth Tale’ by Diane Setterfield who tells the tale of a biographer who struggles to discover the truth about an aging writer who has mythologized her past. Top of the reviewers pile though seems to be a childrens book written by

Jamie Lee Curtis about all those crazy questions that only a child can come up with. Titled ‘Is There Really a Human Race?’ many of the reviews suggest that readers of all ages will enjoy it. Here’s how it starts: Is there really a human race? Is it going on now all over the place? When did it start? Who said “Ready, Set Go”? Did it start on my birthday? I really must know. And if you really do like humour, at the top of the Amazon best sellers list (for this hour) is a book by a lady called Nora Ephron titled ‘I feel bad about my neck: and other thoughts about being a woman’. A compilation of 15 essays in 160 pages, the book is short but effervescant. Be prepared to laugh out loud!

BBBForum Winter 2006  

The magazine from the Bahrain British Business Forum

BBBForum Winter 2006  

The magazine from the Bahrain British Business Forum