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Arab-British Business Volume 41 Issue 1 April 2019 Bi-Monthly bulletin of the Arab British Chamber of Commerce

Joint programme launched to empower the Arab world in the global space industry -The UAE adopts a National Space Strategy 2030

See page 17.


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CONTENTS

CONTENTS News from the Chamber

4

Members’ News

5

UAE Roundtable

6-7

Members’ Networking

8-9

Opportunities in Jordan

10 - 11

Opportunities in Egypt

12 - 13

Bi-monthly bulletin of the A-BCC

New Members

14 - 15

Editorial Team

Member Profile

16

Arab Space Industry

17

Abdeslam El-Idrissi Cliff Lawrence David Morgan Dr Yasmin Husein Arab-British Chamber of Commerce 43 Upper Grosvenor Street London W1K 2NJ Tel: +44 (0) 20 7235 4363 d.morgan@abcc.org.uk (English Editorial) y.husein@abcc.org.uk (Arabic Editorial) www.abcc.org.uk

Production & Design Benham Publishing Aintree Building Aintree Way Aintree Business Park Liverpool L9 5AQ Tel: 0151 236 4141

Advertising Terry Brannigan Tel: +44 (0) 7841 115444 Terry@benhampublishing.com Account Manager Karen Hall Tel: +44(0) 7801 788880 Karen@benhampublishing.com

Disclaimer Benham Publishing or Arab-British Chamber of Commerce cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies that may occur, individual products or services advertised or late entries. No part of this publication may be reproduced or scanned without prior written permission of the publishers and Arab-British Chamber of Commerce.

Projects & Business News

18 - 21

Organic Farming in Morocco

22

Oman Commercial Law

23

Sports & Media

24

Palestine Call Centre Services

25

Jordan Projects

26 - 27

City Week

28

Trade Fairs, Conferences & Exhibitions

29

Arab British Economic Summit 2019

30 - 31

ANNOUNCING THE RELAUNCH OF ECONOMIC FOCUS Our quarterly magazine, Economic Focus, will shortly be relaunching in partnership with our new publisher, Benham Publishing. The magazine will include all the usual features and opportunities for members to contribute. Our publishers will be making contacts with members over the course of coming weeks to introduce themselves and to discuss how you can take advantage of the marketing potential of the magazine.

Economic Focus is now a wellestablished title with an online presence as well as print format enabling your message to reach our targeted readership of recipients who are involved in trade and investment in the Arab-British markets across all sectors. For further information please contact Terry Brannigan on +44 (0) 7841 115444 or email terry@benhampublishing.com

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NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

MR BANDAR ALI REDA TAKES UP HIS POST AS SECRETARY GENERAL & CEO OF THE ARAB BRITISH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

We are pleased to announce that Mr Bandar Ali Reda has joined the Arab British Chamber of Commerce (the Chamber), assuming the role of Secretary General and CEO on 1st March 2019, becoming the fourth person to occupy this position of leadership at the Chamber. As the leader for the Chamber, Mr Reda will contribute his expertise and a proven track record, along with his combined experience as a diplomat and extensive hands-on experience in the private sector to help bring the Chamber to the next level. Mr Reda has a distinguished professional career of more than a decade in banking and corporate industry at SABB HSBC Saudi Arabia, prior to taking up senior positions in the diplomatic service

of his country, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as the Commercial Attaché in the UK & Europe and before that in Italy and the Saudi delegation to BIE in Paris. Mr Reda holds a BA in Economics and Business Administration from Orlando USA. He was an Executive Member of the SaudiItalian Business Council, Council of Saudi Chambers; a Member of the Business Youth Committee, Jeddah Chamber of Commerce; a Member of the Saudi Economy

Association; and a Member of the Saudi Arabian legal accountants. Mr Reda’s undoubted experience and abilities is clearly demonstrated in his extensive career of service in both public and private sectors. His welcome appointment will enable him to make a vital contribution to the improvement of the Chamber’s activities and enhance its influence as the leading strategic business services organisation in the UK working to strengthen bilateral trade.


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•••

ACTIONCOACH Khalil Arouni has worked with global brands, regional companies and SMEs, handling their media budget where he established a long-term relationship, ensuring their investment was measured and delivered the expected return on investment. Clients include McDonald’s, SABIC, General Motors, the British Council, Hayat Kimya and AJVA Ford. Khalil is passionate about his clients’ success and long-term sustainability. Proactive in his nature, he will start by understanding your business goals and objectives and then work with you to craft a plan to deliver the aimed results. Testing and measuring are crucial in his formula for success. After graduating with an MBA in Project Management, Khalil worked overseas for 26 years where he acquired a wealth of experience in market research, business growth, marketing, media planning and management.

Khalil's Approach Khalil will understand your goals and by working with you, put into action a plan on how to achieve it, in a simple, systematic, measured and effective manner.

Khalil's Mission as a Business Growth Specialist To enable you to achieve your dreams, increase your business profitably, put systems in place and improve the work environment for you and your team. If there is a will, there is a way, and if there is no way, we will create one for you. Khalil Arouni, ActionCOACH, Sterling Marketing Consultancy Ltd https://actioncoach.co.uk/coaches/ khalil-arouni/

Client Testimonials: Amanda Rose - Business Owner, Amanda Rose Photography – Feb 2019 “Whether you are an established company or small business owner, you will 100% benefit from Khalil's expertise.” ••• Waleed Gad - Founder & Director, Be-Yond Consulting – Dec 2019 “Would highly recommend Khalil to any client that seeks growth or to overcome their challenges, especially in Sales and Marketing.” ••• Leanne Varney – Apollo Tyres “Very knowledgeable, very passionate coach. Opened my mind to what the future holds. Very helpful and insightful.” ••• Lauren Hall – FireTap Marketing “Engaging, informative and presentation skills are great. Very humble and has a good pace.” •••

WORKSHOP A workshop for executives will take place at the ABCC premises on April 29th in the afternoon. Attendance is free of charge. Register at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/winningteams-knowing-how-and-why-to-get-theright-people-on-the-bus-tickets-59338393733

INVITATION ASK THE EXPERTS: MANAGING POLITICAL AND PERSONAL RISK, AND PROTECTING YOUR INTERESTS Date: 1 May 2019 Time: 3.30pm, welcome 4pm, debate commences Venue: Arab British Chamber of Commerce A business event presented by ABCC member Withers LLP All of us experience the impact of political and personal risk in the current economic and political climates around the world. Many of us are understandably reluctant to make important decisions in order to avoid problems that can be hard to

predict, but the converse side of this is that valuable opportunities – both commercial and personal – may be missed. We invite you to ask the experts on what to do at a debate given by partners of Withers LLP. Careful planning can provide protection to a wide range of personal and commercial issues, and the team from Withers will share their thoughts on mitigating risk in areas such as investment, migration, marriage and divorce alongside trust and tax planning. Following the debate, our experts will be on hand to talk to you about specific questions you may have.

Topics include: • Private disputes in business - commercial arbitration and investment treaties • Concerns about the security of assets in home jurisdictions • UK immigration and visas • Trusts - control, influence and resilience • Risk, privacy and confidentiality – unexplained wealth orders, explained • Protecting family wealth. Chair: Emma Copestake Panel: Hussein Haeri, Steven Kempster, Michael Gouriet and Philip Munro For more information about this event please contact our Membership Officer, Dr Lamya Al-Imara on: lamya@abcc.org.uk

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UAE AMBASSADORIAL ROUNDTABLE The Chamber was proud to host the UAE Ambassador to the UK, His Excellency Sulaiman Al Mazroui, for an ambassadorial roundtable with British investors and executives from a wide range of industries. The event, held on the morning of 18 February 2019, attracted senior representatives from sectors such as financial services, education, jewellery, transport, legal services, health, security, insurance, real estate, construction, communications and hotels. The number of sectors represented around the table reflected the UK business community’s widespread commitments in the UAE market. The Ambassador and all delegates were welcomed to the Chamber by Mr Abdeslam El Idrissi, Deputy CEO

and Secretary General, ABCC, and the Rt Hon Baroness Symons, ABCC Chairman. H E Mr Sulaiman Al Mazroui described the success of the UAE in creating a sustainable and diverse economy where over 70% of GDP was derived from sectors other than oil. The UAE was continuing to build a knowledge based economy and could now boast of having developed an Emirati space programme. The Ambassador stated that the UAE

was the third largest economy in the Middle East after Saudi Arabia and Turkey. Citizens from over 200 nations had made the UAE their home, including 120 thousand Britons, which reflected its diverse and tolerant culture. Turning to address relations with the UK, the UAE Ambassador stressed the importance of bilateral trade and, with a nod to the Brexit negotiations, he mentioned that the UK would remain a trusted and valued partner whether the UK was inside or outside the European Union.


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A detailed presentation was then delivered by Mr Youssef Hassane, Chief Economic Advisor at the UAE Embassy, who began by referring to the UAE’s strong economic fundamentals. Its growth outlook was expected to strengthen with increased inflows of investment and increased private sector activity: for example, non-oil growth was forecast to reach 3.9% in 2019 rising to 4.2% in 2020. The UAE enjoyed high rankings for its economic competitiveness and efficiency. In terms of bilateral relations, UK-UAE ties were expanding across a broad spectrum of economic, strategic and cultural activities. A trade value target of £25 billion had been adopted by the two governments to be reached by 2020. Elaborating on the strengths of bilateral relations, Mr Hassane stated that 6,000 UK firms were now located in the UAE and, in addition, each year the UAE attracted over 1.2 million British visitors. The UAE was also a major investor in the UK economy and there was particular involvement in UK infrastructure, clean energy, healthcare, real estate, hospitality, innovation and transport. He urged UK investors to look to the opportunities in the seven strategic priority sectors identified by the UAE as those that would offer the greatest potential for development: namely, renewable energy, transport, healthcare, education, water, technology and space.

H E Mr Sulaiman Al Mazroui, UAE Ambassador (centre) flanked by Rt Hon Baroness Symons, ABCC Chairman and Mr Abdeslam El-Idrissi, ABCC Deputy CEO & Secretary General

The UAE had an innovative economy and was particularly proud of the growing achievements of its space industry, he said. It had also become a knowledge centre in the region for artificial intelligence.

market attractive to investors such as its excellent infrastructure, the new 10-year visa option for investors and the possibility of 100% ownership.

Mr Hassane urged UK companies to look to taking part in the Dubai Expo 2020 which was expected to attract 25 million visitors.

H E Mr Sulaiman Al Mazroui concluded by warmly thanking the ABCC for organising the event and for its ongoing work in promoting closer UAE-UK relations.

He remarked that the UAE Embassy was planning a major investment and trade forum to be held in London on 25th April which would be followed by a forum on the UAE’s important tourism sector scheduled to be held during the World Travel Market in November. He concluded by remarking on the key factors that make the UAE

Questions raised by delegates during the discussion ranged over the need for more clarity on VAT, the use of the English language and education in English, the possibility of a UK-GCC free trade deal after Brexit, the impact of UK tax changes on UAE investors, the UAE’s ambitious plans for Smart Cities, and opportunities in the UAE financial services industry with the growth of Islamic finance and fintech. Finally, at the conclusion of the roundtable, the attentions of the business community were directed to the ABCC’s Arab-British Economic Summit 2019, to be held on 3rd July, as this would enable further and more detailed discussions on the key topics that concerned business.


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NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

MEMBERS NETWORKING EVENT A networking event for businesses was held at the Chamber on Wednesday 6th March. It attracted upwards of 100 attendees comprising ABCC members and non-member companies along with diplomats and others with an interest in pursuing the business advantages of Arab-British collaboration.


NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

Participants were welcomed to the Chamber by Mr Bandar Reda, the new CEO and Secretary General of the ABCC, who had recently taken up his post. Introducing himself, Mr Reda indicated his interest in listening to the members and made himself available to speak to attendees during the reception. Mr Abdeslam El-Idrissi, Deputy Secretary General and CEO, ABCC, delivered a briefing on the latest developments in the Arab markets during which he also highlighted the various business support services available from the Chamber. Mr El-Idrissi stressed that the ABCC was not a self-appointed body but was one officially recognised by governing institutions of the 22 Arab states represented by the Arab League. The Chamber enjoyed close links to the Union of Arab Chambers and the network of British chambers that connects it to all the major cities of the Arab World and the UK. The main programme of the afternoon consisted of presentations by ABCC member companies which was a big attraction of networking events. Interest in participating is always high and speaking opportunities were snapped up very quickly by members. Places are allocated on a simple first come, first served basis. Representatives of ten member companies were each given the floor to make a five-minute pitch on behalf of their company. The member companies joining us on this occasion were AchieveForum Middle East; SAUDIA; Doyle Clayton Solicitors, Taylor Howes Designs; Notable Notaries Ltd; Trowers & Hamlins; VG; National Philanthropic Trust UK and Health Matters (UK) Limited. The attendees heard that AchieveForum Middle East, the first to speak, was a training and development specialist boasting 25 years’ experience working in the MENA region. It adopted a consultative approach to provide customised training programmes for its clients. SAUDIA, the national carrier airline of the Kingdom Saudi Arabia, based in Jeddah, offers expanding services for UK customers with various options of flying First Class, Business Class or Guest Class. Doyle Clayton Solicitors, employment law specialists offering help with

business immigration cases, as well as notary services, legal advice on contracts, recruitment and we able to help companies to set up and source global talent, among other matters.

serving Middle East clients who are attracted by the stable financial jurisdiction of Jersey which offers a recognised safe harbour for wealth protection.

Taylor Howes Designs is an exclusive interior designer, architect and luxury furniture business that forms part of the Taylor Howes Group. It has worked on about 1,000 high prestige projects for clients located around the world including the Gulf in places such as Kuwait and Dubai. The company held a successful inaugural Business Design Summit in London last year.

The National Philanthropic Trust UK is a registered charity that gives advice to donors on managing funds. Working with today’s philanthropists, wealthy families and private banks, the trust manages $7 billion in charitable funds and has a network of links with a global group of charities.

Notable Notaries Ltd is a provider of a notary services for a full range of business and personal documents including qualifications and certificates. The company has a liaison office in Dubai allowing it to specialise in services for companies doing business throughout the UAE. Trowers & Hamlins is a major law firm with a global reach and has been active in the MENA since the 1950s. It provides a full legal service for companies and individuals, such as leading corporate enterprises and high net worth individuals. VG is a Jersey-based financial advisory service provider offering independent fiduciary and administration solutions including Islamic finance packages. The company has 30 years’ experience

Finally, Health Matters (UK) Limited is a healthcare broker that gives advice on health cover, medical insurance, group risk plans and dental care packages to embassies, wealthy individuals and companies with employees coming to work in the UK. It has around 700 corporate clients. Speakers answered the audience’s questions that ranged widely over current projects, the potential for advantageous collaboration and the growing opportunities in the Arab markets. Mr El-Idrissi closed the formal part of the programme by flagging up the Chamber’s forthcoming events including the Arab British Economic Summit, due to be taking place on 3rd July which he encouraged everyone to attend. Discussions continued during the reception that concluded the event.

“Representatives of ten member companies were each given the floor to make a five-minute pitch on behalf of their company.”

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The Chamber was pleased to welcome H E Mr Omar Al Nahar, the Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in London. We were also delighted to be joined at the event by H E Mr Tarek Adel, the Egyptian Ambassador and H E Mr Mohamed Elkoni, the Libyan Chargé d’Affaires. In welcoming remarks, Mr Bandar Reda, ABCC Secretary General & CEO, stressed the important opportunities in the Jordanian market for British business. He also explained why companies should join the Chamber to take advantage of its services. ABCC Chairman, Rt Hon Baroness Symons, welcomed Mr Reda’s appointment and wished him all success in his position. She described Jordan as a remarkable country at the heart of the Arab world and praised the generosity of its people. She mentioned that H M the King of Jordan had been in London recently for the major international conference held to attract investment in the country.

Front:

H E Mr Omar Al Nahar, Jordanian Ambassador (right), Rt Hon Baroness Symons and Mr Bandar Reda.

Back:

H E Mr Tarek Adel, Egyptian Ambassador, Mr Mohamed Elkoni, Libyan Chargé d’Affaires and Mr Abdeslam El-Idrissi.

OPPORTUNITIES IN JORDAN The ABCC hosted a business event on Opportunities in Jordan at its premises on 13 March 2019.

A promotional film that summarised the key attractions of Jordan as a logistics hub and centre for tech industries was screened before the formal presentations. The Ambassador, H E Mr Omar Al Nahar, told the audience of business people and investors that Jordan was working towards achieving financial self-reliance and economic sustainability which would be based on the resilience and innovation of its people. The London Initiative conference that was held in February had unveiled a plan for growth for which Jordan had received pledges of support from the international community. H E the Ambassador outlined the main assets of the country such as its skilled and educated population, and its strategic location that offered access to markets of over a billion people as a result of the free trade agreements that Jordan had successfully concluded. This had made Jordan advantageous to exporters. Mr Wedad Kurugky, Export Finance Manager, UK Export Finance, explained the funding that his agency was able to offer to companies to help them secure exports and win contracts overseas.


NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

He stated that UKEF, which was marking its centenary this year, had access to a budget of £50 billion but this was not fully utilised. He stressed that support was available to SMEs and not exclusively to large corporates. In fact, 75% of firms receiving UKEF support could be described as SMEs. Dr Neil Quilliam, Associate Fellow MENA Programme, Chatham House, spoke jointly with Dr Sue Griffiths, Executive Director, Global Partners Governance, about a research project they had been undertaking into the Jordanian market which was designed to facilitate greater engagement with the UK. Dr Griffiths stressed that the research was focusing on Jordan’s own priorities for growth and development. Dr Quilliam described some of the findings of the research by highlighting the opportunities in some key sectors which he hoped UK business would not miss out on. The four main sectors he highlighted were healthcare, agriculture, tourism and electrical machinery.

From left: Mr Wedad Kurugky, Mr Andrew Holland, Mr Jun-Dai Bates-Kobashigawa, Dr Sue Griffiths, Dr Neil Quilliam, and H E Mr Omar Al Nahar. Jordanian government and the country was experiencing a turnaround. He flagged up the pipeline projects available to investors that could be accessed online. In total, there were 123 projects identified 10 of which were to be tendered this year.

He stated that a key message was that while UK and Jordan enjoyed excellent relations at the governmental level, much needed to be done to strengthen relations in the economic sphere and UK firms should expand their presence.

Mr Ghanma confirmed that the growth sectors that investors should be looking at were IT, education, renewable energy and healthcare. Investors would be encouraged by the determination to simplify the country’s regulatory framework to make it easier to do business.

Mr Maher Ghanma, Head of Government Affairs ME, DLA Piper, said that the challenges to investors in the market were being seriously addressed by the

Mr Andrew Holland, Research & Development Director, IrisGuard UK, delivered a case study of a UK SME that was working successfully in Jordan.

He said that UK firms would be attracted by the highly educated labour, the stability of the market, the widespread use of English and the long history of friendly UK-Jordan relations. Finally, Mr Jun-Dai Bates-Kobashigawa, Senior Director, technology, Expedia, shared his own experiences of the technology sector in the country by describing how his company had successfully established a partnership with Jordan that recruited IT trained personnel. Discussion covered a range of issues such as higher education, cooperation between public and private sectors, available assistance for entrepreneurs and the integration of refugees into the labour market.

“The London Initiative conference that was held in February had unveiled a plan for growth for which Jordan had received pledges of support from the international community.”

His Excellency Mr Omar Al Nahar

Mr Bandar Reda

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Front (from left):

Mr Bandar Reda, ABCC CEO & Secretary General, H E Mr Tarek Adel, Egyptian Ambassador, and Rt Hon Baroness Symons, ABCC Chairman.

Back:

Iman El Sherif, EBCC Secretary General, Mr Abdeslam El-Idrissi, ABCC Deputy CEO & Secretary General, Mr Ian Gray OBE, EBCC Chairman, and H E Mr Ibrahim Mohielden, Head of Mission, League of Arab States.

OPPORTUNITIES IN EGYPT A successful business seminar on Opportunities in Egypt was hosted by the ABCC on the morning of 14 March. Organised in cooperation with the Embassy of Egypt in London and the Egyptian-British Chamber of Commerce (EBCC), the event attracted business executives and investors from a wide array of industries.

The ABCC also partnered with UK Export Finance, the UK government’s export credits agency, in the preparation of the event. In his welcoming remarks, CEO & Secretary General, Mr Bandar Reda, described Egypt as a unique market that acts as a bridge between Europe, Africa and the Middle East. He urged delegates to visit to ABCC’s website and sign up to attend the Arab British Economic Summit that the Chamber is planning to hold on 3rd July. The ABCC was honoured with the participation of H E Mr Tarek Adel, Egyptian Ambassador to the UK, and by the presence of H E Mr Ibrahim F Mohieldeen, the Ambassador for the League of Arab States in London.


NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

Mr Ian Gray, OBE, EBCC Chairman, chaired the discussion in the absence of the Rt Hon Baroness Symons. Delivering an overview of the market, Mr Gray stated the purpose of the event which was to promote closer UKEgyptian business collaboration. H E Mr Tarek Adel, the Ambassador, stated that relations between the UK and Egypt were developing rapidly as reflected in the numerous trade missions and high level delegations that have taken place since he assumed his post only a few months ago. The Ambassador mentioned delegations regarding education, investment and finance including the London Stock Exchange building contacts with the Egyptian Exchange and Prime Minister Theresa May’s attendance of the ArabEuropean summit in Sharm El Sheikh. Both sides wished the forge new trade relations, the Ambassador stated, describing Egypt as one of the most promising emerging economies in the world. He stated that Egypt’s economic reforms were beginning the bear fruit illustrated by the fact that growth was rising, exports to the UK were on the increase and the number of British tourists was on the increase. The UK was already the largest foreign investor in the country, but this was mainly confined to the oil and gas sector. The new opportunities were emerging as a result of the major projects that Egypt had embarked upon, such as the Suez Economic Zone, the new administrative capital in Cairo and the Golden Triangle mining development.

The financial services industry in Egypt was also a growth area with expansion occurring in microfinance, insurance and capital support facilities for entrepreneurs. The UK’s expertise in financial services meant that it was in a strong position to partner with Egypt in the development of these areas. Mr Wedad Kurugky, Export Finance Manager, UK Export Finance, remarked on the attraction of Egypt to investors and said that it had a lot of potential for investors. He mentioned the strength of the Egyptian banking industry reflected in the presence of the IFC, EBRD and World Bank in the country. Mr Kurugky explained the role of UKEF as acting as an interface between the business community and the UK government’s financial support for the private sector firms seeking to win contracts and fulfil export orders overseas. UKEF support could be extended to firms exporting goods as well as those firms providing services to overseas clients. It was able to help exporters to manage risk by providing insurance products in circumstances where the market is unable to assist. Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP, the UK Trade Envoy for Egypt, described himself as a

great enthusiast for Egypt. The country’s regional significance was increasing, making it an important base for UK firms looking to do business in Africa, the Middle East and the southern Mediterranean. Sir Jeffrey mentioned skills based education, construction and transport as some of the key areas where UK investors should look to play a role. Healthcare offered the opportunity for strategic partnerships while the mining sector was opening up to foreign investors. Egypt’s reforms were making it easier to invest and do business in the market, he observed. Mr Matthew Shires, Managing Director, Eurofinsa UK ltd, provided a case story of a success story of a UK-based company operating in the Egyptian market. Eurofinsa, with a record in the execution of civil projects and turnkey Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) projects, was beginning a new hospital construction project in Egypt. The presentations were followed by questions from the audience on issues such as taxation, visa costs, support for SMEs and opportunities in other areas such as the food industry. The event concluded with a reception.

“The new opportunities were emerging as a result of the major projects that Egypt had embarked upon, such as the Suez Economic Zone, the new administrative capital in Cairo and the Golden Triangle mining development.”

Ian Gray delivered a detailed overview of the market during which he identified opportunities for UK firms in infrastructure, education, healthcare and export oriented manufacturing. Egypt’s extensive transport plans in development of roads, rail, dry ports and metro offered business many opportunities. Healthcare ambitions offered opportunities not only for construction firms and project management, but also suppliers of pharmaceuticals and technical training for medical staff. Specialist technology relating to health was also important.

Mr Bandar Reda addressing the audience.

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NEW MEMBERS Ameera London

S.M.S.A SELFEN

The Westbury Mayfair

10c Applegarth Road LONDON W14 0HY UK Tel: +44(0)771-228 9135 Email: yassineabbaze@ameeralondon.com Website: www.ameeralondon.com Business activities: Beauty products, cosmetics, perfume and toiletries Contact: Mr Yassine Abbaze, Executive Director

BP N 192 Poste Centrale Kasserine 1200 TUNIS TUNISIA Tel: +216 22 044 403 Email: smsa-zelfen@hotmail.com Business activities: Organic jam, syrup and juices Contact: Mr Malek Bennani, Commercial Director

37 Conduit Street Mayfair LONDON W1S 2YF UK Tel: +44(0)20-8382 5036 Website: WWW.WESTBURYMAYFAIR.COM Business activities: Hotel Contact: Mr Gerardo Andriaccio, Assistant Director of Sales Email: gerardo.andriaccio@westburymayfair.com

The British Council 10 Spring Gardens LONDON SW1A 2BN UK Tel: +44(0)20-7389 4385 Email: susan.hay@britishcouncil.org Website: www.britishcouncil.org Business activities: Promoting culture, English language and education Contact: Ms Susan Hay, Programme Manager, Culture and Sport (Gulf)

Dar Al Teeb Ltd Premier Business Centre 47-49 Park Royal Road LONDON NW10 7LQ UK Tel: +44(0)744-4111 777 Email: aziz@daralteebkw.com Business activities: Cosmetics, perfumes and toiletries Contact: Mr Abdulazeez Al Thefeeri, Director

Research Intelligence Unit Limited 10 Briar Road Garston Kingswood WATFORD Hertfordshire WD25 0HN UK Tel: +44(0)746-340 1869 Email: roshan@riunit.com Website: www.riunit.com Business activities: Market research and consulting with focus on a variety of sectors Contact: Mr Roshan Madawela, CEO and Founding Director

Sterling Marketing Consultancy Ltd 79 College Road HARROW Middlesex HA1 1BD UK Tel: +44(0)750-058 4418 Email: khalilarouni@actioncoach.com Website: www.actioncoach.co.uk/khalilarouni Business activities: Business coaching and training Contact: Mr Khalil Arouni, CEO

Hotel Cafe Royal 68 Regent Street LONDON W1B 4DY UK Tel: +44(0)20-7406 3333 Email: rohit.gupta@hotelcaferoyal.com Website: https://www.hotelcaferoyal.com Business activities: Hotel Contact: Mr Rohit Gupta, Regional Director of Sales

The Copperfields Property Management Limited 53 Pinter House Grantham Road LONDON SW9 9DX UK Tel: +44(0)796-100 2100 Email: yasserlondon1@hotmail.co.uk Business activities: Investment and property management Contact: Mr Yasser Abdu, Director

SOMAGRI 4 Rue Sophonisbe 1002 TUNIS TUNISIA Tel: +216 71 793 822 Email: ms@somagri.tn Website: www.somagri.tn Business activities: Food produce Contact: Mr Meher Somrani, Deputy General Manager

BIOLAND Route de Kairouan Manzel Dar Belouar 4032 Enfidha Sousse TUNISIA Tel: +216 50 635 583 Email: saida.bioland@gmail.com Website: www.averland.com Business activities: Aloe Vera pure juices and cosmetics Contact: Mrs Saida Hrabi, CEO

Sensory International Ltd Unit G1 Redwood Court Tytherington Business Park MACCLESFIELD Cheshire SK10 2XH UK Tel: +44(0)162-550 5720 Email: Neils@sensorygroup.com Website: www.sensoryinternational.com Business activities: Smart electronics and security systems Contact: Mr Neil Sherman, Director

Root Group UK Ltd 23 Eyot Gardens LONDON W6 9TR UK Tel: +44(0)20-3959 2020 Fax: +44(0)20-3959 2029 Email: info@rootsgroupuk.com Website: www.rootsgroupuk.com Business activities: Architecture, interior design, building materials and architectural finishes, distribution of construction machinery and building equipment Contact: Ms Pauline Chambers, Adviser Email: pauline.chambers@areen.com

European Safety Systems Ltd Impress House Mansell Road LONDON Greater London W3 7QH UK Tel: +44(0)20-8743 8880 Fax: +44(0)20-8740 4200 Email: accounts@e2s.com Website: www.e2s.com Business activities: Manufacturer of warning signals for oil, gas, petrochemical and industrial applications Contact: Mr Michael Green, Finance Director Email: mike.green@e2s.com

Magnum Industrial Ltd 57 Salisbury Road WORCESTER PARK Surrey KT4 7DE UK Tel: +44(0)20-8337 0444 Email: adaoud@magnumindustrial.co.uk Business activities: Exporting services Contact: Mr Abdulilah Daoud, CEO

Pestana Chelsea Bridge Hotel and SPA 354 Queenstown Road LONDON SW11 8AE UK Tel: +44(0)20-7062 8000 Fax: +44(0)20-7720 4534 Email: michelle.brown@pestana.com Website: www.pestana.com Business activities: Hotel Contact: Mrs Michelle Brown, Director of Sales & Marketing

H&M Security Services Ltd 1st Floor 476/478 Larkshall Road Highams Park LONDON E4 9HH UK Tel: +44(0)20-8523 2227 Fax: +44(0)20-8523 5595 Email: info@hmsecurityvipservices.co.uk Website: www.hmsecurityvipservices.co.uk Business activities: Safety, protection and security solutions Contact: Mrs Tania Al-Hassani, Business Development Executive Email: Tania.AlHassani@hmsecurityservices.co.uk

Tree MR Ltd 79 Bushgrove Road DAGENHAM Essex RM8 3SL UK Tel: +44(0)730-575 2770 Email: marina@treemr.co.uk Website: https://www.treemr.co.uk/ Business activities: Management consultancy services Contact: Ms Marina Rumyanskaya, Director

Morocco Gold Ltd 3 King James Place PERTH Perthshire PH2 8AE UK Tel: +44(0)173-8621 526 Email: info@morocco-gold.com Website: www.morocco-gold.com Business activities: Extra virgin olive oil Contact: Mr Robert Watson, Director Email: robert@morocco-gold.com

Pantaq Limited Unit 2 Ringway Industrial Estate Eastern Avenue LICHFIELD Staffordshire WS13 7SF UK Tel: +44(0)845-459 9441 Fax: +44(0)845-459 9442 Email: ihaque@pantaq.com Website: www.pantaq.com Business activities: Procurements and exports Contact: Mr Irshad Haque, Director

Repaircraft Plc The Common CRANLEIGH Surrey GU6 8LU UK Tel: +44(0)1483 273536 Fax: +44(0)1483 278078 Email: hq@repaircraft.co.uk Website: www.repaircraft.com Business activities: Defence contractor Contact: Mr Adrian Stainton, Managing Director

Your Self Centre 29 Wards Wharf Approach LONDON E16 2EY UK Tel: +44(0)20-7474 7020 Email: nadia@yourselfcentre.org Website: www.yourselfcentre.org Business activities: Relocation services, housing and education Contact: Mrs Nadia Nevin, Director


NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

Nawasa Mahal International Ltd

The Edge Picture Company

9 Arran House Raleana Road LONDON E14 9RN UK Tel: +44(0)751-840 1588 Email: omar@serendi.co.uk Website: serendi.co.uk Business activities: Trade in high-value sapphires Contact: Mr Omar Anbargi, COO

20-22 Shelton Street LONDON WC2H 9JJ UK Tel: +44(0)20-7836 6262 Fax: +44(0)20-7836 6949 Email: ask.us@edgepicture.com Website: www.edgepicture.com Business activities: Film production company with operations in the Middle East Contact: Ms Faye Jackson, Head of Digital Marketing & Creative Email: faye@edgepicture.com

Checkout Ltd 54 Portland Place LONDON W1B 1DY UK Tel: +44(0)20-7323 3888 Email: legal@checkout.com Website: www.checkout.com Business activities: Unified payment solutions Contact: Ms Tilly McAdden, Senior Legal Counsel Email: tilly.mcadden@checkout.com

Hownam Studio C/O Greaves West & Ayre 17 Walker Gate BERWICK-UPON-TWEED Northumberland TD15 1DJ UK Tel: +44(0)753-821 9112 Email: scott@hownamstudio.com Website: www.hownamstudio.com Business activities: Contemporary sculptural furniture and art for private and public collections Contact: Mr Scott Horner, CEO

Randall Parker Foods Dolwen Wales LLANIDLOES Powys SY18 6LX UK Tel: +44(0)168-641 2114 Email: sales.wales@randallparkerfoods.com Website: www.randallparkerfoods.com Business activities: Meat processing and retail packing of high quality beef and lamb for retail, wholesale and international markets Contact: Mr James Evans, Sales Manager

RELM Interiors Limited F2 59 Putney Bridge Road Wandsworth LONDON SW18 1PB UK Tel: +44(0)20-3732 2522 Email: info@relminteriors.co.uk Website: www.relminteriors.co.uk Business activities: Design and build company specialising in both residential and commercial properties Contact: Mr Rodi Mirza, CEO

RAF Estates Ltd Trident Court 1 Oakcroft Road CHESSINGTON Surrey KT9 1BD UK Tel: +44(0)20-8641 6663 Email: raqim@rafestates.com Website: www.rafestates.com Business activities: Sourcing properties for commercial and residential clients; interior design and tenanted property management Contact: Mr Raqim Sacranie, CEO

Grand Majestic for Hotels Management PO Box 29907 Safat 13159 Abdullah Al Mubarak Street Mirqab Kuwait City KUWAIT Tel: +965 2225 4700 Fax: +965 2225 4711 Email: lopera.gcc@gmail.com Business activities: Hotel management and hospitality Contact: Mr. Mohammed Abuslaib, Chairman Email: lopera.gcc@gmail.com

Motis Ireland Ltd 9 Downshire Place NEWRY County Down BT34 1DZ UK Tel: +44(0)283-0252 500 Email: kevin.letham@motis.com Website: www.motis.com Business activities: Storage, Logistics, Freight Forwarders and Shipping Agents Contact: Mr Kevin Letham, Forwarding Development Manager

LD Collins & Co Ltd 1st Floor Gallery Court 28 Arcadia Avenue LONDON N3 2FG UK Tel: +44(0)1442 345086 Email: mariarosca@ldcollins.com Website: www.ldcollins.com Business activities: Pharmaceuticals, IVF, fertility treatment Contact Name: Ms Maria Rosca, Business Administrator

Medex Pharma Limited Office 15 12 Jenne Avenue LONDON W3 6WQ UK Tel: +44(0)20-8993 2392 Email: admin@medexpharma.co.uk Website: www.medexpharma.co.uk Business activities: Pharmaceuticals wholesaler Contact: Mr. Karam Almustafa, CEO Email: mshnaf@medexpharma.co.uk

S-RM Intelligence & Risk Consulting Beaufort House 15 St Botolph House LONDON EC3A 7DT UK Tel: +44(0)20-3597 7512 Email: t.crooke@s-rminform.com Website: https://www.s-rminform.com/ Business activities: Consultancy helping clients understand and manage regulatory, reputational and operational risks Contact Name: Mr Tom Crooke, Associate Director

Kellogg European Logistics Services Company Limited Orange Tower Mediacity UK Salford Lancashire M50 2HF UK Tel: +44(0)161-869 5408 Website: www.kelloggs.co.uk Business activities: Manufacturer of cornflakes and other breakfast cereals Contact: Ms Camelia Bassi, GBS Bucharest Transportation Lead for Export Email: Camelia.Bassi@kellogg.com

Engineering Corporation Ltd Park House Park Terrace WORCESTER PARK Surrey KT4 7JZ UK Tel: +44(0)20-8874 7282 Fax: +44(0)20-8874 7539 Email: ecl@engcorp.co.uk Website: www.engcorp.co.uk Business activities: Multidisciplinary Engineering and Planning Corporation Contact: Mr Nabeel Ahmed, CEO Email: nabeel.ahmed@engcorp.co.uk

H E Mr Hamish Cowell, British Ambassador to Oman (centre) with Mr Irteza Piracha, CEO, Berkeley Engineering Consultants (right) and Mr Abdulsattar Al Murshidi, Berkeley’s local partner in Oman.

BERKELEY ENGINEERING CONSULTANTS OPENS OFFICE IN MUSCAT ABCC member, Berkeley Engineering Consultants (BEC), has opened an office in Ghala, Oman. The opening event was attended by H E Hamish Cowell, the UK’s Ambassador to the Sultanate and high-level dignitaries from Oman. Berkeley Engineering Consultants is a UK-based company specialising in the oil and gas and infrastructure sectors. It has been in the Middle East for ten years primarily in Saudi Arabia with its main clients being Saudi Aramco. Now, it is looking to capture the Omani market. Ambassador H E Cowell commended the efforts of the company. “I am also very clear that companies investing in Oman isn’t just about bricks and mortar or physical infrastructure. It’s about creating employment opportunities for Omanis, investing in training and knowledge transfer, and ensuring that supply chains comprise goods and services procured from local businesses.” The Ambassador added, “All of these are things, which matter deeply to BEC and its approach to recruiting the local workforce, and its commitment to in-country value (for which it already has a clear plan) are both extremely commendable and could easily be used elsewhere as model examples.” Thanks to Berkeley Engineering Consultants for drawing this news to our attention.

Source: Muscat Daily

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NEWS FROM THE CHAMBER

MEDINA PUBLISHING CELEBRATES 10 YEARS From the Isle of Wight to Saudi Arabia, independent publisher seeks to educate and entertain. March marks the 10th Anniversary of ABCC member Medina Publishing Ltd, founded in 2009 with the mission to ‘educate, entertain, and to foster cultural understanding.’ Medina Publishing titles cover topics as diverse as biography, memoirs, cli-fi, horses, falconry, photography, travel and history. “It has been an eventful journey for Medina, and from small offices in Greater London we have now expanded our presence to the Isle of Wight, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates,” says founder and commissioning editor Peter Harrigan. Recent Medina titles include ‘People of Ras Al Khaimah’ supported by the Ras Al Khaimah Media Office and ‘A Solider in Arabia’ by David Neild supported by the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research. Arabic editions of both books are planned. Medina Publishing has also produced new books in Arabic, English, French and Spanish editions for the Riyadh Development Authority. ‘Discovering the United Arab Emirates’ is aimed at young readers and is acclaimed by UAE-based author and historian Peter Hellyer as “essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the Emirates”. ‘The Pearl Diver’ by award-winning author Julia Johnson is a Hamilton Trust recommended resource on ‘Stories from Other Cultures’ and remains a popular title.

Medina Publishing authors continue to be active by presenting their work around the world. “Their remarkable knowledge, achievements and experience across a remarkable range of subjects is extraordinary and they continue to help propel the company,” acknowledges Harrigan. Harriet Sandys has just returned from the Lahore Literary Festival where she spoke about her Silk Road Journey and her book ‘Beyond That Last Blue Mountain.' Harriet travelled to Afghanistan in her 20s and spent the next 15 years in the region. Her book has been praised by Lyse Doucet, BBC Chief International Correspondent, as “An extraordinary journey by an extraordinary woman, beautifully told and bravely lived; storytelling at its best.” Stuart Laing, former Ambassador in Muscat and Kuwait, former Master of Corpus Christi College and current Chair of the Anglo Omani Society, continues to present internationally on the remarkable subject of his book ‘Tippu Tip: Ivory, Slavery and Discovery in the Scramble for Africa.’ Sir Terence Clark, Chairman of the Friends of the Basrah Museum is author of ‘The Salukis in My Life: from the Arab World to China’. He delights international lovers of Salukis with his tales of these ‘Companions of Kings’ while providing a personal insight to life in Iraq while ambassador there between 1985 and 1989.

Leading indigo expert, Dr Jenny Balfour Paul, continues her world tour of ‘Deeper Than Indigo: Tracing Thomas Machell, Forgotten Explorer’ and most recently opened the Lasalle College of Art interdisciplinary focus on The Colour Blue in Singapore. Writer and Arabist Peter Clark has been immersed in the Middle East for over 50 years and continues to regale audiences with his ‘Emirates Diaries’ including tales of how to organise a royal visit, the culture of camel racing and an unpaid bill left by Margaret Thatcher. “2019 sees continued growth and we are publishing two titles with a Middle East focus later this year”. ‘Captain Shakespear: Desert Exploration, Arabian Intrigue and the rise of Ibn Sa‘ud’, by Alan Dillon profiles one Britain’s most remarkable personalities in the formative years of the modern Middle East. Shakespear is almost forgotten in his own country but he has remained a legend in the deserts. This title will be followed by ‘Across Arabia: Three Weeks in 1937’ the hitherto unpublished diaries of Lady Geraldine Rendel, the first Western woman to travel across Saudi Arabia. Both books are richly illustrated with historic photographs and will be the subject of events and exhibitions in the UK and the Gulf States. Contact General enquiries: info@medinapublishing.com https://medinapublishing.com/


UAE SPACE SECTOR

UAE ADOPTS NATIONAL SPACE STRATEGY 2030 The UAE Cabinet, chaired by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, adopted the National Space Strategy 2030 during a meeting at the Presidential Palace in Abu Dhabi. Sheikh Mohammed asserted that the UAE has established an economic powerhouse and advanced infrastructure by young Emirati talents, which enabled it to be at the forefront of the space exploration industry today. “Last year we celebrated the launch of the first satellite fully built by young Emirati engineers, and in the very near future we will see them operating international space technology centres, based in the UAE,” His Highness said. He added, “We are investing in the space industry, with ambitious projects and initiatives that will benefit our citizens and contribute to key sectors of the national economy. This is an important milestone for our country, and we are aiming to become a model for countries seeking to launch ambitious space programmes.” The National Space Strategy aims at achieving UAE’s vision in the field of space exploration, technologies, and applications. It also constitutes one of the pillars of the regulatory framework for the space sector in the country which consists of four components: National Space Policy, Space Sector Law, Space Regulations, and National Space Strategy. The UAE seeks to establish a major global hub for space science and technology, through investing in building capabilities and creating a scientific, legislative and financing environment that is stimulating and attractive for space projects. The strategy sets the general framework for UAE’s space industry and activities for the years 2030, including government activities related to space, commercial and scientific activities carried out by public and private sector operators and academic institutions and research and development, R&D, centres. The UAE possesses today four specialised centres in the research and development of space, all of them with manufacturing capabilities. Emiratis represent more than 50% of the workforce, with more than half of them are women. Source: UAE Cabinet PR UAE Space Agency signs MoU with UK Space Agency The MoU was signed during a visit to London in February 2019 by a high-level UAE delegation,

including H E Dr Khalifa Al Romaithi, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency and by H E Dr Mohammed Nasser Al Ahbabi, its Director General, who met senior officials from the UK Space Agency. The MoU covers collaboration in space science, technology, applications, policy, law, regulation and human capital development in the space field and related areas. The MoU also covers educational activities in space science and technology as well as the promotion of the use of products and services developed under the two agencies programmes. Source: Arabian Aerospace Arab Space Cooperation Group The UAE has launched a regional space collaboration programme that aims to empower the Arab world in the global space industry. The ‘Arab Space Cooperation Group’ includes partnership with 10 other Arab countries, namely Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, Jordan, Lebanon, Sudan and Kuwait. The programme will involve exchange of knowledge and joint projects, ultimately boosting the Arab space industry. H H Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched the group during the inaugural day of the Global Space Congress, Abu Dhabi, 19-21 March. 813 - satellite built by Arab scientists in the UAE “The group’s first project will be a satellite built by Arab scientists in the UAE. I personally believe in Arab talents,” Sheikh Mohammed tweeted. “We called the new satellite “813” in reference to the date that marked the beginning of prosperity for the House of Wisdom in Baghdad under the reign of Al Ma’mun. Resembling our region, the House embraced scientists, translated notable texts and produced scientific capabilities,” Sheikh Mohammed said.

The satellite will be built by engineers and scientists from all 11 countries in the group. Source: Africa News Background - UAE Space Investment Plan The “National Plan for the Promotion of Space Investment,” announced in January 2019 by the UAE Space Agency, is part of a wider initiative to turn the country into a rising space power through projects ranging from a Mars mission to launching the country’s first astronaut. The plan seeks to encourage local and foreign investment in the sector, according to a statement from the space agency. “The UAE Space Agency, as a federal government entity, will actively play the part of an enabler and facilitator to encourage local and foreign investment in the sector, and proactively design a conducive environment which ensures startups and investors feel welcome and have access to business in the UAE that can drive their growth potential,” said Mohammed Al Ahbabi, director general of the UAE Space Agency, in a statement. The space industry is not new to the country. Mobile satellite operator Thuraya was founded in the UAE in the 1990s, operating two satellites in geostationary orbit to provide voice and data services from Europe to Asia. Yahsat, a satellite operator also based in the UAE that operates three geostationary orbit satellites, acquired Thuraya in 2018. In 2009, Aabar Investments, an Abu Dhabi-based fund now part of Mubadala Investment Company, invested $280 million into suborbital spaceflight operator Virgin Galactic for a roughly onethird stake in the company. Among the UAE’s space projects is its first Mars orbiter mission, Hope, scheduled for launch in 2020. Source: Space News

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PROJECTS AND BUSINESS NEWS

NAVIGATING THE NEW RETAIL REALITY Views of Middle Eastern Retail CEOs surveyed in new PwC report. Change is the one constant for retail CEOs in the Middle East. Like retail leaders across the world, they must keep pace with new technology that is changing the way people consume products and services. But in the region, the changes go far beyond the disruption of online retailing: consumers are more price sensitive, they are less brand loyal and economies are reforming. Despite the breadth of their experience and the products they sell, the retail CEOs interviewed by PwC for the survey all identified very similar concerns: first, how to develop the agility to respond quickly to market changes and new customer demands; second, how to attract and retain talent; and third, how to keep up with the pace of advances in digital technology, all against the backdrop of macro stability in the region. Almost all of the retail CEOs we spoke to have experienced a softer market in recent times and most said they were targeting low single-digit growth this year, at best. While this would be considered very acceptable in mature markets, it’s a far cry from the region’s double-digit growth of years gone by. The report sets out the views of retail CEOs across three broad categories: technology, changing consumer behaviour and macro influences.

Notable growth areas in the Middle East, according to the retail CEOs surveyed, include expansion in the beauty sector, driven by the era of the social-media influencer, ‘ath-leisure’ (wearing workout clothes outside the gym) and healthy eating, spurred by millennial interest in wellness. Another trend having an impact is Black Friday discounting. The November sales event, which began in the US, is becoming more and more popular with Middle East consumers. Key issues retail CEOs identified around technological change, highlighted in the report: • Challenges around the lack of digital talent in the market, including recruitment of people with data analytics and artificial intelligence skills. This is part of a broader issue in the region with more than a quarter of Middle Eastern CEOs across all sectors believe hiring outside of their industry is a potential solution to address the skills gap. • Delivery and logistics continue to be a challenge for some retailers. While service is improving, change is happening slowly. Same-day delivery is no longer something that can be ignored as some retailers are delivering orders purchased online within 2-4 hours. We are also seeing some retailers investing in local logistics firms to improve their customer journey and create a competitive advantage.

Contact For further information contact Norma Taki, Middle East Consumer Markets Leader, PwC. https://www.pwc.com/content/pwc/global/forms/contactUsNew.html?parentPagePath=/ content/pwc/m1/en/publications/navigating-the-new-retailreality&style=pwc&territory=m1&contactLink=/content/pwc/m1/en/contacts/n/norma-taki

• Retailers urgently need to pursue technological solutions to allow consumers quick and easy return options for unwanted goods bought online. • Managing stock and the volume of products to buy is a challenge when an excess of supply is available online. • Online copycats: replica items or designs are being sold online for a fraction of the price, creating price wars and undermining quality. • Customers seeking greater value are opting to use delivery platforms such as Aramex’s ‘shop and ship’ to purchase the same item outside of the Middle East more cheaply. • Keeping pace with changing demands: mobile access to online information such as new product offerings, product reviews and price comparison sites continue to influence customers’ buying decisions and retailers need to be on their toes, monitoring these trends to stay relevant.

UAE, VIRGIN GALACTIC INK DEAL TO PAVE WAY FOR SPACE TOURISM FLIGHTS The UAE Space Agency and Virgin Galactic have signed an agreement to open up the possibility of space tourism flights. Under the agreement, the parties intend to plan for a SpaceShipTwo and carrier aircraft vehicle pair that would be operated from the UAE, collaborate to develop a "centre of excellence" for microgravity research in the UAE and develop spaceship operational plans for UAE’s Al Ain airport. The space vehicle will be used by customers in the UAE and the region as a science platform for high-frequency space research, as well as private individuals to experience space. Arabian Business

UK’S BANFICO PARTNERS WITH BAHRAIN ON OPEN BANKING SOLUTIONS Bahrain-based Gulf Business Machines (GBM) has partnered with Banfico from the UK to help financial institutions adopt open banking solutions in line with new regulations introduced by the Central Bank of Bahrain. Within the framework of the partnership, GBM will provide technology components required for the solution, as well as manage the overall implementation by leveraging its experience in cooperating in the financial industry, while Banfico will deliver the compliant implementation and also provide consulting services in Digital Transformation & Open Banking. Trade Arabia

LEBANESE BANKS' OUTLOOK STABLE ON GROWTH AND DEPOSIT INFLOWS, MOODY'S SAYS Moody's Investors Service maintained a stable outlook for Lebanese banks on expectations of higher deposit inflows and improved economic growth. Lebanon's newly-formed government will provide some respite from months of investor uncertainty, the credit rating agency said in a report. "We believe that despite a recent slowdown in deposit growth, inflows will be sufficient to allow banks to finance the government and the economy, provided that the new government implements reforms to bolster confidence," said Alexios Philippides, an

analyst at Moody’s. Operating conditions for banks will remain "challenging" in the transition period over the next 12 to 18 months and will depend on the government's ability to implement longawaited fiscal reforms, Moody's said. Even if the government successfully implements reforms, it will take time to restore investor confidence and sustain economic recovery, it said. This is reflected in Moody's forecast of 1.3% GDP growth in 2019 and 1.5% in 2020. The National


PROJECTS AND BUSINESS NEWS

DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION IN MOROCCO World Bank to provide $700 million loan The Ministry of Economy and Finance in Morocco signed off on a $700 million loan from the World Bank on 14 March, launching extensive reforms for the country’s digital economy. The programme is the World Bank’s latest project in Morocco, part of a five-year “Country Partnership Framework,” launched in February. The framework laid out the World Bank’s priorities for Morocco of job creation and human capital. The initiative brings the digital economy to the centre of development efforts in Morocco. A lack of access to such basic financial services hinders entrepreneurship and holds back economic growth. “Digital entrepreneurship is central to the current programme,” said Djibrilla Issa, a financial sector specialist at the World Bank. He explained that the project’s reforms would “unleash the potential of Morocco’s digital start-ups.” The World Bank scaled up its work in Morocco in 2010 and has since lent the country an average of $748 million annually, through projects that have

addressed everything from pollution management to rural infrastructure. The programme to promote financial inclusion and transformation to a digital economy in Morocco has three pillars: Pillar 1, Enhancing financial inclusion for individuals and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), will be achieved by diversification of financial instruments through the expansion of the regulatory and institutional framework for microfinance, agricultural finance, insurance coverage for entrepreneurs, and Islamic finance products, as well as better monitoring of gender gaps. Pillar 2, Supporting the development of digital platforms and digital infrastructure, will support reforms needed to develop digital platforms like mobile payment systems, e-commerce platforms with a focus on financial market infrastructure and mobile payments. Pillar 3, Enhancing support to digital entrepreneurs, will facilitate access to financing for start-ups through strengthening angel investing networks and streamlining online enterprise registration processes. Sources: Morocco World News; World Bank

KUWAIT FLOATS 125 DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS ON TENDER Kuwait’s public works ministry has announced that it has put out to tender some 125 development projects across the country, as part of its plan for the fiscal year 2019/2020.

Egaila, in addition to a sprawling children’s hospital as other major projects planned, along with a volunteer centre in a country known for its philanthropy.

Among the projects is the construction of aircraft parking stands and transport corridors for Kuwait International Airport’s new Terminal 2, the ministry’s official spokesperson Iman Al-Omar said in a statement.

Grouping the projects into different categories, she revealed that 23 belong to the healthcare engineering sectors, while 51 are classified as maintenance engineering projects, in addition to renovation deals including road repair.

She cited a new private school complex in Kuwait’s southern commercial hub of

Arab Times

BIRMINGHAM TO EXPAND DUBAI CAMPUS The University of Birmingham has signed an agreement to build the second phase of its campus in Dubai. Located within Dubai International Academic City (DIAC), the facilities will open in September 2021 and provide an academic home for up to 2,900 students. The second phase of the campus will be built opposite the city’s first purpose-built student accommodation community and is designed by Hopkins Architects. The 50,000 square metre campus is designed to encourage collaboration across all academic disciplines, with flexible learning spaces and formal teaching spaces ensuring that both teaching and research can benefit students. There are also plans for a student hub which will locate student services in one space while other facilities will include a 300-seat lecture theatre, an auditorium and three laboratories accommodating 200 students, along with seminar and tutorial rooms. The first UoB Dubai campus was opened and welcomed students in September 2018 and was built to show the University's ‘global mission’ according to Vice-chancellor Sir David Eastwood. Students attending the UoB Dubai campus can get a full UoB degree. Dubai also boasts branches of UK universities such as Exeter, Bradford, London Business School and HeriotWatt. Birmingham was the first global top 100 and UK Russell Group university to establish a campus in Dubai. Redbrick, University of Birmingham

UAE PLANS $163 BILLION SPEND ON SUSTAINABLE ENERGY The UAE will invest Dh600 billion ($163bn) until 2050 to meet growing energy demand and ensure sustainable economic growth, said the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) in a new report. The UAE Energy Strategy 2050 aims to achieve an energy mix that combines renewable and clean energy sources to balance economic requirements and environmental goals.

The Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, which was launched by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, aims to provide seven per cent of Dubai’s total power output from clean energy by 2020; a target that will increase to 25% by 2030 and 75% by 2050. Dubai is the only city in the region to have launched such a strategy, with set goals and timelines that map the future of energy until 2050.

The strategy consists of five main pillars: infrastructure, legislation, funding, building capacities and skills, and with an environment-friendly energy mix. The infrastructure initiatives include the Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest single-site solar energy project in the world, with a planned total production capacity of 5,000 megawatts (MW) by 2030, and a total investment of Dh50 billion. Trade Arabia

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PROJECTS AND BUSINESS NEWS

SAUDI ARABIA AND UK AGREE ON CLEAN ENERGY COOPERATION The Saudi Council of Ministers approved a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the KSA Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources and the British Ministry of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for cooperation in the field of clean energy. The UK and Saudi Arabia have agreed to work much closer on issues of clean energy and climate change. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed at the UK’s Cabinet Office during an official visit from the Saudi government. The deal means the two countries will share technical expertise and knowledge to reduce carbon emissions and accelerate the low-carbon economy. Some of the technologies they will now work on

include electric vehicles, carbon capture and storage, and smart grids. The MoU also commits the two states to hosting an annual UK-Saudi Energy and Industry Dialogue to discuss further ways advance sustainability issues. Both countries are keen to promote their long-term economic plans and see closer cooperation as one way of doing so. The UK Government released its Industrial Strategy last year which identified new sectors, such as artificial intelligence, clean energy, and digital infrastructure as a way of driving productivity and economic growth. In contrast, Vision 2030 is attempting to diversify the kingdom’s economy. Source: Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

OMAN - A SWEET TIME TO BE IN THE HONEY BUSINESS More than twenty of Oman’s leading honey producers attracted the attention of commercial buyers at the Omani Pavilion at Qatar’s recent Doha Seasonal Honey Market Exhibition, generating sales of over US$300,000, putting orders for US$100,000 on the books, and contracts signed with 11 international distributors, Ithraa reports. Commenting on the successes, Nasima Al Balushi, Ithraa’s Director General for Investment & Exports, said: “Honey is actually worth more per litre than oil and spurred by recent trends for healthy,

TENDERS AROUND THE REGION

natural products in the food industry, wholesale prices are on the up. Given this, many Omani producers are increasing hive numbers and improving infrastructure. It’s clearly a sweet time to be in the honey business.”

GULF COUNTRIES SAID TO HAVE $1.1TRN ACTIVE INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS Road development projects continue to be among the largest infrastructure investments across the GCC region and remains a top priority for governments, according to new research. A report released by Orient Planet Research highlighted the massive investments in road, tunnels and bridges across the GCC amid oil prices fluctuation in recent years. The report said that total value of active infrastructure projects in the GCC has reached $1.14 trillion with roads, highways and bridges among the highest number of projects. It further noted that there was a total of 1,069 road projects in the region, the highest number among all infrastructure projects, with a combined value of $122.6bn. The report highlighted some of the major projects across the region such as Dubai’s allocation of AED15 billion ($4.8bn) to complete key projects to serve the upcoming Expo 2020, including the upgrade of roads, ramps and flyovers. In Saudi Arabia, over $400m is invested in nine major road projects including the King Hamad Causeway while in Kuwait, the government is set to implement the construction of the Seventh Ring Road Project, a 93-km road network development.

Occupying the largest pavilion at the Honey Market, this was the second year Ithraa has organized an Omani pavilion at the show, bringing on board double the number of Omani firms that participated in 2018.

Other projects include the Saudi-Oman Highway, a 680km road which links Oman and Saudi Arabia and the MafraqGhuwaifat International Highway, a $5.3bn project that links Abu Dhabi to the Saudi border.

Source: Ithraa

Arabian Business

Partnership wanted with a university or medical college

UAE

JORDAN

A university is looking for partners to provide curriculum development on Respiratory Therapy.

A government owned enterprise has issued a tender for healthcare facilities management and maintenance services.

Steel work boats

Closing date: 27 November 2019

Closing date: 13 April 2019

The tender specifications cover the requirements for 2 push work boats. Closing date: 01 October 2019

___

Digital health courses

Facility management services

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Energy management

SAUDI ARABIA

A university is looking for a UK partner to provide digital health courses.

A leading business house is looking for facilities and energy management companies to represent or partner with.

Blockchain systems

Closing date: 21 December 2019

Closing date: 14 April 2019

•••

A company is looking for providers of blockchain technology. Closing date: 01 October 2019

•••

•••

For all the details: https://opportunities.export.great.gov.uk


PROJECTS AND BUSINESS NEWS

UK-ARAB NEWS BRIEFS UK consultancy set for Expo 2020 with new Dubai office Trade Arabia UK-based Direct Access Consultancy has opened its first international office in Dubai, UAE, after winning a contract to turn the city’s Expo 2020 exhibition into an event accessible for all, thanks to support from the Britain's Department for International Trade (DIT). http://www.tradearabia.com/news/MEDIA_ 352299.html UAE-based Network International plans London IPO Arabian Business UAE-based payments solutions provider Network International has announced that it will publish a registration document and is considering proceeding with an initial public offering in London. https://www.arabianbusiness.com/ banking-finance/415425-uae-basednetwork-international-plans-london-ipo Hambro Perks: 'We want to be the first London VC in the Gulf' Arabian Business London-based venture capital (VC) firm Hambro Perks has set its sights on the Middle East and Africa. https://www.arabianbusiness.com/ banking-finance/415270-hambro-perkswe-want-to-be-the-first-london-vc-in-thegulf Another UK-based Recruiter Expands into Iraq Iraq Business News UK-based recruiter Samuel Knight International has reportedly announced plans to open a new office in Baghdad. http://www.iraqbusinessnews.com/2019/03/26/anotheruk-based-recruiter-expands-into-iraq/ Dubai’s Emirates to launch second daily flight to London Stansted Gulf Business Emirates today announced plans to launch a second daily flight from Dubai to London Stansted, starting from July 1. https://gulfbusiness.com/dubais-emirateslaunch-second-daily-flight-londonstansted/ UAE unit of UK's Interserve wins $12m Adnoc work Construction Week Online Interserve’s UAE subsidiary Adyard Group has been awarded $12.4m (AED45.5m) in a bulk of onshore and offshore service contracts from Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc). https://www.constructionweekonline.com/ projects-tenders/169899-uae-unit-of-ukscash-strapped-interserve-wins-12madnoc-contract

Dubai's Jumeirah plans revamp of flagship London hotel Arabian Business Dubai-based Jumeirah Group on Thursday announced its plans to refurbish the Jumeirah Carlton Tower, its flagship hotel in the heart of London’s fashionable Knightsbridge. https://www.arabianbusiness.com/travelhospitality/414946-dubais-jumeirah-plansrevamp-of-flagship-london-hotel Jersey and Bahrain building financial and digital ties Jersey Evening Post Jersey is forging closer ties with Bahrain, in particular in the areas of financial services and digital. https://jerseyeveningpost.com/news/ business/2019/03/06/jersey-and-bahrainbuilding-financial-and-digital-ties/ Britain to increase investments in Lebanon: official Xinhua A senior British government official said that Britain will continue to provide Lebanon with 200 million U.S. dollars yearly despite Britain's listing of Hezbollah as terrorist group, the National News Agency reported. http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/ 2019-03/07/c_137874044.htm Sidra acquires Sainsbury's property in Glasgow Trade Arabia Sidra Capital, a top Shari’ah-compliant financial services company in the region, has increased its UK presence by investing in a large commercial property leased to two leading British retailers at Great Western Retail Park, Glasgow. http://www.tradearabia.com/news/ RET_351887.html

UK Export Finance supports Siemens in Iraq Iraq Business News UK Export Finance (UKEF) will support a ¤30.2 million contract for the refurbishment of Al Mussaib power station in southern Iraq, the UK government has announced. http://www.iraq-businessnews.com/ 2019/02/25/uk-export-finance-supportssiemens-in-iraq/ Saudi investor named as mystery buyer of Evening Standard stake Arabian Business UK reports name Sultan Mohamed Abuljadayel as man behind deal for 30% stake in London newspaper group. https://www.arabianbusiness.com/media/ 414012-saudi-investor-named-asmystery-buyer-of-evening-standard-stake UK and Palestinian Authority sign trade continuity agreement Department for International Trade The agreement will see Palestinian businesses and consumers benefitting from continued trade after the UK leaves the European Union. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/ukand-palestinian-authority-sign-tradecontinuity-agreement Aberdeen drilling contractor KCA Deutag wins £85 million of contracts in Algeria, Oman and Russia Insider Aberdeen drilling and engineering contractor KCA Deutag (KCAD) has won new contracts and extensions to existing work worth around £85m across the Middle East, Russia and Africa. https://www.insider.co.uk/news/ aberdeen-drilling-contractorkca-deutagwins-14014490 British firms top foreign influx into Dubai Arabian Business The number of branches of foreign companies operating in Dubai has increased to 1,985 while the number of branches of GCC companies is 833, according to the Department of Economic Development (DED). https://www.arabianbusiness.com/politicseconomics/413226-british-firms-topforeign-influx-into-dubai

UK Company keen to build Solar Energy Plants in Iraq Iraq Business News Oil Minister Thamer Al-Ghadhban met on Monday with Richard Crow, the Director of Development for the Middle East and North Africa at Shire Oak International. http://www.iraq-businessnews.com/ 2019/03/05/uk-company-keen-to-buildsolar-energy-plants-in-iraq/

UK's Quiqup to raise £10m for Middle East expansion The National Quiqup, a London-based last-mile delivery services company, announced a £10 million strategic funding round to open a regional tech hub in Beirut and expand to two cities in the Arabian Gulf, with others to follow. https://www.thenational.ae/business/techn ology/uk-s-quiqup-to-raise-10m-formiddle-east-expansion-1.825310

UK-based Choudhrie family set to target the Saudi, UAE hotel sectors Arabian Business London-based C & C Alpha Group is targeting the holistic wellness sector in the Gulf. https://www.arabianbusiness.com/travelhospitality/414796-uk-based-choudhriefamily-set-to-target-the-saudi-uae-hotelsectors

BP invests more in Egypt than anywhere else for second year Reuters British oil major BP has invested more in Egypt than anywhere else in the world for two consecutive years, CEO Bob Dudley said on Monday. https://www.reuters.com/article/bpegypt/bp-invests-more-in-egypt-thananywhere-else-for-second-year-idUSC6N1 V300X

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ORGANIC FARMING IN MOROCCO

In December last year key industry figures gathered to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing organic farming at a conference in Rabat hosted by the Organic Entrepreneurs Association (Club des Entreprenurs Bio, CEBio), a branch of the General Confederation of Moroccan Enterprises.

HOW ORGANIC FARMING CAN HELP EXPAND MOROCCO’S AGRICULTURE SECTOR

Morocco is working to raise the profile of its organic farming industry both at home and abroad on the back of rising demand, with officials targeting the sector as a way of expanding value-added agricultural earnings.

The conference, which covered topics such as the organisation and regulation of the segment, marked the launch of a wider national campaign to increase awareness of organic agriculture. Speaking at the event, Slim Kabbaj, the CEO of CEBio, emphasised the importance of encouraging new companies to enter the market, establishing investment funds and educating consumers on the benefits of purchasing organic produce. As part of this campaign, CEBio will hold the country’s first-ever organic products expo in Casablanca in June. The fair will cover a range of produce, including food and food supplements, cosmetics, aromatic and floral derivatives, ecological products and textiles. Market expands on increased domestic demand Although there is significant demand for organic products outside Morocco, with a strong and well-established export market in Europe, the segment is starting to gain traction among domestic consumers. To meet this growing demand, the country’s first organic food and produce franchise was launched in September last year. Green Village initially opened three outlets in Casablanca and Rabat, with a fourth opened in Marrakech in mid-January. Although only 35% of the 4000 products stocked are domestically sourced, the company aims to increase this to 50% by 2023. It is currently working with more than 45 local organic producers to source tea, coffee, spices, flour, food supplements and cosmetics, and expects to add more products and suppliers in the future. The expanding domestic demand will help support the growth of the organic products market and encourage further investment in the segment, according to Anouar Alasri, director-general of global organic fertiliser firm Eléphant Vert.

“There is a growing interest among consumers for organic products in Morocco, following the positive trend in Europe,” Alasri told OBG. “In addition, retailers are now choosing to use local producers rather than relying solely on imports.” Producers look to maintain economic viability The growing interest in local organic producers could help overcome one of the major challenges faced by the segment: increasing output and utilising new technologies to maintain economic viability. While returns on organic products can be considerably higher than conventionally grown products, production costs and potential losses incurred by not using chemical pest control can eat into profits. As a result, a top goal for companies such as Eléphant Vert, which produces bio-fertiliser and bio-pesticide at two facilities in Morocco, is reducing production costs to make organic agriculture more sustainable and closer in price to mainstream farming. Organic farming central to Green Morocco Plan Raising the profile of organic farming is also an important objective of the Green Morocco Plan (Plan Maroc Vert, PMV), the government’s 12-year agricultural development strategy launched in 2008. The strategy aims to diversify the sector to reduce its dependence on cereal production, which currently accounts for around 75% of all land under cultivation while only generating 15% of the revenue. In order to achieve this goal, the plan has targeted a number of segments within the agriculture sector; however, organic produce has been identified as a particular focus due to the projected increase in output and revenue. In 2010 the total area under cultivation for organic produce was 380 ha, but this has increased to 8000 ha in 2019. While this shows considerable progress, there is still much to be done to reach the PMV’s goal of 40,000 ha under plantation.

By Oxford Business Group https://oxfordbusinessgroup.com


OMAN

NEW OMAN COMMERCIAL COMPANIES LAW Royal Decree 18/2019, the new Commercial Companies Law, comes into force in mid-April 2019 (New Law). By Trowers & Hamlins Photo: Ithraa In many respects the New Law, which comprises 312 articles compared to the 176 articles under Royal Decree 4/74, as amended (Old Law), is generally the same as the Old Law. However, there are some important new concepts and a much needed dose of modernity introduced under the New Law. Points to note in relation to an Oman Limited liability Company (LLC) include: • statutory pre-emptive rights on the transfer of LLC shares and the requirement for prior consent of all other shareholders in order for a shareholder to be involved in a competing business are carried over from the Old Law into the New Law; • a number of provisions are carried over from the Old Law into the New Law which in practice the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MCI) has not enforced or applied in recent years, such as (i) the requirement for the founders of a new LLC to establish an "under formation" bank account and deposit the initial capital preincorporation and (ii) the option for an LLC to buy back its shares, so it Trowers & Hamlins

remains to be seen how the MCI will apply these provisions of the New Law; and • the New Law provides for a maximum of 50 LLC shareholders, an increase from the maximum of 40 shareholders under the Old Law, which is particularly relevant for an LLC which has multiple individual shareholders who have a large number of legal heirs under Sharia law.

• a joint stock company must have an odd number of directors; and

Non LLC

• the New Law provides for a "sole proprietorship" as a registrable legal entity for an Omani individual.

Points to note include: • the minimum registered capital for a company converting to a public joint stock company (SAOG) has been reduced from RO 2,000,000 to RO 1,000,000, which is particularly relevant for a closed joint stock company (SAOC) which has an IPO obligation in the electricity or water sectors • Chapter Three of the New Law deals with the issuance of bonds and, unlike the Old Law, Sukuk;

The New Law provides for the Minister of Commerce and Industry and the Chairman of the Capital Market Authority to issue accompanying regulations within one year of the New Law coming into force. We will be reviewing the New Law in more detail and we will consult with the MCI for guidance on some ambiguities we have already identified over the coming weeks. We will circulate further updates as appropriate.

For more information please contact

Jamie Gibson Partner t +968 2468 2905 e jgibson@trowers.com

Thomas Wigley Partner t +968 2468 2928 e twigley@trowers.com

Salman Ahmed Partner t +968 2468 2912 e sahmed@trowers.com

Majid Al Toky Partner t +968 2468 2914 e maltoky@trowers.com

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SPORTS & MEDIA

Mr Bander Reda, ABCC Secretary General & CEO (centre), Mr Majed Garoub, President, Development & International Affairs, IASL, (right) and Mr Abdeslam El-Idrissi, ABCC Deputy Secretary General & CEO.

ABCC HOLDS MEETING ON THE SPORTS AND MEDIA SECTORS IN SAUDI ARABIA Discussions explore potential for private sector cooperation. The ABCC hosted a roundtable meeting on the development of the sports, media and entertainment sectors in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and benefiting from the experiences of developed countries in this regard. The meeting discussed the impact of the media and technological progress on the sports and leisure industries; investment in sports; the management of clubs, federations and sports cities; and the social responsibility of sports businesses. Discussions touched on partnership between the public and private sectors in sports and entertainment. Participants concluded that relevant government institutions should focus on developing necessary legislation, creating markets and job opportunities, and strategic planning for the medium and long terms.

They also noted the importance of supporting the private sector, especially small and medium enterprises, to work and invest in the sports, culture, hospitality and media sectors due to their great impact on development, creating jobs and supporting the economy. Participants praised the Saudi Vision 2030 reform plan, driven by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, which aims to diversify and develop the Kingdom’s economy at all levels, including increasing the number of tourists. The hosting of continental and international sporting events by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE, Egypt and Morocco has great economic value, they said. Participants stressed the importance of the human, cultural and legal dimensions of sports and entertainment programmes.

The ABCC’s Secretary General and CEO, Mr Bandar Reda, said the meeting was a major preparatory stage for the organization of an Arab-British conference on the sports, entertainment and hospitality industries as important economic sectors. He stressed the importance of strengthening relations between Arab countries and the UK by exchanging experiences in all fields of trade and the economy. He also stressed the importance of benefiting from the experiences of the UK as one of the world’s leading countries in the fields of sports, entertainment, tourism, services and economic management. The head of development and international relations at the International Association of Sports Law (IASL), Mr Majed Garoub, noted the importance of the huge investments opening up in Saudi Arabia. He urged British and international companies to participate in these projects, share their expertise, and partner with Saudi Arabian and international companies. Source: SPA


PALESTINE

CALL & CONTACT CENTRE SERVICES FROM PALESTINE Leading Palestinian company, REACH TELECOM, was in London recently to exhibit at the Call & Contact Centre Expo when it took place at the Excel Centre, London, on 27 and 28 March. This marked the first time that a Palestinian company had participated in the Expo. The company was taking part with the aim of discussing cooperation with UK businesses. Reach, which forms part of the PALTEL Group Company, provides the latest technologies and services in the contact centre domain. Reach offers high quality performance-driven BPO services through multi-communication channels with over 260 seats across two locations in Palestine and is equipped with state-of-art technology, employing over 800 employees. The company operates round-the-clock to serve a diverse mixture of international and regional clients with an average of 45,000 calls served a day. Reach's focused management, multilingual capabilities, ISO 27001 certification, and customer satisfaction, ranked them #1 in the world for "Best Outsourcing Partnership category" at the Contact Centre World Awards in 2011 where they were certified The Gold Medal Winner. More than a contact centre, Reach is a customer engagement specialist with a full range of business services. It is actively working with clients in the following industries: Utilities & Energy, Finance, Retail, Non-profit, Technology, Manufacturing, Government and E-commerce. Reach is the first and largest Palestinian contact centre for outsource telecommunications. Established in 2009, Reach offers the highest quality performance-driven services, through multi-communication channels. Reach uses the Cisco IPCC Technology system, allocated across 260 seats. Its multi-lingual agents are able to receive and make calls around the world, and are experts in a variety of industries. Who it Serves With years of experience and expertise, Reach serves a wide variety of industries, and is actively growing its call centre services.

Reach agents are trained and equipped with information to answer tough calls, or to know when to pass calls on to its expert level specialists. Reach has clients in the following industries: • Utilities & Energy • Finance • Retail • Non-profit • Technology • Manufacturing • Government • E-commerce • General Services • Consultancy. Reach is more than a contact centre; it is a customer engagement specialist who takes pride in the full range of its business services. It boasts innovative solutions for your business, saving clients time and money, and helping companies to grow and flourish. When a customer calls for assistance Reach will strive to make the most out of the conversation. “At Reach, we aim to engage with your customers, providing them support and peace of mind, while building a relationship with them on your behalf. We also gather and organize valuable market data, and feedback, and provide you with the tools you need to fully make use of our extensive, comprehensive services”, it says. Inbound Services Our services are tailored to your business. When you work with Reach, we partner with you, to develop and create a comprehensive, customized strategy to target and solve your challenges, and help you expand your business by providing a top notch customer service experience to your clients. Our inbound call centre services provide your customers with a single point of contact for all of their needs. Customers are given a single phone number which allows them to easily handle a variety of tasks, like making

a payment, registering a product, or obtaining product information. Customers will also be able to request real time support or make further inquiries. Through our research and experience, we have found that customers prefer the ease of having a single phone number to handle all of their questions and concerns. Having easy, straightforward customer service helps your company to create and build relationships with customers and encourages repeat customers and brand loyalty. Reach agents are specifically trained on your company's policies and procedures, and well equipped to handle incoming calls, or to direct the call to a specialist if further assistance is needed”. Not sure that this is what you need? Inbound services are often used for the following: • Customer Care • Basic Support level / Full Support level services • Order Processing • Technical Support • Inquiry Line. Outbound Services How can Reach help? Outbound call centre service is the exact opposite of its inbound services. Instead of having agents receiving customer calls, trained Reach agents make outbound calls to your customers. Outbound customer service strengthens your company's relationship with each customer by direct contact, raising the value of your product or service, and providing you with invaluable feedback. There are many other situations in which Reach’s outbound call centre services can work for your business, such as: • Telemarketing Services • Telesales Services • Data Cleaning • Lead Generation • Market Research • Surveys and Feedback. Social Media Management and Monitoring Keep tabs on performance and results: Having an active social media presence is more important now than it ever has been but keeping up with the demands of social media can be time consuming and tedious to say the least. With Reach's social media management and monitoring, our highly trained agents will use dedicated software to resolve issues, engage with users, mitigate risks and complaints, and more, protecting, sustaining, and growing your company's valuable community of loyal followers. Reach Us Email: sales@reach.ps Tel: +970 (2) 2945000 Located at Jerusalem Street, Al-Bireh, Palestine PO Box 4464 https://www.reach.ps/ An interview with Reach will appear in the forthcoming issue of Economic Focus.

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JORDAN PROJECTS

JORDAN PROJECTS READY FOR TENDERING Jordan National Broadband Network The project aims at ensuring inclusive digital development and using digital infrastructure to increase work efficiency, improve work mechanisms, and promote socio-economic development. Project Brief The Jordanian government has invested in around 7000 KM of fiber optical cable laid around the Kingdom that MoICT is allowing to be used by the private sector to create a whole sale operator through a PPP model which should: • Allow Broadband internet nationwide and reach the untapped market. • Increase the overall internet speed by providing fiber connectivity. • Allow the Mobile operators to use the already made investment to be their shared infra-structure to make their investment more efficient. • Provide additional services on top of the connectivity services on scale, where security, Sandboxing and other value added services. The government has conducted pre-feasibility study to with the support from the World Bank and IFC to design and tender a comprehensive broadband and digital platform as PublicPrivate Partnership (PPP) opportunity to manage, expand and operate the National Broadband Network (NBN). Status Update The existing network is currently a private network owned by GoJ and is designed for the connectivity of all Governmental entities to serve more than 4,000 governmental institutions and entities across all areas of Jordan. The GoJ is evaluating options to commercialize this spare capacity through a PPP to provide: • Fiber-based backhaul services to mobile and other operators;

• Fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) access in areas close to government nodes; • National and international connectivity services; and • Value-added-services, including cloud hosting, Sandboxing, database management, etc. The GoJ already invested about JD 120M in a 6500 km country-wide fiber-optic IP PMLS network. And committed to continue additional 500 KM. This Infra-structure will be allowed to be used by the private sector in a PPP model. IFC is supporting to identify potential investors Expected Procurement Plan by April 2019 As-Samra Wastewater Treatment Plant (third phase/second expansion) Project Brief The objective of the project is to expand the capacity of the As-Samra treatment plant from 365,000 CM to 465,000 CM per day (i.e. additional treatment capacity of 100,000 CM per day). Additionally, the project will establish a solar power plant with 10 MW capacity and will serve the adjacent unserved communities with wastewater networks. Status Update Fichtner Water & Transportation GmbH, supported by ECO Consult and IBLAW was assigned to perform a technical, financial, legal and environmental and social due diligence in order to assess the feasibility of the Project and determine all key risks to its successful implementation. Government contribution includes land use/existing infrastructure USAID is showing interest in supporting the financing of the project with ($50-100M) grant. Tendering Expected in June 2019

4th Expansion of Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company (JPRC) Project Brief The objective is to expand the Jordan Petroleum Refinery, since current production is not sufficient to meet the growing demand in the Jordanian market. The opportunity of converting the low value heavy fuel oil to more valuable products will allow the Refinery to cover most of the local demand, and this is the basis for the fourth expansion project of the Refinery. Status Update JPRC contracted the services of UOPHoneywell, its technical consultant and the licensor of all the existing units in the Refinery, to study the feasibility of the expansion project, arrive at the best configuration of the Refinery, and determine the best residue conversion technology. Tendering Expected by Q3 2019

Hisban Brackish Water Desalination 10-15 MCM/Year Project Brief The project consists of: • Drilling 10 wells (500 meters deep) in Hisban area to provide 20 MCM per year • Constructing a water treatment plant to treat the salinity (TDS) of the water • Constructing a water pipeline to deliver the water to pump station 2 of the Zara Main Water Conveyance System • Constructing a pipeline to transfer the brine to the Dead Sea; as well as a solar power plant with a capacity of 15 MW to reduce operational costs Status Update WAJ is conducting a test for the observation water wells to measure the yield potential of the wellfield and to understand more the quality of the wells. A feasibility study was prepared in 2011 to assess the project technically. Tendering Expected Start by June 2019

Aqaba-Amman National Water Conveyance Project (AAWDC Project) (National Project) Project Brief The objective of the project is to construct a water conveyance system to enhance the Kingdom’s national water security by producing potable water through desalination at the Gulf of Aqaba and transferring 150 MCM/year of additional water to Amman. These flows will be obtained from the identified two Project Components – Rum/ Disi Wellfield and a Reverse Osmosis Plant to the south of

From the opening address as delivered by His Majesty King Abdullah II of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. “I’ve watched our cities begin the vital work of renewal, with brilliant urban regeneration projects like Abdali in Amman. I’ve seen solar power and wind farms open the door to green energy solutions. And I’ve been to our five UNESCO World Heritage Sites, beacons of regional and global tourism. I’ve seen our fertile green farms and our blue-water seaport. And I’ve met with thousands of young Jordanians at work for our future —bilingual computer programmers who have led the region in communications and Arabic Internet content; young businesswomen and businessmen building domestic, regional and global markets; young scientists leading the way at the Middle East’s first particle accelerator; and many, many other young leaders and innovators. They are ready for you.”


JORDAN PROJECTS Aqaba the Red Sea. Phase I/ Component 1 of the Project will include the Rum/ Disi Wellfield systems with associated collection piping and conveyance transmission to Amman; while Phase II/ Component 2 will include the sea water intake, RO plant and conveyance to the wellfield area. This project is different from the Regional Project, however interfaces exist between both (Brine Disposal Facility). Status Update A Joint Venture was appointed to undertake the consultancy services for AAWDC Project, and two scenarios were investigated to meet the project objective to improve the current abstraction and expand the wellfield systems. The study indicates that the second scenario, which considers the abstraction of 50MCM/year (instead of 70MCM/year) from the wellfield systems and 100MCM/year from desalination which requires abstraction of 250MCM/year from the Red Sea is more realistic. Tendering Expected by Q4 2019

Al Ghabawi Wastewater Septic Tank Facility Project Project Brief The objective of this project is to construct a new septic tank facility to replace and relocate an existing facility currently co-located at Ain Ghazal Treatment plant (AGTP) due to odor, traffic and pollution and capacity concerns. The capacity will be 25,000 m3 per day. The proposed new replacement septic tank facility will be located at Al Ghabawi and is intended to serve the unsewered areas of Amman, Zarqa and the surrounding area. Status Update In 2018, Ankura Consulting was appointed by EBRD to undertake a study exploring the possibility of private sector participation for the new Tanker Discharge Station in Al Ghabawi (including updating 2009 feasibility work done by Engicon). Ankura will also be responsible for preparing the tender documents and preparation of the project cost and bankability study. As part of its scope, Ankura will be preparing the following documents: • An update of demand estimates to reflect current Wastewater demand/supply taking into account future sewage connection plans and carry out revenue analyses to pinpoint revenue streams and applicable tariffs • Undertaking of treated wastewater Demand study • Detailed feasibility study with a technical advisor to right scale the facility and costings Tendering Expected by September 2019

Non-Revenue Water (NRW) Reduction Project Project Brief The project aims to develop appropriate techniques to reduce physical and commercial water losses in Amman through the preparation and implementation of a performance based NRW contract under a hybrid financing modality including grants and Private investment. This approach will start in Amman Governorate but will be rolled out to other governorates. Status Update USAID and the World Bank (WB) submitted a proposal for a performance-based programme to reduce NRW in Amman with Miyahuna Water Company. The proposal has the following requirements: • Work with District Metered Areas (DMAs) which are hydraulically isolated sub-zones in a distribution network for which the water consumption is monitored by water meters. • The objective is to establish more DMAs in Amman with continuous minimum light flow of water. This approach has proven to reduce NRW to 9-13% in Tabarboor and Jabal Tareq (work done by FARA USAID project). The project will probably use the Hybrid financing model relying on grants and private partners such the profit sharing will be between the private entities and Miyahuna or WAJ. Tendering Expected to Start in the Q4 2019

King Hussein Bridge Crossing Terminal and Truckyard Project Brief The objective of the project is to expand a key land crossing for passengers and freight between Jordan and the West Bank. Status Update A Regional masterplan is being prepared in parallel with the feasibility study, The World Bank Infrastructure Development fund ($1.5 m) is co-funding the project development with the GoJ. IFC was chosen as the transaction advisor. Tendering Expected by Q3-Q4 2019

assist in the design and implementation of a PPP transaction, including undertaking due diligence and structuring, to identify and select a private sector participant to implement the project. The agreement with IFC and EBRD was signed in December 2018. 6000 students are expected to benefit from the pilot project. Status Update A project preparation and advisory services agreement has been signed with the IFC and EBRD to carry out the transaction advisory work for the project. The scope of the agreement includes designing, constructing, operating and maintaining the schools over a number of years before transferring the facilities to MoE. The MoE recently gave no objection on the TORs for the recruitment of the technical and legal consultants. Furthermore, IFC officially notified the MoE that funding has been raised to cover the costs of the consultants. Tendering Expected by Q4 2019

Marka Airport Project Brief The project consists of the expansion of Marka Civil Airport as well as the rehabilitation of its existing terminals. The project will serve regular low-cost flights, commercial flights in addition to charter flights and offer aviation training. The expansion will increase the airport’s capacity to host up to 2 million passengers in the future. Status Update The pre-feasibility and technical studies were done by the EBRD. Initial findings from the study have identified 2 options with CAPEX amounts of 167.5 million USD and 160 million USD. The first phase of the feasibility study for this project has been completed with the following assumptions: • Need for support from GoJ in the form of tax exemptions

Supporting the Jordan Schools Programme to Build 15 Schools using PPP Model

• Sorting out the issue of the existing military base at the airport as well as the challenge of land ownership

Project Brief The aim of the project is to support the Jordan Schools Program, which entails building up to 300 new schools over the next decade under a PPP scheme. The IFC in partnership with the EBRD will provide advisory services to GoJ to

The ministry began to address the relevant entities for those issues and asked for a phase 2 of the feasibility study to be completed. Tendering Expected by end of Q4 2019 Source: Jordan Project Pipeline Prospectus

From a speech as delivered by International Development Secretary, Penny Mordaunt MP. “Jordan is uniquely positioned to take advantage of emerging global trends and become a regional economic dynamo. It is a safe, stable haven, and a gateway to Asia and beyond. UK companies like Jaguar Land Rover have spotted the huge potential of Jordan, as the Chief Executive will tell us later. And Jordan’s burgeoning tech start-up scene is generating international buzz. 75% of the Arabic content on the internet is generated in Jordan, that’s extraordinary. 68% of Jordan’s population are below the age of 30 and full of aspiration. This is an enormous opportunity. A young, educated population with the potential to drive Jordan’s success. These are the engineers who will be part of high-end infrastructure. These are the innovators who will power tech start-ups. These are the young women and men ready to step into the booming professional services sector.” Republished with permission.

Full details of the conference proceedings and keynote speeches can be found on the UK government website: https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/jordan-growth-and-opportunity-the-london-initiative-2019

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CITY WEEK 2019

CITY WEEK 2019 20TH - 21ST MAY

Now in its ninth year, City Week is the premier gathering of the international financial services community. It brings together industry leaders and policy makers from around the globe to consider together the future of global financial markets and London, in particular. It consists of two days of cuttingedge conferences, workshops, social events and networking opportunities, with other satellite events being held later during the week.

r offer e b m e m e iv s ABCC exclu an exclusive bers receive m e m d e il ic m C ABCC UK do de: CITY9ABC o c t n u o c is d g discount, usin

20%

International delegates

Hear from 70+ prominent speakers such as:

C-suite executives from leading international financial organisations whose application is accepted, may attend the event free of charge

• Rt Hon Dr Liam Fox MP Secretary of State for International Trade • Katherine Garrett-Cox Chief Executive Officer Gulf International Bank UK • Luis de Guindos Vice-President European Central Bank • UK delegates

To apply for your place, please visit the City Week website at www.cityweekuk.com/2019 and register as an ‘International Delegate’.


Trade Fairs, Conferences & Business Events

TRADE FAIRS, CONFERENCES & BUSINESS EVENTS

Project Qatar Building, Construction, Electronics & Electrical Goods, Power & Renewable Energy industries 29 April – 1 May 2019 Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre (DECC), Doha, Qatar http://www.projectqatar.com/

AI Everything World’s largest and most empowering AI Summit for governments, businesses, social enterprises and the creative economy 30 April - 1 May 2019 Dubai World Trade Centre, UAE https://www.dwtc.com/en/events/Pages/2019/ AI-Everything

Blockchain for Business Summit 2019 Process Engineering Expo – EPEX

The Property Investor Show 2019

Pipes, Valves and Pumps 7-9 April 2019 Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre, Muscat, Oman http://www.epexgulf.com/

The UK’s largest — and longest running — exhibition of UK & International property 12-13 April 2019 Excel, London https://www.propertyinvestor.co.uk/page/home

Future Cities Show

GHEDEX - Global Higher Education Exhibition 2019

Propelling Globalisation through Digital Transformation 8-10 April 2019 Dubai World Trade Centre, Sheikh Zayed Road Dubai - United Arab Emirates http://www.futurecitiesshow.com/

Iraq – Financing a Modern Economy 10 April 2019 The Mansion House, London Iraq Britain Business Council https://www.iraqbritainbusiness.org/event/ spring-conference-at-the-mansionhouse?referrer=iraq-business-news

Kuwait International Agro Food Expo (KIAFE) 10-11 April 2019 Kuwait International Fair http://www.kuwait-food.com/2019/

Seamless Middle East 2019 The Future of Payments, Fintech, Identity, E-Commerce and Retail 10-11 April 2019 Trade Centre Arena & Sheikh Saeed Halls 1 - 3 Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre, UAE Terrapinn Middle East https://www.terrapinn.com/exhibition/ seamless-middle-east/index.stm

International Exhibition & Conference on Higher Education (IECHE) Transforming Saudi Universities in an Era of Change 10 - 13 April 2019 Riyadh International Convention & Exhibition Center, Riyadh, KSA http://www.ieche.com.sa/english/home

14-16 April 2019 Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre, Muscat, Oman https://ghedex.om/2019/en/contact/

Gulf Health Exhibition & Conference 14-16 Apr 2019 Kuwait International Fairground, Kuwait City, Kuwait https://www.gulfhealthexhibition.com/

Oman Downstream Exhibition & Conference 2019 15 - 17 April 2019 Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre, Muscat, Oman www.omanconvention.com

GEC 2019 Global Entrepreneurship Congress 15-18 April 2019 Manama, Bahrain www.gec.co

Cityscape Abu Dhabi 16-18 April Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), UAE www.cityscapeabudhabi.com

GETEX Spring 2019 Gulf Education & Training Exhibition 17 April 2019 Dubai World Trade Centre, UAE evensi.com

Egypt Property Show 18-21 April 2019 Dubai World Trade Centre, UAE https://www.dwtc.com/en/events/Pages/2019/ Egypt-Property-Show

9th Annual Gulf Education Conference and Exhibition 19-20 April 2019 University of Bahrain, Bahrain www.gulfeducation.co.uk

KSA Business & IT Resilience Summit

5th Erbil International Oil & Gas Exhibition

11 April 2019 Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh At Kingdom Center, Riyadh, KSA http://www.bcm-ksa.com/#about

22-25 April 2019 Erbil International Fair Ground, Erbil, Iraq Pyramids International https://www.erbiloilgas.com/

Real world use cases from industries and business leaders who are reaping the rewards of blockchain 12-13 June 2019 Excel, London https://tmt.knect365.com/blockchain-businesssummit/

Public Sector Solutions Expo 2019 25-26 June 2019 Excel, London https://pssxpo.co.uk/

Iraq Petroleum 2019 The Established Meeting for Iraq's Oil & Gas Industry 27–28 June 2019 Park Plaza London Riverbank, London, UK https://www.cwciraqpetroleum.com/

Supporting Kirkuk & Mosul Megaprojects Maximizing International Investment, Humanitarian Aid & Support for the Liberated Areas 29 June 2019 Park Plaza London Riverbank, London, UK https://www.cwckirkukmosulprojects.com/ contact-us/

Invitation

Cairo ICT Information Technology Fair 1st - 4th December 2019 Cairo, Egypt Interested companies are invited to the Cairo ICT Information Technology Fair on the 1st to 4th of December 2019, Cairo, Egypt. Cairo ICT reaches across regional markets, connects the industry and enables exhibitors to grow. Every year Cairo ICT draws attendees from Egypt and the region ready to do business. Cairo ICT is an annual event covering exhibition, conference, consumer and corporate activities organized by Trade Fairs International. It represents a platform for major launches from public and private sectors. In 21 years, Cairo ICT had more than 5,000 + exhibitors 98,000 + conferees and over 1 million visitors. It is the showcase for new technologies & trends. Cairo ICT is a networking event to meet clients from important emerging markets of the Region and take the opportunity to open new vistas for business. For further information regarding exhibitor participation rate see the event website on www. http://cairoict.com RSVP by email: sibrahim@cairoict.com

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IN PARTNERSHIP WITH

SUPPORTED BY

www.arabbritisheconomicsummit.com


ARAB BRITISH ECONOMIC SUMMIT 2019

The Arab British Economic Summit 2019 (ABES 2019) is an ABCC Event taking place on Wednesday 3rd July 2019 at the QEII Centre, London. ABES 2019 will highlight the subjects most relevant to UK and Arab business. The Summit will provide insights into key topics through panel discussions, keynote speakers and by providing opportunities for discussion with other attendees. It will oer invaluable opportunities for investors, exporters, experts, consultants and providers of services to engage in dialogue with project leaders and decision makers. ABES 2019 is a must-attend event for British and Arab business leaders, corporate aairs and public policy professionals and is an exceptional opportunity to network with people from all sectors.

FIND OUT MORE


CONTEMPORARY SCULPTURAL FURNITURE & ART Hownam Studio creates contemporary sculptural furniture and art in Scotland, using the world’s rarest materials and finest skills. The launch of the Black Collection will be at the D Contemporary Gallery in Mayfair London from April 30th - 4th May, with a RSVP private viewing being held on the evening of the April 30th.

The heritage of our Black collection extends back over millennia and includes some of the last remaining and historically significant pieces of Scottish walnut and ancient yew wood. We also work by commission; our artisans have created work for public, private and royal collections across the globe.

Visit www.hownamstudio.com or contact Hownam Studio Director Scott Horner at scott@hownamstudio.com or call +44(0) 7538 219 112

To attend the private viewing please contact D Contemporary Gallery Director Amina Mona at am@dcontemporary.com or call +44 (0) 207 824 1920

Profile for Benham Publishing Limited

ABCC e-Bulletin No41 April 19  

Arab British Chamber of Commerce e-Bulletin

ABCC e-Bulletin No41 April 19  

Arab British Chamber of Commerce e-Bulletin

Profile for benham