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Thursday, 19 February 2015

Dubai case victim Marcus Lee has his say | The Australian

Dubai case victim Marcus Lee has his say | The Australian:



"AN Australian property executive who was trapped in Dubai for four years fighting discredited fraud claims has won the right to respond to attacks on him by MP and now Assistant Defence Minister Stuart Robert.



Marcus Lee, who spent nine months in prison after a property deal involving Dubai authorities and Queensland developer Sunland turned sour, has won the right to confirm his acquittal of all charges to the federal parliament.



In a comparatively rare development, parliament’s privileges committee — chaired by Victorian Liberal MP Russell Broadbent — granted Mr Lee leave to make a statement to the House of Representatives detailing his acquittal."



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UPDATE 2-MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia down, Egypt firms as oil slides | Reuters

UPDATE 2-MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia down, Egypt firms as oil slides | Reuters:



"Saudi Arabia's stock market fell in early trade on Thursday after oil prices tumbled, while Egypt edged up as investors made bets ahead of fourth-quarter earnings reports.



Brent oil traded below $59 per barrel as U.S. crude inventories were expected to hit record highs, while analysts said a possible rise in Saudi Arabia's output could stoke oversupply built up in the past few months.



The main Saudi stock index fell 1.3 percent as Saudi Basic Industries, the kingdom's top petrochemicals producer, dropped 3.6 percent."



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A staggered approach to reviving cancelled projects | GulfNews.com

A staggered approach to reviving cancelled projects | GulfNews.com:



"Amidst the flurry of announcements by Rera (Real Estate Regulatory Agency) updating the list of cancelled projects, the question on every vested party’s mind was: When will the monies be finally recovered?



Ever since the freehold bust in 2008, a number of projects have stalled, and Rera and the Dubai Land Department have worked with developers and investors to revive a number of these successfully. However, their numbers are still considerable and investor funds remain stuck in them. The process of recovery remains a long winded one and investors, more likely than not, will have to wait further as the projects await liquidation.



Given the construction boom the city is undergoing at present, looking abroad may offer some solutions as to expedite the process, as well as allowing for these projects to be revived."



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Saudi Arabia’s Oil Exports Fell in 2014 in ‘Tough Year’ - Bloomberg Business

Saudi Arabia’s Oil Exports Fell in 2014 in ‘Tough Year’ - Bloomberg Business:



"Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest crude exporter, shipped 5.7 percent less oil overseas last year led by a decline in China, its biggest customer in Asia, in a sign the price rout did little to revive demand.



Shipments averaged 7.11 million barrels a day, down from an 11-year high of 7.54 million barrels a day in 2013 and the lowest in three years, according to data from the Joint Organisations Data Initiative. In December, exports dropped 5 percent from November to 6.9 million barrels a day.



Crude prices fell almost 50 percent last year as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries sought to defend market share amid a U.S. shale boom and a global glut estimated by Qatar and United Arab Emirates at 2 million barrels a day. Saudi Arabia will maintain output, Oil Minister Ali Al-Naimi said in December, according to the state-run Saudi Press Agency."



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Delta CEO’s 9/11 Comment on Open Skies Riles Gulf Carrier Chiefs - Bloomberg Business

Delta CEO’s 9/11 Comment on Open Skies Riles Gulf Carrier Chiefs - Bloomberg Business:



"Delta Air Lines Inc. triggered a backlash from Persian Gulf carriers after Chief Executive Officer Richard Anderson cited the Sept. 11 terrorists as part of his argument in a commercial dispute.



“I’m a little bit concerned that Mr. Anderson crossed the line in some of the statements he made with regard to what went on with regard to 9/11,” President Tim Clark of Dubai-based Emirates Airline told CNN on Wednesday. “And I know that has caused great offense in this part of the world, and I’m sure will be dealt with at the governmental and state level.”



Clark’s comeback added to a feud between Anderson and the gulf’s major airlines -- Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways PJSC. Anderson told CNN on Monday that he saw a “great irony” in airlines from the Arabian Peninsula criticizing U.S. aid to domestic carriers after the 2001 attacks since many of the hijackers hailed from the region."



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Dubai Property Set to Tumble as Currency Adds to Woes - Bloomberg Business

Dubai Property Set to Tumble as Currency Adds to Woes - Bloomberg Business:



"Liam Jeffrey was surprised when a couple selling an apartment on Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah artificial island asked the property broker to cut the price by 10 percent just three weeks after they put it on the market.



“They found a property they wanted to buy in London and when they send the money back to the U.K., they make up that difference on the exchange rate alone,” said the 26-year-old broker at Smith & Ken. “They’re not losing anything and that wasn’t the case a few months ago.”



Buyers from European countries, among the most active in Dubai, are spending less because their currencies have declined against the dirham, which is pegged to the dollar. Falling oil prices and a tax on foreign property held by Indians are also pushing down home values in the emirate. A year ago, Dubai regulators took steps to cool a market where home values had been climbing at the fastest pace in the world."



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