Economics and Policy
Security concerns and travel restrictions from Gulf Arab states have driven Lebanese tourist arrivals down by 27 percent during the small Mediterranean state’s peak season, Lebanon’s caretaker tourism minister said.
Elsewhere in Lebanon, declining consumer and business confidence will negatively impact the profitability of the country's banks in the second half of 2013.
Iran has taken delivery of several new oil tankers in recent weeks as it relies more on its own fleet capacity to help sustain crude export shipments in the face of western sanctions.
The US is planning $2.7 billion in new sales to Iraq of air defense and communications systems.
Companies and Strategies
Standard Chartered's net profits fell during the first half of the year as it wrote down its South Korea unit by US$1 billion, but income jumped at its UAE business as bad debts eased and the local economy recovered.