The Lebanese Economic Committees, a leading private sector alliance, came out Tuesday against bringing down the government in the streets, urging calm to safeguard the economy from repercussions of political and security turmoil.
“Despite the enormity of the loss in the killing of Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan, we condemn road blocks and the attempt to storm the Grand Serail,” committees head Adnan Kassar said.
“We call on all political sides to endorse a moderate political discourse to help save what is left of the Lebanese economy,” he added at a news conference.
Jordan's King Abdullah on Tuesday called on the country's Islamist opposition to end a boycott of forthcoming parliamentary elections he said would usher in a new era of political reforms.
In an address to a large gathering of opposition and tribal figures at the royal palace, the monarch said the opposition could achieve a wider say in the running of the country by participating in parliamentary elections due on Jan. 23.
"My message to you and to all the political forces if you want to change Jordan for the better, there is an opportunity through the coming elections and through the new parliament," the monarch told an audience of several thousand people from across the political spectrum.
OPEC remains in a stalemate over selecting its next secretary general, delegates to the producer group said after a two-day meeting, due to rivalry between four member-countries over its top administrative post.
A panel of officials met at the Vienna headquarters of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries on Monday and Tuesday, to advise OPEC oil ministers on who should succeed Abdullah al-Badri, whose term in the job ends in December.
"No progress was made on a single name recommendation," one of the delegates said, declining to be identified as the talks are confidential. "Now it is up to the ministers."
A senior Iraqi oil official says shipments from the country's main oil export terminals on the Persian Gulf have restarted after being halted earlier in the week due to bad weather.
Deputy Oil Minister Ahmed al-Shamaa confirmed to The Associated Press on Tuesday that exports had resumed from the southern oil terminals, but he didn't say how much oil was being shipped.
Shipments were stopped Sunday because of bad weather.
Kuwait's government has given final approval to settlement with Iraq to end a standoff over Gulf-War-era debts and lift restrictions on Iraqi Airways flying to destinations in the West, Iraq's government said on Tuesday.
The airline row was part of a broader dispute over billions of dollars in reparations dating back to Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait in 1990-1991 when his forces seized aircraft and parts.
Iraq and Kuwait in March reached an agreement under which Iraq will pay Kuwait $300m in cash and invest $200m in a joint airline venture in return for Kuwait lifting legal actions against Iraqi Airways.
Saudi Arabia is to spend around US$400m on development projects at holy shrines on the outskirts of Makkah, the official Saudi News Agency reported.
The report said the investment projects would include linking the city of Mina with Jamarat in Al-Azizia, the expansion of the western parts of the holy site of Jamarat, the transfer of the camel and cattle slaughter houses to Al-Sharayea in Mina and improvements to the water circulation in Muzdalifah and Arafat.
The work was announced by Dr Sahal Al-Sabban, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Hajj for Transport and Projects in the holy places and came as millions of pilgrims began arriving this week in Makkah for Islam's annual hajj pilgrimage, which starts on Wednesday.
Etisalat, the United Arab Emirates’ number one telecom operator, posted a 28 per cent rise in third-quarter profit, beating analysts’ estimates after the former monopoly booked gains from a stake sale in Indonesia.
The firm, which operates in 15 countries across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, made a net profit of Dhs2.21 billion ($602 million) in the three months to September 30, up from Dhs1.72 billion in the year-earlier period.
This included net profit of Dhs430 million from selling a 9.1 per cent stake in Indonesia’s PT XL Axiata that cut Etisalat’s holding to 4.2 per cent.
Hotels in the UAE are eyeing 100 percent occupancy over Eid Al-Adha, with many already fully booked.
Eid Al-Adha will begin on Thursday October 25 – Arafat Waqfa Day, according to the UAE Ministry of Labour, with work officially resuming on Sunday October 28 for the private sector and Monday October 29 for public-sector employees.
“We will witness a very high occupancy. All hotels in the city will be fully booked up to 100 percent occupancy,” Metropolitan Deira Hotel Dubai general manager Khalid Saeed said, adding that the biggest business boost would come from the GCC, especially Saudi Arabia.