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Bahrain parliament approves VAT agreement

Bahrain is set to become the third Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to implement the unified agreement on Value Added Tax (VAT) on goods and services. On Sunday, the kingdom’s bicameral parliament, holding an extraordinary session upon a royal order issued last week, approved VAT at the rate of five per …

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Kuwait stops crude oil shipping for first time since first Gulf War

Kuwait has all but stopped shipping crude to the US for the first time since the aftermath of Saddam Hussain’s invasion in 1990, eroding an economic link between Washington and the Arab state. The halt is the latest sign that booming demand for oil in Asia, particularly as the US …

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Egypt plans foray into Asia bond market

Egyptian officials will tour Asia later this year to test interest in the country’s debt, part of government efforts to expand borrowing options as volatility roils emerging markets, Finance Minister Mohammad Maait said. Egypt has raised the possibility of issuing Samurai or Panda bonds in the past, but the planned …

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Egypt sentences hundreds over 2013 pro-Morsi protests

Egypt has delivered verdicts for more than 700 people over a pro-Muslim Brotherhood sit-in after President Mohammed Morsi was ousted in 2013. The court confirmed 75 people’s death sentences and life imprisonment for 47 others, including Islamic leaders. Rights group Amnesty International has called the trial “grossly unfair” and a …

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Kuwait suspends Wataniya Airways’ permit

Kuwaiti aviation authorities have suspended the permit of Kuwait-based carrier Wataniya Airways for three months. Minister of State for Housing Affairs and Minister of State for Services’ Affairs Dr Jenan Boushehri said the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) took the 90-day suspension decision effective as of September 6 after …

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400 inmates escape after Libya prison riot

Some 400 detainees escaped after a riot on Sunday at a prison in the southern suburbs of the Libyan capital Tripoli, theatre of a week of deadly battles, the police said. “The detainees were able to force open the doors and leave” as fighting between rival militias raged near the …

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The audio revolution will not be televised

Podcasts and audibooks have caught fire in recent years, offering publishers a brand new way to access their audiences. Despite scepticism from some that a return to what is essentially radio would ever be possible following the arrival of the television, and later the internet, the smartphone has enabled people …

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10 Inspirational Arab Proverbs

Proverbs are a special way to gain insight into one’s culture. Proverbs, through the power of anecdotal messages and meanings, allow for various cultures and societies to share a common idea, While they showcase a universal cultural message, they also highlight the unique nature of various cultures and societies. Proverbs are …

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Moody’s downgrades Bahrain to B2

Moody’s has downgraded the Bahrain government’s long-term issuer ratings to B2 from B1, and maintained its negative outlook. The ratings firm said on Thursday evening that the new rating assumes Gulf Cooperation Council members will provide some financial support to Bahrain, but the negative outlook reflects the risk that the …

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Egypt inaugurates several power generation plants

Egypt has inaugurated several power generation projects, including three power plants built by the German conglomerate Siemens. Tuesday’s ceremony was attended by President Abdul Fattah Al Sissi, and government ministers and officials. The three combined-cycle power plants built by Siemens in Kafr Al Shaikh and Beni Suef provinces and also …

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Oman government revenue grows by 23.2%

The Oman government’s revenue rose by 23.2 per cent to 4,091.9 million riyals (Dh39.08 billion) for the first five months of 2018, over the same period of last year, thanks to a major recovery in oil prices. As a result of a growth in oil prices, the net oil revenue …

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The Trump Putin Summit – Quick Take

For nearly 80 years the US and Russia (or the former Soviet Union) have held summits.  In each case, it has been a forum for domestic political debate.  The president’s supporters always say the summit took solid steps towards peace and understanding, even while the president remained forceful and unyielding.  …

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IMF Urges Egypt to Watch Inflation After New Subsidy Cuts

The International Monetary Fund urged Egypt to maintain a tight monetary policy as a new round of subsidy cuts rekindled inflation worries. The Washington-based lender praised Egypt’s implementation of economic reforms as “instrumental in achieving macroeconomic stabilization, with external and fiscal deficits narrowing, inflation and unemployment declining, and growth accelerating.” At the same …

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