(MENAFN) The UN's World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) released data showing that the UAE ranked first in the Middle East in terms of total tourism receipts in 2012, reported Arabian Business. The country, which also ranked 31st globally, recorded USD10 billion worth of tourism receipts in the year. On the global scale, Saudi Arabia ranked 35th, with total receipts of USD7.4 billion. According to the UNWTO, the US was the number one globally, followed by Spain, France, China, and Italy.
(MENAFN) The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency stated that it has notified the Congress about a possible USD210 million arms deal with both Oman and Qatar, reported Arabian Business. The two Gulf governments are most likely to by two Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures (LAIRCM) systems. The deal will include all the parts, trainings, tools, and repairs, according to the Agency statement. It's worth noting that the LAIRCM is an anti-missile system that can protect military planes.
(MENAFN) Bahrain's minister of trade and industry, Hassan Fakhru, stated that in 2011, the Gulf Cooperation Council's (GCC) gross domestic product (GDP) stood at around USD1.4 trillion, reported Emirates 24/7. Fakhru added that the figure ranked the GCC as the 13th largest economy worldwide in the year. He also said that the region's trade with other countries reached almost USD1.2 trillion, of which exports accounted for nearly USD811 billion and imports for USD379 billion, bringing a surplus of USD432 billion. As for the GCC's GDP per capita, the minister said that it stood at USD30,000. It is worth noting that the bloc's total population grew to 45 million at the end of 2011 from 14 million when the GCC was formed in 1981.
(MENAFN) Qatar Holding is said to be eying an investment in Versace, the famous Italian fashion house, reported Reuters citing Italian daily Il Sole 24 Ore. According to the report, Qatar Holding, the investment vehicle of the rich GCC state, is considering the investment along with FSI, an Italian state-controlled investment fund that inked a joint venture deal in November with the Qatari company to launch investments in Italian firms. The Italian daily added that owners of Versace had not taken a decision yet to sell a minority stake; although CEO Gian Giacomo Ferraris told Reuters in April that the fashion house may consider opening the company to foreign investors to help finance expansion in overseas markets. It is worth noting that other companies are also interested in acquiring a stake in Versace besides Qatar and FSI, according to Il Sole 24 Ore.
(MENAFN) Deloitte stated that the UAE topped the GCC construction market last year, reported Arabian Business. The value of construction contracts awarded in the country stood at USD16.2 billion, which is 4 percent higher than Saudi Arabia. For the first time since 2008, Saudi Arabia came second on the list. It's worth mentioning that Qatar was number three on the list with USD10.4 billion, followed by Kuwait with USD8 billion.
(MENAFN) The National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company's (NIORDC) director, Alireza Zeighami, announced that his country will increase its exports of diesel to Iraq to around 5 million liters per day, reported Reuters. Zeighami added that during the current Iranian year, the country's output of diesel is expected to reach 100 million liters per day, noting that after meeting domestic demand, there would be at least 3 million extra to ship to its neighbor. In March, Iran's Oil Minister inked an agreement to export 2 million liters per day of diesel to Baghdad. It is worth noting that mutual trade between Iraq and Iran amounted to nearly USD12 billion.
(MENAFN) Dubai Aviation City Corporation's (DACC) COO, Rashid Bu Qara'a, stated that investments in Dubai World Central (DWC) have reached USD6.66 billion until now, reported Gulf News. Qara'a added that another USD136 million is being invested by Emirates Airline in the USD32.66 billion facility to develop its pilot and cabin crew training facility. He said that 37 large logistics service providers have already moved their operations at the Logistics District of the DWC. It is worth noting that DACC is the developer of the DWC.