Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 34 n° 349

Posts Tagged ‘middle east’

Peace in the Middle East: debate with Palestinian PM Mohammad Shtayyeh

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 12 ottobre 2020

Bruxelles Monday, 12 October, at 14:30 CET. Remote via room 2Q2 in the European Parliament’s Antall building in Brussels.Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs will hold a debate with Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh. Mr Shtayyeh has served as Prime Minister of the State of Palestine since April 2019 and is a member of the political party Fatah. He will connect remotely from Ramallah to the upcoming meeting. Up for discussion will be, among other topics, the state of play regarding the Middle East Peace Process and the recent announcement that elections may be held in Palestine in the next six months. President Mahmoud Abbas’ request for an international peace conference during the UN General Assembly will also likely be discussed.

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High inflation continues to affect African pay packets, uncertainty in Middle East continues

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 15 novembre 2019

Despite inflation forecasted to increase 10 percent in 2020, employers in Egypt are expected to offer employees a real salary increase of 2.8 percent. This follows a year in which wages shrunk 0.7 percent in 2019.Meanwhile, in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia saw the biggest real increase in salaries in 2019 but is expected to plummet in the rankings in 2020. Real salary increases are forecast to reach 2.4% on average, a long way short of the 5.8% increase that was seen in 2019.“Inflation has risen significantly throughout the Middle East as the stable commodity prices boost domestic demand. This has seen Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar all drop out of the global top ten as rising inflation cuts into the real salaries of workers in the region,” explained Kilfedder.(font: ECA International

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AM Best To Host Annual Middle East Regional Insurance Market Briefings in Muscat and Dubai

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 3 ottobre 2019

AM Best will host two Insurance Market Briefings for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with the first event to be held at the Sheraton Oman Hotel on Wednesday, 2 October 2019, in Muscat, Oman. A second market briefing will follow in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Monday, 7 October 2019, at the Hotel Address Dubai Mall. The briefings will be led by Nick Charteris-Black, managing director, market development—EMEA, and Greg Carter, managing director, analytics—EMEA & AP. Asad Irshad, principal and consulting actuary, Milliman, is to be the guest presenter at the event in Muscat, while Christos Adamantiadis, chief executive officer, Marsh Middle East and Africa, will deliver the guest presentation in Dubai. Each event will conclude with a networking lunch for attendees to connect with AM Best and other industry professionals.
AM Best publishes ratings on thousands of insurers and reinsurers in more than 90 countries worldwide, including ratings on a number of regional insurers and reinsurers across the MENA insurance markets. More information about Best’s Credit Ratings, AM Best’s rating methodology and the rating process can be found at

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Bango Expands Resale Across Middle East, Asia and Beyond

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 26 luglio 2019

Bango (AIM: BGO), the mobile commerce company, has opened-up a 2 billion subscriber market opportunity by launching new OTT partnerships that reach subscribers across pre-paid mobile, fixed line, broadband and cable TV platforms.The new partnerships enable subscribers in Spain, UAE, India, Singapore, Philippines and New Zealand to enjoy popular streaming media subscription services as part of their existing plans, enabled by Bango Resale technology. These launches, in the first half of 2019, come hot on the trail of Bango Resale launches in the UK, Brazil and USA.“Bango Resale technology supports a wide range of different offers through multiple channels, enabling leading OTT partners to easily open-up new markets in addition to mobile, acquiring customers quickly and at very low cost”, commented Anil Malhotra, Chief Marketing Officer at Bango. “Providing bundled media packages acquires millions of new customers, creating valuable, recurring revenue streams for OTT players, and at the same time provides all-important market differentiation and loyalty for the channel partners that promote the bundles.”

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Mutual respect is crucial to the peaceful co-existence of religions in the Middle East

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 20 dicembre 2018

The Conference of European Churches and Cumberland Lodge held a conference titled “Towards Peaceful co-existence in the Middle East: challenges and opportunities,” which took place at Cumberland Lodge, Windsor Great Park, United Kingdom, and was co-hosted by the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland. Participants from a broad range of Middle Eastern and European Churches discussed issues such as religious and cultural diversity. A central issue was how states treat people of different religious affiliation, respecting the rights of every person, including their Freedom of Religion or Belief. They emphasised that states need to implement equal status for and treatment of all its citizens, instead of continuing with a system of a majority granting certain minority rights. In order to achieve this, a principle of “moderate secularism” – that is moving towards secular laws and state institutions, not society – might be a way forward, establishing state neutrality towards people and communities of all religions and beliefs.The President of CEC, Rev. Christian Krieger, stated: “We are aware that in Europe, when we talk about justice for minorities, we also look for everyone to have the status of equal citizens. This point, as our partners in the Middle East have stressed, requires more attention and clarification.” The conference also addressed other concrete challenges and opportunities in countries such as Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, and Syria. Participants expressed a need for churches to continue a peaceful and constructive dialogue amongst themselves and with other faiths. In two days, they reflected on a variety of issues relevant to dialogue, such as language differences and different understandings and concepts.The contribution of a living Christian presence in the Middle East is important to counter religious hatred, violence and terrorism. Participants stressed that education is one of the key elements in overcoming prejudices. The need to become advocates for each other’s human rights remains a common task for all Christians and people of good will. While the notion of tolerance has different interpretations, an agreement could be reached that people should try to move from mere tolerance to respect, valuing the contribution of everybody.In his greetings, His Beatitude John X Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, read by Metropolitan Silwan, said, “By the grace of God, we, as Christians, have been living in the East for two thousand years, and we have coexisted with our Muslim brothers and sisters for many centuries. The actions happening today in the East, from intimidation to kidnapping and desacralizing, affects both Muslims and Christians, sheikhs, priests and bishops alike. Differences of religion do not separate us, but rather enrich us in many areas of life.” The Conference of European Churches will continue its advocacy work to support the needs of Churches in the Middle East, including interfaith dialogue.

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Registration is Open for 2nd Solar Decathlon Middle East in 2020

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 2 Maggio 2018

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has announced that registration is now open for the second Solar Decathlon Middle East (SDME). SDME was created through an agreement between Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, DEWA, and US Department of Energy. Dubai will host the first two rounds of SDME in November 2018, and in 2020. Prizes for the two rounds total over AED20 million (USD5.45 million).The announcement was made at the Second International Workshop, which DEWA organised for the 21 teams from 36 universities in 15 countries participating in the first competition.Shortlisted team for the first SDME include Team Spirit of the Union from Zayed University and the Petroleum Institute; Team Know-Howse from University of Sharjah, UAE and University of Ferrara, Italy; Team ORA from Heriot-Watt University in Dubai; Team NYUAD from New York University Abu Dhabi; Team Jeel from the American University in Dubai; Team Al Bayt Al Kamel from the American University of Ras Al Khaimah; Team UOW from University of Wollongong-Australia and University of Wollongong Dubai, and Team Aqua Green from Ajman University from the UAE. It also includes Team KSU from King Saud University in Saudi Arabia; Team SoLLite Salalah from Dhofar University in Oman; Team BaityKool from the University of Bordeaux, France, Amity University in the UAE, and An-Najah National University from Palestine; Team EFdeN from Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism, University Politehnica of Bucharest, and Technical University of Civil Engineering Bucharest, Romania and Birla Institute of Technology and Science Pilani Dubai Campus, UAE; Team FutureHAUS from Virginia Tech University in the USA; Team HAAB from University of Chieti-Pescara Gabriele D’Annunzio University of Pisa, and University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli in Italy; Team Sapienza from Sapienza University of Rome, Italy; Team VIRTUe from Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands; Team TDIS from the National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan; Team MizanHome from Universiti Teknologi and Universiti Sains Islam in Malaysia; Team Twist Box from the University of Belgrade, Serbia; Team Jordan from the University of Jordan, and Team Bgreen from the National University of Sciences and Technology in Pakistan.

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Middle East Now Festival di Firenze

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 1 aprile 2018

Il 10 aprile, Wajib – Invito al matrimonio. Ambientato nella comunità cristiana di Nazareth, in Palestina, il film – diretto dalla pluripremiata regista palestinese di When I saw you, Annemarie Jacir, e interpretato da due straordinari attori, Mohammed e Saleh Bakri, padre e figlio sullo schermo e nella vita – evidenzia le criticità e le difficoltà del vivere in una terra martoriata, in cui pragmatismo e idealismo non sempre riescono a convivere. Il titolo Wajib, che tradotto in italiano significa “dovere”, fa riferimento alla tradizione palestinese secondo la quale il padre e i fratelli della sposa hanno il dovere sociale di consegnare personalmente gli inviti di matrimonio. Un gesto solenne e culturalmente importante che dà vita a un road-movie profondo ed emozionante, che esplora la complessità del rapporto padre-figlio nel confronto tra liberà e dovere, modernità e tradizione.Il film, che ha ottenuto anche il Premio ISPEC (Istituto di Storia e Filosofia del Pensiero Contemporaneo) al Festival di Locarno 2017, sarà distribuito da Satine Film a partire dal 19 aprile 2018.
Abu Shadi ha 65 anni e vive a Nazareth, in Palestina. Di professione insegnante, molto stimato, Abu Shadi ha cresciuto da solo i due figli dopo l’abbandono della moglie e la sua fuga in America con un altro uomo, e ora si appresta a vivere quello che è forse il giorno più bello della sua vita: il matrimonio della figlia Amal. Per l’occasione e per aiutarlo nei preparativi, è tornato nella città natale anche Shadi, l’altro figlio che ormai da tempo vive in Italia, dove lavora come architetto. Pur essendo ormai avvezzo agli usi occidentali e molto critico verso quanto accade nella regione, Shadi non si è sottratto al rispetto della locale consuetudine palestinese che prevede il “Wajib”, il “dovere” da parte dei familiari, di consegnare personalmente le partecipazioni di nozze, come forma di rispetto verso gli invitati. Di casa in casa, con visite a familiari, amici o anche semplicemente vicini, Shadi e Abu Shadi si apprestano a trascorrere insieme un’intensa giornata on the road dedicata a incontri e consegne così come vuole la tradizione. Le porte di cristiani, mulsulmani e anche atei si aprono al loro arrivo. Ma se al cospetto degli invitati padre e figlio riescono a calarsi nel ruolo che tutti da loro si aspettano, nei momenti in cui sono soli, la diversa visione della vita e dei valori che ormai ampiamente li separa affiora man mano in superficie costringendoli a un inevitabile confronto.

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Avanti Communications and Isotropic Systems to Develop Self-Installing Terminal to Expand Markets in UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 16 marzo 2018

Avanti Communications Group plc (“Avanti”), a leading satellite operator, providing Ka-band satellite data communications services across the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, has formed a partnership Isotropic Systems, the next-generation satellite terminal provider, with to develop self-installing, all electronic scanning terminals.The partnership signals Avanti’s confidence that the transformational optical technology will open new addressable markets with disruptive pricing and enhance a range of mobility applications that service providers can flexibly deliver to consumer, government and enterprise users.
Isotropic Systems will customise the terminals specifically to Avanti’s requirements with a special focus on seamless multi-beam tracking, market-leading instantaneous bandwidth as well as significantly lower pricing. The innovative technology will also provide Avanti with the capability to deliver fixed broadband services that consume 90 percent less power with extremely high performance and reliability. A working prototype is expected in early 2019 and full scale production by mid 2020.Graham Peters, Managing Director of Government Solutions, Avanti Communications, said: “We are pleased to partner with Isotropic Systems to lead our industry in creating and addressing new market opportunities based on this disruptive and innovative technology. Avanti is focused on delivering cost-effective high-throughput connectivity to serve our customers across EMEA.” “Demand for broadband increases each day worldwide, and satellite operators such as Avanti, continue to build out their ecosystem to provide HTS services to underserved markets,” said John Finney, founder and CEO of Isotropic Systems. “Our unique technical capabilities and disruptive pricing enable Avanti to unlock the latent demand for HTS capacity by segments that require a significantly lower barrier to entry in terms of the CAPEX but without compromising on expected performance. Having gained the confidence of a long-standing satellite operator reinforces our vision of satisfying the demand for satellite data, mobility and broadband services by significantly minimizing the cost compared to existing ground terminals and making them much simpler to deploy.”

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Grandstream and ABSIS Middle East Announce Partnership

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 8 marzo 2018

Grandstream Networks, Inc., connecting the world since 2002 with award-winning SIP unified communication solutions, and ASBIS Group, one of the leading distributors of information and communications technology solutions in the Middle East, today announced a new partnership. Under this partnership, Grandstream’s full portfolio of voice, video, data, mobility and networking solutions are now available through ABSIS Group. System integrators, installers and resellers throughout the Middle East can now purchase Grandstream’s entire award-winning product portfolio directly from ABSIS Group.Grandstream believes that high-end communication technology should be easy and attainable for business of all sizes and designs solutions to enable this. The company, founded in 2002, was one of the world’s original manufacturers of SIP solutions and now offers a one-stop-shop for all voice, video, data, mobility and networking needs – making ABSIS and Grandstream a great fit. Grandstream, a top 4 manufacturer of VoIP endpoints, also offers a full portfolio of award-winning products including video conferencing, WiFi, IP PBXs, VoIP gateways, analog telephone adaptors, door access systems and more. Their new GWN series of WiFi APs and Routers, featuring built-in controller technology, have been making waves throughout the networking industry. Grandstream’s products have been recognized throughout the world for their quality, reliability and innovation.ABSIS Group is an expert in information and communications technology distribution. They distribute top-quality communications and networking equipment to retail, corporate, and small-to-medium business clients, as well as complete IT solutions to enterprises and system integrators. ABSIS works with some of the most prominent global brands and offers almost 30 years of expertise, being founded in 1990. They combine the international expertise of their management team with experts in their 21 offices in order to offer a local presence for in-depth knowledge of the rapidly growing IT markets, including cultural, linguistic and legal requirements. Since 2008, ABSIS has been listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE) under the ticker name “ASB.”
“We are thrilled to expand Grandstream’s presence in the Middle East through this new partnership with ABSIS Group,” said David Li, CEO of Grandstream. “ABSIS is an ideal fit for Grandstream as they share our value of providing complete technology solutions surrounded by value-added services that allow their integrators to get the most from any deployment. We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with ABSIS for many years to come.”“Grandstream is a global leader providing top-notch solutions within the IP voice, data, video and security realms,” said Hesham Tantawi, vice president, MENA, ASBIS Middle East. “We are excited to partner with Grandstream to deliver globally acclaimed products to the regional market. As a highly reputed distributor in the Middle East, we look forward to working closely with our extensive partner ecosystem to assist them by offering enablement and sales support for Grandstream’s portfolio. Together with our partners, Grandstream customers can expect undisputed value-add in our offerings.”

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Protection of Holy Sites and Worship Places in Europe and the Middle East

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 14 novembre 2017

conferenceIn the run up to the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, European churches are urging the European institutions to increase their efforts to ensure respect and protection of places of worship and holy sites, both in the EU law and in the Common Foreign and Security Policy.
The forty participants of the conference emphasised that several gaps in the international legal regime, governing such sites, need to be filled, in particular a common definition and legal remedies. To buy, build, own, maintain, restore and use such religious places are part and parcel of the fundamental right to Freedom of Religion or Belief, they said.The conference explored different legal, political and cultural contexts of the theme. This included Western Europe, with its increasingly secular setting, as well as regions where religious sites have been politicized in conflict situations, such as in Kosovo (UNSCR 1244/1999), in the divided Cyprus, in Ukraine, in Syria and in the City of Jerusalem, which holds special significance to Jews, Christians and Muslims alike.For Cyprus, His Beatitude Archbishop Chrysostomos II of Nova Justiniana and All Cyprus spoke about the need of de facto protection of the churches in Cyprus. Religious monuments in the country are not under the effective control of the Republic of Cyprus and are often vandalized with the Turkish Cypriot side doing little to prevent that. Legal owners are also often denied access to and prevented from worshiping at their holy sites. “Using the right of access to places of worship for political ends is not conducive to dialogue,” said Cyprus’ Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides.Speaking about the Holy Land, His Beatitude Theophilos III, Patriarch of Jerusalem and all Palestine, said that over the last several months, a new level of threat has emerged to the stability of conference1Jerusalem as a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural and multi-religious society of which the diverse holy sites are concrete evidence, and that the churches have become increasingly concerned about their properties.
For Syria, Bishop Armash Nalbandian, Primate of the Armenian Diocese of Damascus, talked about the great suffering his community that has lived through during the civil war. He emphasized the desire to return the country to relative harmony between different faiths that existed before the conflict.Fr Sava Janjic, Abbot of Dečani Monastery in Kosovo (UNSCR 1244/1999), demanded that “political leaders in the Balkans should demonstrate more commitment to the protection of cultural and religious heritage of vulnerable communities and make more efforts to prevent further destruction of holy sites”.The moderator of CEC Thematic Reference Group on Human Rights, Rev. Dr Göran Gunner, stated that “the destruction of a place of worship often deeply affects the identity of a religious person, who wants the site to be preserved for the present and future generations with dignity, integrity and respect.” (photos: )

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The United States and the Middle East in historical and political perspective Roma

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 5 giugno 2017

Lunedì 5 Giugno 2017, ore 10:00 / 7 Giugno 2017 Dipartimento di Scienze Politiche Via Chiabrera 199. Il seminario, tenuto dal prof. Yossi Shain e realizzato nell’ambito del corso The United States and the World in the 20th and 21st centuries, vuole offrire agli studenti del percorso magistrale in International Studies la possibilità di approfondire un tema centrale nelle relazioni internazionali oggi.Yossi Shain, docente di Scienze Politiche all’ Università di Tel Aviv e alla Georgetown University di Washington, approfondisce l’analisi sulla politica degli Stati Uniti in Medio Oriente sia in prospettiva storica che in quella delle relazioni internazionali. Gli incontri seminariali non prendono in esame solo il conflitto israelo-palestinese, ma affrontano più in generale le tensioni e i problemi che attraversano i paesi del MO nella attuale difficile fase storica, con particolare riferimento al cambio radicale che la nuova amministrazione americana sembra voler imprimere alle relazioni internazionali, e in particolar modo nei sui rapporti con Israele e i paesi arabi.

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Finance cannot be fully responsible until it is inclusive

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 30 marzo 2016

rfi foundationKUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA. The Summit, hosted by Bank Negara Malaysia, organised by the RFI Foundation and co-organised by Middle East Global Advisors, will take place on 30-31 March in Kuala Lumpur. During periods of economic stress, it is important for the responsible finance industry to come together to lay the groundwork for inclusive and sustainable economic development. The Responsible Finance Summit, under the theme of “Unlocking Finance, Expanding Impact”, aims to forge alliances between Islamic finance and traditional responsible finance in order to build the foundation for such an economic future. Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia will deliver a Keynote address at the Responsible Finance Summit alongside other leaders including His Royal Highness Emir Muhammadu Sanusi II, Emir of Kano, and Georg Kell, the Founder & Former Executive Director of the UN Global Compact.
In addressing the role for responsible finance, Governor Zeti, Chairperson of the Council of Advisors of the Responsible Finance Institute (RFI) Foundation, said: “Responsible finance has to always remain founded on the conviction that the primary role of finance is to be in the service of the real economy. This call for a closer examination of the fundamentals of the financial services sector to ensure ethical behavior is built into the culture and that financial products will value add to society. As we work towards a financial sector that is more responsible, we must also ensure that it benefits are accessible to all members of society; that it is inclusive.” Prof. Datuk Rifaat Abdel Karim, Chairman of the Trustees of the RFI Foundation which is organising the Summit, highlighted the importance of bringing all parties to the table: “As we come together, we must always ask how can responsible finance – Islamic finance, socially responsible investing and impact investing – most effectively contribute to equitable, inclusive and sustainable economic growth. This is the shared goals that unites all of the responsible finance approaches and guides the dialogue as the industry comes together”. (photo: rfi foundation)

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World Takaful Conference: Key opportunities exist for industry to mitigate competitive pressures and macroeconomic headwinds

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 24 marzo 2016

dubaiDubai, UAE The conveners of the 11th annual World Takaful Conference (WTC) – Middle East Global Advisors – is set to reveal cutting-edge insights on the outlook for the global Takaful industry as part of its commitment to serving the Sharia-compliant insurance markets. The 23-year financial intelligence platform, in partnership with Netherlands-based consultancy Takaful Outsource, will launch the “Finance Forward World Takaful Outlook Report 2016” on April 11th at the WTC, the world’s leading Takaful platform.
Blake Goud, Chief Research Officer of Middle East Global Advisors, spoke ahead of the presentation of the report, sharing that: “For over a decade, the World Takaful Conference (WTC) has connected the industry with insights about the state of and future for Takaful. The Finance Forward Takaful Outlook Report 2016 will complement the insights that come out of the Conference and provide Takaful leaders with the key insights they need in order to make strategic decisions to capitalize on emerging opportunities.”According to the Report, the Islamic insurance industry faces an uphill climb against severe competitive pressures with an added headwind coming from macroeconomic challenges. However, the forecast is brighter with Takaful growing faster than the broader insurance market. Further, the report also identifies several areas where changes are underway which could accelerate growth, based on a comprehensive survey of industry participants.Momna Saeed, Senior Research Analyst at Middle East Global Advisors added: “The Takaful industry has exhibited impressive double digit annual growth over the last decade; however, it remains underdeveloped as compared to the overall thriving Islamic finance industry.” “The uniqueness of the report,” Ms. Saeed continued, “is that it combines current insights from Takaful leaders – gathered from an extensive global survey of practitioners’ – with robust analysis of the impact of the global economy on the regional Takaful markets, as well as comparative analysis of various markets.” The groundbreaking Takaful report covers a wide variety of issues including the effect pricing regulations and their impacts across various regions, the important and evolving role of actuaries, as well as key issues relating to human capital.The “Finance Forward Takaful Outlook Report 2016” will be launched by Middle East Global Advisors and Takaful Outsource at WTC 2016 on the 11th of April. (photo: dubai)

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Middle East Global Advisors (MEGA) launched groundbreaking Insurance Outlook Report

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 19 febbraio 2016

Manama, BahrainManama, Bahrain, 18 February 2016: Middle East Global Advisors, the conveners of the 12th annual Middle East Insurance Forum (MEIF), launched a comprehensive outlook report on the final day of MEIF 2016, the industry’s leading platform strategically supported by the Central Bank of Bahrain. The “Finance Forward Middle East Insurance Outlook Report 2016” is a unique report that serves as indispensable guide for the insurance leader making strategic decisions for 2016.Speaking on the Outlook report, Ehsan Abbas – Chairman of Middle East Global Advisors – emphasized the sheer importance of the launching platform: “MEIF has served as the leading insurance platform shaping the direction of the industry and charting new ways for growth – and no doubt its successes largely stem from the unyielding support of the Central Bank of Bahrain.”The uniqueness of the report, Mr. Abbas continued, is that it combines meaningful insights from insurance leaders – gathered from an extensive survey of practitioners’ sentiment – with robust analysis of the impact of the global economy on the Middle East’s insurance markets. The report also provides industry participants with dynamic and visual ranking of Insurance companies as compared to their peers at the regional and national level based on various financial metrics.Blake Goud – Chief Research Officer of Middle East Global Advisors who spearheaded the Report – shared that in 2014, growth in commercial lines grew at just 6.6% (compared to 19.6% for personal lines) in the Middle East (GCC and Turkey and Jordan) – with Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Bahrain enjoying significant premium growth in Personal Lines segment.According to Mr. Goud, existing markets are not big enough to support domestic insurers at current numbers even if there is less competition from international insurers. Pointing to the industry-wide combined ratio (which in the largest markets exceed 100%), Mr. Goud said that the gap is filled with net investment income, which has few low-risk investments and is too heavy on real estate.The report also demonstrates that underwriting is very competitive in most markets and on aggregate insurers rely heavily on investment income to make up the difference. This exposes insurers to solvency risks if their investments perform poorly.“Bahraini and Kuwaiti insurance companies have good combined ratios and the companies elsewhere should develop their business model to move towards underwriting profitability and reduce their dependence on net investment income,” Mr. Goud concluded.In terms of strategy, the report’s survey results show that a shift in investment portfolios in terms of deviating away from real estate investments is on the cards. In fact, approximately 38% of respondents plan to decrease such investments.
MEIF is the region’s leading insurance platform that has served a key role in the development of the industry and driving its growth for the past 12 years. Held under the patronage of the Central Bank of Bahrain, the forum partners with the region’s largest insurance organizations in converging the most distinguished leaders in insurance under a single platform to assess the direction of the industry and chart new ways for its growth.
Middle East Global Advisors (MEGA) is the leading gateway connectivity and intelligence platform to Islamic finance opportunities in the rapidly developing economic region that stretches all the way from Morocco in the West to Indonesia in the East- The Middle East North Africa Southeast Asia (MENASEA) connection. For 22 years, our exclusive focus on achieving business results for the Islamic finance industry has enabled us to create significant value for the leading players in the Islamic banking, finance and investment markets. (photo: ehsan blake pic)

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International Forum on Islamic Finance (IFIF) gathers powerhouses from across global Islamic finance industry

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 10 febbraio 2016

H.E. Abdelrahman Hassan Abdelrahman HashimH.E. Badr El-Din Mahmoud AbbasKhartoum, Sudan. Islamic banking leaders and dignitaries from across Africa and the Middle East gathered today at the 2nd annual International Forum on Islamic Finance (IFIF 2016). Held under the patronage of the Government of the Republic of the Sudan, the Central Bank of Sudan and the Ministry of Finance & Economic Planning – and in strategic partnership with the Bank of Khartoum – IFIF 2016 hosted 200 dignitaries, central bank representatives, Ministers, C-level bankers, thought leaders and experts who gathered at the Al Salam Rotana Hotel in Khartoum to deliberate on strategies to enable Islamic finance gain prominence and spur economic growth across Africa. Delivering keynote
addresses to a packed audience were Fadi Al Faqih (CEO of Bank of Khartoum), Musaed Mohammed Ahmed (Head of Sudan’s Banks Union), H.E. Abdelrahman Hassan Abdelrahman Hashim (Governor of the Central Bank of Sudan), H.E. Badr El-Din Mahmoud Abbas (Minister of Finance and National Economy of the Republic of the Sudan) and H.E. Bakri Hassan Salih (First Vice President of the Republic of the Sudan).The conveners of IFIF, Middle East Global Advisors – a renowned intelligence platform serving the Middle East North Africa Southeast Asia (MENASEA) region for 22 years – gathered a powerful line-up of speakers including Dr. Anindya Ghose, Professor at H.E. Bakri Hassan SalihNYU Stern School of Business, who was named Business Week’s “Top 40 Professors Under 40 Worldwide”.Dr. Ghose will speak on the impact of social media on banking and shared that: “Industries and markets are being transformed by a growing shared technology infrastructure. Indeed, Africa is emerging as an inspiring hub of innovation for social media in the banking sector, enabling unbanked individuals in Africa to access risk averse financing through Islamic banking.”Dr. Ghose continued: “The International Forum on Islamic Finance (IFIF) is an outstanding platform to help build awareness of Africa’s digital media proposition in the context of Islamic finance’s push for financial inclusion across the continent.” Another key highlight of Day 1 of IFIF was the exclusive launch of the much-awaited Sudan Islamic Finance report. The report was produced by the Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI) and the General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions (CIBAFI), in collaboration with the Bank of Khartoum. The ground-breaking report provides substantive due diligence on the opportunities for Islamic financial and non-financial services in Sudan.
The final day of IFIF 2016 continues on the 10th of February.
Middle East Global Advisors (MEGA) is the gateway connectivity and intelligence platform to opportunities in the rapidly developing economic region that stretches all the way from Morocco in the West to Indonesia in the East – The Middle East North Africa Southeast Asia (MENASEA) connection. We pride ourselves for being at the heart of these diverse markets for over 22 years. (photo: H.E. Bakri Hassan Salih, H.E. Badr El-Din Mahmoud Abbas, H.E. Abdelrahman Hassan Abdelrahman Hashim)

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Risks and challenges of multinational corporations operating in fragile and conflict-affected areas

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 15 gennaio 2016

amsterdamAmsterdam. Wars and conflicts continue to destabilise large parts of the world. In 2014, there were more than 400 political conflicts. This includes 21 full-fledged wars, spread over the entire world, but concentrated in the Middle East, the Maghreb region and Sub-Saharan Africa. Worldwide, 55 million people fled their homes – as refugees or as internally displaced people. The result is that more and more businesses are currently operating in fragile and conflict-affected areas – either because they were already operating in a country when a conflict broke out, or because they arrived in a country that was already engaged in a conflict or during the post-conflict phase because they see opportunities for business. A new SOMO paper focuses on these risks and challenges, and offers recommendations on how to reduce business-related human rights violations in conflict-affected areas.Human rights abuses in conflict-affected areas, the lack of corporate accountability in such situations and the risk of sparking or intensifying a conflict are three types of risks that this paper addresses. The report highlights a number of cases in the Democratic Republic of Congo to illustrate to what degree multinational companies are involved. A local subsidiary of Dutch beer manufacturer Heineken, for example, was allegedly paying taxes to rebel groups engaged in human rights violations. Meanwhile, a local subsidiary of the Swiss-German Danzer Group, a major timber company, was accused in a German court of complicity in a violent attack on local villagers by Congolese police and military forces. In a report published last year on cobalt mining in Katanga province, it was reported that a Chinese mining company has violently ended peaceful protests by workers to demand a fair remuneration and respect for their rights, with some protesters dying in the event.‘These cases are just some notable examples’, says SOMO researcher Mark van Dorp, ‘and they reflect some of the challenges that companies encounter when operating in conflict-affected areas. Companies are confronted with questions such as: Should they be paying rebels or security forces to protect their assets? What are the criteria for assessing whether local business partners have been engaged in war crimes? And how can companies avoid buying conflict minerals or agro-commodities? Ultimately, companies should take extra care to act responsibly when operating in conflict-affected areas, because the most serious human rights abuses take place in exactly those settings.’This paper calls on governments to introduce measures to make ‘enhanced due diligence’ processes mandatory for any company, irrespective of where their operations are located, but with a special focus on companies operating in conflict-affected areas. The authors recommend that the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court initiate an investigation into the conduct of corporate agents regarding their individual criminal liability for international crimes committed by their subsidiaries or business partners. This would complement the current practice of holding only political or military leaders criminally responsible. Moreover, the authors also propose including conflict sensitivity as a key aspect of international standards for responsible business practices that will serve as an added tool for the prevention of harmful practices of multinational companies in conflict settings.

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First-time regional viewing of 13.3 inch 8K adds to the Super HiVision excitement at IBC Content Everywhere MENA

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 19 gennaio 2015

menaLondon. Super Hi-Vision is the biggest video system in the world. At 8K resolution it has 16 times the detail of today’s high definition television. On giant screens it is a stunning experience – and now NHK have developed a system that puts 8K anywhere. NHK’s Super Hi-Vision system is being demonstrated in the Middle East for the first time between 20 – 22 January 2015 at IBC Content Everywhere MENA, a three day exhibition and conference which will bring together the leaders from the converging world of media, telecoms and IT. In addition to this being the first time that 8K will be demonstrated in the MENA region, this will also be the first time that 8K is seen displayed on portable screen outside Japan. The 13.3 inch OLED screen has been developed by Semiconductor Energy Laboratory, and it will be in action alongside some very much larger displays, showing the flexibility and immersive power of high resolution video. This incredible, handheld 8K screen uses a high resolution with 664ppi, going far beyond visual limitations, creating a picture that is better than high quality printing. This means that the OLED displays videos in higher quality than photographs, producing an image that appeals to the viewer’s senses. Despite its small 13.3 inch display, the image is so sharp that it provides a close-up three dimensional effect. Whilst still in prototype phase, this development proves that 8K is not only for the big screen, but could also be used to provide a truly immersive experience on personal devices such as tables or notebooks. NHK has been responsible for some of the most important developments in television, including the plasma screen, HD and satellite television. Super Hi-Vision is its biggest technical challenge yet, and it aims to broadcast it to homes in Japan by 2018. Demonstration material to be shown at IBC Content Everywhere includes remarkable coverage of games at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. Also on the programme will be video created for art galleries and museums in Japan, showing how the system is ideal for public spaces and eventsDates for forthcoming events:
IBC Content Everywhere MENA Dubai 20-22 January 2015
IBC2015 Amsterdam 11-15 September 2015
IBC Content Everywhere Europe Amsterdam 11-15 September 2015
IBC Content Everywhere LATAM Sao Paulo tbc 2015
IBC is the premier annual event for professionals engaged in the creation, management and delivery of entertainment and news content worldwide. The event attracts more than 55,000 attendees from 170+ countries worldwide and showcases upwards of 1,700 key international technology suppliers alongside a peer-reviewed conference that debates the hottest industry topics. For up-to-date information about the conference, exhibition and awards, visit
Powered and created by IBC, the IBC Content Everywhere global series of events has been created in response to demand from IBC visitors and exhibitors to help professionals from the broadcast, telecommunications, online and IT sectors seize the new opportunities being created by the explosive growth in the consumption of TV and video content on IP-connected smartphones, tablets and laptops. For up-to-date information visit (photo mena)

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Pope Francis, Jewish leaders discuss situation in Middle East, lament persecution of Christians

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 19 settembre 2014

sinagoga romaROME / BRUSSELS – Pope Francis on Wednesday evening received a delegation of 40 international Jewish leaders at his residence in Rome ahead of Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, which begins next week. The presidents of the World Jewish Congress (WJC), Ronald S. Lauder, and of the Latin American Jewish Congress (LAJC), Jack Terpins, presented the head of the Catholic Church with a number of gifts, including a traditional honey cake. In their conversation, the Pope notably raised the question of the persecution and mass slaughter of Christians in the Middle East and told the Jewish delegation, “Like you [the Jews] suffered in the past, Christians are today suffering in many parts of the world.”The meeting with Francis took place in the Santa Marta guesthouse in an informal setting and lasted 40 minutes. Among the participants were many Jewish community heads from Latin America and other parts of the world.The Pope expressed his desire for peace in the Middle East and said the “window of prayer” to find a peaceful solution was still open. Lauder also raised the subject of the mass slaughter and persecution of Christians in the Middle East, to which the Pope replied: “Christians are being expelled from the region. They are persecuted, not liked, discriminated against. You [the Jews] suffered from that in the past, and we [the Christians] are suffering from it today in parts of the world.”In a press conference on Thursday, Ronald Lauder said fanatical Islamists such as ISIS were tagging Christian houses with the letter N for ‘Nassarah’, a term used for Christians in the Koran, which was “no different from the yellow star of David which the Nazis obliged Jews to wear to separate them from the others.” He had raised this issue in an opinion article published by the New York Times last month.

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Caritas meeting on the Middle East

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 9 settembre 2014

attacchi chimici sirianiRoma 15-17 September 2014 Caritas Internationalis, Palazzo San Calisto. Caritas Internationalis High Level meeting on crises in the Middle East, including Syria, Gaza and Iraq. Msgr Antoine Audo of Caritas Syria, Fr. Paul Karam of Caritas Lebanon, Wael Suleiman of Caritas Jordan, Nabil Nissan of Caritas Iraq and Fr. Raed Abusahlia of Caritas Jerusalem.The crisis in Syria has left over 13 million people in need of aid both inside and outside the country. There is a ceasefire in heavily damaged Gaza, but no long term plan to end the cycle of violence. Resumption of conflict in Iraq has forced over a million people from their homes. Caritas has responded to the needs of 965,000 people over the last three years affected by the crises in Syria, Gaza and Iraq. This includes shelter, healthcare, food, basic needs, education, protection for women and children, trauma counselling and peacebuilding Caritas Internationalis Secretary General Michel Roy said, “The Middle East is in turmoil. Caritas organisations are overwhelmed as needs grow and resources shrink. This is far beyond our capacity and anyone else’s. A major move has to take place as we cannot accept that millions of people, whole societies, that used to live together in peace, are destroyed “We’re coming together to plan how best to respond to this regional tragedy in the coming months and years and how we can work together with others in the Catholic Church and beyond to promote peace and stability in the region.”

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World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder denounces American scholars’ boycott of Israel

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 17 dicembre 2013

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NEW YORK – The President of the World Jewish Congress, Ronald S. Lauder, reacted strongly to a vote to boycott Israeli institutions by the American Studies Association, an academic group with almost 5,000 members.“This vote to boycott Israel, one of the most democratic and academically free nations on the globe, shows the Orwellian anti-Semitism and moral bankruptcy of the American Studies Association,” Lauder declared. “The Middle East is literally filled with dead from governments’ reaction to the convulsions of the ‘Arab Spring,’ but the American Studies Association singles out the Jewish State, the one Middle Eastern country that shares American values, for opprobrium? No wonder many Americans dismiss the academy as deeply biased and disconnected with reality.“Rather, the ASA should follow the example of the American Association of University Professors, which notes that any such boycott ‘undermines exactly the freedoms one wants to defend, and it takes aim at the wrong target,’” Lauder added.The American Association of University Professors, one of the largest US academic groups, recently reiterated its opposition to boycotts targeting Israel and others. The ASA, a group of scholars who teach American studies, approved the anti-Israel boycott resolution by a 2-to-1 margin in online balloting that concluded Sunday night, with about a quarter of the members voting, according to the New York Times.The vote is the first time the association has boycotted any nation’s universities and only the second such academic boycott of Israel by a group of American scholars. The Association for Asian American Studies endorsed a boycott of Israeli universities in April

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