Archive for April, 2009

Optimistic Sheikh Mohammed

UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, believes the worst of the financial crisis is now over, following its ‘significant’ impact on the economy during the final quarter of 2008. Taking part in an electronic question and answer session with the press, he said the UAE economy is expected to grow this year, albeit only slightly.77055-sheikh_mohammed_bin_rashid_

Sheikh Mohammed said that the economy is in better shape than in many countries, so the ‘contraction it [the small and medium business sector] has suffered is only temporary.’

Gold Souk

Duba:i One of the toughest moments in Dubai’s history came when Japanese scientists discovered how to culture pearls. The process devastated the economies of the Gulf region in the 1930s as the primary industry, diving for natural pearls, collapsed and depression in the US punctured demand. So the symmetry of Dubai seeking once again to become a pearl trading hub is apt just as the global credit crunch curbs the city-state’s financial and real estate sectors.

“Maybe there is some sentimentality here, but we do believe Dubai can once again become a pearl trading centre, even if it does not turn into a multibillion-dollar industry here,” says Ahmad Bin Sulayem, chairman of the Dubai Metals and Commodities Centre (DMCC).

Monorail project delayed

The opening of the monorail on Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, which was slated for April 1, has been delayed to later this year, according to a Nakheel spokesperson. The new system, when operational, will carry passengers daily between Gateway Station at the trunk of The Palm and the Atlantis’ Aquaventure Station on the crescent with plans to ultimately connect to the Dubai Metro following the introduction of RTA’s Al Sufouh tramline, with direct links to Dubai Airport and other major transport hubs.

Operating approval – dubai international airport

Dubai International airport has been given approval to operate in very low visibility conditions such as fog. The General Civil Aviation Authority and Dubai Civil Aviation Authority have approved the upgraded CATIIIB landing system, which means planes can operate in visibility conditions below 200 metres down to 50 metres. The first time a Middle East airport has been given this approval, it will help reduce passenger disruption during the months when fog is most common, airport officials said.

It happened

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