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Incredible: Carrefour launched ‘world’s first’ sailing supermarket in Dubai

UAE malls and retail firm Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) has launched a ‘sail thru’ Carrefour store concept to serve yachts and beachgoers in Dubai.

‘Carrefour Bites and More by the Shore’ is new concept where customers can order items to the beach or collect them personally on jet ski, yacht or sailing craft from a specialised Aqua Pod.

MAF said 300 items would be available to customers on Kite Beach, Jumeirah Public Beach and Al Sufouh Beach including hot and cold snacks, ice cream, beverages, fresh and dried foods, and non-food items such as sunscreen.

Jet skiers and small boats can order at the Aqua Pod’s window, pay and collect their items.

Those on larger vessels or on the selected beaches can order by calling 056 4003659 or using the ‘Aqua Pod’ app to order, with delivery promised in less than 45 minutes.

“With Dubai’s stunning coastline being enjoyed by millions of people each year, it is a natural next step to cater to our customers with relevant products in a locale where they are not currently being served,” said chief operating officer and head of operational excellence for Carrefour UAE at Majid Al Futtaim Retail Miguel Povedano.

“It’s exciting to know that we can reach our customers anywhere whether it be land or sea, and we can’t wait to delight them with this world-first service.”

The Aqua Pod concept is designed and created by Aquatic Architects Design Studio (AADS), in Dubai, and has been built and designed with an eco-friendly focus.

It is powered by rechargeable batteries, which will allow it to cruise out to sea and back. An attached ‘seabin’ vacuums any floating debris into its holding tank to ensure rubbish is collected and disposed of once the vessel returns to shore.

The Aqua Pod can also convert grid water in its holding tank to potable water using a built-in purifier, eliminating the need for plastic bottles on board.

MAF said the Aqua Pod experience would only provide customers with biodegradable paper straws and bags and encourage the public to dispose of any waste from their purchases in an environmentally friendly manner.

This service is operational six days a week 10:00am to 6:00pm depending on weather conditions.

 

Source: Gulf Business

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Plan to expand health centres in Bahrain

Bahrain’s Cabinet has reviewed a memorandum submitted by the Minister of Health on a project to expand the Kuwait and Bilad Al-Qadeem health centres.
His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa chaired the weekly Cabinet session, which was attended by His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Premier.
The cabinet referred the matter to the Ministerial Committee for Financial, Economic and Fiscal Balance Affairs, said a Bahrain News Agency (BNA) report.
Meanwhile, work on the construction of a health centre in Khalifa Town will be fast-tracked, a Gulf Daily News report said.
The Cabinet also requested ministries and other relevant entities to continue implementing the old and new sustainable urban agendas, as outlined in a memorandum submitted by the Minister of Housing.
The National Information Committee was requested to follow up on the implementation of the agendas through coordinating with the relevant ministries and entities to unify the national efforts in this regard, said BNA.
Source: Trade Arabia

Eid Al-Adha Festival 2019: How do Muslims celebrate it?

The second significant religious festival of Islam, Eid al-Adha, is shortly due to take place.

This year, the celebration of Eid al Adha begins this Sunday, August 11, and ends four days later on Thursday, August 15 – however, but public holidays vary around the world with Arab countries observing a nine-day public holiday.

To celebrate this most holy of days millions of Muslims get together to pray while enjoying feasts and wearing their best clothing.

Muslims are also encouraged to be especially friendly and reach out to one another during this period.

How is the festival celebrated?

As Eid al-Adha commemorates the sacrifice made by the prophet Ibrahim, Muslims typically celebrate the festival by carrying out a Qurbani, meaning “sacrifice” in Arabic.

The animal that is sacrificed – which is usually a goat, sheep, cow or camel – is separated into three parts.

“At least one third of the meat from the animal must go to poor or vulnerable people,” states international aid organisation Islamic Relief.

“Traditionally, a Muslim would keep one third of the meat for their family and give the final third to their neighbours.”

During the morning of Eid al-Adha, a special prayer called Salat al-Eid is recited in honour of the festival, ahead of the Dhuhr prayer at noon.

Muslims traditionally dress in fine clothes in celebration of Eid al-Adha, in addition to exchanging gifts.

Eidi is the Arabic word for a gift given to children by relatives during Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr.

Due to the celebrations of Eid Al Adha next week, both private and public sector will not work till Wednesday or longer (depend on the country).

 

Of course, we would like to wish to All our Muslims friends and their families Eid Mubarak!

Oman to invest $7bn in clean water and sanitation

Oman’s Supreme Council for Planning reveals investment plans over next 20 years

Oman is set to invest $7 billion in the next 20 years – averaging $381 million per year – to develop wastewater treatment plants and extend sewage network lines across the country.

A report by the Supreme Council for Planning revealed the huge level of investment which will be carried out through the National Strategy for the Use of Tertiary-treated Wastewater 2040 program.

As of 2016, 98.7 percent of the population in Oman benefited from safe drinking water services, with desalinated water accounting for over 86 percent of the total drinking water needs.

The report said: “Desalinated water production increased from 196 million cubic meters in 2011 to 311 million cubic meters by the end of 2018.”

Other sources of drinking water, such as wells, contribute approximately 14 percent.

Sanitation and hygiene services cover more than 98 percent of the population in urban areas and 97 percent in rural areas, and as of 2018, 68 wastewater treatment plants were established, producing around 94 million m3/year of tertiary treated wastewater, about 61 percent of which is being used in agriculture, aesthetic afforestation, refrigeration, and injection of coastal aquifers.

The report added: “The Sultanate seeks to improve its various systems and activities; increase water supply reliability; boost operational efficiency; further upgrade services; and implement strategies to develop and enhance human resources, subscriber services, health, safety and the environment, information technology, water quality, and project management.

“Moreover, a strategy was prepared to manage water loss, which brought losses down from 43.4 percent in 2010 to 23 percent in 2018. Contingency strategy and plans were also elaborated in collaboration with other stakeholders in the country.”

Source: https://www.arabianbusiness.com/

Abu Dhabi creates $163m fund for ‘mega-events’

  • Abu Dhabi is already spending billions of dollars on industry, tourism and infrastructure to move away from oil dependence
  • The fund is part of a wide-ranging 50 billion dirham investment and reform initiative known as Ghadan 21

 

ABU DHABI: Abu Dhabi launched a new 600 million dirhams ($163.4 million) “mega events” fund to finance potential global entertainment partners as part of its strategy to boost tourism and diversify the economy away from oil.
The capital of the United Arab Emirates is already spending billions of dollars on industry, tourism and infrastructure to move away from oil dependence, but remains far behind nearby Dubai in attracting visitors.

“This initiative will work to attract the best entertainment and business event organizers from across the world to consider Abu Dhabi as a place to invest their time and efforts,” said Saif Saeed Ghobash, under-secretary of the Department of Culture and Tourism, in a statement on Tuesday.
The fund is part of a wide-ranging 50 billion dirham investment and reform initiative known as Ghadan 21.
Ghadan means tomorrow in Arabic.

Abu Dhabi’s existing attractions include Formula One, the Louvre Abu Dhabi and a Warner Bros. theme park. Two new museums – the Guggenheim and Zayed National Museum — are being built.

Source: http://www.arabnews.com/node/1532971/business-economy

GCC announces $125bn new development projects in H1

The GCC countries have witnessed the announcement of $125 billion worth of new projects during the first six months, including $63.5 billion developments announced in the second quarter of 2019, according to a new report.

These are part of the estimated 27,000 active projects live in the GCC, worth $2.52 trillion at the end of the first half, stated BNC Group, a leading construction intelligence provider in the region, in its latest report.

Saudi Arabia was the frontrunner, riding high on the back of the $63.5 billion project announcements, comprising 50 per cent of the total project announcement in the second quarter, it stated.

During the first half of 2019, project owners in the GCC countries have also awarded new construction contracts worth $49 billion, a 33 per cent jump compared to the corresponding period in 2018.

Unveiling the new report, CEO Avin Gidwani said: “GCC project awards during first half of 2019 and the second half of 2018 were consistent, saved by the exponential growth in contract awards seen during the first half of the year and the major spike in utility contract awards during the first quarter of 2019.”

“The latest BNC Construction Intelligence provides a robust construction sector – not only in terms of new project announcements, but also new construction contracts and project completion, as the development activities gains momentum despite challenges including geo-political tension across the region and slow global economic growth forecast,” he added.

The GCC states also witnessed the completion of $88.5 billion worth of construction projects in the first half as the region’s construction sector remains robust.

The construction project completions across all economic sectors in the second quarter surged to $46.5 billion with the list dominated by the urban construction sector with a 46 per cent share of the total value of the completed construction projects.

The majority of them were registered in the UAE, the second largest Arab economy, stated the BNC report.

The latest BNC Projects Journal states that the overall GCC construction market expanded 12 per cent year-on-year, with both Saudi Arabia and the UAE growing by 12 per cent.

“Geopolitics during the quarter added drama and insecurity to construction as regulatory changes in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, to uplift the market and invite stability and prosperity, were revealed.” noted Gidwani.

On the energy sector, BNC report said the total construction contracts awarded in this sector hit $29.3 billion in the first half of 2019, recording a growth of more than 248.3 per cent, compared to $11.8 billion worth of oil and gas construction project awards last year.

The $29.3 billion worth of oil and gas project awards in the first half of 2019, surpassed the total energy sector project awarded in the year 2018 as a whole, it added.

According to BNC, Saudi Arabia led the region’s oil and gas project awards list with $15.8 billion while the UAE dominated the utility project section with $4 billion.

In Saudi Arabia, new oil and gas projects worth $20.4 billion were announced in the second quarter of 2019 while projects worth $11.3 billion were awarded for construction, it added.

 

Source: TradeArabia

Master plan approved for phase 1 of Oman economic city project

First phase of Khazaen Economic City will include Oman’s first dry port plus a free zone and industrial complexes

Khazaen Economic City (KEC), developer of a new 52 million sq m integrated economic city in Barka, Oman has announced the detailed master plan for the first phase of the project.

Located to the north of the capital, Muscat, Khazaen is the largest public-private partnership project in Oman.

The first phase of the city will include one-of-a-kind facilities such as the first dry port in Oman, a free zone, logistics and industrial complexes as well as social infrastructure, residential, commercial and entertainment components.

Source: https://www.arabianbusiness.com/politics-economics/423951-master-plan-approved-for-phase-1-of-oman-economic-city-project

Saudi Arabia to start work on mega tourism development

Saudi Arabia’s Diriyah Gate Development Authority (DGDA) will start work on its 7.1 million-sq-m mega development in November, following the approval of three detailed plans for the development of Diriyah by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The DGDA will oversee the restoration of Diriyah and develop a number of major new historical and tourism assets including museums, academic institutions and “edutainment” facilities, as well as resorts, restaurants, wellness facilities and high-end retail in a mega development on the west side of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia’s booming capital city.

The initiative is a key deliverable in Crown Prince’s Saudi 2030 Vision to modernise the kingdom, engage Saudi citizens, and welcome guests from all over the world, DGDA CEO Gerard Inzerillo told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Saudi Arabia plans to announce the tourist visa by the fourth quarter, stated Inzerillo, pointing out that Diriyah will directly and indirectly create about 55,000 jobs by 2030 and include about 200 buildings that serve all activities and events.

Inzerillo also discussed challenges and hopes for the development of Diriyah Gate and the participation of Saudi youth in shaping the future of their country.

“Three preliminary plans for the Diriyah project were presented to the Crown Prince, who also serves as head of the DGDA board,” he stated.

“Al-Turaif in Diriyah is a historic neighbourhood and has been listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site. Dubbed as “the jewel”, Turaif is included in the plan along with the Hanifa historic valley and Es-Saffar,” revealed Inzerillo.

The mega project will also be the home of the world’s largest Islamic museum.

“We have launched a global design competition for the Diriyah project and the contest is an open challenge to all professionals in both the kingdom and across the globe to create stunning designs for the region,” he added.

A key highlight of the project will be an exclusive 3.5-sq-km area for pedestrians where no cars will be allowed to enter. “We will also be hosting hundreds of events throughout the year with dozens of restaurants, cafes, and about 13 international hotels,” he added.

 

Source: http://www.tradearabia.com/

New Dubai Cruise Terminal – contract is already signed!

Master developer Meraas has appointed UAE-based contractor ASGC to construct the new Dubai Cruise Terminal at the Dubai Harbour.

 

Located in the heart of Dubai, between Bluewaters and Palm Jumeirah, the Dubai Cruise Terminal will become the main hub for international cruise ships visiting or deployed in the region, ASGC said in a statement.

This world-class addition to the city’s tourism infrastructure comes in-line with the Dubai Tourism Strategy 2020 that focuses on making the emirate the first choice for international leisure and business travellers.

Bishoy Azmy, CEO of ASGC, stated that his company is committed to delivering this project utilising the latest construction processes.

ASGC’s scope of work on the project will include the construction of two main cruise terminal buildings strategically positioned on a quay of approximately 1 km, in addition to service buildings, a central unit building with all associated fit-out works, external works, and all fixtures, fittings and equipment.

With a combined floor area of 300,000 square feet, Dubai Cruise Terminal will create a unique, iconic entry experience to all cruise ship passengers who arrive in the emirate, and will have the capacity of accommodating complete passenger turnaround of two mega cruise ships concurrently, accounting to over 15,000 guests.

Each cruise terminal will create an environment of complete luxury and comfort for passengers and crew alike, with simplified processes, seamless flow as well as leisure and retail offerings.

According to the Cruise Lines Industry Association (CLIA), more than 40 million people worldwide will be travelling on cruise ships annually by 2030, representing a 40 per cent increase from 2017. At a national level, the maritime tourism sector is expected to contribute more than Dh1.5 billion ($408.3 million) to Dubai’s economy by 2030.

Source: http://www.gdnonline.com/Details/567387/Meraas-signs-up-ASGC-to-build-new-Dubai-Cruise-Terminal-

Revealed: $494bn construction projects active in Kuwait

Construction projects worth more than $494 billion are currently active in Kuwait, according to new research by ProTenders.

Of these, projects worth $15.5 billion (3.1 percent) are on hold, the consultancy said in a statement.

Projects in the design stage are valued at $243.5 billion (49.3 percent) while another $63 billion (12.8 percent) are in the planning stage while $140.9 billion worth of projects are in the construction phase, making up 28.5 percent of the total.

Of the project under construction, most (44 percent) are in the oil and gas sector while infrastruction projects make up 21.9 percent and the urban buildings sector make up 34.1 percent, ProTenders data showed.

Total upcoming projects in Kuwait are worth $337.7 billion, with the large majority in the urban buildings sector (72.7 percent). Oil and gas makes up 12 percent and infrastructure 15.4 percent.

ProTenders said the top five developers in the Gulf country are currently the Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development with $125 billion worth of projects, followed by the Kuwait Authority for Partnership Projects ($50.5 billion), Kuwait National Petroleum Company ($45.8 billion), the Ministry of Public Works ($30.2 billion) and Kuwait Oil Company ($23.7 billion).

 

Source: https://www.arabianbusiness.com/construction/421873-revealed-494bn-construction-projects-active-in-kuwait