BUSINUAE Non-Oil Private Sector Hits Second Consecutive Record Low: PMIESS |

RIYADH | SAUDI ARABIA – The United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) non-oil private sector shrank at a record rate for the second month running in April, as lockdown measures to fight the coronavirus pandemic piled pressure on an already sluggish economy.

The seasonally adjusted HIS Markit UAE Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), which covers manufacturing and services, fell to 44.1 in April from 45.2 in March. The 50.0 mark separates expansion from contraction.

The output and new export orders sub-indices fell sharply, both falling to record lows since the survey began in August 2009. Output tumbled to 39.9 in April from 47.2 in March.

‘Shop closures and restrictions in domestic and international travel had huge repercussions on new business, which fell at an unprecedented peace after also declining sharply during March’, said David Owen, economist at survey compiler HIS Markit.

‘Business sentiment reached the lowest in nearly three years, reflecting heightened uncertainty from the COVID-19 crisis. While firms on balance remain optimistic of growth in the coming year, some panelists were apprehensive, noting that the risk of an economic downturn was increasing’, Owen said.

As of May 3, the UAE had reported 14, 163 cases of the novel coronavirus and 126 deaths, the highest number of deaths after Saudi Arabia among the six Gulf Cooperation’s Council countries.

The authorities have imposed strict lockdown measures to stem the spread of the virus, including a 24-hour curfew in Dubai that was eased in late April as the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan began.

Malls, dine-in restaurants and cafes in Dubai, the country’s business and tourism hub, were allowed to resume operations with limited capacity. This week, malls in the capital Abu Dhabi began to reopen and Sharjah followed.

But travel, tourism and trade, major contributors to the economy, both remain largely at a halt.

‘Tourism declined sharply again, as countries worldwide imposed similar restrictions amid the virus pandemic. Along with reduced demand from foreign clients, this led to a steep fall in export business, one that was unprecedented in the survey history’, the report said.


BREAKING NEWS | Saudi – Led Coalition Intercepts Ballistic Rockets, Drones Launched By Yemen’s Houthis: State News Agency

RIYADH | SAUDI ARABIA – The Saudi –Led Coalition said on Monday that it intercepted and destroyed two ballistic rockets and six drones laden with explosives launched by Yemen’s Houthis towards the kingdom, the state news agency said, citing the coalition spokesman. The coalition has started a military operation against the Iran-aligned group after it … Continue reading BREAKING NEWS | Saudi – Led Coalition Intercepts Ballistic Rockets, Drones Launched By Yemen’s Houthis: State News Agency

BUSINESS NEWS | Federer – Backed Sports Shoe Maker On Preparing For IPO, Swiss Paper Says

VIENNA – Swiss sports shoe maker On, partly owned by tennis champion Roger Federer, is in the early stages of preparing for a stock exchange listing in summer or autumn of next year, newspaper NZZ am Sonntag reported. The Zurich – based company, founded 10 years ago, says it has  special sole technology that is … Continue reading BUSINESS NEWS | Federer – Backed Sports Shoe Maker On Preparing For IPO, Swiss Paper Says

BUSINESS NEWS | Abu Dhabi Fund Suspends Debt Service Repayments For Countries, Companies

ABU DHABI – Abu Dhabi Fund For Development has suspended debt service repayments for some countries and companies for the year, the state-financed fund said on Sunday. The fund provides financial assistance to companies in the United Arab Emirates and to developing countries, which has included Pakistan, Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia. Debt service repayments would … Continue reading BUSINESS NEWS | Abu Dhabi Fund Suspends Debt Service Repayments For Countries, Companies

WORLD NEWS | Pope ‘Very Pained’ By Decision To Turn Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia Museum Into Mosque

VATICAN – Pope Francis said on Sunday he was hurt by Turkey’s decision to make Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia museum a mosque, the latest religious leader to condemn the move. ‘My thoughts go to Istanbul. I think of Santa Sophia and I am very pained’, he said during his weekly blessing in St.Peter’s Square. Turkish President … Continue reading WORLD NEWS | Pope ‘Very Pained’ By Decision To Turn Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia Museum Into Mosque

BUSINESS | Saudi Telecom Extends Vodafone Egypt Stake Purchase For Second Time

RIYADH | SAUDI ARABIA – Saudi Arabia’s largest telecoms operator Saudi Telecom CO said on Sunday it would need another two months to complete the purchase of Vodafone Group’s 55% stake in Vodafone Egypt. STC signed a non-binding agreement in January to buy the majority stake for $2.4 billion, but extended the process in April … Continue reading BUSINESS | Saudi Telecom Extends Vodafone Egypt Stake Purchase For Second Time

TV | There’s A New Documentary All About The Ritz Hotel

 A new documentary about the famed The Ritz Hotel is on its way. Inside The Ritz Hotel follows several important events that took place at the London hotel in recent months, including the launch of its first cookbook and an exclusive look inside the Michelin-starred kitchen. As well as all things foodie, the documentary series … Continue reading TV | There’s A New Documentary All About The Ritz Hotel

THE POWER OF INFLUENCE | Angelina Jolie Discussed How She Talks To Her Kids About Racism

Angeline Jolie is no stronger to change. She’s worked as a Special Envoy of the High Commissioner for Refugees to bring attention to the challenges that refugees face around the world. With the current state of the world, which involves protestors everywhere fighting for racial equality, Jolie told Harper’s Bazzer U.K. that she’s sitting down … Continue reading THE POWER OF INFLUENCE | Angelina Jolie Discussed How She Talks To Her Kids About Racism

NEWS | Mohamed Bin Zayed Receives Brazilian President’s Phone Call

ABU DHABI – Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, discussed Friday with the Brazilian President, Jair Bolsonaro, bilateral relations and ways to enhance them in all fields. In a phone call, the two leaders reviewed a number of regional and international … Continue reading NEWS | Mohamed Bin Zayed Receives Brazilian President’s Phone Call

NEWS | Saudi King, Crown Prince Send Condolences To UAE Leaders On Death Of Sharjah Official

RIYADH | SAUDI ARABIA – Saudi Arabia’s King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman sent messages of condolences on Friday to the leaders of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on the death of Sheikh Ahmed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, deputy ruler of the emirate of Sharjah. ‘(We) ask God Almighty to bless him with … Continue reading NEWS | Saudi King, Crown Prince Send Condolences To UAE Leaders On Death Of Sharjah Official

NEWS | U.S. State Department ‘Disappointed’ In Turkish Government Decision On Hagia Sophia

WASHINGTON – The U.S. State Department on Friday said it ‘was disappointed’ by the government of Turkey’s decision to change the status of Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia after Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan declared the ancient monument a mosque again. ‘We understand the Turkish Government remains committed to maintaining access to the Hagia Sophia for all visitors, … Continue reading NEWS | U.S. State Department ‘Disappointed’ In Turkish Government Decision On Hagia Sophia

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