Month: December 2011

Oman Islamic Economic Forum

Yesterday witnessed the beginning of the Oman Islamic Economic Forum, at the Al Bustan Palace Hotel.  Organized by the Amjad Group, in attendance was Tun Abdullah bin Haji, Malaysia’s ex-Prime Minister, State Council honorable members, various ministers, undersecretaries and other political VIPs. As well, there were influential economic executives including those from Islamic banking institutions within and out of the Sultanate.

Finance Matters

The main crux of the forum was discussions on banking regulations in Oman; Islamic banking practices; finance products; Islamic capital markets; charitable endeavors, the development of an alternative Islamic economic system, etc.

At the forum, the Central Bank of Oman’s Chief Executive President, Hamoud bin Sanjour al-Zdjali, pointed out the importance of Islamic banks keeping up with various accounting standards that are accepted by the parties stock market trading, while being conducive to international standards that affect them.

Understanding Islamic Banking Practices

Islamic banking practices work alongside Sharia (Islamic law) and its application through Islamic economics.  In simple terms, this forbids fixed/floating payment or agreeing to specific interest or fees for monetary loans.  In addition, one is not allowed to invest in businesses that sell anything that would be antithetical to Islamic principles.

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Big News for Oman

Omani Exhibitions Industry

Ahmed Baabood has made a name for Oman.  At the 78th UFI Congress which took place in Spain (hosted by Feria Valencia) last month, he was elected board member of the Union Foire Internationale (UFI) – the Global Association for the Exhibition Industry.  This will give him decision-making power and influence over the Trade Fair Industry and for sure be good for the country of Oman. 

On this achievement, Baabood said, “when I first entered the Exhibitions Industry my ambition was to elevate the Omani Exhibitions Industry to world standards. I have worked hard to make this a reality and am very pleased to have now been appointed a Board member for UFI which is the global authority of our Industry, based out of Paris. I dedicate this achievement to all my hardworking colleagues in the Exhibitions Industry here and I look forward to serving them by strengthening relations between various regional organizers and suppliers. With the announcement of the new Convention Centre recently, Oman is now poised to become a prominent place on the map of the Trade Fair business.”

At the Congress, approximately 400 delegates were in attendance (from 52 countries) – a record for such a European UFI Congress.  Eric Everard, the UFI 2011 President, pointed out that the industry had to carry on developing ways to promote exhibitions to global marketers.  He said, “if we can do our bit to convince businesses and governments that, when times are tough, exhibitions and events are the place to focus their marketing dollars, then there will have been a silver lining in those storm clouds for our Industry.”

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UAE 40th National Day

Various greetings were expressed to President of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan.  He received congratulatory messages from His Majesty the Sultan, Shaikh Khalifa and His Highness Sayyid Harib bin Thuwaini al Said.  Khalifa also expressed his desires that good relations between the Omani people and the UAE would continue to thrive, at the benefit of all the citizens concerned.  As well, hopes were conveyed that further advancement and growth would arise for the entire people of the UAE.

Celebrations marking the milestone were held at Zayed Sports City.  Minister of State and Governor of Muscat, Sayyid Saud bin Hilal al Busaidy, went along with Sayid Harib on the UAE visit, along with Minister of Legal Affairs, Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed al Saeedi and UAE’s Sultanate Ambassador, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdullah al Qatabi.

The event was enjoyable and guests were privy to musical performances by the Royal Oman Symphony Ochestra (ROSO).  It was a true evening of good feeling and goodwill and the UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs spoke of his gratitude to HM Sultan Qaboos and the entire Omani people, saying, “we are delighted with any brotherly gestures from the noble Omani people and we consider such gestures as an honor and a manifestation of the strong ties between the leaders of Oman and the UAE.”

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