Thursday, 30 June 2016

Investing is Bahrain Opens the Doors to the Middle East Market

According to statistics released by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in 2014, the total FDI in Bahrain in 2013 was $989 million. As compared to 2012, it was an increase of 11%, which actually outpaced the global increase of 9%. The report also revealed that Bahrain's inward FDI, a sum total of a percentage of 55.3% GDP, 3% nominal GDP and 15.7% gross fixed capital formation is the highest among the GCC countries.

There are many reason for the increase in the inflow of foreign direct investments in the markets of Bahrain. Here are the few reason why investing in Bahrain is a good idea.

Invest in Bahrain's

  • Access to all the Gulf markets: The first and major advantage of investing Bahrain is its location. Situated in the heart of the Gulf market, the nation offers direct access to the Gulf economy that is estimated to be worth $2 trillion by 2020. Saudi Arabia, which is the world's largest oil producer and the biggest economy in the Middle East, is less than an hour away from the capital of Bahrain. Talking about air transport, Bahrain is the hub of Gulf Air, which is the largest airline network in the region, with daily flights to the GCC countries. Since the opening of the Khalifa Bin Salman Port in April 2009, the country has also become a major regional trans-shipment center.

  • Better legal framework: Bahrain is a country with the most liberal business environment in the region. The liberal features in the country include no corporate and personal income tax, no wealth tax on capital, just a few indirect taxes, such as a 10% municipal tax on tents, etc. The government offers 100% foreign ownerships on business in most sectors. To add to this, the telecommunication sector is also the most liberal one in the sector putting the nation at the 18th rank in the world in the most open economy category.

  • Competitive cost: The cost of doing business in the country is approximately 40% less than that of doing business in Dubai and Qatar. The privatization of the utility sector, combined with the subsidies, makes the cost of electricity, gas and other utilities relatively cheaper than other countries, thereby reducing the overall cost of living and doing business.

  • Skilled workforce: Again cost competitive and skilled bi-lingual workforce in the country will help a great deal in reducing the expatriate expenditure and thereby helping in better cost efficiency as well. The large number of English people makes it easier to run a business here for expats.

Are you Looking to Invest your Hard Earned Money in Bahrain Businesses?

Foreign Direct Investment in Bahrain crossed the $1 billion mark at the end of 2015. This is a country driven towards development, supported by initiatives from its government. It has undertaken many reforms in recent years to ensure more favorable conditions and working environment for investors. Its location on the world map gives it the advantage of becoming a hub for the trillion-dollar Gulf market. It was ranked as the fifth-most FDI attractive country in the Middle East by fDi Intelligence, a division of the Financial Times. The government's efforts to improve competitiveness within the country have been successful in attracting foreign investors. It is in fact the leader among the Gulf countries in terms of the effectiveness of its FDI strategy. It is the commitment of the country towards a brighter future that makes investing in Bahrain a smart option. 

Why Invest in Bahrain?

  • Gulf Market: Bahrain has the largest regional network in the Gulf of Persia and the hub of the airlines in the region. It has a world class international airport that operates regular flights to top markets in this region. Qatar is just 25-minutes away, while it takes less than an hour to reach Abu Dhabi and Muscat by air. Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil producer, is less than an hour away by road. 

  • Legal Framework: The nation offers the most business friendly environment in the Gulf region. The population of the country is very skilled and has a very high number of English speaking people, which can be a big asset to global businesses. It also has the most attractive tax regime in the region. It allows 100% ownership of business and real estate in most sectors and has no 'free zone' restrictions.

  • Cost Competitive: The cost of running a business in Bahrain is almost 40% lower than that in Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The subsidies in the utilities sector mean that electricity and gas are available at lower prices too. The cost of living is also much more reasonable than the other Middle Eastern countries.

Where to Invest?

If you are planning on investing in Bahrain, these are the best sectors for you:

  • Manufacturing: The Gulf region as a whole is continuously developing in terms of infrastructure. Bahrain being at the heart of this region, is an ideal base to meet the needs of manufacturing goods companies. You can do duty-free trade, since it is a member of the GCC common market.

  • Financial Services: Services like banking and insurance are good investment options in the country. The Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) is the single regulatory body for all the banking and financial activities in the country.

Meet the Board of Directors of the EDB?

The Economic Development Board (EDB) is a public body responsible for attracting foreign investments in Bahrain through various initiatives. The EDB’s Board of Directors is chaired by His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Prime Minister of the Kingdom. An alumni of American University and University of Cambridge, Prince Salman was appointed as the First Deputy Prime Minister of Bahrain in 2013. He is an active speaker on various international seminars and conferences like The World Economic Forum, Clinton Global Initiative, and the World Islamic Economic Forum.

The Deputy Chairman of the Board is HE Dr. Hasan bin Abdulla Fakhro, who is also His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa's Advisor for Economic Affairs. Having worked in the oil industry in Bahrain as well as in the United States, Dr. Fakro was given the task of setting up Bahrain National Oil Company (BANOCO) by the government. He is the Deputy Chairman and has served as the advisor to HM the King of Bahrain on Economic Affairs.

The Members on the Board

Here’s a look at the other member of the EDB Board of Directors:

  1. HH Sh. Abdulla bin Hamad Al Khalifa – He is also the Personal Representative of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.
  2. HH Sh. Naseer bin Hamad Al Khalifa – Also the Chairman of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports, as well as President of the Bahrain Olympic Committee.
  3. HE Sh. Khalid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa – He is also the Prime Minister of Kingdom of Bahrain, as well as Chairman of Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Co.
  4. HE Sh. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa – He is also the Minister of Finance.
  5. HE Jameel bin Mohammed Humaidan – He is also the Minister of Labour.
  6. HE Rashid bi Mohammed Al Meraj – He is also the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain
  7. HE Khalid A.Rahman Al Moayyed – He is the Chairman of the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
  8. HE Sh. Mohammed bin Essa Al Khalifa – Mr. Al Khalifa is also Chairman of Tamkeen.
  9. HE Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed – He is the Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications in Bahrain.
  10. Mr. Jameel Ali Al-Matrook – He is a Shura Council Member.
  11. HE Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani – He is Minister of Industry and Commerce, as well as Chairman of the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC).
  12. Mr. Khalid Al Rumaihi – He also holds the position of Chief Executive of the Economic Development Board.
  13. Mr. Adel Hussain Al Maskati – Mr. Al Maskati is the Managing Director of the Al Maskati Group.
  14. Mr. Tariq Jalil Al Saffar – He is the Managing Director of Harbour Investment Holding.
  15. Dr. Samer Majid Al Jishi – He is the President of BFG International.
  16. Ms. Deema Rasool Al Haddad – Ms Al Haddad also holds the position of Director, Al Haddad Motors.
  17. Mr. Khalid Ali Al Amin – He is also the CE of Retail Operations, Ali Rashid Al Amin Co.
  18. Mr. Mohammed Farouk Almoayyed – He is also Vice Chairman and Managing Director of Al Moayyed International Group.
  19. Mr. Khalid Ebrahim Humaidan – Mr. Humaidan is the Regional Head of ALM – Treasury, BNP Paribas.
  20. Ms. Nada Alawi Shubar – Ms. Shubar is also the Director of Annada Commercial Trading.

Excellence in business banking in the Middle East

Every business requires a set of reliable financing solutions that helps it meet its financial goals quickly and with the lowest turnaround time. Time, security and ease are important benchmarks for companies wanting to transact with other businesses, pay office staff and vendors and make important business purchases. As such, the finance channels of any company must be secure and backed by an experienced financial institution that can provide money solutions as well as monitor financial processes for the company.
Having capital at hand helps companies plan their short term and long term goals, procure machinery and skilled manpower, expand into other territories and even acquire smaller businesses to enlarge its portfolio.
Banks and financial institutions often provide the resources that help companies expand their scope of operations for a variety of requirements. However, it is key to select a bank that provides a gamut of exceptional financing products and services that bolster the company’s performance and portfolio.
Islamic banks are feted year on year for their diverse range of customer-centred products, but truly excel in the field of providing financial products and services to businesses in the UAE. The Bank’s Murabaha and Ijarah products are designed to meet a range of businesses’ needs: from sourcing working capital to offering trade finance solutions. 
Banks  backed by Islamic benefit from its inter-city presence in three prominent locations in the UAE, apart from its nine branches spread out all over Dubai. However, it also offers a range of business accounts which can be opened and closed quite easily without wasting much business time and without too much paperwork. Apart from these, there are many options in transaction banking (from fund transfers to issuing standing orders for payments, and from making Wakala Agreement for investment to creating salary accounts for employees) and trade services as well (from issuing Letter of Credit to shipping guarantees). The Bank also rises above other banks and financial institutions in the area of business banking for start-ups and e-commerce platforms.
Islamic banks offer an interactive web platform for online banking and money transfer, as also excellent solutions for businesses requiring assistance in the arena of Wages Protection System (WPS).

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Watch Out for Symptoms of Fever in Your Child

While the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been declared free of the Zika virus, along with other Gulf countries, it is Dengue fever that has become the disease that is on the top of the watch list for the Ministry of Health in the country. According to the Ministry of Health Contagious Diseases Director General Prof. Hayel Al-Abdali, “The Kingdom recorded 6,000 cases of dengue fever in 2015. Dengue fever is a bigger threat to the Kingdom than the Zika virus. Both diseases are transmitted through the bite of Aedes Aegypti mosquito and both have the same symptoms.” Health warnings such as these are adequate reason to watch out for symptoms of fever in your child.

Dealing with Fever in Children

Fevers and fever-like symptoms are common in growing children. A child with a fever will have a body temperature that is above 39°C. Usually, you can spot a fever if your child's skin feels hotter to the touch than normal. The forehead is usually the best place to check. Alternatively, the child may also have a red or flushed face or the skin may feel sweaty and damp. To be on the safer side, it is always better to rely on a digital thermometer. For children below the age of five, place the thermometer in the armpit. 

A fever is usually caused by infections by viruses or germs. Expect your child's appetite to be absent or reduced. However, give the child plenty of fluids to counteract dehydration. Fevers need to be closely monitored and you should keep checking your child's body temperature from time to time, especially at night. If your child complains of body or head ache, you can give them ibuprofen. Using a cold sponge or cold cloth compress is not advisable, as it might reduce the body's heat loss. Make sure the room is well-ventilated without any draft or cold wind blowing in the child's direction.  

When to Consult a Doctor?

If the infection is serious, the fever will not come down despite your efforts. In such cases, your child may also exhibit additional symptoms, such as difficulty in breathing, headaches or even cramps and convulsions. If your child shows symptoms that worry you or if your child is in extreme discomfort, do not waste time and contact a doctor immediately.  

While speaking to your doctor, expect to be questioned about your child's symptoms, duration of the fever and any additional symptoms. The common tests and observations made by doctors include temperature readings, pulse and breathing checks, level of body fluid and blood pressure. The child's urine sample may also be required for testing. 

Serious fevers like that caused by the dengue virus can be mistaken for a mild flu or viral infection. If undetected, the fever may suddenly climb, accompanied by a severe headache and pain behind the eyes, a feeling of fatigue and pain in the joints and muscles, and vomiting. The final stages are characterized by a skin rash and bleeding from the nose and gums of the teeth. 

Clearly a fever in children might be a normal part of growing up but the importance of preventing it from increasing cannot be stressed enough.

3 Biggest Enemies of a Clean House

The home and personal care markets have seen immense growth in last few years, especially in Saudi Arabia, along with the other Gulf countries. People are buying more and more products to make sure their home looks its best. Most of us think that the biggest challenge to maintaining a clean house is the constant invasion of dirt and dust but this may not be true always. Yes, the reality is that it is the people who are more responsible for a messy house. In fact, we lovingly give shelter to the biggest enemies of a clean house, while wondering where all that clutter came from and how to remove carpet stains. Don’t agree? Read on.

Biggest Reasons for a Messy Home

  1. Small Kids: Don't go by their cuteness. They may look innocent but they can come up with the most ingenious ways to spread dirt and mayhem! From spilling everything from milk to paint, leaving melting chocolates on the couch to learning how to draw on the walls, messing up a clean home is second nature to them. And each time they come back from playing outside, they bring in all sorts of dirt with them. But then they are the apple of our eye and we love them to bits. So, make sure you start teaching them about hygiene and cleanliness early and learn how to remove carpet stains so that you can undo all the damage till they grow up enough to take responsibility. Don't be too hard on them for creating a mess, handle it with grace and care.

  1. Pets: If your kids are your most prized possessions, then pets are the second most prized possessions. It is unthinkable to get rid of your dog or cat only because they make a mess, right? But there are things that you can do to housebreak them, train them not to destroy the home too much and spend a little more time and effort in cleaning the home. One thing that can help you bring back that new and clean look to your furnishings is Vanish Oxi Action Carpet and Upholstery Spray, which also keeps your carpet fresh and clean.

  1. Guests: You know what is worse than pets? Guests! At least, you can ask your pet to behave! If someone pays you a visit, it becomes more of a liability than responsibility. They all want comfort but do not treat your house like their own. But if you are a party person and love to have frequent visitors, you better learn how to remove carpet stains!

Doesn't matter how much trouble a kid, pet or guest can be, there are moments we can't help but adore them, which makes all the trouble worth it. Just make sure that you keep your home inviting for them.

How to Remove Body Hair at Home?

Did you know, according to an article published in February 2016 on Arab News, women in Saudi Arabia spend SR15,000 on an average annually on beauty, cosmetic, personal care and skin care products? The cosmetic industry in the country is estimated at a whopping SR60 billion. If you are among the women who give priority to personal grooming and looking their best at all times, the first thing you might be concerned about is removing unwanted body hair. This is an essential part of personal grooming but it also means regular visits to the salon and spending your hard earned money. Fortunately, you can now get salon-like results at a fraction of the cost and time with cold wax hair removal right at home. There also are some other home remedies you can try, although the results might vary. Here’s a look at some methods you can try at home.

Try These Easy Methods

  1. Sugar Lemon Mix: The mixture of lemon and sugar acts as a bleach for the face. It helps in effectively removing facial hair and can also be applied on other body parts. The lemon juice in the mixture helps in lightening the color of the hair. After applying the mixture, wait for 15-20 minutes and then wash it off with water. However, it is advisable not to use it on sensitive body parts.

  1. Lentil and Potatoes: Potatoes naturally have bleaching properties. When combined with yellow lentils, it forms a mixture that is very effective in removing body hair. It is a trusted Ayurvedic method to get rid of unwanted body hair. Leave the paste on your body for at least 30 minutes before gently rubbing it with your fingers. The dry paste will pull the hair out.

  1. Cold Wax Strips: Cold wax hair removal is an alternative to traditional waxing that takes place in salons at that too at a comparatively cheaper price. It helps in removing body hair instantly and the impact lasts for 4-5 weeks. These strips are very easy to use and save you from the trouble to travelling to a salon and then waiting for your turn. It is also available in different variants and can be purchased according to your skin type. It doesn't have any side effects.

  1. Egg Mask: This is a slightly painful yet a very effective method, especially for removing facial hair. This paste is sticky, so pulling it off may cause some pain. However, it takes only 15 minutes to remove hair using this method. Do it 3-4 times in a week.

  1. Chickpea Flour Mask: This not only removes unwanted hair from the body but also stops them from growing back in future. The mixture can be easily prepared at home by using chickpea flour, turmeric powder, cream and milk. Apply this paste on the concerned areas and wait for around 30-40 minutes. Wash it off with water. Do it frequently for better results.