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Founding partner of the Tehran, Iran-based International Law Firm of Shirkhani & Alavi, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani has extensive knowledge of the Middle Eastern regional economy. In recent years, the Middle East has offered investors sustained infrastructural and real estate expansion opportunities, against a generally bleak global economic backdrop. Contrary to common belief, Middle Eastern countries’ robust growth profiles are not dependent on oil prices; rather, they represent a variety of dynamics, encompassing new technology start-ups, tourism, banking, and construction. The latter sector is a promising investment area that reflects major publicly and privately led building initiatives. The Gulf Cooperation Council nations, which include the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, and Oman, form the epicenter of large-scale construction projects. Saudi Arabia alone has more than $700 billion in ongoing infrastructure initiatives. Among the more than 70 real estate projects being undertaken is the development of 500 new homes for Saudi citizens. The UAE’s capital, Abu Dhabi, supports upward of 75 new hotels, while more than two dozen hotel projects are ongoing or have been recently completed in Qatar. Reflecting this sustained growth dynamic, Abu Dhabi is regularly included as one of PricewaterhouseCoopers’ top 20 "Cities of Opportunity."
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Planespotting Case Highlights UAE Laws on Aircraft Photography

Planespotting Case Highlights UAE Laws on Aircraft Photography | Investment | Scoop.it

Recent legal action against two British tourists for photographing aircraft at the United Arab Emirates’ Fujairah International Airport has raised public awareness about UAE laws regarding “planespotting.” A popular hobby among both visitors to and residents of the UAE, planespotting typically involves taking photographs of planes in flight against the dramatic backdrop of the city skyline. Some enthusiasts also track aircraft registration numbers, logos, and markings. Dubai is an especially popular location for planespotters, who frequently visit the city for the opportunity to view rare aircraft from around the world and often share and research ideal vantage points on dedicated planespotting websites. However, many of these sites also alert hobbyists to potential legal complications associated with aircraft photography. 

While UK tourists Conrad Clitheroe and Gary Cooper are now free following a two-month jail sentence, their story has led aviation authorities and enthusiasts alike to stress the importance of understanding and adhering to local laws. While tourists familiar with Western laws may mistakenly assume that only military planes are off-limits for photography, individuals wishing to film or photograph aircraft from inside or near an UAE airport must submit an approval request and comply with laws aimed at ensuring the safety of airport passengers and employees. 

Seeking to prevent security breaches and malicious surveillance, UAE legal authorities also restrict photography in locations such as palaces and embassies. A failure to comply with these laws can result in fines of up to 5,000 dirham or prison sentences of up to three months. Aviation photography enthusiasts have since requested that UAE authorities change their regulations, arguing that they only photograph planes after they have taken off and thus pose no security risk.

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UK-UAE Bilateral Cooperation in Spring 2014

Continuing a long-standing tradition of bilateral cooperation, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) sponsored a number of programs and events in the spring of 2014. In May, the “UAE Women in Business Mission to the UK” event welcomed a delegation from the Dubai Business Women’s Council and the Abu Dhabi Businesswomen Council. At the event, female entrepreneurs from the UAE established working relationships with British counterparts and strengthened commercial ties between the two nations.

In April, the London Book Fair’s International Publishing Industry Excellence Awards recognized the Sharjah-based publisher Kalimat for its many Arabic children’s books. Kalimat earned a place on the shortlist of the Children’s and Young Adult Publisher Award category. In the field of education, the British Embassy in Abu Dhabi announced that it would open four new British curriculum schools between 2015 and 2019. Similarly, the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship formally announced the BP Innovation Scholarship.

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Barclays Sells UAE Retail Banking Unit to ADIB

Barclays Sells UAE Retail Banking Unit to ADIB | Investment | Scoop.it

British financial services giant Barclays announced in early April that it would sell off its retail banking unit in the United Arab Emirates to Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank PJSC (ADIB). The deal, which is pending regulatory approval, is valued at $177 million.

The transaction is part of a greater strategy on the part of Barclays to rein in costs after a decline in fourth-quarter profits in 2014, as well as to reorient its business toward markets in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Africa, where it will have a clearer competitive advantage. The sell-off is also intended to soothe investor concerns in the wake of fines Barclays incurred when it was found to be involved in interest-rate manipulation.

In the deal, ADIB, the largest bank in the UAE, will take on Barclays' entire UAE retail banking staff. It will also gain 110,000 new customers, most of whom are expatriate workers. This will significantly boost ADIB's current customer base of 600,000. These new clients will see the terms on their existing accounts updated to reflect the Islamic financial rules adhered to by ADIB.

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North Sea Oil Production Dips Dramatically

North Sea Oil Production Dips Dramatically | Investment | Scoop.it

In the United Kingdom, legislators are facing challenges related to oil-drilling efforts in the North Sea. Over the last three years, production in the area has dropped significantly, to lows not seen since the 1970s. Additionally, companies drilled fewer than 50 test wells in the area, a 10-year low. Experts report that reserves within the North Sea remain strong, but that much of the remaining oil is harder and more expensive to recover. In fact, estimates show that the region could still produce up to 24 billion barrels of oil, but that the companies that have the necessary licenses and infrastructure in the area are hesitant to make the investment.

If the government does not resolve the issue, it stands to lose major tax contributions; between 2012 and 2013, taxes paid by the oil industry accounted for 15 percent of all corporate taxes. The UK plans to complete its review of the North Sea oil situation and collaborate with companies like BP and Shell, which hold major stakes in the oil-rich seas, to resolve the dip in production.

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Tidal Lagoons Predicted to Meet 10 Percent of UK Energy Needs

Tidal Lagoons Predicted to Meet 10 Percent of UK Energy Needs | Investment | Scoop.it

In the United Kingdom, officials have submitted plans to create a tidal lagoon in Swansea Bay. Part of the country's commitment to explore methods of alternative energy, the lagoon could result in power for 120,000 homes for 120 years. Using the tides, the 6-mile-long U-shaped seawall will feature turbines designed to generate power from the rush of water flowing out at low tide and back in at high tide. The £850 million project would take approximately two years to complete and provide some 1,850 jobs.

Experts predict that the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon and other similar projects could ultimately provide the UK with a clean, reliable source of power. In fact, some forecast that the technology would produce up to 10 percent of the country's electricity. Additionally, lagoons such as this one could serve as effective flood barriers for areas along the north Wales coast. Environmentalists have expressed concerns but have also worked with lagoon engineers to develop a series of strict environmental guidelines.

For further information about the plan, please visit TidalLagoonSwanseaBay.com.

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Annual Investment Meeting in Dubai Scheduled for April


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Officials in the United Arab Emirates expect more than 10,000 professionals from 165 countries to attend the fourth Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre this April. Themed “Investment Partnerships for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth in Frontier and Emerging Markets,” the forum will discuss the global economic outlook and the opportunities for investment in countries like the UAE. In a recent speech, AIM organizers noted that the nation is uniquely poised to play a strong role in our globalized economy, thanks to its strategic location, well-developed transportation infrastructure, and current investment environment.

The last two days of AIM will include multiple sessions on foreign direct investment (FDI), especially as it relates to the World Expo 2020 in Dubai. Attendees will participate in panel discussions on FDI in tourism, hospitality, infrastructure, and logistics. Moreover, experts will share the importance of investing in sustainability and food security. As always, the annual meeting will include numerous opportunities for networking and an awards gala.

Learn more about this exciting upcoming event by visiting AIMCongress.com.

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British Prime Minister Discusses UK’s Relationship to UAE

British Prime Minister Discusses UK’s Relationship to UAE | Investment | Scoop.it

In late 2013, UK Prime Minister David Cameron made several efforts to tighten his country’s ties with the United Arab Emirates. Shortly after an announcement was made that Emirati citizens would benefit from relaxed visa requirements for travel to the United Kingdom, Cameron made a visit to the UAE. He prefaced his trip with remarks praising the relationship between the UAE and the UK.

Speaking to an Arabic-language newspaper, Cameron described the UAE as “a vital partner” in creating economic growth in the UK and noted that British businesses play a strong role in the UAE. British companies including BP and Shell have long had a presence in the oil-rich Middle Eastern nation. Cameron’s remarks to the paper also touched on security, including issues surrounding Syria and Iran. Cameron reiterated his support for the Emirati claim to three islands that Iran has occupied for more than 40 years, and affirmed his commitment to policies aimed at keeping Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

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UAE Hosts International Conference on Business and Consumer Behavior

Islamic Azad University in the United Arab Emirates recently hosted the International Conference on Business Strategies and Consumer Behavior, the eighth international conference of the American Academic and Scholarly Research Center (AASRC). The conference, which was held Nov. 6-7, 2013, provided scholars, researchers, and industry professionals with the opportunity to share their insights on a variety of topics ranging from marketing strategy and export growth to corporate governance and international investing.

Professionals from all over the world submitted papers for AASRC approval in order to present their research at the conference. Topics discussed at the conference included the relationship between international finance and the international political economy, corporate responsibility in the coal mining industry, the effect of international immigration on European trade, and the efficacy of digital marketing in Pakistan. Papers approved for presentation at the conference will be peer-reviewed and published in the AASRC Conference Proceedings. AASRC carries out research that promotes the sustainable development of the world’s resources.

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London Hosts 9th World Islamic Economic Forum

For more than 25 years, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani has handled commercial banking and investment arbitration and litigation for clients in the Middle East and Europe, focusing on the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates. Furthermore, Dr. Shirkhani regularly advises companies on matters related to real estate, taxation, and labor relations.

This October, the United Kingdom became the first non-Muslim country to host the World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF). Themed “Changing World, New Relationships,” the conference took place at Excel London. Over the course of the three-day event, business and political leaders from around the world addressed such matters as “smart” cities, the expanding of the online market, and microfinance in social enterprise.

Additionally, attendees participated in courses that covered Islamic capital markets and infrastructure and discussed how to promote growth in the Halal industry. In an effort to increase international investment opportunity, experts also spoke on the importance of creating global Islamic finance standards. Finally, the United Kingdom's prime minister used the conference to announce that Britain plans to offer Sharia-compliant government bonds within the next year.

In 2014, the 10th WIEF will take place in Dubai. For more information, visit WIEF.org.

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Global Markets Reflect Worries Over Syrian Conflict

by Shahram Shirkhani

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Leveraging more than 25 years as an international legal consultant, Shahram Shirkhani serves as a partner of international law firm Shirkhani & Alavi. Over the course of his career, Shahram Shirkhani has helped arrange financing for numerous Middle East oil projects and established a GSA branch of Saudi Arabian Airlines in Iran.

Over the week of August 26th, markets around the world experienced the effects of rising global tensions surrounding the Syrian conflict. As world powers such as the United States and United Kingdom debated the appropriate course of action, markets responded with increased oil prices and a rise in traditionally safe investments. Although Syria is not a major exporter of oil, prices of the commodity surged as investors worried about instability in the Middle East. In fact, Brent crude hit a six-month high of $117 per barrel on Wednesday.

Simultaneously, shares in airline stocks began trading at lower prices, as investors considered the repercussions of high fuel costs. Shares of easyJet fell 1.78 percent, while other major companies experienced decreases of nearly 4.5 percent. However, as investors divest of riskier stocks, they poured funds into traditionally safe investments such as gold. Indeed, the price of this commodity reached just over $1,433 per ounce on Wednesday.

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Dubai's Largest Bank Reports Significant Profit Increase

 Dr. Shahram Shirkhani

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A graduate of the University of Miami in Florida and Islamic University in Tehran, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani studied economics and law. Today, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani resides in Iran and has developed a reputation as an expert in international banking law, commercial arbitration, and foreign investments.

In July, Emirates Bank NBD PJSC announced that its second quarter profits had exceeded expert predictions. The bank, which is 56 percent state owned and the largest in Dubai, reported a 50 percent rise in net income in comparison with the same period last year. As a result, Emirates NBD stock values jumped 7.9 percent, adding to a total gain of approximately 83 percent for the year. 

These shifts come during a period of significant recovery for the United Arab Emirates. Since 2008, the country and Dubai more specifically have suffered the effects of the global financial crisis and the crash of the real estate market. However, government officials have estimated that between 2012 and 2015, the city will experience average economic growth of 4.6 percent. In keeping with this positive outlook, Emirates NBD has approved more mortgage loans and is considering further international expansion.

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Shahram Shirkhani: An Overview of Commercial Arbitration

Shahram Shirkhani: An Overview of Commercial Arbitration

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An accomplished legal professional with many years of experience, Shahram Shirkhani leads the International Law Firm of Shirkhani & Alavi. In this capacity, Dr. Shirkhani advises clients on an array of legal issues, including commercial arbitration. Defined as the resolution of business disputes through one or more independent arbitrators, commercial arbitration represents an ideal solution for businesses that wish to avoid the high costs and time commitment associated with the courts. 

In general, commercial arbitration occurs when two entities write an arbitration clause into their business arrangements, a decision that usually cannot be overruled. Commercial arbitration plays an integral role in the resolution of international business disputes, as a foreign judicial system may be inclined to favor one party over the other. While rulings from foreign legal systems can mean next to nothing for certain entities, international arbitration decisions carry a great deal of weight with members of an international business community.

International arbitration may be governed by one of many international laws, including the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL). Be sure to consult an attorney who is well versed in international law and legal disputes, in your home country and in any foreign country in which you do business, if you are considering arbitration.

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The UK and UAE Cooperate on Defense and Security

For many years, the militaries of the UK and United Arab Emirates (UAE) have worked together to ensure long-term stability in the Arabian Gulf and beyond. In 1996, the two nations signed a Defense Cooperation Accord, which became the UK’s most significant defense commitment outside of NATO. The UK regularly dispatches military officers to the UAE for a wide range of advisory and training activities. In addition to using air bases in the UAE, the UK has trained Emirati military leaders at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst for the better part of four decades.

During NATO’s Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, the UAE deployed 250 Special Forces soldiers, who represented the only full-scale Arab military presence in the operation. The UAE has also signed the Proliferation Security Initiative, regularly supports UK intelligence agencies, and cooperates with UK-led extradition and anti-money laundering initiatives. In recent years, the UAE has helped enforce UN sanctions in response to regional nuclear weapons initiatives.

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London's Fortnum and Mason Ventures Abroad to Open Shop in Dubai

In March, London-based upscale retailer Fortnum & Mason established its first overseas location, in Dubai. After nearly 300 years as one of London's most renowned shops, Fortnum’s is now offering its signature teas and wicker wares beyond the bounds of the United Kingdom in a move meant to update the brand and capitalize on unique cultural commonalities between Britain and the cosmopolitan United Arab Emirates.

The new Fortnum’s opened shop at a 9,400-square-foot stand-alone site directly opposite the famed Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. The shop, which occupies one of the finest luxury retail spaces in Dubai, offers the complete Fortnum’s experience in an airy, contemporary environment.

Representatives of Fortnum’s have explained some of the rationale behind the expansion into the UAE. First, Dubai offers a discerning and affluent clientele likely to appreciate a retailer like Fortnum’s, which is frequented by the likes of Queen Elizabeth and the Duchess of Cambridge. The move is also an effort to modernize the Fortnum’s brand alongside the rollout of a regional website strategy. Furthermore, as a venerable tea merchant, Fortnum’s saw a logical market in the Middle East, where tea is one of the most popular beverages and an integral part of the culture.

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UAE Ratifies New Law Governing Legal Translators

UAE Ratifies New Law Governing Legal Translators | Investment | Scoop.it

Dubai Ruler and Vice President Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid recently gave official approval to a new bylaw that will put increased requirements on nonnative legal translators working in the United Arab Emirates. In addition to requiring five years of experience in legal translation, the law will require professional translators who are not UAE citizens to register with the appropriate government agency in each emirate and obtain licensure to practice. Legal translators will also be obligated to acquire insurance covering a minimum of Dh500,000 in damages per year, to go toward compensation costs in mistranslation cases.

Sign language translators will also be held accountable by the law, which mandates competencies in manual and body language and a deep understanding of deaf culture. So far, UAE lawyers are optimistic about the law and believe that it may encourage Emiratis to enter into the profession while boosting the quality of the existing pool of non-Emirati legal translators.

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Thanks to Efficient Light Bulbs, UK Consumes Less Energy

Thanks to Efficient Light Bulbs, UK Consumes Less Energy | Investment | Scoop.it

According to analysts, UK residents now use almost a third less energy for home lighting than they did in 1997. The shift is due primarily to the increasing usage of energy-efficient light bulbs, as opposed to incandescent bulbs, which have changed very little since their invention in the late 1800s. Despite rising energy costs, the cutback in consumption has helped save the country's residents millions of pounds. Additionally, Energy Saving Trust has reported that once homeowners phase out the last of the filament bulbs, households will save up to £1.4 billion.

Although the country has made huge strides toward efficiency, the UK still lags behind its European counterparts, which on average report 13 percent less energy consumption. Moreover, German households consume 36 percent less electricity than UK households. In recent years, the European Commission has phased out sales of traditional incandescent bulbs, and it plans to decrease availability of halogen bulbs by 2016.

In addition to the higher rates of household energy consumption, cities across the UK have yet to introduce energy-efficient streetlights. Presently, only 1 million of the country's 7 million streetlights have efficient bulbs. To help alleviate this problem, the UK Green Investment Bank is offering loans to fund widespread upgrades.

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Qatar National Bank Expands Services throughout Region

Recently, QNB Financial Services, a division of Qatar National Bank, announced that it would now offer business coverage to the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt. Spurred by increasing interest among Qatari investors, the expansion comes at a time when markets in each of the three countries have experienced significant recovery. Dubai has shown the most progress overall, demonstrating bourse surges of more than 100 percent. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia's stock market increased by 26 percent, and Egypt's rose by 60 percent. Moreover, increases in institutional buying in Qatar have created an influx of funds for various investment projects.

The local economy has also been bolstered by predicted governmental infrastructure projects. As the brokerage arm of Qatar National Bank, QNB Financial Services plans to invest passive funds into the Qatar and UAE markets as early as May 2014. Experts report that the expansion will be most visible in Dubai, where QNB and other brokerage firms will rebuild operations that have not seen activity since before the financial collapse in 2008.

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United Arab Emirates Forex Trader to Enter United Kingdom

United Arab Emirates Forex Trader to Enter United Kingdom | Investment | Scoop.it

ADS, a forex and commodities trading firm in Abu Dhabi, recently began pursuing a license to operate in the United Kingdom (UK) and hopes to begin business there in 2014. When ADS gains licensure, it will become one of the first Middle Eastern firms to price the Chinese yuan for European customers. In the past months, ADS has undertaken a number of expansion initiatives. At present, it operates a fixed-income trading and capital markets brokerage business. In early 2014, the firm plans to launch new wealth management and asset management businesses. Expansion into the UK, complete with a London-based subsidiary, will allow ADS to provide the highest level of service possible to its customers.

To date, ADS has opened subsidiaries in Singapore and Hong Kong. Between these countries and the United Arab Emirates, the firm trades about $5 billion daily in forex, precious metal, and contract for difference transactions. Through trading in the Chinese yuan and American dollar currency pair, ADS offers Middle Eastern investors access to Chinese currency as interest in the region grows. The firm’s executives recognize that a truly global presence requires operation in London and looks forward to widening its international reach.

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UK Government to Launch Small Business Program in UAE

The UAE cities of Abu Dhabi and Dubai have partnered with the UK government to launch two business incubators in 2014. Announcement of the partnership, to be called the British Business Centres initiative, was made in Dubai in September 2013 by a UK minister. It will aim to help small and medium-sized businesses from the United Kingdom establish themselves in the United Arab Emirates.

Assistance provided by the organizations will take a variety of forms. Initially, the business incubators will help companies find local sponsors and affordable office space. Local sponsorship, required by law, often poses a difficulty to new enterprises in the UAE, as do the country’s high rents and a convention that rent be paid a year in advance. Help from the centers will allow new businesses to pay monthly rent for a year, decreasing their initial start-up costs and giving them a chance to begin doing business before facing some of the biggest difficulties of operating in the UAE. Each British Business Centre will have the capacity to assist 50 companies at once.

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U.K.’s Prince Harry Headlines Dubai Fundraiser for Children in Lesotho

As one of the founding partners of the International Law Firm of Shirkhani & Alavi, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani counsels small businesses and large corporations alike on matters relating to European and Middle Eastern markets. Dr. Shahram Shirkhani attended school in the United Kingdom as a young man and maintains an interest in the affairs of the country in the Middle East.

In early October, Prince Harry of Britain’s royal family helped raise over $1 million during a fundraiser held for the Al Jalila Foundation and Sentebale, which supports children living in poverty in the Southern African nation of Lesotho. The event took place in Dubai at the JW Marriot Marquis hotel.

Speaking to the 300 people attending the event, Prince Harry made note of the number of children with AIDS in Lesotho and the ability of donors to destigmatise their condition. Prince Harry and a prince from Lesotho have worked together to combat AIDS in the country for years through Sentebale, which won an award for its practices from the United Nations in 2010. Prizes raffled off to raise money at the dinner in October included Dubai World Cup horse race hospitality and jewellery.

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An Overview of the Oil and Gas Reserves in the UAE

by Shahram Shirkhani

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Noted for his work in transactional law, attorney and law professor Shahram Shirkhani has extensive experience in mergers and acquisitions, financing, and legal advisement for companies in the Middle East and beyond. With a particular expertise in financing oil and gas projects in Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, Shahram Shirkhani stays abreast of developments in the energy trade in each of these countries.

With the world’s seventh-largest reserves of crude oil and natural gas, the UAE remains one of the most important and valued sources of energy for countries across the globe. According to data provided by the U.S. Energy Information Administration in 2011, the UAE produced 2.69 million barrels of crude oil per day; that number has since increased to 3.2 million barrels. Today, the UAE also produces 1.85 million barrels of natural gas each day, making it the 17th-largest natural gas producer worldwide. However, the UAE currently consumes 2.7 million barrels of natural gas per day, resulting in a net import.

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Survey Ranks UAE as a Top Destination for British Expats

Survey Ranks UAE as a Top Destination for British Expats
Shahram Shirkhani's insight:

According to a recent study conducted by NatWest and the Centre for Future Studies, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has become a hotspot for British expatriates. Although the country has made the list of top 10 expatriate destinations every year for the last five years, in 2013, the country climbed to the number three spot. Indeed, the NatWest International Personal Banking Quality of Life Report concluded that Britons preferred the UAE after only Australia and Canada.

All of the study’s 1,800 participants responded to questions about weather and environment, jobs and the economy, and education and culture. Overwhelmingly, Britons reported that the UAE offered significant career advancement opportunities, as well as tax-free salaries. They also noted the family-friendly lifestyle and the wide range of activities available for both adults and children. Finally, participants stated that they enjoyed the hot, sunny weather and often took advantage of their local beaches. However, more than 90 percent of British expatriates living in the UAE said that they planned to eventually return to the UK.

A professor on the Islamic Azad University faculty of law in Tehran, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani also serves as a legal and financial consultant to corporations and banks across Europe and the Middle East. Specifically, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani focuses his career on matters in the UK and the UAE.

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Shahram Shirkhani: Qeshm Island and Its Importance Today

Shahram Shirkhani: Qeshm Island and Its Importance Today

Shahram Shirkhani's insight:

Over the course of his career in transactional law, Shahram Shirkhani has worked with a wide range of public and private entities in Iran, the U.A.E., the U.K., and elsewhere, accumulating several notable achievements in the process. During the 1990s, Shahram Shirkhani helped arrange financing for the Qeshm free trade zone, a strategic island located in the Strait of Hormuz.

Nestled between the Iranian mainland, the Omani port city of Khasab, and the U.A.E.’s Port Rashid, the Qeshm free trade zone was envisioned and designated to be the largest free trade area between the Asia-Pacific region and Europe. With more than 15,000 ships crossing through the strait each year, Qeshm is capable of docking ships of more than 100 tons, as well as hosting substantial port installations and commercial buildings. Additionally, Qeshm has been identified as a source of oil and natural gas production, and a massive pipeline on the island is currently under construction.

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