Business in Brief [Archives:2008/1157/Business & Economy]

May 22 2008

– 25.5% of all electricity produced is lost

The General Electricity corporation stated that a total of 25.5% of all electricity produced within the country is lost at a total cost exceeding 17 billion Riyals in 2007. Capital Secretariatand Sana'a governorates were responsible for 40% of the lost electricity. Reasons for the loss range between inefficient transformers and poor connectivity and illegal power connections which are not accounted for.

– Cost of construction steel sky rockets

The cost of construction steel has increased by 30% during the last two weeks, exceeding 300,000 Riyals per tones, compared to slightly less than 200,000 Riyals last month. The ministry of trade has formed a committee toinvestigate the increase in the prices and recommend remedies.

– Islamic Development Bank to build more roads in Yemen

A delegation from the Islamic development bank has met with the Minister of public works and road Al-Kurshimi, and discussed the financing of the construction of feeder roads in the governoates of Taiz and Lahej at a total cost of US$ 13 million. The delegation also discussed the importance of forming maintenance units to ensure that the roads are regularly maintained.

– 66 new companies registered in Q1 2008

Ministry of Trade and industry reported the registration of 66 new companies during the first quarter of 2008, with a total paid up capital of 2.1 billion Riyals. 28 companies were trade and construction companies with the largest capital, while 24 companies were service-oriented and smaller in size.

– Yemen Seeks Australian wheat

Yemen's Minister of Trade and Industry Dr. Yahya Al-Mutawakel is heading a delegation consisting of officials and businessmen to Australia, with the purpose of finding new suppliers of wheat, and discuss possible cooperation and food aid to Yemen.

– Substantial increase of wheat production locally

The Ministry of Agriculture has recently announced that the total amount of locally produced wheat has increased by 46% in 2007 compared to 2006, amounting to a total of 218,000 tones. The ministry stated that its new food security strategy aims atcontinually increasing local production to

decrease dependence of the international market of wheat.

– Economy further strained by refugees

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said that the number of the Somali refugees in Yemen has tripled, increasing the strain on the Yemeni economy and also on organizations which provide humanitarian assistance to refugees.

– Total E&P announces scholarships in petroleum

Total E&P has announced three scholarships for diplomas in petroleum engineering for the employees of the ministry of oil, and two master scholarships for employees of the ministry of foreign affairs in public policy.