Their News [Archives:2008/1170/Local News]
NATCO expands Hyundai motors services in Yemen
Hyundai and NATCO, the distributor of Hyundai vehicles in Yemen join in launching new dealerships in Sana'a and Aden. This is an innovative marketing approach, the first of its kind in Yemen.
Today, due to the wide-spread recognition of Hyundai in Yemen and the increasing demand by the Yemeni consumers, NATCO has sought to expand its sales outlets throughout the country. A number of dealers for Hyundai vehicles have been appointed. They are Al-Nakeeb Agencies in Aden, Al-Jazeerah Agencies and Auto Cars in Sana'a. These dealers will provide the same level of service provided by NATCO continuing on the path of success achieved by Hyundai's motor Company in Yemen.
This is a move designed t respond to the increasing demands of our customers and, yet, another proof to NATCO's commitment towards its customers, NATCO has been providing the highest level of after sales service,. NATCO has built Showrooms and well-equipped maintenance centers in most governorates of the country. In addition, NATCO has made available the mobile workshop, which is well equipped to provide quick response and emergency repair services around the clock.
NEW REPORT UNVEILS BUSINESS STRATEGIES FOR ENGAGING THE POOR
Creating Value for All: Strategies for Doing Business with the Poor, a new and groundbreaking report released today by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) offers strategies and tools for companies to expand beyond traditional business practices and bring in the world's poor as partners in growth and wealth creation. Part of UNDP's Growing Inclusive Market's initiative, the report draws on extensive case studies and demonstrates the effectiveness)both for human progress and for wealth creation)of more inclusive business models.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently issued a call to action on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), urging an international effort to accelerate progress and to make 2008 a turning point in the fight against poverty. This report demonstrates concrete ways the private sector can join in this vital effort.
The poor have a largely untapped potential for consumption, production, innovation, and entrepreneurial activity. But the more business models integrate and include the poor, the more likely companies successfully pursuing revenues will also help in fulfilling the Millennium Development Goals.
Yet the private sector cannot meet the needs of the poor nor overcome all the obstacles to doing business with the poor alone. The report outlines what businesses, governments, communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), donors and international organizations can do to ensure the greatest good.
As UNDP Administrator Kemal Dervi_ writes, “The power of poor people to benefit from market activity lies in their ability to participate in markets and take advantage of market opportunities. Business models that include the poor require broad support and offer gains for all.”
Creating Value for All highlights five strategies that private businesses have successfully used to overcome the most common obstacles to doing business with the poor:
– adapt products and services;
– invest in infrastructure or training to remove constraints;
– leverage the strengths of the poor;
– work with similarly-minded businesses, non-profit organizations or public service providers;
– engage in policy dialogue with governments.
As the authors note, “There is room for many more inclusive business models. There is room for more inclusive markets. And there is room for much greater value creation. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, 'The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems.'”
Creating Value for All showcases 50 case studies by researchers in developing and developed countries. These studies demonstrate the successful pursuit of both revenues and social impact by local and international small- and medium-sized companies, as well as multinational corporations.
In Morocco, the subsidiary of a European water and waste company has dramatically increased the percentage of people with access to water and electricity in the shanty towns of Casablanca. By hiring and providing technical and management training to “street representatives”, the company ensured local oversight. Now more than 30,000 new households are connected to Casablanca's electricity system, and monthly household budgets for energy in this area have dropped from $17 to $6.
In Egypt, a group of eight companies has specialized in sustainable agricultural production and organic products for the domestic market and for export. With 2000 employees and 850 small-scale farmers, in 2005 the group cultivated 3,500 hectares of land and reaped US$19 million in revenues.
In Egypt, a sustainable development initiative at the Siwa oasis incorporates women's artisanry, sustainable agriculture, animal husbandry and renewable energy. The initiative employs local people and uses local building and art techniques to make the oasis a key destination for eco-tourists.
In addition to examples from the 50 case studies, Creating Value for All offers new tools for interested businesses. A strategy matrix helps find potential solutions to common constraints, while another new tool -heat maps – offer a visual overview of the market or services landscape)and a first look at potential new markets. For example, in Guatemala's western regions the heat map shows that 13 percent of people living on less than $2 per a day have access to credit, but that this figure drops to less than 8 percent in the country's eastern regions.
Hendrix photographer captures diversity of Islamic culture
One of the world's most celebrated rock photographers has launched a collection of work showcasing the diversity and beauty of the Islamic world. Peter Sanders, who made his name photographing famous rock and roll icons of the 1960s, has launched “In the Shade of the Tree”, documenting the author's travels around the Muslim world.
The book illustrates Sanders four decades of travels to experience the wonders of the Islamic world. “In the Shade of the Tree” captures the humanity of peoples often labeled by the West as either victims of circumstance or a threat to modern culture.
This seminal work was originally published, as a limited run, in 2002, and had been out of print for 6 years. The second edition was commissioned as a response to continued demands from Sanders' fans for a chance to acquire a copy of his most celebrated work. The new edition has been updated and is prefaced by renowned American scholar Hamza Yusuf.
During the four decades of travel that inspired the work, Sanders journeyed across the three continents of ancient Islamic civilisation, and enjoyed the diversity of culture and history offered by Andaluc”a, North and Central Africa, The Middle East, Central Asia and China.
The photography is interspersed with world poetry and verses from the Holy Scriptures of different religions. The book gives the reader an opportunity to share Sanders reflections on the concepts of beauty, wisdom, poverty and the nature of happiness. He cajoles his audience into contemplating the “wealth of poverty” and the influence and importance of women in Muslim societies.
The title is inspired by the saying of the Prophet Muhammad “I am in this world like a traveller who takes shade under a tree, only to resume his journey.” Shaykh Hamza Yusuf elaborates further, quoting a Qur'anic verse: “Have you not considered your Lord, how He extends the shade, and had He willed He would have made it still? Then We make the sun its guide, then We withdraw it unto Us gradually.” (chapter 25, verses 45-46)
California-based Scholar Hamza Yusuf is a fan of the work, and commented: “In the Shade of the Tree is the result of many years of painstaking observation of shade. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then these pictures are a testimony to the beauty in Sanders' eye. He uses an odd yet wondrous mechanical device that captures for one brief moment a glimpse of beauty. The pictures in this book, while only brief moments of shade written in light captured by his discerning eye, will linger on in your memory long after you have closed the book.”
Further information about “In the Shade of the Tree” is available at www.inspiralbooks.com.
G8 should abandon current model of aid for health – new report
As the G8 gathers in Hokkaido, leaders will pledge billions more aid for health in Africa – despite the fact that previous aid has had almost no impact.
A new paper from the Campaign for Fighting Diseases argues we should completely rethink the way aid is delivered, bypassing corrupt and inefficient government ministries and making far greater use of private organisations.
Recent years have seen massive increases in foreign aid for health, rising to 13% of total overseas aid in 2005 and accounting for over 19% of all health spending in Sub-Saharan Africa; yet in spite of this the region is making no progress towards meeting the health-related Millennium Development Goals.
Much of this failure is due to aid going directly to ministries in developing countries, who are then supposed to use the money to deliver healthcare. Mismanagement, corruption and waste ensure that very little of it reaches patients.
Instead, donors should stipulate that their funds be used to finance competitive, outcome-based contracts to deliver healthcare. Such contracts would see non-profit, private sector and government entities competing to provide health services, with continued funding contingent on actually delivering results.
Where they have been used, contracts have outperformed government provision in cost, effectiveness and equity. The government of Cambodia has been so successful with their contracting programme that it has now been extended to cover one in ten Cambodians. Six other case studies show that contracting delivers results far superior to government provision.
Report author Philip Stevens says: “The current model of health aid is not working. Competitive contracts would ensure that health services could be delivered more cheaply to those who are failed by public provision – especially the rural poor – and that taxpayers' money is no longer wasted on unaccountable aid spending.”