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Prospective buyers can explore a metaverse city before buying a property off plan

Metaverse will boost online home sales ‘five-fold’, says Damac

One of Dubai’s largest real estate developers is already close to $500 million in property sales each year online – and the metaverse is expected to help this grow more than five-fold when it is fully utilised as a selling channel. Many observers may be sceptical about the nascent Web3 sector, but Damac Properties is […]

Qatar issues licence to Elon Musk’s satellite broadband firm

Qatar’s telecom watchdog Communications Regulatory Authority (CRA) has issued an individual licence to Starlink Satellite Qatar, state-owned QNA reported. The licence authorises US-based Starlink’s Qatar unit to provide satellite broadband Internet services to individuals and enterprises via the low-earth orbit satellite constellation of SpaceX. Starlink will provide direct-to-consumer satellite Internet and premium services, targeting businesses […]

Oracle fined for bribing foreign officials in the UAE and Turkey

Oracle Corp will pay about $23 million to resolve charges its units in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and India used slush funds to bribe foreign officials in order to win business, the US Securities and Exchange Commission said on Tuesday. The case covered alleged wrongdoing from 2014 to 2019, and is the second time […]

Malaysia and Indonesia interested in buying Turkish armed drones

Malaysia and Indonesia have expressed keen interest in buying armed drones from Turkish defence firm Baykar, according to Ankara’s foreign minister. “Many Asian countries, especially Malaysia and Indonesia, show great interest in our defence industry products. Agreements are being signed,” Mevlut Cavusoglu told a press conference in Tokyo on Monday. Cavusoglu, who was in Japan […]

Lionel Messi in PSG shirt with Ooredoo logo

Qatar’s Ooredoo plans to sell 20,000 telecom towers

Qatari telecoms company Ooredoo is preparing to sell 20,000 of its towers, it revealed on Monday. Sources said it had engaged Morgan Stanley to work on the deal. The sources added that Ooredoo is looking to sell towers in the Gulf region and other markets including Iraq and Algeria through a sale-and-leaseback arrangement. In a […]

Elon Musk says activating Starlink for Iranians after Blinken’s tweet

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said on Friday that he would activate the firm’s satellite internet service, Starlink, in response to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s tweet that the United States took action “to advance internet freedom and the free flow of information” to Iranians. The US Treasury Department on Friday issued guidance expanding internet […]

Israel to sell Rafael-made air defence system to UAE

Israel has agreed to sell an advanced air defence system to the United Arab Emirates, two sources familiar with the matter said, in the first such known deal between them since they forged ties in 2020. The deal reinforces how, for some Arab states, resolving the decades-long Israel-Palestinian conflict has now been overshadowed by national […]

Vodafone is among the leading tech companies opening offices in Egypt

Big-name tech businesses choose Egypt as place to outsource

The Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) has recorded a rise in the number of business services and IT jobs offshored to Egypt. At least 19 global services providers and leading tech companies have announced their expansion plans in the country and four new market entrants established their offices and research and development centres during […]

Apple to hike App Store prices in Egypt

Apple Inc. announced increasing prices of apps and in-app purchases on its App Store in several countries, the Cupertino-based firm said in a blog post. The countries include Egypt, Japan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Poland, South Korea, Sweden, Vietnam, and all territories that use the euro currency. The new prices, excluding auto-renewable subscriptions, will be effective as […]

Tie, Accessories, Accessory

Elon Musk’s satellite firm seeks exemption from Iranian sanctions

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said on Monday that the company will ask for an exemption from sanctions against Iran to provide the firm’s Starlink satellite broadband service in the country. Musk made the statement on Twitter at a time of widespread protests in Iran over the death of a woman in police custody. Some people […]

Turkish fintech Fimple plans Dubai office before 2024-end

Fimple, a Turkish fintech startup that provides advanced cloud-based financial services, is planning to open an office in Dubai before the end of 2024 as part of its expansion in the Middle East and Africa. The startup has already drawn $2 million worth of investments in two months, said Fimple co-founder and managing director Mucahit […]

UAE rolls out digital VAT-refund scheme as transactions rise 104%

The UAE’s Federal Tax Authority (FTA) has launched a 100 percent digital value-added tax (VAT) refund scheme for tourists, in partnership with Planet Tax Free, the operator of the tax refund system in the country, WAM, the UAE state news agency, reported. The new solution is integrated electronically between retail outlets and the tax refund […]

Airplane, Aircraft, Vehicle

Turkish firm eyes drone manufacturing in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on Friday met with the head of Turkish defence firm Baykar and said the company would set up a factory in Ukraine to build unmanned aerial vehicles. Baykar’s Bayraktar TB2 drone has been hugely popular in Ukraine, where it helped destroy many Russian artillery systems and armoured vehicles. “We discussed the […]

Dubai grants provisional approval to crypto firm

London-based crypto firm said it had won a provisional approval to operate in Dubai, becoming the latest in a series of digital asset companies expanding in the Gulf as the region looks to become a hub for blockchain technology. The company, which offers users a crypto wallet and is also a crypto exchange, said […]

Person, Human, Shop

Qatar’s Ooredoo plans to sell Myanmar unit to Singapore firm

Qatari telecommunications company Ooredoo plans to sell its Myanmar operations to Singapore-headquartered technology firm The One Matrix Ventures (TOMV), according to three people with direct knowledge of the matter. Ooredoo is the last majority foreign-owned telecoms company in Myanmar since a rush to exit after last year’s military coup. Norway’s Telenor withdrew from the country […]

Parents can keep an eye on their children's spending with the app

Teen banking app Zywa targets Saudi after funding boost

Zywa, a teen-focused fintech startup in the Middle East and North Africa, has announced plans to expand into Saudi Arabia following a seed funding round of $3 million.  The startup, which is part of Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem, offers a prepaid card for teenagers and an app to manage and save money. The […]

Damac's data centre company Edgnex has started work on a Riyadh facility

Dubai’s Damac to invest $990m in data centres in Germany

Dubai-based conglomerate Damac Group is planning to invest $990 million in data centres and technology acquisitions in Germany. The company is currently on a fact-finding expedition in the European country to identify opportunities. “It’s a very interesting time now in Germany, especially for future-oriented industries and the country has a lot of opportunities in sectors […]

China seeks ‘affectionate’ ties with domestic internet firms

China’s cyberspace watchdog wants to build an “affectionate” relationship between internet enterprises and the government, a senior official said on Friday, the latest verbal assurance to an industry still on edge after a long and bruising regulatory crackdown. Niu Yibing, vice minister of the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), told a news conference the agency […]

Snap eyes Qatar office to support local creators

US social media firm Snap Inc. has signed a memorandum of understanding with Qatar’s Government Communications Office (GCO) to open a new office in Doha, expanding its footprint across the Middle East. This move is part of Snap’s efforts to work closely with local partners and businesses to grow the country’s digital landscape, GCO said […]

Dubai ranks 18th in new index of top digital cities

Dubai is the only Middle Eastern city to be highlighted in the Digital Cities Index (DCI) 2022 – a new ranking of 30 global cities across four key pillars: connectivity, services, culture and sustainability. Ranked 18th with an overall score of 63.8, the city’s position highlights its forward-thinking approach to the digitised economy, underpinned by […]

US to resupply Saudi and UAE missile defence systems

The US State Department approved the potential sale of Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) missile interceptors to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Patriot missile interceptors to Saudi Arabia in separate deals worth as much as $5.3 billion, the Pentagon said on Tuesday. The potential deals, which would resupply key missile defence systems for […]