Hamriyah Free Zone to install air quality monitoring stations

Updated 22 November 2014
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Hamriyah Free Zone to install air quality monitoring stations

Hamriyah Free Zone Authority (HFZA) has decided to install continuous and portable ambient air quality monitoring stations in the Free Zone to monitor the levels of air pollution at all times.
Saud Salim Al Mazrouei, director of Hamriyah Free Zone Authority (HFZA) and Sharjah Airport International Free Zone (SAIF ZONE), signed a contract in this regard with BDH Middle East L.L.C which was represented by its Business Development Director, Noveel Pandya.
“This initiative is in line with the directives of Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al-Qasimi, member of the Supreme Council, Ruler of Sharjah,” said Al-Mazrouei.
He thanked the Ruler for his constant support toward environmental conservation and industrial growth in accordance with the standards.
“We are installing this system to assess the extent of pollution, to evaluate our control options and provide data for air quality modeling,” he added.
“These ambient air quality monitoring networks are designed to address environmental & human health objectives and we are committed toward preserving the environment and have established high performance standards for environment, health and safety (EHS) in the free zone as a step toward our objectives,” Al-Mazrouei said.
“We have assigned BDH Middle East for the supplying & commissioning of Ecotech, Australia and Airpointer, Austrian brands of Ambient Air Quality Monitoring stations as a part of this project which is on par with the international and federal environmental standards,” he said.
“We are upgrading our systems with the launch of this ambient air quality monitoring system,” he added.
“Apart from leading to heightened awareness of the importance of EHS across our operations, the new air quality monitoring system — to be managed by the internal environmental protection department — will also help in identifying and managing risk or breach of norms by companies operating in the Free Zone,” he said.
“Ambient Air Quality Monitoring will help to determine the daily trend of air pollutants and to assess the free zone’s compliance with the air quality standards. It will also assist in evaluating the potential impact of the air pollutants on the environment and on the health of the free zone population and the general public. In addition, reliable and updated information on air pollution will be available to the general public,” Al-Mazrouei said.
“Our environmental team keeps a close watch on air quality at different sites within the Hamriyah Free Zone and the priority monitoring is focused on the industrial and other sensitive areas,” he added.


Filipino remittances from the Middle East down 15.3% in 2018

Updated 54 min 26 sec ago
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Filipino remittances from the Middle East down 15.3% in 2018

  • Cash remittances from OFWs in Saudi Arabia fell 11.1 percent last year to $2.23 billion from $2.51 billion previously
  • Personal remittances are a major driver of domestic consumption

DUBAI: Money sent home by overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in the Middle East went down 15.3 percent to $6.62 billion in 2018 from $7.81 billion a year earlier, latest government data shows.
Lower crude prices, which affected most OFW host countries in the region, the job nationalization schemes of Gulf states and a deployment ban last year of household service workers to Kuwait were the primary reasons for the decline, a reversal from the 3.4 percent remittance growth recorded in 2017.
A government study has noted that Saudi Arabia was the leading country of destination for OFWs, with more than a quarter of Filipinos being deployed there at any given time, together with the United Arab Emirates (15.3 percent), Kuwait (6.7 percent) and Qatar (5.5 percent).
Cash remittances from OFWs in Saudi Arabia fell 11.1 percent last year to $2.23 billion from $2.51 billion a year before; down 19.9 percent to $2.03 billion in the UAE from $2.54 billion in 2017; 14.5 percent lower in Kuwait to $689.61 million from $806.48 million and 9.2 percent down in Qatar to $1 billion in 2018, from $1.1 billion a year earlier.
The Philippine government issued a deployment ban for Kuwait early last year, and lasted for five months, after a string of reported deaths and abuses on Filipino workers in the Gulf state.
OFW remittances from Oman, which implemented a job nationalization program like that of Saudi Arabia and the UAE, dove 33.8 percent to $228.74 million in 2018 from $345.41 million a year before. In Bahrain, cash sent by Filipinos rose 2.2 percent to $234.14 million last year from $229.02 million previously.
Meanwhile, overall OFW remittances grew 3 percent year-on-year to $32.2 billion, the highest annual level to date.
“The growth in personal remittances during the year was driven by remittance inflows from land-based OFs with work contracts of one year or more and remittances from both sea-based and land-based OFs with work contracts of less than one year,” the Philippine central monetary authority said.
Personal remittances are a major driver of domestic consumption and in 2018 accounted for 9.7 percent of the Philippines’ gross domestic product.