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.


Hajj season boosts Middle East hotel demand in August

Updated 24 September 2018
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Hajj season boosts Middle East hotel demand in August

  • Occupancy rates — a measure of the proportion of available rooms sold — in the region jumped to 63.4 percent from 62.1 percent
  • The average daily room rate — another key industry metric — increased 12.2 percent to reach close to $170 per night

LONDON: Demand for hotel rooms across the Middle East leapt last month providing welcome relief for an industry that has been grappling with an oversupply of hotel accommodation, new data showed.
Occupancy rates — a measure of the proportion of available rooms sold — in the region jumped to 63.4 percent from 62.1 percent, according to data provider STR’s research published on Sept. 24.
The average daily room rate — another key industry metric — increased 12.2 percent to reach close to $170 per night, while revenue per available room (RevPar) increased by 14.5 percent to reach $107.50.
The region’s hotel sector has been under pressure due partly to the impact of low oil prices and geopolitical risks, resulting in a slump in room revenue and occupancy as supply exceeded demand.
“It is true in the broader sense that we have been seeing a softening of market-wide RevPar levels in the hospitality sector across most major cities within the GCC countries,” said Ali Manzoor, partner, hospitality and leisure at property consultancy firm Knight Frank.
Analysts have blamed the year-on-year uptick in August on the earlier Hajj season and Eid Al-Adha holiday, rather than indicative of a change in outlook for the sector.
“The spike in occupancy levels in August was largely attributable to differences between the Gregorian and Hijri calendars,” Manzoor said.
This year, the pilgrimage period took place in August, helping to boost the industry’s performance that month. “It is therefore reasonable to expect hotels to underperform in the month of September in relation to last year,” he said.
Looking at data for the year-to-date, the UAE retains the highest occupancy rate in the Gulf region at 72.2 percent, though this represents a slight decline of 0.8 percent compared to the same time period last year, according to STR data.
Saudi Arabia’s occupancy levels stood at 58.1 percent year-to-date, marginally up by 0.2 percent on last year.