Boeing grounds 777s after engine fire in Colorado

Boeing grounds 777s after engine fire in Colorado
Boeing confirmed Feb. 22, 2021 that dozens of its 777 aircraft were grounded globally after the engine of a United Airlines plane caught fire and scattered debris over a suburb of Denver, Colorado.(File/AFP)
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Updated 23 February 2021

Boeing grounds 777s after engine fire in Colorado

Boeing grounds 777s after engine fire in Colorado
  • The recent incident prompted United and other airlines to ground planes with the same Pratt & Whitney engine
  • While no one was injured in the Denver incident, the episode is the latest setback for Boeing

NEW YORK: Dozens of Boeing 777 planes were grounded worldwide Monday following a weekend scare on a United Airlines’ plane that suffered engine failure and scattered airplane debris over suburban Denver.
The incident on the flight out of Denver — which quickly returned to the airport after part of the engine caught fire and broke off — prompted United and other airlines to ground planes with the same Pratt & Whitney engine.
While no one was injured in the Denver incident, the episode is the latest setback for Boeing, which only recently resumed deliveries of the long-grounded 737 MAX following two fatal crashes of that plane.
Aviation experts said the incident especially raised questions about Pratt & Whitney and United over engine maintenance.
“It’s nothing like the MAX,” said Teal Group aviation analyst Richard Aboulafia. “After all these years of service it is unlikely to be a design issue with the engine, certainly it is something to do with maintenance.”
The Denver incident followed a Japan Airlines 777 incident in December involving the same type of engine, as well as an engine problem in February 2018 on a United flight.
“There might be a common theme” among the three incidents “but until the investigation is complete, we don’t know that,” said Scott Hamilton of Leeham News, an aviation news site.
Boeing said all 128 of the 777s with Pratt & Whitney engines were grounded following Saturday’s emergency landing of United flight 328 to Hawaii.
Of the 128 planes, only 69 were in service while 59 were in storage.
Besides United, which removed 24 planes from service, affected carriers included Japanese carriers, Japan Airlines and All Nippon and South Korean airlines, Asiana and Korean Air.
Egyptian state newspaper Al Ahram reported Monday that national carrier Egyptair is grounding four planes with this type of engine. However, those aircraft were not presently in service, a source close to the manufacturer said.
British Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced a temporary ban on jets with Pratt & Whitney 4000-112 series engines from entering UK airspace.

A video shot from inside the United aircraft — which had 231 passengers and 10 crew on board — showed the right engine ablaze and wobbling on the wing of the Boeing 777-200.
Residents in the Denver suburb of Broomfield found large pieces of the plane scattered around their community.
The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has ordered extra inspections after the incident.
FAA chief Steve Dickson said a preliminary safety data review pointed to a need for additional checks of the jet engine’s fan blades, unique to the model and only used on 777 planes.
FAA officials met with Pratt & Whitney and Boeing representatives Sunday evening, he added.
The US National Transportation and Safety Board (NTSB) said a preliminary investigation indicated two fan blades fractured on the number 2 engine on the plane.
“The airplane sustained minor damage,” the NTSB said Sunday. “The examination and documentation of the airplane is ongoing.”
In a briefing Monday, NTSB chair Robert Sumwalt reiterated that two fan blades were damaged but there had been “no structural damage” to the plane.
“Our mission is to understand not only what happened but why it happened, so that we can keep it from happening again,” he said.
Pratt & Whitney said it was cooperating with the NTSB probe and “will continue to work to ensure the safe operation of the fleet.”
United said it was removing the aircraft from its schedule, “and will continue to work closely with regulators to determine any additional steps.”
Japan’s transport ministry earlier said it had ordered stricter inspections of engines after a Japan Airlines 777 plane flying from Haneda to Naha experienced trouble with “an engine in the same family” in December.

The engine failure is unwelcome news for Boeing, which also faces a fresh investigation in Holland after a Boeing 747-400 cargo plane showered a small townwith debris injuring two people — the same day as the Denver incident.
“We have started a preliminary investigation,” said Luisa Hubregtse of the Dutch Safety Board. “However, at this stage it’s too early to draw any conclusions.”
Boeing only recently resumed deliveries of the 737 MAX following a 20-month global grounding after two tragic crashes killed 346 people.
The MAX began returning to commercial service in late 2020, a time when airline travel remains depressed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Boeing executives said last month they expect it will take about three years for activity to return to pre-pandemic levels.
Michel Merluzeau, an expert at consultancy AIR, agreed the latest problem did not appear to result from poor plane design.
“It’s not really a problem for Boeing,” he said. “It’s more an issue of maintenance — how United or Pratt & Whitney is maintaining engines that have been in use for a while.”
Hamilton of Leeham News said the episode “is an embarrassing headline, but as a practical issue, it will have no impact on Boeing.”
Noting the weak demand for longer-service planes during Covid-19, Hamilton predicted some carriers could opt to retire the planes rather than return them to service.
Shares of Boeing fell 2.1 percent to $212.88, while Pratt & Whitney’s parent company Raytheon Technologies fell 1.7 percent to $73.00.
United rose 3.5 percent to $49.70, joining other carriers in rallying after a positive note from Deutsche Bank about the industry’s prospects amid improving Covid-19 trends.
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Deyaar profits rise, sees Dubai property demand growing

Deyaar profits rise, sees Dubai property demand growing
Updated 39 min 5 sec ago

Deyaar profits rise, sees Dubai property demand growing

Deyaar profits rise, sees Dubai property demand growing
  • Profit grew on higher demand for Deyaar’s ready and off-plan residential units

DUBAI: Deyaar, one of Dubai’s biggest property developers, reported a rise in first quarter profit, the company said in a statement.

The shares rose 0.8 percent in early trade.

The developer that is majority-owned by Dubai Islamic Bank, reported first quarter net profit of 15.1 million dirhams ($4.1 million)  – up from 2.6 million dirhams from the same period last year.
Sales also rose to 149.2 million dirhams, compared to 98.8 million dirhams in 2020.
Profit grew on higher demand for Deyaar’s ready and off-plan residential units, Saeed Al-Qatami, its CEO said.
"We expect this demand to grow even more with the economic recovery in the emirate and the effort that the government takes towards executing the Dubai Urban Master Plan 2040,” he said.
Deyaar recently handed over its Bella Rose development in Dubai Science Park. It has 478 residential units and 12 shops.
The company also began construction work on the third and fourth phases of its residential Midtown project in Dubai Production City, where it plans to add 11 more buildings.


Qatar may allow 100% foreign ownership of listed companies

Qatar may allow 100% foreign ownership of listed companies
Updated 48 min 56 sec ago

Qatar may allow 100% foreign ownership of listed companies

Qatar may allow 100% foreign ownership of listed companies
DUBAI: The Qatari cabinet approved a draft law on Wednesday that would allow non-Qatari investors to own up to 100 percent of the capital of companies listed on the Qatar Stock Exchange, according to a statement on Qatar News Agency.

Should the law be implemented, companies would have to approve increases in foreign ownership on a case-by-case basis, Bloomberg News reported.

Such a change could lead to inflows of about $1.5 billion into listed Qatari companies, with beneficiaries potentially including Qatar Islamic Bank, Masraf Al Rayan and Commercial Bank of Qatar, Bloomberg cited investment bank EFG-Hermes as saying.

Foreign ownership of many Qatari companies currently sits way below the 49 percent limit. Qatar General Insurance had 32 percent foreign ownership as of April 14, Gulf Warehousing 30 percent and Commercial Bank of Qatar 21 percent, Qatar Stock Exchange data shows.

Saudi Arabia dropped its cap on ownership of publicly traded companies by foreign strategic investors in June 2019, while the UAE said in July of the same year it would allow the emirates to set their own foreign-ownership limits.

Qatar eased rules on foreign property ownership in October last year in an attempt to make the sector more attractive to expatriates, foreign investors and real estate funds.

Turkish lira trades flat ahead of central bank rate decision

Turkish lira trades flat ahead of central bank rate decision
Updated 45 min 55 sec ago

Turkish lira trades flat ahead of central bank rate decision

Turkish lira trades flat ahead of central bank rate decision
  • Last month, the lira weakened to near its record lows after President Tayyip Erdogan appointed Sahap Kavcioglu as central bank governor

ISTANBUL: Turkey’s lira traded flat against the dollar on Thursday, ahead of the new central bank governor’s first rate decision, where the bank is expected to maintain its policy rate at 19 percent.
The lira stood at 8.0530 against the dollar at 0647 GMT, near Wednesday’s close of 8.0655. Last month, the lira weakened to near its record lows after President Tayyip Erdogan appointed Sahap Kavcioglu as central bank governor, replacing his predecessor in a shock decision.


Dubai logistics firm Tristar drops IPO plans

Dubai logistics firm Tristar drops IPO plans
Updated 15 April 2021

Dubai logistics firm Tristar drops IPO plans

Dubai logistics firm Tristar drops IPO plans
  • Tristar began its public share sale on April 4, setting a price range that implied a market capitalization of 2.64-3.24 billion dirhams
  • The company saw weak demand for its shares, said two sources familiar with the matter

DUBAI: Logistics firm Tristar has dropped plans for an initial public offering (IPO) in Dubai, with sources saying the deal did not attract enough investor demand.
The move, which confirms what the sources had earlier told Reuters, is a setback for Dubai’s bourse, the Dubai Financial Market, which has not seen a big ticket listing since 2017.
The company said “its board and existing shareholders have decided to withdraw its planned initial public offering on the Dubai Financial Market as existing shareholders’ expectations were not met.”
“The board and existing shareholders believe that greater returns can be realized executing Tristar’s current growth strategy under the established shareholder structure,” it said.
Tristar began its public share sale on April 4, setting a price range that implied a market capitalization of 2.64-3.24 billion dirhams ($719-$882 million).
The company saw weak demand for its shares, said two sources familiar with the matter. The offering was planned to close on April 15.
Part-owned by Kuwaiti logistics firm Agility, Tristar had previously intended to list in London, but plans were scrapped after turmoil at London-listed health care firm NMC shook investor confidence in Gulf companies.
Tristar said earlier this month it expected to raise between 438 million and 537 million dirhams as part of its primary offering, and another 90 to 240 million from a secondary offering.
BofA Securities and Citigroup were global coordinators and joint bookrunners on the deal.


Saudi Arabia cuts maximum subsidized housing loans by five years

Saudi Arabia cuts maximum subsidized housing loans by five years
Updated 15 April 2021

Saudi Arabia cuts maximum subsidized housing loans by five years

Saudi Arabia cuts maximum subsidized housing loans by five years
  • Targets people who earn SR14,000 or less
  • Subsidized loans first implemented in 2017

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has reduced the maximum period of subsidized housing finance from 25 years to 20 years for new applications, 2021, the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and Housing said in a circular on Tuesday. The change took effect from April 12.
The ministry said that this decision was "in line with the strategy of the housing program for the second phase, to serve the largest number of target groups,” the Al-Watan newspaper reported.
The subsidized mortgage loan program was first implemented in June 2017.
It provides a real estate loan with up to 100 percent, for those whose salary is SR14,000 or less, with a guarantee (on the amount of the profit margin) of up to SR500,000 of the financing amount.
This program targets Saudi citizens who are on the housing support lists of the Real Estate Development Fund, and who meet the Ministry of Housing conditions.