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Oct 22, 2014

Blogs, videos and verse: an Iraqi poet’s quest to heal her homeland

LONDON (Reuters) – Iraqi-born poet Amal al-Jubouri may not have the Hollywood recognition of Angelina Jolie, but both women are artists who have decided to use their talents and profile to help the victims of war.

When al-Jubouri, one of foremost poets writing in Arabic, met Jolie this year, she urged the actress and U.N. humanitarian envoy to go with her and see the worsening hardships in her homeland. Jolie has already visited Iraq in previous years.

Oct 15, 2014

Floating storage at sea stalls despite falling oil prices

LONDON, Oct 15 (Reuters) – Despite falling oil prices,
traders in recent weeks have booked just a few tankers to store
cargoes at sea as higher freight costs outweigh any profit play
for now.

This is partly due to expectation among tanker owners for
higher rates in the final quarter of the year. That means oil
traders will have to pay a premium to lease vessels for longer
periods as shipping firms remain reluctant to tie up vessels
given the potential for quicker earnings.

Oct 8, 2014

Ports tighten ship entry procedures as Ebola fears spread

Oct 8 (Reuters) – Brazil, Argentina and the United States
have tightened port entry procedures for ships that have sailed
from West Africa in a bid to control the potential spread of the
deadly Ebola virus.

Ebola has killed more than 3,400 people in Guinea, Sierra
Leone and Liberia, and its spread has become a global concern –
with worries for trade, which could affect the airline and
tourism industries together with seaborne activity.

Oct 8, 2014

Corporate Iran pins hopes on overseas financial charm offensive

LONDON (Reuters) – Iranian banks and firms will seek European investors willing to bet on thawing ties with the outside world in London next week, hoping to overcome caution or even outright hostility among Western governments and pressure groups.

The Oct. 15-16 conference, the largest gathering of Iranian commercial officials in London for years, aims to attract capital which the country badly needs due to its long isolation under international sanctions.

Oct 7, 2014

Iran’s top oil tanker firm says EU sanctions lifted

LONDON, Oct 7 (Reuters) – European Union sanctions on Iran’s
main oil tanker firm NITC have been annulled after the EU failed
to appeal against a court ruling that ordered the measures to be
lifted, the shipping company said on Tuesday.

An EU official told Reuters the European Union was working
to resolve the issue, adding: “The time for appeal had elapsed,
but work is still ongoing on remedial action for maintaining the
entity on the list.”

Oct 6, 2014

Iranian banking newcomer struggles as fear of sanctions hits humanitarian deals

LONDON (Reuters) – International banks are shying away from processing humanitarian deals with Iran for fear being fined for breaking Western sanctions, despite moves intended to facilitate the trade, a senior Iranian banker said.

The sanctions regime, imposed by the United States and European Union over Tehran’s nuclear program, allows trade in humanitarian goods such as food and medicine.

Sep 24, 2014

EU plans for Iran gas imports if sanctions go

LONDON, Sept 24 (Reuters) – The European Union is quietly
increasing the urgency of a plan to import natural gas from
Iran, as relations with Tehran thaw while those with top gas
supplier Russia grow chillier.

Two “ifs” – the removal of sanctions on Iran and the
addition of some pipeline infrastructure – are not preventing EU
planners preparing, a European Commission source involved in
developing EU energy strategy told Reuters.

Sep 23, 2014

Fighting, payment problems disrupt Libya’s food imports

TOBRUK/LONDON, Sept 23 (Reuters) – Food prices have risen in
Libya as payments problems, fighting and a breakdown in
authority disrupt the usual import routes as the country spins
out of control three years after the ousting of Muammar Gaddafi.

Rice, vegetables such as tomatoes and juice have become more
expensive by up to 10 percent in cities such as Benghazi, a
major port, where violence has made it harder for suppliers to
get their goods through, forcing importers to look for new ways
to bring food in.

Sep 9, 2014

Container group CMA CGM unveils “Ocean Three” alliance in quest for efficiencies

PARIS/LONDON, Sept 9 (Reuters) – French container shipping
group CMA CGM has sealed an alliance with two rivals
after a failed attempt to partner with bigger peers Maersk
and Switzerland’s MSC, vetoed by China earlier this
year due to competition concerns.

CMA CGM said on Tuesday it had agreed a service-sharing
alliance with China Shipping Container Lines Co Ltd
and United Arab Shipping Co to be known as Ocean Three. The
agreement still needs approval from the U.S. Federal Maritime
Commission.

Sep 4, 2014

Iraq sues Greek shipping firm for transporting Kurdish oil

BAGHDAD/LONDON, Sept 4 (Reuters) – Iraq said it filed a
lawsuit against Greek shipping company Marine Management
Services (MMS) for its role in the export of crude from the
Kurdistan region, which Baghdad says is illegal.

The case is the latest move by Baghdad to deter customers
and thwart independent exports of crude from the autonomous
Kurdistan region. The federal government claims sole authority
to manage sales of all the oil in Iraq.