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Senate brawls over debt ceiling, Obama stays out of sight WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama will stay out of the public eye on Sunday as Senate leaders try to work out an elusive deal ahead of a Thursday deadline for lifting the US government debt ceiling ahead of Thursday's deadline.Just before noon, the White House gave the pool of reporters and photographers who travel with the president notice that it would be highly unlikely that Obama would leave the White House or speak publicly for the rest of the day.Senator Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader, was slated to hold talks on Sunday with his Republican counterpart, Mitch McConnell, about how much to raise the debt ceiling, and how to end the ongoing government shutdown, now in its 13th day.Obama made a series of high-profile public appearances during the early days of the shutdown, where he sought to blame Republicans for the fiscal impasse.But Obama has stayed away from television cameras ...

Gunmen abduct 6 Red Cross workers in Syria BEIRUT: Gunmen abducted six Red Cross workers and a local volunteer of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent in northwest Syria on Sunday, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said.The humanitarian agency had no contact with the unidentified gunmen but was appealing for the seven to be freed immediately, ICRC spokesman Ewan Watson said, declining to reveal the nationalities or gender of the six ICRC staff for now."I am able to confirm that six ...

Eiffel Tower evacuated after threatening phone call PARIS: The Eiffel Tower was completely evacuated on Sunday afternoon following a threatening phone call, a police official told Reuters.The 324-metre-high (1,062-foot) iron tower was evacuated around 3 p.m. (1300 GMT) and had not reopened to tourists by 5.30 p.m. The sector around it was fully cleared, the police official said. He could give no further details.Built in 1889 and one of the world's most recognisable monuments, the Eiffel Tower sees some 7 million visitors ...

As crisis fades, G20 tries to get its mojo back WASHINGTON: Top officials for the world's biggest economic powers get nostalgic over how they mobilized to save the world from economic collapse in 2008. They are not nearly so glowing about their current muddle.At meetings held in Washington last week, there was a sense that the Group of 20, which brings together policymakers who oversee the vast majority of global output, has grown bogged down by a sprawling agenda no longer focused by crisis."It's very ...

Italy to setup patrols to prevent migrant ROME: Italy is to step up naval and air patrols in the southern Mediterranean to try to prevent repeats of the shipwrecks which have drowned hundreds of African migrants this month.Prime Minister Enrico Letta said late on Saturday an "air and naval package" would be put in place south of Sicily, where tens of thousands of migrants in flimsy, overcrowded boats have made the crossing from Africa so far this year.Italian officials have been increasingly ...

Afghan in uniform shoots at US soldiers in country's east KABUL: An Afghan man wearing an Afghan army uniform shot at US soldiers in east Afghanistan, killing at least one serviceman on Sunday, local officials and the NATO-led coalition said.The so-called "insider attack" in eastern Paktika province is the fourth in less than a month and is likely to further strain already tense relations between coalition troops and their allies.According to a Reuters tally, Sunday's incident was the tenth this year, and took the death ...

Egypt's economy grew by 2.1pc in year to end-June CAIRO: Egypt's economy grew by 2.1 pct in the year to end-June, the state news agency MENA quoted Planning Minister Ashraf al-Arabi as saying on Sunday, down from the 2.2 percent reported in 2011/12.The economy saw several years of 7 percent growth before the popular uprising that brought down Hosni Mubarak in February 2011, but since then has suffered from a collapse in tourism and foreign investment and an increase in domestic labour disputes.Copyright AFP ...


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Banking Review 2013

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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.434 bln
Exports $1.930 bln
Imports $3.364 bln
WeeklySeptember 18, 2014
Reserves $13.525 bln