By John Lee.

Ride-sharing services Uber, from the United States, and Careem of Dubai, have reached an agreement for Uber to acquire Careem for $3.1 billion, consisting of $1.7 billion in convertible notes and $1.4 billion in cash. The acquisition of Careem is subject to applicable regulatory approvals. The transaction is expected to close in Q1 2020.

Uber will acquire all of Careem’s mobility, delivery, and payments businesses across the greater Middle East region, ranging from Morocco to Pakistan, with major markets including Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

Upon closing, Careem will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber, preserving its brand. Careem co-founder and CEO Mudassir Sheikha will lead the Careem business, which will report to its own board made up of three representatives from Uber and two representatives from Careem. Careem and Uber will operate their respective regional services and independent brands.

Established in July 2012, Careem operates in 120 cities across 15 countries and has created more than one million economic opportunities in the region.

Careem entered the Iraqi market in January 2018.

(Source: Uber)

By John Lee.

Najaf Investment Commission has reportedly signed an initial agreement with a Hong Kong-based company to build a monorail for the city.

According to Xinhua, the head of the commission said:

“The project will provide an accessible and fast transportation way to the people of the city as well as all tourists.”

(Source: Xinhua)

The chairman of the Iranian Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission hailed an agreement to ease visa restrictions between the Islamic Republic and Iraq as a major achievement of President Hassan Rouhani’s visit to the Arab country.

“The president’s visit to Iraq after the withdrawal of Daesh (ISIS or ISIL) from the country and the elimination of the terrorist group is important because it can develop investments and strategic relations between Tehran and Baghdad,” Heshmatollah Falahat Pishe told Tasnim.

He further emphasized that the visit is also important because Iraq can play a major role in countering the sanctions imposed by the US against Iran.

The senior lawmaker also referred to the easing of visa restrictions between Iran and Iraq as one of the most important achievements of Rouhani’s visit to Iraq, the senior lawmaker added.

Heading a high-ranking delegation, Rouhani arrived in Baghdad on Monday at the official invitation of the Iraqi government. It is Rouhani’s first official visit to Iraq during his tenure.

Iran and Iraq enjoy cordial political, security and cultural ties but due to some internal and regional problems including Daesh terrorism in Iraq, they have not been able to increase their trade volume.

Iran’s main exports to the neighboring country include agro products, foodstuff and fruits such as watermelon, tomato and cucumber, which account for 37% of the total exports.

Other Iranian exports to Iraq include canned food, tomato paste, chicken, egg, meat, construction materials (mainly rebar, tiles and ceramics), steel and evaporative cooler.

(Source: Tasnim, under Creative Commons licence)

By John Lee.

A ferry on Tigris River near Mosul sank on Thursday afternoon, leaving at least 93 dead.

According to Xinhua, the ferry capsized because of “high water levels” while crossing from the bank of the river to a small tourist island called Um al Rabeein.

It cites a civil defense source as saying that the ferryboat, owned by a tourism office, was overloaded with more than 100 people, while being designed to carry just 30 people.

Prime Minister Adil Abd Al-Mahdi has declared official mourning all over Iraq, embassies, consulates in and out the country for three days.

(Source: Xinhua)

By John Lee.

A ferry on Tigris River near Mosul sank on Thursday afternoon, leaving at least 93 dead.

According to Xinhua, the ferry capsized because of “high water levels” while crossing from the bank of the river to a small tourist island called Um al Rabeein.

It cites a civil defense source as saying that the ferryboat, owned by a tourism office, was overloaded with more than 100 people, while being designed to carry just 30 people.

Prime Minister Adil Abd Al-Mahdi has declared official mourning all over Iraq, embassies, consulates in and out the country for three days.

(Source: Xinhua)

By John Lee.

A Turkish airline will start new services from Diyarbakir and Gaziantep to Erbil from 21st March.

AnadoluJet, a subsidiary of Turkish Airlines, plans to offer three flights per week to each location.

(Source: AnadoluJet)

By John Lee.

The Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority (ICAA) has announced that it has banned all Boeing 737 MAX planes from its airspace.

The move follows the crash of a 737 MAX in Ethiopia on Sunday, which killed 157 people, and another disaster involving that model of aircraft in Indonesia five months ago, which killed 189 people.

(Source: ICAA)

The National Investment Commission (NIC) and the Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority (ICAA) have announced the investment opportunity to build Nasriya International Airport.

The airport is located to the south–west of Imam Ali (PBUH) air force base in Thi Qar province.

The area of the passengers terminal is 3000m².

Interested foreign and local companies can apply by filling the investment licenses available on our website and submit all required documents to our email address info@investpromo.gov.iq within 45 days from the date of announcing this advertisement.

For more information, please contact the Civil Aviation Authority headquarters:

Baghdad International Airport/ third floor

info@icaa.gov.iq

P.O Box: 23006 BIAP

(Source: NIC)