Decline in chemical industries products

Terrorist acts and the unfair economic sanctions targeted the Syrian peoples  livelihood and resources, have directly contributed to a big decline in production of many Syrian industrial companies and institutions especially the General Establishment for Chemical Industries.

The production in 2012 reached a value of S.P 5, 8 million according to 2011 figures and that the establishment sales reached S.P 8,455 billion representing only 45% of the planned sales for 2011 which was estimated at 18, 7 billion SP , according to the Establishment production report.

The Establishment stocks were priced at 1, 6 billion S.P. by the end of 2012, receded to 213 million S.P.

The report referred to the difficulties in implementing the plans resulting from the emergency conditions in the country and the obstacles that hinder the process of product marketing, including difficulties in electricity power supplies, transporting necessary row materials and commodities.

   Khaled falhoot

SIA: Investment outside Industrial Zones a Necessity for Medium-Sized Projects

 Director General of the Syrian Investment Agency (SIA) Hala Ghazal has asserted that the SIA is working hard to unify all legislations and measures related to investment since factors of making the investment sector a success are available.

In a statement to SANA, Ghazal said that legislations and administrative measures regulating investment have contributed to promoting the investment climate in general, calling on all investment-related bodies to coordinate their efforts to boost this sector.

She pointed out that investment projects are distributed according to the markets’ elements and the availability of raw materials and investment requirements.

"Laws related to supervising insurance institutions have adopted the right track, as a number of insurance companies, private banks, universities and institutes have been established," Ghazal said, noting that the Syrian markets' thirst for such investments has remarkably contributed to making these investments a success.

Ghazal stressed that the losses caused to the Syrian economy because of the ongoing aggression against the country and of the West's unjust economic sanctions have led to more losses to investment, particularly in the tourism, industry, agriculture and services sectors.

She also underscored the direct negative impacts of the ongoing crisis, Syria has been witnessing, on the projects enlisted under the provisions of Investment Law No.8 of 2007, on the diversity of investment projects, on social and economic development and on the availability of commodities and services.

"A remarkable decrease in the number of investment projects in 2011 and 2012 is noticed due to the current extraordinary circumstances in the country," Ghazal said.

She underlined that the establishment of four giant industrial zones has contributed effectively to enhancing all kinds of industrial investment.

"Investment out of the industrial zones has become a necessity for medium-sized projects and other types of enterprises, Ghazal said, adding that the government has decided to deal with some industrial areas located in different provinces the same way as the aforementioned four big industrial zones in terms of the provided advantages and facilities. She pointed out that the feasibility studies and investment maps for setting-up 100 industrial zones have been worked out.

The government has adopted a plan to finance the establishment of more than 25 industrial areas and to share the financing of a similar number of areas with local authorities and investors. The rest of industrial areas are scheduled to be proposed for direct investment to meet the need for investment outside huge industrial zones.

Rawaa Ghanam 

Government Discusses Mechanism to Protect Oil and Gas Facilities against Terrorism

DAMASCUS, (ST) - The Cabinet yesterday convened to discuss the situation of oil and gas production and the government's procedures to protect oil facilities from the attacks of the foreign-backed armed terrorist groups.

During the session, which was chaired by Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi, Minister of Oil and Mineral Resources Suleiman Abbas stressed that terrorists' attacks on the infrastructure, equipment and pipelines of the oil and gas sectors have disrupted refineries, reduced production and caused difficulties in meeting development, industrial, services and social needs for oil and its derivates, an affair that directly and negatively affected the national economy and the public interest.

The minister said oil derivatives convoys have been the target of armed attacks, pointing out that the measures taken by the ministry to protect the oil facilities haven't achieved the hoped-for goal, an affair that necessitated reconsidering the current mechanism and adopting more effective protection measures.

The ministry proposed a protection mechanism in the light of which the cabinet agreed on signing contracts for protecting oil facilities, crud oil pipelines and oil derivatives convoys.  It also agreed on forming a ministerial committee to restudy the contracts forms in a way that guarantees the rights of the state. In parallel, the cabinet agreed on establishing a public government commission to protect oil facilities.               


Only Tax Payers Feel It

The Syrian leadership has recently issued some decrees exempting tax payers from all the fines and fees they had to pay in 2011 and 2012 for delaying tax payment, if they pay their due taxes before June 30, 2013.

It is one of the many other important steps taken by the Syrian leadership to ease the pressure caused to economic activities, because of the ongoing crisis in the country.

Only economic activities and self-employed people, who couldn't pay their due financial obligations to the state because of the critical circumstances in Syria, will realize and evaluate the importance of this step.

Delaying payments or the act of not paying taxes has accumulated more fees and fines and caused remarkable retreat in tax revenues without any arrangements or caution measures.

This situation affirms the need to tackle the problem so as to guarantee the right of the state and, at the same time, help owners of economic and services activities pay their due financial obligations without hesitation or extra costs under the uncomfortable and extraordinary circumstances the entire homeland is experiencing.

The timing of issuing these decrees is very suitable, as they restore the right of the state treasury and encourage owners of economic and craft activities to pay the state the due taxes and customs on time. This will in turn be reflected positively on their lives through the services rendered by the state to them and to other citizens and will also contribute to reconstructing the infrastructure necessary for public and private utilities. Thus, what tax payers give reflects positively on their conditions and it is for their good.


Ahmad Orabi Baaj


Translated by H. Mustafa      


ACSAD in Cooperation with Agriculture Ministry Implement Projects

DAMASCUS, (ST) - The Arab Center for the Studies of Arid Zones and Dry Areas ( ACSAD) in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture carry out several agricultural projects in Syria.

Some projects achieved real strides in implementation and some faced difficulties and obstacles result in terrorist armed groups that led to the delay of some stages in implementation. The projects work on alleviating rural poverty and drought in the governorates of Deir Ezzor, Idlib and Raqqa.

The projects work to improve the level of targeted families living through the implementation of activities that would support income in the domains of livestock, agriculture, provide models for supporting activities for the sustainability of animal production projects and marketing animal products, according to a recent report issued by ACSAD.

" The results of the field survey, targeted some villages in Raqqa, Hasaka and Deir al-Zour to a questionnaire about the condition of breeders and farmers in the region hit by drought in recent years, emphasizes the need to provide technical support in the areas of breeding sheep and goats in terms of herd management, fattening and training of technicals in the region, the establishment of units to chop agricultural residues and waste of food industry and its treatment to improve the food value, preparing it for marketing as fodder, making a suitable feed plan for sheep flocks using agricultural residues, creating units to pasteurize milk and improve methods of marketing milk from grazing areas to the cities and the application of suitable health care systems for roaming herds and implementing training courses for veterinary cadres in the region" the report clarified.

The report confirms that the project helped creating job opportunities for local people to enable them to cover their daily needs, reducing migration and giving examples of pioneering   projects to help the sustainability of livestock production in the region.

The report indicates that the center of ACSAD began in 2011 implementing an evaluation project and the election of new varieties of palms and identifying strains of  palm seeds with good quality in Syria, Egypt and Saudi Arabia expected to be completed in 2014, where the project aims to choose and classify the distinct breeds and setting up hereditary complexes to make an evaluation of distinguished seeds.

Experts working in the project  expect to get new varieties of palm, propagation of these sorts, spreading its cultivation, setting up genetic complexes to carry out studies and experiments.

ACSAD  has operated since 2007 on a project to use artificial insemination and embryo transfer for the development of Arabian horses in Syria, which is scheduled to be completed in 2016 in order to develop educational programs to maintain genetic  unique traits to Arab horses, especially the Syrian , in addition to the training and developing of technical personnel in the areas of transport and use of modern technologies in the horse breeding and care.

The report shows that the project of using of salt and brackish water in agriculture, which is implemented in the ACSAD Station for Research in Deir ez-Zor, since the founding of the center, is still standing, explaining that the project is working on the study of the potential impacts from the use of non-conventional water in irrigation on soil and plant and study the cumulative effect of salts on soil, vegetation and finding a new and traditional supporter of water.

ACSAD also performs a project on the use of treated water in the afforestation in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture, which is scheduled for completion next year to study the possibility of using treated water in the afforestation to reduce the depletion of fresh water to irrigate plants and finding  an alternative water resource for this purpose and ensure fresh water  for the purposes of household and the preservation of the environment and reduce climate impacts.

 ACSAD also in cooperation with the International Institute for Plant Nutrition implements a project to study the impact of overlap between the major elements of fertilizers in feeding crops in Deir al-Zour , al Ghab Plain and Izraa.

The project  started in 2009 and ends 2015 in order to study the effect of the mutual act between fertilization at different levels in the production of wheat, maize in quality and quantity, improve the fertility of soil, the rational use of fertilizers to reach the best economic production and reducing of environmental pollution.

The report reveals that the workers on the project used the nutrients elements fertilizers in a balanced way  at different levels to maintain the fertility of soil and  increase productivity.  The workers on the project expected for response to wheat produced in the Arab Center for mutual reaction between the used mineral fertilizers that leads to the increase in production.

Sh. KH