December    2010
If you think you are free, there is no escape possible


Greetings and good wishes to you all.

Roasted Turkey is synonymous with thanksgiving day celebrations. This culture has been on since long. Whereas this year, growing vegetarianism was seen replacing the humble turkey in many celebrations. For some of the lucky turkeys saved, it was indeed thanksgiving returned.

The poor performance of democrats in the U.S. elections proved once again how soon you can be forgotten. Just few incidents can bring down your rating. After all, voters are a unique tribe. It is human to expect only good and that too overnight. And governance, a complex issue.

Soft targets appeals to the weak. The attack on the innocents in the Baghdad church is another evidence of how desperation reacts. Having failed miserably, the ultras are opting for soft targets to achieve their (unknown) ends.

Taking on the mighty Myanmar military dictators is not an easy task. Aung San Suu Kyi just did that. Walking away loose from the fifteen year house arrest, she is back on the streets proponing how important freedom means to the country that was long under military dictactorship. For sure, finally it will be victory for mother ' Freedom'. This will send strong signals to other governments following the path of rights denial.

As we expect a good festive season that will usher in a grand New Year, in the far east, trouble reported to be brewing in the Korean landmass. Imagine people of same tribe and cultural affinities at logger heads, that too for almost half a century. Let us hope the crisis do not get out of control.

Enjoy cakes and niceties.

Merry Christmas and wishes to a great year ahead.

The team at Mirage



Early November witnessed oil making its highest gain, touching USD 87 Per barrel, eventually closing the month at an average of USD 83 Per barrel. IMF clarified in its reports commented that the price increase should not be seen as a threat to global economy. Rather to be seen as a sign of improving trade growth.

Whereas Irish economy developments and its perceived issues dampened oil prices that remained low for most part of the month. The huge bailout atlast brought in relief. For sure, when damage is quantified, things start getting back to normalcy. Not to forget, Greece was recently bailed out by the European Community.

Despite these shocks, it may be noted that the overall situation within EU was far better than the projected fallouts from the Greek rescue months back.

As US economy appears more confident, the green back made an impressive come back against major currencies. Some sources expects this development to gather momentum, perhaps signs of better times for the world largest economy.

The Black Friday shopping frency indicated growing confidence among the consumers when compared to the situation during the last two years. This complements the resounding response to the General Motors IPO, considered yet another positive development for the American market.

In Dubai, The Big 5 Exhibition, focused on building related goods, was well attended amidst claimed regional construction chaos. Interestingly, revealed business potential in the sector proved a positive aspect of the construction market, despite all negative news in the making. An estimated USD 72 Billion worth of projects are expected to be announced by the end of the year.

As strong growth factors support the UAE economy, the Ministry of Economy forecasted a 3.5 % growth in its GDP for 2011. Trade and Aviation growth are foreseen to be the major supportive factors, as reported in the local business review.

The World Economic Forum summit was held in the UAE for the third consecutive year. Attended by over 700 delegates that took stock of global challenges and strategizing to meet these in a changing global scenario.

Liner trade reports shows a steady and buoyant Asia / Pacific traffic. With indications of sustained growth, some sources project a six per cent growth in that sector. Carriers are reported to be working on to introduce an increase of USD 400 per box effective January, 2011.

On a positive note, industry analysts forecasts a substantial increase of traffic in ports during 2011. Though some soures also foresee deep seasonal traffic drop pockets , this however will be offset predicting another exceptionally good year after the 2008 crisis.

Meanwhile a respectable shipping media reported on the proposed new tonnage of Maersk Line, that plans to bring out mega vessels of 18000 teu capacity. The tie-up is with a South Korean builder. Some basic details indicate that the new vessel will be powered by LNG, a new approach away from the traditional fueling method, making it more eco friendly apart from cost benefits. Currently, the largest container vessel in operation is at a capacity of 15000 teu.

On the oil trade, tanker sector was on the losing streak on freight yield for the last two months. Strangely, this is against the backdrop of increasing oil demand. The factor cited is the growing oversupply of tankers. Some reports point to the growing entry of Chinese into tanker tonnage. The growth of Chinese tonnage grew by 300 percent in the ten years, reports indicate. Therefore price levels will be dominated by the Chinese shipping interests in the future, a move apparently aimed at cutting their transportation costs.

Baltic index movements reflected similar drop in rates for the bulk sector where over tonnage is cited as a principal factor.

IATA proposed tighter cargo screening at airports following the seizure of explosive materials recently. With most airports on high security alert and countries in the west banning flights from Yemen , the issue is attracting unprecedented attention globally.

Whereas there is an unanimous understanding on the implications of tighter security to the global trade, that can decelerate the free flow of goods in an age where electronic medium acts as a complementing factor.


Arms - be it a simple weapon for self defence or the high tech ones that can cause mass destruction, is on the rise, globally. Proliferation talks, as a routine, continues. Military expenditure continues to rise.

Should this trade get legitimate status is a question that cannot find an easy or conclusive answer. Some studies link development of arms race to oil. That could have been true, atleast during the seventies and eighties, when importance of oil was great and sources limited. Altneratives almost absent then.

When we look at spending patterns, the oil factor becomes apparent. The volume of armaments traded in 1987 was estimated at around USD 1.86 Trillion, when compared to the world military spending in 1995, at a roughly 34 per cent reduced figure of USD 865 Billion. Since then it made a continous climb and now stands at USD 1.67 Trillion.

Therefore a steady pattern cannot be ascertained. Geo-political situations keep changing all the time, warranting changes in threat perceptions of governments.

The complexity is added when countries forms groups and blocs that have common political and trade interests.

All along an interesting study was made linking the Armadollar-Petrodollar nexus for defence spending.

It begins by identifying the ‘military bias paradox' of divergent behaviour, whereby the large armament corporations experienced an almost uninterrupted growth since the peak of the Vietnam War while domestic military spending exhibited a decade-long decline.

The resolution of this apparent paradox could be found in the merging institution of arms exports, which supplemented domestic military budgets. The expansion of world markets for weapons coincided with the oil crisis of the 1970s. The Middle East became the focus of these developments. The interaction during the 1970s of rising military exports to this area and growing oil exports from the region provided a basis for cooperation between major armament and energy corporations in an ‘Armadollar-Petrodollar Coalition'.

The wars fought in the last sixty years are put at around 105. These includes brief skirmishes and long drawn ones. Trillions of dollars literally fired to waste.

According to updated reports, around 3 Billion people today live at less than a meagre USD.2.5 Per day. Over 70 per cent of world population living in poverty.

Despite these known facts and people communicating at never before levels in this internet age, there is no resolve to arrive at a consensus on how to put wasteful defence expenditure to actual use as alleviating poverty and general welfare of mankind.

Hope man will grow up soon, moving away from destructive politics.


December Highlights

Arms Trade- Merchants of Destruction

Business expositions in November  

 Events in December

2nd December, 2010 - National Day

   International            Human Rights       World Migrants Day
Civil Aviation Day  
          Day                   18 December 2010
7 December,2010     10 December 2010

                  Christmas - 25th December
- Christmas, undisputedly the world's most celebrated occasion, cutting across religious barriers. The occasion is an international holiday in may countries.


Celebrity & Famous Birthdays in December
Walt Disney, 5 December 1901

Nostradamus - 14 December 1503

Christina Aguilera - 18 December, 1980


Powerful Surya Namaskar
(Salutation to Sun - The Universal Powerhouse)

Since ancient times Indians worshipped the Sun ( Solar Energy) and this exercise form is an extension of fitness regime followed by the people. Surya Namaskar benefits skeletal, muscular and ligament flexibility, making them supple for any kind of involuntary movements. 


Business events in Dubai- December 2010

Middle East Natural and Organic Products Expo
6 Dec - 08 Dec, 2010
MEBA -- Middle East Business Aviation 2010
7 Dec - 9 Dec, 2010
International Autumn Trade Fair 2010
13 Dec - 15 Dec 2010


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