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Credit Cards
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Credit Cards

Credit Cards is a very convenient method of making purchases without carrying cash.
The way a normal credit card works is that you make purchases using your card and the bank issuing the card will pay on your behalf to the merchant providing you the product or service.


The bank deducts a certain percentage (2.5% normally) from the merchant in return for processing the transaction and adding the money to the merchant's account.
From the customer side (the card holder), he is given a loan for that amount and given a grace period (normally 26 days to a month) to repay the amount interest free. If the card holder decides he does not want to pay the full amount, he pays the minimum (printed on the monthly statement), and the rest of the unpaid balance gets deferred in the form of a loan with compound interest.


Many consumers have gotten used to this, and use the card as a loan machine.
Apart from being convenient, credit cards offer other benefits, such as frequent flyer miles, donations of a certain amount or percentage to your favorable charity, consumer protection (can refund the price of a faulty product), extended warranty, ...etc. All depending on the specific card in use. The largest issuers of Credit Card worldwide by far is VISA followed by MasterCard. There are lots of others as well, including Diners Club, American Express, Discover (USA only), JCB (Europe), and others.


There are certain services that one cannot get without a Credit Card, including Car Rentals in North America, and many internet services.


Another feature of Credit Cards is that you can get Cash Advances using it at bank outlets and Automatic Teller/Banking Machines (ATMs/ABM). This is treated as a loan, and interest is to be paid on it. Therefore a Muslim should avoid this, unless it is an emergency, where such an exception would be permissible.


In short, this has become a very pervasive aspect of our modern life.


For the Muslim, a Credit Card can be had, but extreme care must be taken not to be late in paying the statement balance in full, so as not to incur interest. If you travel on a regular basis, you may miss a statement, so maybe you want to talk to your bank about this and explain that you travel and make other arrangements.


Also note that because you are paying during the grace period on a regular basis, you will eventually be "flagged" as an unprofitable customer to the bank (you use their money for a month, and generate no interest revenue for them). There has been reports of some Credit Card Issuers in the USA asking customers to pay an annual fee to compensate for this "loss of revenue". If this is the case, find another credit card company to do business with, there are too many of them.

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posted by Beebee @ 11:44 PM   0 comments
Leading Halal meat producer & distributor
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Leading Halal meat producer & distributor steps up production to meet demand for Eid Al Adha

One of the Gulf’s leading producers of Halal meat food products is stepping up production by 25 per cent for Eid Al Adha as Muslims around the region prepare to celebrate the occasion.

Khazan, whose products are a familiar sight on supermarket shelves across the Middle East, is increasing production at its manufacturing facilities in Kuwait and Sharjah to meet the extra demand as awareness of being Halal is rapidly catching up.


The opening of a second Khazan meat factory in Sharjah, UAE, a year ago has given the company huge additional manufacturing capacity, and the facility has in fact been designed to allow expansion for the next 20 years.

“We will be using our extensive regional distribution network to ensure we meet the greater than normal demand for Halal products during Eid Al Adha,” said Dr. Laith Abuhilal, the company’s General Manager in the UAE.

The Kuwaiti-owned company, which has developed an extensive range of Halal food products over more than 40 years, is planning a new phase of regional and global expansion which will be highlighted at Halal World Expo in Abu Dhabi from 9-11 December.

Leading event organisers IIR Middle East are launching the exhibition at a time when the global Halal industry is worth an estimated US$2.1 trillion a year, with demand from 1.8 billion Muslims resulting in growth of US$500 billion annually.

Khazan, one of the Gulf region’s top five producers and distributors of Halal products, will take its place alongside many of the industry’s global giants in the first comprehensive exhibition in the region covering all sectors and focus areas of the Halal market.

It is often taken for granted that processed food and products available in supermarkets in Islamic countries like the UAE and the other Gulf states are fully Halal compliant unless stated as being for ‘non muslim’ consumption or use. While systems currently in place offer protection to consumers, rapid growth in the Halal consumer market means there is a rising demand for a globalised standard across all Halal products.

Some countries like Malaysia and Brunei have already formed regulatory bodies to service their markets, and Brunei’s Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources will be among the exhibitors at Halal World Expo.

Khazan’s GM, Dr. Laith Abuhilal said: “The exhibition is enormously important as it provides a platform to meet, debate and discuss standards, regulations and explore options into globalising our fast growing industry.”

Halal World Expo will feature Halal lifestyle products, including Islamic fashion, cosmetics and other health care products, as there has been a growing demand in the UAE towards products that are Halal compliant. The exhibition will also focus on Islamic Finance, which is currently worth between US$200 and $500 billion annually and a consistently growing interest for financial market across the world.

The Global Halal and Islamic Business Forum will run alongside the Halal World Expo at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. The exhibition will be an annual landmark event opening the gateway for the Middle East market to the international Halal industry.
© 2007 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)

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posted by Beebee @ 8:34 PM   0 comments
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