Bahrain builders fear Saudi export ban
Manama, November 1, 2009
Saudi Arabia will stop exporting sand and gravel to Bahrain and other Gulf countries at the end of the month.
Bahrain Chamber of Com-merce and Industry board member and customs committee co-chairman Abdul-hakim Al Shammary yesterday confirmed the decision had been taken and said a crisis meeting would be held to discuss the issue.
The ban, which comes into effect on November 26, follows an order from Saudi King Abdullah.
However, the reason for the ruling was not immediately clear.
'We are hoping to hold an urgent meeting to discuss the issue with the Industry and Commerce Ministry and the Finance Ministry,' said Al Shammary.
The decision is another blow to Bahrain's construction industry after Saudi earlier banned the transport of cement and sand to Manama via King Fahad Causeway on October 1 to ease traffic congestion.
Bahrain reportedly lost nearly BD35 million last year due to traffic jams on the causeway, with Gulf-wide losses believed to amount to a combined BD100 million.-TradeArabia News Service