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A leading Middle East business journal, AME Info, reported in its April 8, 2004 issue that in 2000 a number of Arab organizations “asked Muslims to shun goods from America, seen as an enemy of Islam and a supporter of Israel. In Bahrain, the Al-Montazah supermarket chain, for example, boosted sales by pulling about 1,000 US products off its shelves, and other grocers followed suit.”
Coca-Cola and Pepsi, “sometimes considered unflattering shorthand for the United States, took the brunt of the blow. Coca-Cola admitted that the boycott trimmed some $40 million off profits in the Gulf in 2002.” In 2003, Coca-Cola retreated from Bahrain to Athens. “We see that retrenchment as the rise of local brands. Coca-Cola feels they are identified with US regional policy, and there’s nothing they can do about it.”
The report further pointed out that in recent years a number of “Muslim colas” have appeared in the Middle Eastern/Muslim markets. “Don’t Drink Stupid, Drink Committed, read the labels of Mecca Cola, from France. . . . Iran’s Zam Zam Cola, originally concocted for Arab markets, has spread to countries including France and the United States.”
The report also indicated that US exports to the Middle East dropped $31 billion from 1998-2002. Branded, value-added goods — all the stuff easily recognized as American — were hit the hardest. “Our piece of the pie is shrinking,”
Profits to charity One of the main attractions for buyers, Mr Mathlouthi says, is the fact that 10% of the profits go to charities operating in Palestinian territories and 10% to European NGOs.
Originally posted by Ridhya
Russia is in Asia so technically they are Asians but I have never heard them called that. Just from me to bug them. I have heard far more calling them Europeans which is untrue.