Companies in Gulf Lose 40% Sales
Due To Boycott Campaigns
By Reda Hammad,
April 22 2002
ABU DHABI, April 22 (IslamOnline) A U.S. report announced
that the popular Arab campaign for boycotting American products
has resulted in losses for U.S. companies reaching up to 40% during
the last two months.
The report, issued by the U.S. National Council for U.S.-Arab relations,
said that stores selling American consumer products such as cars,
drinks and foodstuff in the Gulf have lost nearly 40% of their customers
because of the campaigns, which were a direct result for the Unites
states governments support for Israel and its obvious silence
regarding the Israeli atrocities in the Palestinian territories.
The report, which was prepared by John Anthony, the councils
president, said that the campaigns were successful because of the
religious sermons and civil student organizations which have asked
the people to boycott American products and distributed lists which
includes the names of these products through the internet and through
short messages on cellular phones.
UAE daily newspaper Al Ittihad, published the report on Sunday,
April 21, and said that some fast food companies have resorted to
organization donation campaigns for the Palestinian people in order
to maintain its customers. Some American automobile companies have
also noticeably reduced the prices of their cars in order to maintain
their share in the car market.
Meanwhile, the report said that US campaigns which claimed that
the boycott will harm Arabs, especially those with franchise rights
in the Gulf, have failed, adding that American business men themselves
feel that these campaigns are wrong and misleading and only aim
to lessen the negative effects of the boycott campaigns.
The business men also said that the American policy makers have
ignored the harm that will affect the image of U.S. products in
addition to children who will grow up in schools that teach them
that consuming American products is wrong and goes against the teachings
The report said that the McDonalds and KFC food chains are the
most affected by the campaigns and quoted a manger of one of these
stores saying that the boycott has not only reached Arabs but also
The report said that the future of American interests in the Gulf
is worrisome since it may reach other trade relations such as defense,
trade, investment, technological cooperation and purchasing franchises,
and warned against the increase in the threats if the United States
decided to transfer its embassy to Jerusalem.
Meanwhile, UAE nationals have asked for an end to the American
presence in the Gulf and the reduction of all Gulf-American military
Most UAE nationals interviewed by IslamOnline agreed that eliminating
the presence of U.S. forces on Gulf land is difficult, but reducing
the military deals will add a legitimacy to Gulf governments and
will earn them the respect of Arabs.