x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

Dark nights for Batman fans

A reader says the decision to delay UAE screenings of The Dark Knight Rises is a commercial one. Other letter topics: mortgages, the Doha mall fire and the Greek election.

A reader says the UAE's Batman fans have been disadvantaged by a commercial decision. / Courtesy Warner Bros
A reader says the UAE's Batman fans have been disadvantaged by a commercial decision. / Courtesy Warner Bros

Unfortunately what Homeowners caught in mortgage rate trap (June 10) fails to address is the fact that since mid-2010 most UAE banks have switched from Eibor (an interbank rate set by the central bank) to their own "internal rate" which is predominantly 2 per cent higher and offers no transparency whatsoever.

I am surprised a quoted expert talks about banks "adhering to the terms and conditions agreed with the client".

Banks will inevitably have at the bottom of the home loan agreements a clause allowing them to change the interest rate when they want, and change the conditions whenever they want, rendering any loan agreement the client signs with the bank meaningless.

Since the banks scrapped Eibor, the UAE mortgage and property market has taken one giant step backwards and this will contribute significantly to a delayed bounce back in the property market.

Harvey Ellis, Abu Dhabi

Lessons for all from fire inquiry

In reference to the article Catalogue of errors led to fatal fire in mall (June 15), I think we in the UAE can count ourselves lucky that a tragic event such as the one in Doha hasn't happened here.

It's my opinion that some mall developers are far too busy looking for the next "wow factor" for their buildings, than they are in investing in halfway decent HR training and security.

Overall responsibility for this tragedy, however, is at the government level.

Let's hope that what happened in Doha will also be a wake-up call for all mall operators and governments everywhere.

Andre D Sterchi, Dubai

Missing a daily dose of golf

With non-existent mainstream television coverage of the US Open here in UAE, I have looked towards my daily paper to provide some coverage and analysis of the day's play.

As usual, I have had to frustratingly rifle past pages and pages of detail on football, looking in vain for even a small snippet of golf news. Then, at last, there was a full page on golf (McIlroy a different kind of cat, June 17).

However, my hopes were completely dashed after reading only about Tiger Woods and his never-ending career being compared to Rory McIlroy's present fall from grace.

There was no update on the leader board, no analysis of the game - just nothing.

Susan Falconer, Abu Dhabi Editor's note: Due to the time difference between California and the UAE, we are unable to report on the day's results in print; they will be online at thenational.ae/sport

Big burden for Greek voters

As a student of history, I wonder how Greece - the home of great thinkers and statesmen - could have become embroiled in such a mess (Euro zone on knife edge as Greece goes to polls, June 17).

Now many commentators are saying that the voters in the Greek elections hold the fate of the world economy in their hands. That's a big responsibility.

Paul Gregory, UK

Dark nights ahead for Batman fans

The decision to delay the release of The Dark Knight Rises in the UAE (Looking for a happy ending, June 17) seems more like a commercial one than anything else.

While the distributors talk of respect in waiting until the Eid holiday, it's more a matter of them identifying a busier cinema-going time to screen what will most certainly be one of the year's biggest blockbusters.

The losers, of course, are the true fans of this film franchise who are desperate to see Batman battle with the villain Bane.

Unless they can afford to travel abroad to see the movie, or they download it illegally, they will have to put up with weeks of "spoilers" in social media and on websites.

J Johannson, Abu Dhabi

I am sceptical that this decision has anything to do with respecting Ramadan. Perhaps it has more to do with money. Don't cinemas make a large profit on food sales?

During the Holy Month of Ramadan, snack bars are shut for all movies before the iftar.

Since people observing Ramadan are not likely to take their iftar in a cinema, it's easy to see how that might put a big dent in the huge profits expected from food sales at a big ticket movie. Donald Glass, Abu Dhabi


Bus shelters are the hot topic

The cooling units at many Dubai bus shelters don't work (Commuters feel the heat in shelters with no AC, June 17)? Maybe we're getting too reliant on air-conditioning.

Ian Dunn, Dubai