Gulf Economic Barometer

The Gulf Economic Barometer monitors initiatives taken by Gulf states as they seek fiscal, monetary, and labor policy changes to meet the challenge of reduced state revenue from natural resources. The key trend is a major shift in the way the GCC countries have been spending on public sector wages, infrastructure, and social services over the last decade. The GEB documents the policy changes as they are announced and/or implemented by country and by sector and is updated regularly as data becomes available. The information here is neither official nor exhaustive.

Present

Market Watch: As Reform Agenda Waffles, Citizens Take Life to the Streets

by Karen E. Young Despite slowdowns in consumer demand and general economic activity, there is evidence of alternative economic behavior and microenterprise that is thriving in the Gulf.

Market Watch: Economic Nationalism at the Expense of GCC Integration

As a burgeoning global trend, economic nationalism is also surging in the Gulf states. What may be lost is the decade of efforts in economic integration and negotiations to make the GCC work as a common market, with complementary assets.

Market Watch: Oman’s Fiscal Management Problem

by Karen E. Young For Oman, balancing domestic pressures against necessary economic reforms is proving difficult.

Market Watch: Reformers are Holding Ground: Saudi Arabia’s New Fiscal Policy

by Karen E. Young The Saudi budget for 2017 demonstrates that fiscal reform works; at least, it shows that with a reduction in spending will come a decline in deficit.

Market Watch: Tough Love or Useful Ally? IMF Recommendations for Taxes in GCC

Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, makes the case for tax implementation in the Arab Gulf states.

Market Watch: Regional Politics Impact GCC Economic Reforms

Gulf Cooperation Council states struggle to agree upon a shared tax regime as regional politics come into play.