Market Watch

A blog seeking to provide insights from the crossroads of Gulf politics and finance.

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The Political Ramifications of the Gulf’s Digital Transformation

Gulf Arab states are striving to become tech-driven, knowledge economies, but the digital path ahead is bound to be bumpy.

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Saudi Arabia Takes Steps to Assure Foreign Investors

The economic components of Saudi Arabia’s ambitious transformation, in which local and foreign investments play a pivotal role, ultimately hinge on the government’s ability to improve the transparency of commercial processes.

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Bahrain’s Path to a Balanced Budget

Many natural resource-dependent countries have tried to restructure government finances in the wake of falling commodity prices, with little success. However, Bahrain’s current efforts may bear fruit.

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Aramco’s Pickup of SABIC Suggests Diversification is Losing Steam

The “back-to-basics” economic strategy now underway in the region represents a partial retreat, or at least a refocusing, from the ambitious diversification goals of past years.

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Year-on-Year Deficits Brewing in Gulf Economies

More spending, low growth, and recurring deficits are not a recipe for long-term economic sustainability, but this concoction may be a necessary pill for Gulf states to swallow as the hard work of economic reform sets in.

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Uber’s Acquisition of Careem Strengthens the Gulf’s Tech Credentials

Uber’s acquisition of its Dubai-based rival Careem signals a promising new phase for the Gulf’s technology sector.

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Gulf States Help Defuse South Asia Tensions, Protect Economic Interests

Three processes of interregional engagement – labor dynamics, energy cooperation, and strategic investments – are crucial for understanding how Gulf Arab states will exercise economic power in South Asia over the coming years.

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Saudi-Moroccan Political Tensions Challenge Quiet Economic Ties

A series of political disputes is testing bilateral relations between Saudi Arabia and Morocco, but growing economic engagement between the two monarchies offers an incentive for both sides to prevent simmering tensions from boiling over into commercial spheres.

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More Tax and Fewer Petrodollars: Iran Prepares to Face Sanctions

The return of U.S. sanctions targeting Iran’s energy, banking, and shipping sectors is expected to put more pressure on the Iranian economy in 2019.

Qatar Balances Fraught Regionalism Against Uncertain Globalization

In order to remain a relevant actor in the global economic order, Qatar has established a middle ground between the trends of regionalism and globalization through a strategic strengthening of bilateral partnerships.

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Through its careful examination of the forces shaping the evolution of Gulf societies and the new generation of emerging leaders, AGSIW facilitates a richer understanding of the role the countries in this key geostrategic region can be expected to play in the 21st century.

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