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Gulf states have emerged as key players on the global stage by projecting soft power and, increasingly, as players with hard power muscle. Huge hydrocarbons revenues make that activity possible – and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, even while Gulf monarchies talk up investments in the carbon transition.
Issue 1120 - 18 February 2021
United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar
Energy & industry
GSN’s year-end Perspective/Agenda feature provides a look back – and forwards – at key events across the region in 2020-21. It gives an opportunity to update the Risk Grades included with each of our regular Risk management reports. After another year of tragedy, Yemen is effectively a failed state (rated F6, the bottom political and financial grades). Qatar has shown itself to be robust in the face of its neighbours’ boycott, its finances warranting an upgrade to 1, putting it on a par with the UAE. Iraq’s political standoffs and financial woes remain deeply troubling, but the situation is improving rather than deteriorating and the prospect of higher oil prices next year should help further; it has been upgraded from E5↑ to D4↓. Oman’s fiscal challenges continue to mount, prompting a downgrade of its economic rating to 3.
Issue 1116 - 10 December 2020
Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Yemen, Oman, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Iraq, Qatar
Politics, Royals watch, Defence & security, Energy & industry, Finance & business, Diplomatic brief