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Published in May 2012, this graphic illustrates data for the Middle East North Africa region taken from the IMF World Economic Outlook. Selected indicators include real GDP, consumer price inflation and current account balance. A map of the region is shaded to show revisions to 2012 GDP growth forecasts, while a chart shows fiscal breakeven oil prices.

Iran | Egypt | Saudi Arabia | Bahrain | Yemen | Mauritania | Oman | Sudan | United Arab Emirates (UAE) | Libya | Iraq | Qatar | Algeria | Morocco | Tunisia | Syria
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Washington’s decision to pursue arms deals with Bahrain may have been intended to empower Crown Prince Salman, but it was no cause for cheer among the ruling family’s increasingly frustrated opposition

Bahrain
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While Qatar is no stranger to negative stories in the more scurrilous regional papers, British media, including Euromoney magazine, have picked up the case of senior British banker David Proctor, who has reportedly been unable to leave for nearly a year after his all-powerful sponsor refused to sign his exit visa.

Qatar
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Former Eastern Province governor Prince Mohammed Bin Fahd Bin Abdelaziz is reportedly the new owner of a New York penthouse which belonged to the late actress Joan Rivers. The 5,100ft2 property was bought for $28m and comes with a resident ghost, Mrs Spencer (JP Morgan’s niece and the original resident). According to the New York Post, Prince Mohammed is not impressed with the penthouse’s Versailles-inspired décor and is overseeing a large renovation.

Saudi Arabia
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Prince Saud Al-Faisal, settling into his new role as supervisor of foreign affairs rather than minister, had a meeting in Paris on 12 May with Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, in which he briefed them on “previous contacts he made”, ahead of the GCC-US summit in Washington/Camp David the next day. He was also at a meeting of GCC foreign ministers in Riyadh on 30 April – which Adel Al-Jubeir, appointed foreign minister just the previous day, did not attend.

Saudi Arabia
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Qatari forces have surprisingly taken part in military exercises in Saudi Arabia, alongside the countries that have been ranged against Doha in the diplomatic and economic dispute that began last June. A Qatari armed forces delegation led by Brigadier General Khamis Mohammed Deblan took part of the Joint Gulf Shield 1 drill, held at Ras Al-Khair in Eastern Province from 21 March to 16 April.

Saudi Arabia | Qatar
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King Salman Bin Abdelaziz on 2 October welcomed King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa on a brief visit to Jeddah. Lunch was held and the two leaders held talks on “regional issues and ways of boosting GCC work”, the official Bahrain News Agency reported. The Bahrain monarch was bid farewell at King Abdelaziz International Airport by Mecca deputy governor Prince Abdullah Bin Bandar Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud and other officials.

Saudi Arabia
Issue 976 - 05 September 2014

Yemen: Houthi attacks

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Tens of thousands of Houthi supporters massed on the outskirts of Sanaa in the second half of August to try to pressure the government to quit, and to restore fuel subsidies, news agencies said. On 2 September, President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi dismissed his government and proposed a national unity administration in a bid to halt the conflict, but the Houthis rejected his proposals. There have been several deaths in clashes between Houthis on one side and Yemeni soldiers and local militias on the other.

Yemen
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A decision to allow shops to stay open around the clock has sparked confusion over what that means for prayer times. Following a cabinet meeting on 16 July, the government said businesses would now be able to chose their own opening hours, leading some to speculate that shops would be allowed to stay open during prayers. This is a reform that many retailers have been seeking, given the inefficiencies created by having to pull down the shutters several times a day.

Saudi Arabia
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For a short while the visits to Doha of two African leaders overlapped. Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari arrived on 27 February, held talks with Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani the following day and left on the 29 February. Buhari has visited other Gulf capitals in recent weeks, seeking support to help Nigeria’s economy – one of the Organisation Petroleum Exporting Countries’ most stressed by slumping oil prices - and for his anti-corruption campaign (see Politics).

Qatar
Issue 1029 - 17 January 2017

Emir Sheikh Tamim: Nepal, Lebanon

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Ahead of his planned trip to Pakistan, Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani hosted Nepalese foreign minister Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat and the new Lebanese President Michel Aoun. Aoun had been to Riyadh first for a meeting with King Salman.

Qatar
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Conversations in Paris have turned of late to the richer Gulf states, where President François Hollande has successfully hawked defence sales in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, while elite vendors from the Louvre to up-market real estate agents have been structuring deals that shine out in an indifferently performing Eurozone economy.

Saudi Arabia
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Parliamentary sessions resumed on 16 October following a five-month holiday; its agenda includes 27 draft laws: five bilateral agreements, four new laws, 14 replies to law proposals previously submitted by MPs and four laws previously presented by the Shura Council upper chamber. MPs will also review the government’s reply to 20 parliamentary proposals submitted to the previous legislative session. These include building schools and specialised autism centres, paying students monthly allowances, building car parks and other services-related requests. There was no mention of the crisis with Shia communities or regional tensions in official communiqués.

Bahrain
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Funeral prayers were performed at the Grand Mosque in Mecca in early July for Princes Badr Bin Mohammed Bin Abdelaziz and Mansour Bin Faisal Bin Saud. Prince Badr was born in 1935, the son of Prince Mohammed (who became known in the West as the prince who ordered the 1977 execution of his granddaughter Mishail for adultery) and full brother of King Khalid. Many senior princes turned out for Badr’s funeral including his first cousins Khalid Al-Faisal, Turki Al-Faisal, Mansour Bin Saud, Khalid Bin Fahd, Sattam Bin Saud, Sultan Bin Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef.

Saudi Arabia
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Royal Court advisor and former economy and planning minister Mohammed Bin Maziad Al-Tuwaijri has been nominated by Saudi Arabia for the post of World Trade Organisation (WTO) director-general. He is competing against seven others for the job, after his nomination was filed just ahead of the deadline on 8 July.

Saudi Arabia