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Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan (MBZ) received Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed at Al-Shai Palace on 20 November. The official statement said their discussions ranged across economic development initiatives and co-operation in fighting terrorism and enhancing security and stability in Somalia.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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The deployment of Turkish forces to Qatar as the emirate’s ‘GCC-3’ rivals ratcheted up pressure – including calls for Ankara to close the new military base it is building in Qatar – has underlined the positioning of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government as a key ally for Doha and Turkey’s wider importance in the regional balance of power. As the crisis unfolded, the Turkish parliament on 7 June ratified two agreements on stationing troops in Doha.

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Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani travelled to the Rwandan capital Kigali on 9 December, just as his fellow rulers in the Gulf Co-operation Council were preparing to head to the Saudi capital Riyadh for the GCC summit. The emir was back in Africa to hand out the fourth batch of Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani International Anti-Corruption Excellence Awards at the Kigali Convention Centre. While in Rwanda, Tamim held talks with President Paul Kagame, an increasingly close ally.

Qatar
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Mohammed Bin Nayef Bin Abdelaziz Al-Saud (MBN) is a nephew of King Salman and, like him, from the powerful Sudairi bloc that has re-emerged as the dominant branch of the Al-Saud in the months since King Abdullah’s death. Born in 1959, he has long been thought of as a contender for the throne, and has excellent dynastic credentials, having been born to two members of the Al-Saud, the late crown prince Nayef and Jawahar Bint Abdelaziz Bin Musaid Bin Jiluwi.

Saudi Arabia
Issue 1049 - 30 November 2017

UAE: Adnoc Distribution pricing announced

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Abu Dhabi National Oil Company’s retail fuel arm Adnoc Distribution has set a price range of Dh2.35-2.95 ($0.64-0.80) per share in its initial public offering (IPO) on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX). The government is planning to sell between 1.25bn and 2.5bn shares in the business, equating to 10-20% of its share capital. The sale could garner $800m-$2bn for the state. The shares are expected to list on the ADX on 13 December.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani was the most senior Gulf royal to attend the inauguration ceremony for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s second term in office – no surprise given the importance that Doha places on its alliance with Turkey in the face of hostility from other Gulf states.

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The Iraqi cabinet passed the 2014 draft budget on 15 January, but its passage through parliament is facing a number of challenges. As well as complaints from the Kurds (see box, page 5), the budget’s failure to follow through on a 2013 provincial powers law stating provinces should get $5 per barrel of oil produced has provoked huge anger in the oil-producing states of southern Iraq, which are now threatening to block it in parliament.Article 2(1)(d)(2) of the budget states that provinces should receive $1 of additional revenue for each barrel of oil produced, along with $1 for every 150m3 of gas.

Iraq
Issue 968 - 18 April 2014

Boeing and GE warily eye up Iran Air

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While they continue to grapple with the tough economic climate, Iranians who can still afford to travel by air will at least be heartened by the US treasury department’s decision to allow Boeing to sell spare aircraft parts to Iran, and for General Electric (GE) to overhaul old jet engines. But even this apparently simple gesture is complex and shrouded in some mystery.For a start, the waiver only covers equipment sold to Iran before the 1979 revolution. In most countries, these planes and engines would have been retired long ago, but Iran has not been able to buy enough replacements so the need for repairs and spare parts remains.

Iran
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Aligning itself with international pressure over the nuclear issue, Tokyo has announced new sanctions against Iran, which include a ban upon any medium- to long-term (MLT) export credit cover from either Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (Nexi) and The Japan Bank for International Co-operation (JBIC).

Iran
Free

Muscat is planning to spend OR12.9bn ($33.6bn) over the course of this year, OR400m more than forecast in the 2018 budget. According to local media reports, the budget is based on an oil price assumption of $58 a barrel, with total revenues forecast at OR10.1bn in 2019 The projected deficit of OR2.8bn is slightly lower than the OR3bn shortfall predicted in the 2018 budget.The government plans to borrow to cover most of the deficit, with OR2.4bn to be raised in international and domestic debt and the rest coming from withdrawals from reserves.

Oman
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Amid all the talk of war on Iran, it is worth noting that Israeli deputy foreign minister Daniel Ayalon took the time last week to distance his country from any notion of imminent conflict.

Iran | Israel
Issue 1040 - 07 July 2017

UAE: Border patrol aircraft deal

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The UAE is reportedly close to finalising a deal with US-based Iomax to buy 12 more Archangel border patrol aircraft, with options for a further dozen, according to defence industry specialist Jane’s.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)
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The once-high flying but later disgraced art collector Sheikh Saud Bin Mohammed Al-Thani is being sued in the UK High Court by a group of dealers who say he has dishonoured a pledge to pay $19.7m for a collection of coins sold at auction in January in New York.

Qatar
Free

The application of renewable energy (RE) to replace hydrocarbons in generating electricity could provide an end to the Gulf’s ‘resource curse’, but right now the region lacks some of the tools needed to cope with the new era. Just as oil prices were hitting a three-year high in mid-January, the world’s RE industry was gathering in Abu Dhabi for the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena)’s annual summit.

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An electorate numbering around 600,000 will go to the polls on 25 October to elect a new 84-member Majlis Al-Shura (the eighth) from among 596 candidates, 20 of them women, according to a schedule set out by interior minister Sayyid Hamoud Bin Faisal Al-Busaidi. Electoral posters and other material have started appearing for elections, which the authorities have said should be preceded by “unprecedented” public campaigns. The Ministry of Interior has been insisting that candidates should not try to buy votes.

Oman