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Oman: Regulating real estate (Oxford Business Group - 30/01/2012)

The introduction of a real estate regulatory agency in Oman is expected to instil greater confidence among foreign investors and promote better practices in this growing segment. Early this month the Council of Ministers took a first step towards getting

Kingdom gaining more clout in Islamic finance (Mohamed H. Zakaria - Arab News - 30/01/2012)

As Islamic finance/banking industry is growing at a sky rocketing growth rate of 12 percent - 15 percent per annum, Kuala Lumpur, Dubai, Bahrain and London are chomping at the bit to become the center of the industry, which currently boasts some $1

IEA, OPEC foresee easing of world oil market in medium term (Syed Rashid Husain - Arab News - 29/01/2012)

For the new, almost just arrived secretary general at the International Energy Forum Secretariat, Dr. Aldo Flores-Quiroga, this must have been a hectic week. While the secretariat is busy preparing for the 13th IEF Ministerial and the 5th International

Kuwait oil industry and the cash surplus (Kamel Al-Harami - Al Watan - 29/01/2012)

Kuwait is the only oil exporting country in the region that doesn't benefit from the huge cash flow from oil. Perhaps Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) is the only oil company that did utilize its oil revenues in building new projects. Not at all.

Abu Dhabi: In the pipeline (Oxford Business Group - 28/01/2012)

Abu Dhabi is putting the final touches on an oil pipeline that will allow the emirate to bypass the congested Strait of Hormuz, through which about 40% of all sea-borne crude is currently shipped. Completion of the project is viewed as increasingly

Segments of the GCC financial markets are beginning to develop fraction (Arab News - 26/01/2012)

The uneven performance of the GCC financial markets has continued to reflect the extremely uncertain global economic situation as well as a number of risks - most of them country-specific - in the region itself. Nonetheless, commenting on a review of the

'Uncertainties' affecting energy trade analyzed (Ghazanfar Ali Khan - Arab News - 25/01/2012)

Several experts from the International Energy Agency (IEA), International Energy Forum (IEF) and Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) reviewed uncertainties affecting the short, medium and long-term markets of oil, including the impact of

$100 is the price target for 2012 (Kamel Al-Harami - Al Watan - 25/01/2012)

Top Saudi oil officials announced last week that the Kingdom's target price is 100 US dollars a barrel for this year. This is an increase of $25 over Saudi's objective target of $75 per barrel. This level seems to be acceptable to all consumers and

Qatar Islamic banking directive to set example for other markets (Mushtak Parker - Arab News - 23/01/2012)

The deadline of Dec. 31, 2011, as per the directive issued by the Central Bank of Qatar (CBQ) in January 2011 requiring the country's conventional banks which have opened Islamic banking windows to close them down, has passed almost unnoticed. Despite

Saudi Arabia: Year in Review 2011 (Oxford Business Group - 21/01/2012)

As 2012 gets underway, Saudi Arabia can look back on 2011 as a year of solid growth, as well as anticipate a further 12 months of expansion and development, building on an already impressive economic platform as the state seeks to guarantee future growth

Abu Dhabi in delicate dance over oil (April Yee - The National - 20/01/2012)

Opposite Abu Dhabi National Oil Company's (Adnoc) two-storey pavilion at the emirate's biggest energy gathering, an ExxonMobil economist entertains local school children who are out on a field trip. Next door, Shell's display at the World Future Energy

Abu Dhabi: Shifting priorities (Oxford Business Group - 19/01/2012)

Key elements of Abu Dhabi’s economic diversification programme, including the development of the emirate’s manufacturing base, are moving ahead as planned, with the government reiterating its commitment to encourage investment and diversification.

Dubai: Building beyond borders (Oxford Business Group - 19/01/2012)

A number of leading local firms are vying for lucrative construction contracts in neighbouring Gulf states and beyond, creating new opportunities for the sector. Activity in Dubai’s domestic construction trade is also continuing apace, with signs the

Oman: Year in Review 2011 (Oxford Business Group - 19/01/2012)

With forecasts predicting solid economic growth in 2011 and a political system that remained stable in spite of unrest rocking much of the Middle East, Oman looks set to see increased investor interest in the coming years. GDP reached OR22.2bn ($57.67bn)

Bahrain: Year in Review 2011 (Oxford Business Group - 19/01/2012)

Looking to better times in 2012 after a challenging 12 months that saw Bahrain’s economy lose some of its momentum, the Kingdom is seeing signs that several key sectors are moving quickly to recover lost ground in the New Year. For Bahrain, 2011 will

Kuwait: Year in Review 2011 (Oxford Business Group - 19/01/2012)

Kuwait can look back on 2011 as a year characterised by higher than expected oil revenues and developmental progress despite domestic political wrangling and turmoil in the global market. As OPEC’s third largest producer, pumping around 2.9m barrels of

Abu Dhabi: Year in Review 2011 (Oxford Business Group - 19/01/2012)

In 2011 Abu Dhabi made significant progress towards its long-term goal of economic diversification, with major developments in the fields of industry, transport and tourism. While these are significant accomplishments, the government announced in late

Infrastructure sukuk receives a major boost (Mushtak Parker - Arab News - 16/01/2012)

Infrastructure sukuk has received a major boost when Projek Lebuhraya Usahasama Berhad (PLUS Berhad) last week closed a record landmark RM30.6 billion sukuk issuance program comprising both government guaranteed (GG) and non-government guaranteed

GCC sukuk market shows signs of revival (Mushtak Parker - Arab News - 16/01/2012)

The consensus seems to be universal that the outlook for the sukuk market in 2012 is bright. While Malaysia and Southeast Asia seems to be setting the pace, there are signs that the sukuk sector in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) markets and a few

Don't under sell our crude oil (Kamel Al-Harami - Al Watan - 15/01/2012)

For some time now and on several occasions it has been quoted by Kuwaiti officials that Kuwait is producing three million barrels of oil per day. We may produce at the stated level, but we know that such a level of production is unsustainable, as our

GCC: What to expect in 2012 (Arab News - 15/01/2012)

Arab Spring, nuclear disaster in Japan, Wall Street protests, Greek mess, European banking crisis, unemployment in the Western world, recessionary and deflationary fears, high volatility in stock markets, loss of AAA status to US treasuries, gold price

Saudi Arabia: Networking solutions (Oxford Business Group - 14/01/2012)

Saudi Arabia’s telecommunications sector is to get a major shake up this year, with up to three new operators entering the mobile phone segment, though the route they will be taking will be very different from that followed by the three existing service

Saudi private sector warms to ICIEC’s export credit (Mushtak Parker - Arab News - 09/01/2012)

Contrary to popular misconception, Saudi Arabia is the largest beneficiary of the services of the Jeddah-based Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Export Credits and Investment (ICIEC), the standalone export credit agency (ECA) of the Islamic

Renewables making inroads in emerging global energy mix (Syed Rashid Husain - Arab News - 08/01/2012)

Renewables are to be a significant pillar of the global energy balance of tomorrow. This is where the future lies, insist the green lobby, the environmentalists and indeed the peak oil pundits. Most agree, if this crude driven civilization has to keep

Bahrain emerging from 2011 with ‘cautious optimism’ (Arab News - 08/01/2012)

As a troubled 2011 ended, the outlook for Bahrain appears to be one of cautious optimism. The unresolved protest movement in Syria continues to unsettle Bahrain as the "Arab Spring" maintains the remnants of momentum, and the region as a whole juggles

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