Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s decision to weaken the link between hydrocarbons and economic growth, and pursue a policy of diversification has seen a wide range of projects come to fruition in the last several years. While at present the Covid-19 pandemic and the unprecedented plunge in oil prices are causing significant short-term uncertainty, the reforms that have been put in place in recent years should stand the Kingdom in good stead over the longer term.

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Following delays, the long-awaited GCC Railway looks likely to be revitalised, a move that could transform trade and connectivity across the Gulf.

Food production in the GCC has long faced obstacles ranging from water scarcity to a lack of arable soil – factors that are being exacerbated by climate change.

Nations in the MENA region have been intensifying efforts to increase their food security, with Russia's invasion of Ukraine the most recent geopolitical event to underline the fragility of global supply chains, as well as the importance of agricultural self-sufficiency.

The GCC chemicals and petrochemicals industry demonstrated considerable resilience in the face of Covid-19 and oil price fluctuations.

As oil prices reach 7.5-year highs, a number of countries in the Middle East have unveiled fiscal measures designed to balance their budgets after two years of pandemic-related spending.

As Saudi Arabia pursues a path of national digital transformation, stakeholders must take care to ensure the benefits of the digital economy are shared by the whole of society.

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