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The Middle East Economic Research Highlights

The Report: Qatar 2024

Qatar has been working to position itself as a powerful economy and influential sovereign entity that is well prepared to address future challenges. With a relatively small population and the third-largest...

Report: How can the private sector capitalise on opportunities in the Saudi leisure industry?

Saudi Arabia is undergoing a period of sweeping social transformation and economic diversification underpinned by Vision 2030. This is creating a fertile environment for private businesses to expand...

Key Interviews & Sectoral Videos

OBG Talks

Is the Gulf ready for electric and autonomous vehicles?

As the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) work towards economic diversification objectives and net-zero goals, opportunities are opening up for automotive manufacturers to roll out innovations...

Global Platform

Increasing the accessibility of trading in Kuwait and the GCC

In this Global Platform video, Talal Al Ajmi, CEO and Founder, VI Markets, talks about increasing the accessibility of trading. Financial markets have experienced significant changes compared to...

Growth Perspectives Video

Boosting investment in Kuwait’s capital markets

In this Growth Perspectives video, OBG shows how Boursa Kuwait has introduced reforms and launched new investment tools to support the development of the capital markets...

Global Platform

How Saudi Arabia is working to be a global logistics and transport centre

In this Global Platform video, Farooq Shaikh, CEO, LogiPoint, identifies the key characteristics that make Saudi Arabia a competitive location for logistics and transport activities in the wake of the Covid-19...

Is the Gulf ready for electric and autonomous vehicles?
Increasing the accessibility of trading in Kuwait and the GCC
Boosting investment in Kuwait’s capital markets
How Saudi Arabia is working to be a global logistics and transport centre
 

The Report: Kuwait 2024

Kuwait, with one of the region’s most dynamic political systems and the world’s six-largest crude oil reserves, has seen significant GDP growth in recent years. As part of its efforts to diversify away from a reliance on...

How firms are leveraging entertainment opportunities in Saudi Arabia

Driven by the country’s Vision 2030 blueprint for economic diversification, Saudi Arabia's leisure industry is expanding. Multi-stakeholder efforts have led to rapid growth in the sector in recent...

Special Reports in the Middle East

Focus Report

Driving Saudi Arabia's economic transformation: Unleashing growth and innovation across strategic sectors

Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 blueprint for socio-economic transformation is capturing international attention. Beyond high-profile projects and events, strategic cohesion and societal support are...

Focus report

Unlocking opportunities: How higher education drives socio-economic development in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Vision 2030 and the evolution of education in Saudi Arabia are key drivers of the country’s socio-economic transformation. With a focus on national development goals, Saudi Arabia is committed...

Special Report

Unlocking opportunities: How higher education drives socio-economic development in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Vision 2030 and the evolution of education in Saudi Arabia are key drivers of the country’s socio-economic transformation. With a focus on national development goals, Saudi Arabia is committed...

ESG Intelligence Report

Report: How can Saudi Arabia finance sustainable industrial development?

Guided by the Vision 2030 strategy for diversification, rapid advancements are being made in Saudi industry, mining, logistics and renewable energy. As the Kingdom works towards reaching net-zero...

ESG Intelligence Report

Report: How Qatar is confronting environmental and social challenges

With the publication of its National Environment and Climate Change Strategy in 2021, Qatar has recognised that a proactive and holistic approach is needed to meet the challenge of global warming and...

ESG Intelligence Report

Report: The road to a zero-emission automotive industry in the Middle East and Africa

Automotive stakeholders are increasingly aware that the business-as-usual scenario that has sustained the industry for more than 100 years is no longer tenable. Regulatory changes and emissions-reduction...

ESG Intelligence Report

Report: What factors are driving social development in Saudi Arabia?

Vision 2030 includes social development initiatives to empower micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) and citizens, promote entrepreneurship and widen access to financing...

ESG Intelligence Report

Report: How can sustainable finance support the transformation of hydrocarbons-dependent economies?

With the world economy heading into a complex post-pandemic recovery, GCC governments have outlined a wide-ranging set of environmental targets – and shone a stronger spotlight on sustainability...

Driving Saudi Arabia's economic transformation: Unleashing growth and innovation across strategic sectors
Unlocking opportunities: How higher education drives socio-economic development in Saudi Arabia
Unlocking opportunities: How higher education drives socio-economic development in Saudi Arabia
Report: How can Saudi Arabia finance sustainable industrial development?
Report: How Qatar is confronting environmental and social challenges
Report: The road to a zero-emission automotive industry in the Middle East and Africa
Report: What factors are driving social development in Saudi Arabia?
Report: How can sustainable finance support the transformation of hydrocarbons-dependent economies?
 

Investing in airport infrastructure and boosting passenger capacity in Saudi Arabia

Mohannad Basodan, CEO, NCP; and Salman Badr, Executive Vice President for Infrastructure Advisory, NCP

In this Global Platform video, Oxford Business Group speaks with Mohannad Basodan, CEO, National Center for Privatization & PPP (NCP); and Salman Badr, Executive Vice President for Infrastructure Advisory...

Bahrain, a centre for sustainable finance and innovation in the GCC

Abdulaziz Bin Abdulrahman Al Helaissi, Group CEO and Member of the Board, Gulf International Bank (GIB)

In this Global Platform video, Abdulaziz Bin Abdulrahman Al Helaissi, Group CEO and Member of the Board, Gulf International Bank (GIB), talks about Bahrain's banking sector, a significant contributor to...

Economic Analysis across the Middle East

Overview

Why foreign investors are attracted to Abu Dhabi
OBG
plus

The largest of the seven emirates that make up the federation of the UAE, Abu Dhabi is an archipelago that comprises 200 islands and a coastline that stretches 700 km. The emirate is home to...

Interview

Ayman Al Sayari, Governor, Saudi Central Bank (SAMA)
OBG
plus

On the impact of interest rates and new policies on financial capabilities

Overview

How Saudi Arabia is laying the groundwork for future growth
OBG
plus

Located at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa, Saudi Arabia has long been a centre of religious and cultural significance, dating back to before the foundation of the modern Kingdom...

Interview

Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister
OBG
plus

On upskilling the local workforce and attracting investment

Overview

Bahrain boosts diversification through tourism and financial technology
OBG
plus

The strategic location of the island country of Bahrain, combined with its business-friendly ecosystem and diversified economy, have seen it emerge in recent decades as an attractive destination for foreign...

Viewpoint

Sultan Haitham bin Tarik Al Said
OBG
plus

On the course of progress leading towards Oman’s auspicious future

Overview

How institutional changes and diversification boost Oman’s economy
OBG
plus

At the confluence of the Gulf and Arabian Sea, Oman occupies a strategically important location for trade and logistics. Although it is not on the Gulf, Oman sits atop significant oil and natural gas reserves like its...

Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice-President and Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE, and Minister of the Presidential Court of the UAE
Why foreign investors are attracted to Abu Dhabi
Ayman Al Sayari, Governor, Saudi Central Bank (SAMA)
How Saudi Arabia is laying the groundwork for future growth
Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister
Bahrain boosts diversification through tourism and financial technology
Sultan Haitham bin Tarik Al Said
How institutional changes and diversification boost Oman’s economy
 

Report: How can Kuwait’s upstream oil sector reach net zero?

Despite predictions of declining hydrocarbon consumption, significant demand remains due to economic transformations and disruptive events like the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Gulf: Economic Research & Views

Economic View

Eman Mojali, CEO, Bahrain National Insurance

On building a regulatory framework and consumer awareness to support growth

Economic View

Michael Michael, CEO, Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre (DECC) and Qatar Business Events Corporation

On catering to local and global audiences with new technologies and safety measures

Economic View

Jack Uppal, President and Managing Director – Africa and Middle East, General Motors (GM)

On learning from supply chain challenges and the development of other segments

Economic View

David Grover, Group CEO, ROSHN

On the trends shaping the Kingdom’s real estate market

Economic View

Wajdy Al Ghabban, CEO, Catrion

On developments in Saudi Arabia’s catering industry

Economic View

Musabbeh Al Kaabi, Executive Director, Low Carbon Solutions & International Growth, ADNOC

On Abu Dhabi’s carbon capture efforts and the role of hydrogen in the energy mix

Economic View

Ali Al Dhaheri, CEO, Tadweer

On the business opportunities presented by sustainable waste management

Economic News

Gulf countries look to space to harness scientific and commercial opportunities
OBG
plus

In the push to embrace emerging technologies and harness their potential commercial opportunities, Gulf countries are launching new initiatives to bolster their domestic space industries...

Economic View

Mohamed Khalid Ateeq, General Manager, Rain

On the importance of creating a conducive regulatory framework to foster an investment-friendly environment

Economic View

Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President and CEO, Dubai Chambers

On how collaboration can strengthen the investment-promotion efforts of chambers of commerce in the Gulf

Economic View

Vincent Miccolis, Managing Director for Middle East, Africa, Turkey and India, The Ascott

On creating investment opportunities and fostering sustainable infrastructure development

Eman Mojali, CEO, Bahrain National Insurance
Michael Michael, CEO, Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre (DECC) and Qatar Business Events Corporation
Jack Uppal, President and Managing Director – Africa and Middle East, General Motors (GM)
David Grover, Group CEO, ROSHN
Wajdy Al Ghabban, CEO, Catrion
Musabbeh Al Kaabi, Executive Director, Low Carbon Solutions & International Growth, ADNOC
Ali Al Dhaheri, CEO, Tadweer
Gulf countries look to space to harness scientific and commercial opportunities
Mohamed Khalid Ateeq, General Manager, Rain
Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President and CEO, Dubai Chambers
Vincent Miccolis, Managing Director for Middle East, Africa, Turkey and India, The Ascott
 

GCC ESG Research & Views

Economic View

Ahmed Al Shamsi, Managing Director and CEO, Abu Dhabi Sustainable Water Solutions Company (SWS)

On innovative approaches in water conservation and reuse


Economic News

Climate risk is reshaping the insurance sector in emerging markets

With the launch of a new joint initiative to support the countries that are most vulnerable to climate change, the global insurance industry is evolving in ways that could carry important implications for business in emerging markets. The Global Shield against Climate Risks (GSCR) was announced by the ministers of finance of the so-called Vulnerable Twenty Group (V20) and the G7 after the COP27 UN Conference on Climate Change in Sharm El-Sheikh Egypt in November last year. It seeks to address weaknesses...


Economic News

The effectiveness of water-management strategies in emerging markets

With extreme weather events such as drought or flooding becoming more common due to climate change, countries around the world are looking to innovative solutions for water management. Water scarcity captured global headlines last summer, as Europe experienced its worst drought in 500 years and China’s Yangtze River reached record low levels, derailing hydropower operations. Elsewhere, widespread flooding affected Nigeria, India, Pakistan and other parts of the world. Due to population growth, climate change and...


Economic News

How emerging markets are navigating the rising cost of solar power

With high energy prices and supply chain disruptions creating shortages of key renewable energy components and materials, emerging markets are reassessing how to build out utility-scale solar power to accelerate their energy transitions. After more than a decade of decline, the cost of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels has risen around the world, due primarily to the increasing cost of solar-grade polysilicon in China. A key component in PV panels, polysilicon spot market prices rose from less than $7 per kg in July 2020 to $39 in August...


Economic News

Saltwater batteries and the emerging blue energy economy

As emerging markets seek to accelerate their energy transitions by increasing solar and wind power capacity, recent technological advancements that harness the sodium from saltwater could provide a crucial breakthrough in battery storage. In recent months start-ups and researchers have debuted saltwater battery technologies that promise cheaper capacity to store variable solar and wind power at scale, a development that could help to reduce global dependence on lithium. In January US-based tech start-up Salgenx...


Economic News

How tech can unlock geothermal energy in emerging markets

As countries around the world look to increase baseload power generation, reduce energy imports and decarbonise their economies, emerging markets are boosting geothermal power generation with the help of new technologies and expertise. A new drilling technology developed by Quaise Energy, a US geothermal start-up spun out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that uses gyrotron-powered millimetre waves to vaporize rock, could allow for producers to drill as far down as 20 km compared to the average drilling...


Economic News

How the new High Seas Treaty affects ocean conservation in emerging markets

As the international community reaches a landmark agreement to protect ocean resources, emerging markets are looking to balance conservation and the exploitation of marine resources. In the first week of March 2023 UN delegates in New York finalised the text of an international treaty outlining the sustainable use of marine resources beyond national jurisdiction. Popularly known as the UN High Seas Treaty, the document is the result of two decades of talks and represents the first international treaty on ocean protection...


Economic News

Urban areas experiment with cooling technologies to combat climate change

With temperatures in cities set to rise in the coming decades, many public and private players in emerging markets are looking to tackle the challenge of extreme heat through technology, sustainable building techniques and the expansion of urban green spaces. Cities cover just 3% of the Earth’s surface but currently house over half of the world’s population – a figure set to reach 70% by 2050. Urban population growth is predicted to be highest in emerging markets, with 90% of the shift to cities occurring in Asia and...


Kuwait's banks target sustainable growth

In this Growth Perspectives video, OBG shows how Kuwaiti banks are embracing environmental, social and governance principles to contribute to the sustainable growth of the banking sector...

GCC: The Report Highlights

Market Profile Video

Sharjah’s path to a sustainable future through sector diversification and green investment

Oxford Business Group will soon be launching The Report: Sharjah 2023. The report explores the emirate’s economic diversification initiatives, as well as efforts to attract investment, and advance environmental...

Market Profile Video

Abu Dhabi’s economy thrives, fuelled by global partnerships and market innovation

Oxford Business Group has launched The Report: Abu Dhabi 2023. The report delves into the emirate’s commitment to economic diversification through the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, aiming to...

Market Profile Video

Highlights from The Report: Saudi Arabia 2023

Ongoing giga-projects such as NEOM and The Red Sea Project are supporting Saudi Arabia's twin goals of attracting investment and stimulating economic diversification. A rise in non-oil exports between 2017...

Market Profile Video

Highlights from The Report: Bahrain 2023

Fiscal sustainability measures are bearing fruit, with the kingdom posting its largest current account surplus in decades in 2022, at 15.4% of GDP, resulting from a 52% increase in government revenue.

Market Profile Video

Oman leverages non-oil sector development to propel economic growth

Oxford Business Group has launched The Report: Oman 2023, highlighting how the sultanate is diversifying its economy, and accelerating privatisation and Omanisation. Supported by a robust...

Market Profile Video

Kuwait’s strategy to enable private sector-led growth and diversification

Guided by the New Kuwait 2035 vision, Kuwait is undergoing social and economic reforms designed to achieve a diversified private sector-led economy and a more sustainable future...

Market Profile Video

Saudi Arabia’s economy is positioned for growth in the coming years

Oxford Business Group has launched The Report: Saudi Arabia 2022. This Market Profile video highlights how the Kingdom’s diversified approach to economic development is helping to position it as one of the fastest-growing G20 economies in 2022.

Market Profile Video

Highlights from The Report: Bahrain 2022

Elevated oil prices are helping Bahrain rebound from the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, and driving an economic expansion that is expected to continue through 2022 and into the coming years. With some $30bn in infrastructure projects in the pipeline, the country is seeking to strengthen its position as a regional logistics destination.

Sharjah’s path to a sustainable future through sector diversification and green investment
Abu Dhabi’s economy thrives, fuelled by global partnerships and market innovation
Highlights from The Report: Saudi Arabia 2023
Highlights from The Report: Bahrain 2023
Oman leverages non-oil sector development to propel economic growth
Kuwait’s strategy to enable private sector-led growth and diversification
Saudi Arabia’s economy is positioned for growth in the coming years
Highlights from The Report: Bahrain 2022
 

Education: Shaping the Future of the Middle East

Economic News

How has the pandemic changed university course offerings in the Gulf?

With the current semester winding up, many higher education institutions in the Gulf are already planning an expanded offering of courses for the next academic year – with a focus on supporting the needs of the region’s post-pandemic economy. As OBG detailed earlier this year, the economic fallout of Covid-19 has encouraged higher education institutions in the Gulf to adapt their course offerings to help drive their respective countries’ economic recoveries. The coronavirus pandemic both highlighted and heightened the importance...


Covid-19 Response Report

Report: Will digitalisation in UAE higher education spur longer-term economic growth?

The UAE’s robust current account balance cushioned the economy against the twin global challenges of Covid-19 and the oil price drop in 2020. Lockdowns were implemented to protect public health, and Emiratis migrated online. UAE residents were ranked as the best ICT users globally in an October 2020 study from the Portulans Institute, due in part to a number-one ranking for school internet access, underlining the agility of UAE education stakeholders. Continued innovation within the UAE’s education segment will be...


Interview

Hussain Ibrahim Al Hammadi, UAE Minister of Education: Interview

On boosting innovation and entrepreneurship


Economic News

Can higher education institutions shape the Gulf’s post-Covid-19 economy?

As Gulf countries look to rebound from the disruption of 2020, higher education institutions are playing a key role in meeting the needs of the region’s post-coronavirus economy. Universities, schools and technical colleges were among the first institutions to innovate following the outbreak of the virus. While many were initially obliged to close, educational institutions quickly adapted to the new situation by making learning materials available online, thus enabling students to continue their studies remotely...


Covid-19 Response Report

Report: How has the UAE responded to Covid-19, and what does it mean for higher education?

The UAE’s efforts to develop an advanced higher education sector, coupled with its robust fiscal position, meant it entered the pandemic from a position of relative strength. This report focuses on the response of policymakers to the challenges presented by Covid-19, and looks in detail at how the higher education sector adapted to the new reality...


Economic News

How are universities driving the transition towards net zero in emerging markets?

Higher education institutions have a leading role to play in helping emerging economies adapt to the effects of climate change, as well as to meet their net-zero goals. This role can be roughly divided into two key areas: implementing best practices and leading on research. At the end of October, as part of the Times Higher Education Climate Impact Forum, 1050 universities from 68 countries made a series of commitments to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Over the course of the preceding year, many of these institutions...


Focus Report

Report: Will e-learning transform tertiary education in Saudi Arabia?

Saudi Arabia’s tertiary education system is underpinned by a strong network of 28 public universities accounting for 81% of student enrolment. However, the ongoing process of economic diversification is contributing to a rise in admission to vocational training institutes and private universities – helping to raise standards across the board and ensure programmes are attuned to market needs. As new economic growth engines emerge, skills development will increasingly be viewed as a lifelong pursuit that is not limited...


Latest Covid-19 Reports - Gulf

Covid-19 Response Report

Report: Can agri-tech offer sustainable solutions to GCC food security challenges?

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. Prior to Covid-19, imports accounted for 85% of the...

Covid-19 Recovery Roadmap

Report: What is the post-Covid-19 outlook for GCC chemicals and petrochemicals?

The GCC chemicals and petrochemicals industry demonstrated considerable resilience in the face of Covid-19 and oil price fluctuations. With economic diversification a leading concern for GCC...

Future Readiness Report

Report: Is the Gulf shipping and logistics sector future-ready?

In the wake of a period of severe disruption to global trade, Gulf shipping and logistics companies are adapting to government efforts to boost self-sufficiency in the region, while also investing in...

Covid-19 Response Report

Report: Was Oman's banking sector resilient enough to support economic stability during the pandemic?

Oman’s economy was heavily reliant on hydrocarbons when the pandemic began, creating fiscal pressures as demand and prices fell. However, the country was able to rely on a well-capitalised and regulated financial...

Post-Pandemic Prospects Report

Report: How is the Covid-19 pandemic re-shaping the global oilfield services sector?

The global oil industry had yet to recover from the price crash of 2014-15 by the time the pandemic hit in early 2020, which meant that upstream operators and service providers were already grappling with...

Covid-19 Response Report

Report: How is the pandemic shaping the future of Abu Dhabi’s health care sector?

Sustained investment and foresighted policy initiatives meant that the UAE and Abu Dhabi had developed a modern and effective public health system prior to the pandemic, supported by a growing number of...

Business Journey Report

Report: What are the post-pandemic prospects for Qatar’s start-ups and SMEs?

Sharjah entered the pandemic period in a resilient position thanks to a highly diversified and digitalised economy supported by strong fundamentals at the national level. With the emirate benefitting from...

Covid-19 Recovery Roadmap

Report: How can Bahrain stand out as a post-pandemic investment destination?

Bahrain entered the pandemic with the most diversified economy in the GCC, which meant it was not overly susceptible to the sharp drop in the oil market. The country also benefits from some...

Covid-19 Response Report

Report: What are the post-pandemic prospects for Sharjah's economy?

With the emirate benefitting from one of the world’s highest vaccination rates, it is well positioned to enjoy a robust economic recovery supported by investment flows into high-potential segments such as ICT...

Covid-19 Recovery Roadmap

Report: How can Dubai’s economy bounce back from Covid-19?

Dubai’s diversified and digitalised economy was able to absorb the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic relatively well. The emirate enjoys some of the fastest internet speeds and most advanced...

Report: Can agri-tech offer sustainable solutions to GCC food security challenges?
Report: What is the post-Covid-19 outlook for GCC chemicals and petrochemicals?
Report: Is the Gulf shipping and logistics sector future-ready?
Report: Was Oman's banking sector resilient enough to support economic stability during the pandemic?
Report: How is the Covid-19 pandemic re-shaping the global oilfield services sector?
Report: How is the pandemic shaping the future of Abu Dhabi’s health care sector?
Report: What are the post-pandemic prospects for Qatar’s start-ups and SMEs?
Report: How can Bahrain stand out as a post-pandemic investment destination?
Report: What are the post-pandemic prospects for Sharjah's economy?
Report: How can Dubai’s economy bounce back from Covid-19?
 
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