Newsletter Archive

Below are all the Arab Digest newsletters going back to 17 June 2013

Binance Bahrain launch

Crypto castles in the Gulf

Summary: Gulf states are making deals with the king of crypto as they compete to establish global dominance of a market that with the collapse of FDX has significant questions hanging over it.

Libyan prime minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

Libya’s black swans for 2023: Part 2

Summary: the fighting in Libya may have all but ended in 2022 but that may be the calm before a coming storm as contestation grows over gas rights in the eastern Mediterranean.

Haftar Russia

Libya’s black swans for 2023: Part 1

Summary: the fighting may have all but ended in 2022 but that may be the calm before a coming storm as Washington prepares to challenge the Wagner group in Africa and contestation grows over gas rights in the eastern Mediterranean.

J Cleverly in UAE 2020

GCC and UK: opportunity beckons

Summary: the UK has the opportunity to deepen trade relations with the GCC states who, even though China beckons, will need a strong counter-balance with the West to fully realise the goal of diversifying their economies away from hydrocarbons dependency.


Summary: as a key defendant agrees to cooperate fully with Belgium prosecutors, the full extent to which the EU parliament was allegedly corrupted by Qatar and Morocco is set to be revealed.

Lord Ahmad Palestine

Israel and Palestine: why Britain matters

Summary: Britain bears a significant responsibility for the Palestine-Israel conflict but successive governments have chosen to ignore that responsibility while giving strong support to Israel. A distinguished Arabist and retired British diplomat argues that has to change and the first step is to recognise the state of Palestine.

President Sisi and German Economic Affairs Minister Brigitte Zypries

Yesterday’s allies, today’s anxious lenders

Summary: the lenders who are bankrolling Egypt’s President Sisi, principally the Gulf states, are growing uneasy as Egypt’s currency woes and ever-mounting debt signal an economic crash is on the horizon. 

A rainbow over Algiers [photo credit: @tergeek]

LGBTQ+ Algeria: rainbow repression 

Summary: Algerian authorities unleash a campaign against rainbow symbols; the Algerian LGBTQ+ community continues to be subjected to discrimination, abuse and sometimes violence. 

A sombre World Bank forecast

Summary: 2023 promises to be a very difficult year for many MENA countries with only the Gulf states escaping the long shadow of a deep economic slowdown.

Saudi industry minister Davos

Oil: The Bulls Are Back In Town

Summary: OPEC+ is due to convene next in early June but with a bull market resurgent the date may need to be pushed forward; however, right now is not the time. 

The UAE’s COP28 finesse

Summary: with the appointment of the boss of the UAE’s national oil company to head up COP28, critics say it’s a sell out to big oil interests while others argue the choice of Sultan al-Jaber is a shrewd and positive move.

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