Remember those JCPOA revival talks?

Summary: what seemed a certainty has now bogged down and the Vienna talks are at risk of stalemate with America’s Gulf allies finding themselves caught between a rock and a hard place, on the one hand worried that either the US will do a deal that gives away too much and leaves them in the lurch or on the other that a no deal scenario will further heighten their regional insecurity fears.

Russia/Ukraine and the real opportunity for MENA energy producers

Summary: whether the Ukraine crisis justifies the current outbreak of bullishness over oil remains uncertain. But what it almost certainly does do is open up new opportunities for the majority of MENA’s hydrocarbons producers.

Qatar and the middle way

Summary: when Qatar’s emir visits the White House 31 January he and President Biden will have pressing matters to address including LNG exports to Europe as worries mount that  Russia’s Putin may turn off the gas taps.

The MENA 2022 economic outlook

Summary: this year poses big challenges to the economies of the MENA region, many of which are already in deep trouble while a wealthy few will use their hydrocarbons revenues to ride out whatever rough weather comes their way.

The JCPOA revival: Iran seeks to maintain the status quo

Summary: Iran is seeking to maintain its successful asymmetric warfare advantages by attempting to secure a continuation of the status quo in Vienna, happy to trade short-term acquisition of nuclear weaponry for relief from sanctions and continued progress with its programme of regional interventions.  With the United States pulling back, Abu Dhabi and Riyadh are preparing themselves to be able to disrupt that status quo should it threaten them.

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