No resolution of the Qatar vs. four dispute – propaganda continues. Qatar surviving well. US talks up the need for unity. Active foreign policy continues.
Saudi Arabia may or may not continue to bend to President Donald Trump’s wish to see the oil price go lower still. But there are good reasons to suppose that, whatever Opec decides on 6 December, the trend for the next few weeks at least may be upwards.
Trump has blamed OPEC for the high oil price, but his efforts to shut off Iranian oil may be more to blame – with uncertain political consequences.
Arab states with Mediterranean coastlines have claimed various forms of jurisdiction over the sea lying off their coasts. On occasion, this has caused disputes between them and their neighbours. Some of these disputes have been resolved through the ICJ; others have yet to be resolved and are complicated by existing political conflicts.
different from oil. Vitally important to some MENA economies – Qatar, Algeria, Oman, Bahrain, Egypt.
Impressions of the Vienna OPEC meetings. Complicated interpretation of the final communiqué. All more or less satisfied, price likely to settle around $75. Long-term issues ducked.
OPEC plus Russia respond vaguely to Trump’s tweets – “need to keep prices down!” Russia plays it soft but everything hangs on Saudi Arabia.
Messy developments following the May election. Alliance between Sadr and Amiri not the end of the story. US and Saudi influence down, Iranian up.
Unforeseen rise in the oil price. Middle East factors include Saudi requirements and expected sanctions on Iran.
Oil price up 20% in 10 weeks. Factors: OPEC, Trump, Saudi/Iran. Downside risk (shale), but upside prevailing for 2018.