Qatar: no movement on the dispute with the four. Increasing Qatari confidence, outward investment, arms purchases. Mediation going nowhere, but Qatar itself a mediator.
The Fourth Industrial Revolution impacts on every country in the Arab world but policymaking in response to new fintech like blockchain and cryptocurrencies varies widely.
Iraq and the six GCC states share the Gulf with Iran and with each other. In many cases, maritime boundaries between them have been agreed; in other cases, disputes remain. Where offshore oil and gas deposits do not fall neatly under the sovereignty of one state, cooperative arrangements have often been instituted.
President Xi’s visit to Abu Dhabi marks a change in Chinese policy, with the Middle East a key link in China’s belt and road initiative, and his own emergence as a world leader, not afraid to address problems such as Palestine or Qatar vs. the 4.
resets Turkish government, with power moving to the executive presidency. Activity at home and abroad. Turkey ” great and strong” but can he get what he wants from Trump? EU and others react cautiously.
For Arab states, controlling their borders is often a challenging business. Cross-border cooperation and physical measures, aided by the latest technology, may help. Beggar-my-neighbour policies certainly won’t.
Kuwait supporting Saudi Arabia, for example over oil production, but with some reservations and with an eye on other alliances. Spat with the Philippines over expat workers.
Bahrain dependent on Saudi Arabia and UAE support. Human rights – mixed picture. Trial balloon on Israel.
Tunisia cooperating with the IMF, rewarded with a World Bank loan. Political infighting, drawn into the Qatar vs. four dispute.
different from oil. Vitally important to some MENA economies – Qatar, Algeria, Oman, Bahrain, Egypt.