27 October, 2017

GCC IN REVIEW: 23-27 October 2017

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A Weekly Publication of the main news surrounding the GCC States

Kingdom of Bahrain

Monday, 23 October—Bahrain’s government announced a package of projects including the allocation of 4,800 housing units, the construction of a solar power plant, and investments in infrastructure to develop electrical energy production and expanding Bahrain International Airport. 

Monday, 23 October—Bahrain’s capital, Manama, hosted the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (BIDEC) covering air, land and sea. Held under the patronage of King Hamad Bin Eisa Al Khalifa, the three-day conference, in its first edition, brought together more than 50 senior military and political leaders and officials from several countries and more than 180 exhibitors and international manufacturers and suppliers of the most advanced equipment, technology and military systems. The Middle East Military Alliances and Coalitions Conference (MEMAC) was held alongside BIDEC agreements and focused on the significance of dealing decisively with the rising insecurity in the region. 

Wednesday, 25 October—Bahrain’s Information Minister, Ali bin Mohammed Al-Romaihi, during his meeting with Iraq’s Ambassador to Bahrain, Nayef Al-Dilaimi, stressed Bahrain’s support for Iraq’s unity, stability and security. 

State of Kuwait

Wednesday, 25 October—Kuwait’s Ruler, Sheikh Sabah Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, has warned of dangerous complications deriving from the prolonged Gulf dispute. Kuwait’s Emir has been a leading negotiator trying to resolve intra-GCC diplomatic row. 

Thursday, 26 October—Kuwait’s National Assembly Speaker, Marzouq Al-Ghanim, announced to the public Kuwait’s current government’s resignation plans.

Sultanate of Oman

Tuesday, 24 October—The Executive President of the Central Bank of Oman, Tahir bin Salim Al Amri, stated that the Central Bank will continue to provide stimulus to the continuous growth of the Sultanate’s economic activities.

Thursday, 26 October—Royal Oman Police arrested 46 people for illegally entering the country. The number of people trying to enter into Oman illegally has increased due to the deteriorating conditions in neighbouring Yemen since 2015.

State of Qatar 

Tuesday, 24 October—Turkey’s Ambassador to Qatar, Fikret Ozer, stated that his country is seeking to further boost cooperation with Qatar in health and pharmaceutical sectors. In exchange Qatar is set to invest a further $19bn in Turkey in 2018, with $650m going to agriculture and livestock.  

Thursday, 26 October—Qatar’s Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, met with Russian Defence Minister, Sergey Shoygu. Talks during the meeting covered enhancing cooperation in the military field. The meeting also discussed the Gulf crisis and its implications for regional security, as well as developments in Syria. 

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Monday, 23 October—Iraq’s Prime Minister, Haydar Al-Abadi, attended the first meeting of the Saudi-Iraqi coordination council in Riyadh. The council covers various political, economic, security and cultural fields. The Iraqi Prime Minister stressed that he “valued highly” King Salman’s friendship and Saudi support for Iraq.

Monday, 23 October—Saudi Arabia’s government announced plans to establish a centre for leadership, discipline and building up national sustainable capacities. 

Wednesday, 25 October—Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister, Adel Al-Jubeir, evidenced the lack of commitment of Doha to implement the demands of countries calling for the fight against terrorism. Jubeir also added that the matter was up to Qatar.

Wednesday, 25 October—Saudi Arabia’s State Security listed two entities and 11 names of leaders, financiers and supporters of Al Qaeda and ISIS in Yemen. This action was taken with the participation of the US, the Co-Chair of the International Center for Combating Terrorism, and all the other participating member states.  

Thursday, 26 October—Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Salman, declared that the national oil giant, Saudi Aramco, is set to be valued more than $2 trillion. The sale of around five percent of Aramco next year is a centre piece of Vision 2030—an ambitious reform plan to diversify the Saudi economy beyond oil.  

United Arab Emirates  

Monday, 23 October—The CEO of Abu Dhabi Crude Oil Pipeline, owned by Abu Dhabi’s state-owned oil company ADNOC, will meet investors in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East ahead of a potential 144A/Regulation senior secured US dollar fixed-rate dual tranche offering, including an $800 million 12-year bullet tranche and around $2.2 billion of 30-year amortising notes.    

Thursday, 26 October—Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister and Vice-President of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Dubai, opened the Federal National Council's third regular session in the presence of Crown Princes and deputy rulers, ministers, diplomats, and senior civil and military officials. 

By Antonino Occhiuto