By Luigi Narbone and Valeria Talbot, ISPI, 2015
Over the last decade the Gulf monarchies emerged as increasingly proactive players. The steady rise in hydrocarbon prices, up to 2014, has represented a significant source of wealth for these oil and gas producers, enabling them to maintain sustained domestic economic growth rates and high public expenditures, on the one hand, and to invest heavily in key sectors both domestically and abroad, on the other. Gulf Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs), which amount to 40 per cent of the world’s total SWF assets, have been diversifying and expanding investments into the Americas, Europe and especially Asia. Futuristic cities such as Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Doha have become the symbols of the Gulf’s growth driven by oil wealth, which transformed these states into important financial hubs and international business centres.
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