The Gulf Special

Will the desert rose bloom again?

Dubai is banking top dollar on Expo 2020. Will the event transform its economic geography?

he United Arab Emirates (UAE), like other countries in the GCC, faces a very challenging inhospitable desert environment but has strategically transformed itself into an economic and financial platform for a wide region spanning Africa, west and central Asia. The UAE has dealt with the natural resource curse and high dependence on oil through economic diversification, liberal economic policies (notably on labour mobility and foreign investment in the free zones), good governance, investing the proceeds of oil revenue in sovereign wealth funds and undertaking reforms to lower the cost of doing business.