Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) countries will collectively earn US$4.7 trillion (Dh17.2trn) from oil by 2020, based upon a steady $50-per-barrel price. The projected earnings constitute a sum that is two and a half times their collective oil earnings over the past 14 years, according to Global Megatrends 2009, a report by Ernst & Young.
Many experts expect oil-fuelled Middle East economies to ride out the current global financial implosion even as some sectors succumb to the shockwaves.
“Regional economies are well-placed to capitalise on opportunities emerging from the crisis… [and] these increased earnings will allow [them] to buy additional assets globally or finance local infrastructure developments as many other economies stall,” says Phil Gandier, Head of Transactions Advisory Services at Ernst & Young Middle East.
“Their relatively moderate regulation and tax regimes will be even bigger attractions as European and US business environments tighten under the pressure of the ongoing global recession,” he added.