Commentary & Analysis

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Commentary & Analysis

The Gulf Research Center regularly publishes independent commentary and analysis on the most pressing issues impacting the Gulf region. Sign up for updates and to subscribe.

2022-04-12
Assessment of Saudi Policy in the Horn of Africa

Saudi Arabia has historically maintained positive bilateral relations across the African continent and continues to enjoy political/economic relations across the Sub-S ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2022-04-11
Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Policies

The U.S.-Saudi relationship is currently undergoing a mutual “recalibration” process. From Saudi Arabia’s perspective, there continues to be increased wariness and doubts abo ...

Writer: Amnah Mosly
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2022-02-23
Providing Maritime Security in the Gulf Region

The Gulf Research Center (GRC) held a webinar focused on the fragile security environment in the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, and the Southern Red Sea. Dr. Chris ...

Writer: Webinar Summary
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2022-03-17
The Crisis of Ukraine in the Gulf: Security, Economic, and Energy Repercussions

The war in Ukraine has been going on for almost three weeks, and its effects have been felt worldwide. For the Middle East and the Gulf, the conflict comes at a time when the ...

Writer: GRC
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2022-03-15
The Role of Think Tanks in Public Policy: The Case of the Gulf WMD Free Zone Project

Conceptualising the ideaThink Tanks play an important role in taking a step back and looking at a problem from a variety of angles. A major part of our work at the Gulf Researc ...

Writer: Dr. Christian Koch,Ghassan Shams,Layla Ali
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2022-03-01
Prospects of Saudi led mediation efforts towards the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

On February 20th 2022, Africa’s largest Dam project, the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) began generating electricity for Ethiopia at a current operational capacity of 3 ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2022-02-16
U.S.-Saudi Relations: Recalibrations

U.S.-Saudi relations are currently undergoing a fundamental re-evaluation, which has implications for the broader strategic orientation of both countries when it comes to the ...

Writer: Amnah Mosly
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2022-02-03
GCC-China Relations and the Visit of the Foreign Ministers of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain to China

The five-day visit in January 2022 of the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, and Bahrain, as well as the GCC Secretary General to China was unprecedented in na ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2022-02-01
Green Mobility in the GCC: Challenges and Opportunities 28

Webinar Summary On January 12, 2022, the Gulf Research Center held a webinar discussion on the topic of “Green Mobility in the GCC: Opportunities and Challenges.” The o ...

Writer: GRC
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2022-01-18
To Overcome the Flaws of the JCPOA, a Gulf WMD Free Zone should be pursued

Current efforts to bring back to life the Joint Comprehensive Plan for Action (JCPOA) in Vienna are clouded in uncertainty. The current drawn-out negotiation process alongsid ...

Writer: Mustafa Alani and Christian Koch
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2022-01-13
Saudi-Iranian Relations: Regional Implications

Saudi Arabia continues to view Iran as its main strategic challenge in the region. This applies both to the bilateral relationship and the wider Middle East regional theatre wh ...

Writer: Layla Ali
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2022-01-13
Saudi Arabia: Women and Youth Empowerment

Over the last five years, the Saudi government has installed a range of reform initiatives under the Vision 2030 plan to develop a sustainable diverse economy by leveraging the ...

Writer: Kinda Bakr
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2022-01-10
Summary of GRC online webinar “From Glasgow COP 26 to Abu Dhabi COP 28” Dec 15, 2021 04:00 PM Riyadh

The focus on the webinar was on the main outcome of the Climate talks in Glasgow in November 2021 and its implications for the next two COP Meetings which will in fact be held ...

Writer: GRC
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2021-12-01
Ukraine-Saudi Arabia Relations: Challenges and Prospects For Further Cooperation Joint paper - ADASTRA and The Gulf Research Center Iryna Zaporizka (Researcher) and Kinda A. Bakr ( Researcher)

Ukraine-Saudi Arabia Relations: Challenges and Prospects for Further CooperationUkraine and Saudi Arabia share friendly relations that have been developing since 1991 whe ...

Writer: Iryna Zaporizka, Kinda Bakr
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2021-06-01
Saudi Arabia’s Stance on the Gaza Crisis

Ever since the Arab Spring, it became clear that the primary battleground in the region is not between Arabs and Israel but between regimes and their people, or more so betwe ...

Writer: Layla Ali
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2021-06-01
40th Anniversary of the Gulf Cooperation Council

In May 2021, the nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) celebrate the 40th anniversary since its establishment. Throughout the decades, the governments of the GCC ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2021-06-01
Sudan: Initial Steps to Recovery

On May 17,2021, France held a conference of Heads of State and Government in Paris, chaired by Emmanuel Macron, in support of Sudan’s democratic transition. The conference i ...

Writer: Kinda Bakr
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2020-05-04
Saudi Arabia - India: Strategic Partnership

1.    Introduction SaudiArabia and India share friendly relations reflecting historical economic and socio-cultural ties. Diplomatic ties were initially est ...

Writer: Kinda Bakr
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2021-12-04
Green Gulf Report and the Saudi Green Initiative

Climate change poses many significant threats to the security and stability of not just any particular region (though some are at a more immediate risk than others) but to th ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2021-04-07
Saudi Arabia - Georgia: Realities and Opportunities

Given the territorial proximity, the regional actors of the Middle East have always been interested in Georgia and the South Caucasus as an opening route to Europe. Since th ...

Writer: Layla Ali
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2021-04-06
Challenges and Opportunities: Saudi-Russian Relations

Saudi-Russian relations date back to 1932 when the former USSR became one of the first countries that formally recognized and established diplomatic relations with Saudi Arab ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2021-02-01
Back to the Ottoman future. The Framing of Turkish Foreign Policy in the Saudi Media

With the informal boycott of Turkish products and business ties in October 2020, Saudi-Turkish relations are taking another hit, causing economic damage in Turkey and leavin ...

Writer: Bruno Schmidt-Feuerheerd
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2021-01-27
Prospects for EU-US-GCC Trilateral Cooperation to Counter Iranian Threats

On the 21st of January 2021, world leaders welcomed the inauguration of the 46th President of the United States, Joseph Biden. The period between the election results and the ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2020-12-02
Opportunities and Challenges for Saudi-European Relations

Relations between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Europe in 2020 continue to be marked by difficulties from both sides. For Europe, Saudi Arabia’s human rights record and the ...

Writer: Christian Koch
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2020-11-24
Focus on a GCC Case Study: How Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 can Drive “Lifelong Learning” towards Creating a Knowledge Economy in the Post-COVID Era

A focus on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as a case study amongst the Gulf countries underlines how it has come a long way in the past century – the United Nations in 2010 recog ...

Writer: Dr. Asma Siddiki
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2020-11-16
The U.S. Presidential Election and the Impact of a Biden Administration on U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East

Introduction The significance of the U.S. election on a global level cannot be understated as the U.S. alone controls approximately 25% of world GDP, retains the ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2020-11-08
Design for Hybrid Threats – Be Purposeful and Fast

Imagine that your country has an opponent or even a friend who does not fully agree with the established policies of your government. He is technologically well-positioned a ...

Writer: Walter L. Christman and Ralph Thiele
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2020-11-03
GRC Economic Webinar Summary: “The Future of the Gulf Economies in the Age of Sparsity”

On October 28, 2020, the Gulf Research Center invited a group of six distinguished panelists to participate in a digital roundtable discussion to address the issue of the fut ...

Writer: Dr. John Sfakianakis
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2020-11-01
T20 2020 Journey

In mid-2019 the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC) and the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies (KFCRIS) were appointed co-hosts of ...

Writer: Dr. Fahad M. Alturki
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2020-10-29
Diplomacy in the time of the coronavirus pandemic

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic has affected diplomatic operations across the world. More focus has been shifted to the diplomatic management of the Covid-19 crisis. F ...

Writer: Layla Ali
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2020-10-20
US-Saudi Relations and the Visit of Prince Faisal Bin Farhan Al Saud, Foreign Minister of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to Washington D.C

Background:On October 14, 2020, the Saudi Foreign Minister visited the United States to launch the two nations' strategic dialogue, which serves to strengthen the long-stand ...

Writer: Ghassan Shams
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2020-10-05
Stepping away from the brink in the Eastern Mediterranean

Europeans face a conundrum in Libya and the Eastern Mediterranean. On the one hand, they are called on to respond to what they view as Turkey’s violations of international l ...

Writer: Dr. Nathalie Tocci
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2020-10-04
GRC Energy Webinar Summary: “Should GCC national oil companies target net zero emissions by 2050?”

On September 28, 2020, the Gulf Research Center invited a group of nine renowned energy experts from seven different countries to participate in a webinar with the goal of an ...

Writer: Prof. Giacomo Luciani
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2020-09-22
The German UN Security Council Presidency: Implications for the Gulf Region

On June 8, 2018, Germany was elected as a member of the United Nations Security Council for the 2019-2020 period. During this two-year term, Germany also held the Presidency ...

Writer: Dr. Christian Koch
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2020-09-14
Establish Geographic Inclusivity in the Security Council

The United Nations continues to champion multilateralism. Yet because the future of the multilateral order stands in jeopardy in the wake of criticism that international orga ...

Writer: Dr. Abdulaziz Sager
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2020-09-05
Safer: An Environmental Bomb off Yemen's Coast

The 45-year-old Safer Floating Tank, which is a neglected floating oil storage vessel loaded with approximately 1.1 million barrels of crude oil is anchored about 60km north ...

Writer: Dr. Mohamed Abdelraouf
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2020-09-03
The US-China Battle for Influence in Global Multilateral Organizations: What the Recent WHO Clash Means for the Upcoming G20 Summit and the Future of Multilateralism

The outset of COVID-19 and its impact on the G20 processAs one of its primary responsibilities upon assuming the Group of 20 (G20) presidency in December 2019, Saudi Arabia ...

Writer: Aileen Byrne
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2020-09-02
Russian-Chinese Security Architecture in the Gulf: Role of China, Russia & Iran in the Gulf

As an alternative to the U.S. security umbrella, China envisages a broadening of security arrangements in the Gulf region with the backing of Russia, based on a collective s ...

Writer: Layla Ali
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