Wednesday, January 30, 2008

From Thomas Barnett's Blog - very interesting - and a good sign

SPECIAL REPORT: “Boomtime in lands of oil and money: The rise in the oil price is driving investment growth,” by Roula Khalaf, Financial Times, 20 November 2007, p. 1.

ARTICLE: “The Construction Site Called Saudi Arabia,” by Jad Mouawad, New York Times, 20 January 2008, p. B1.

ARTICLE: “Who’s Afraid of Mideast Money?” by Emily Thornton and Stanley Reed, BusinessWeek, 21 January 2008, p. 042.

The first story is cited just for the numbers. The Gulf Co-operation Council Six (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, Oman and Bahrain) are expected to hit oil export earnings in the range of $400b this year and $450b next year.

Between 2005 and 2020, it’s estimated that GCC will bank $3 trillion. About half is expected to stay in region, a quarter goes to the wider region, and a quarter hits the global streets looking for returns through SWFs. Roughly $1t is slated for local investment, which is why the region starts to rival Asia for its construction crane demand. Indeed, a lot of Turks, Indians and Chinese are doing the construction in the region, so they fight over worker bodies too.

The second story profiles a gargantuan petrochem plant going up in Saudi Arabia that will link the economy to a wide variety of global production chains, like cells, TVs, and thousands of other products. This factory is but a blip in Saudi Arabia’s planned $500 billion in internal diversification investment. The House is building four massive “economic cities” that intend to create about 1.6 million jobs.

Aramco wants to become a bigger Exxon Mobil, a serious supplier of petrochem products as well as oil.

No more “idle mode” for the Saudi economy, and yes, that’s a good sign.

So should we be afraid of all this oil money?

Like just about anybody else hoping to get deeply plugged into the global economy, Saudi Arabia and the GCC are running desperate races against their own demographics and the inevitability that the advanced world must move past oil—for environmental reasons alone.

The oil producers are facing their last great swing at the ball. Failure is really not an option here.

4 comments:

Sean said...

hey guys, ok to reprint but when you do, link to the post, ok? thanks!

Tom's webmaster

Sean said...

oops, i see you did in the title. my bad. disregard and thanks for the links.

best,

Sean

Mosihe said...

no worries Sean, we are huge fans of Tom's blog. we even linked him in our links.

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