The Middle East is one of the most culturally and economically diverse regions in the world. Unfortunately, the recent Arab Spring followed by terror attacks and insurgency have colored most people’s views about this vibrant region.
However, do a little research and you’ll learn that there’s more to this area than meets the eye. The Middle East is ripe with investment opportunities if you know where to look. While the region is collectively known for producing and exporting oil, there are other numerous economic activities going on. These vary from country to country as each has a different area of specialization.
The impact and influence the oil industry has on the Middle East economy cannot be overlooked. It is the main source of wealth in the area and countries such as Saudi Arabia are heavily dependent on it – more than 70% of the country’s government revenue in 2015 came from oil. This dependence exposes such countries to economic instability every time oil prices fluctuate. As a result, most countries in the region have made considerable efforts in recent years to diversify their economies away from their dependence on oil.
Diversification and economic expansion
Investors have long shied away from seeking out opportunities in the Middle East, thanks to civil unrest and political instability in some countries. This is gradually changing as the region settles and begins to work on the economy.
The investment potential in the Middle East was brought to light by Iran’s landmark nuclear deal. Economic sanctions against the country were also lifted, sparking an economic resurgence. Other than oil, the country also has thriving telecommunications, mining, agricultural and banking industries in which to invest.
Furthermore, a country such as Dubai has positioned itself as a premier tourist destination, attracting considerable foreign investment. This has boosted the country’s property and tourism sectors, leading to greater economic growth. Qatar is also experiencing an economic boost thanks to winning the bid to host the World Cup in 2022. This has heightened activity in the country’s construction sector.
Thanks to the efforts of Fahad Al Rajaan and other local investors in the region, the property market in countries such as Kuwait is booming. These professionals have worked tirelessly to invest in their countries and to promote them as viable investment destinations to the world, and this is finally paying off. For more information on Kuwait’s real estate sector and other investment opportunities, follow Mr. Al Rajaan on Twitter.
Other viable investment sectors in the Middle East include the booming science and technology industry (especially in Israel), education, healthcare and infrastructure.
Although some countries in the Middle East have heightened insecurity, political uncertainty and weak economic growth, others are out to attract investors. All is not lost as some of these countries continue to be key trade partners for the UK, the US and other nations in the West. Keep an eye out for hidden investment opportunities in fairly stable countries such as Kuwait, Jordan, Dubai or Turkey, and you’ll be glad you took the risk.