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As an attempt to draw upon the populist political platform erected by Abdel Fatah El Sisi in 2014, the Tahya Misr Fund was set up to breathe life into a faltering economy. Three years on, questions remain about its raison d’etre of Tahya Misr as well as those who stands to benefit most from it.
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European investments in Iran are following a tentative course, primarily due to political uncertainty from across the pond. Should the issue of the nuclear deal finally be put to bed in Washington, this may trigger widespread investment. However, President Trump’s hawkish administration could still throw a spanner in the works.
Sources suggests that Egypt’s ‘deep state’ is lobbying to improve its reputation in the United States. By agreeing contracts with various PR firms, the mukhabarat is now assuming a role that was once upon a time the remit of official state institutions. This highlights the bloated role Egypt’s intelligence community now plays, which may have profound implications on the economic and investment prospects.
As Rouhani presses on with forming his new cabinet in Iran, the composition of his government is worth reviewing. The President will face a number of political battles in Tehran over the next four years and is thus reliant upon those within the cabinet: a team comprised of those he trusts most as well as those who sit at the table as a result of compromises made within the establishment.
Russia and the KRG have enthusiastically announced a new deal for oil exploitation and commercialisation. While, officially, the economic benefits of this deal are being highlighted, their political implications are much more important. This deal remains obscure and politically exposed to the Kurdish power struggle.
With Youssef Chahed ramping up the fight against corruption in Tunisia, many questions are left unasnwered. Chief among them is the Prime Minister’s intentions behind the crackdown and to what end it will be pursued going forward. The fate of the country’s businessmen exposed to the previous regime will also be determined.
Turkey and Qatar have come to the political rescue of each other twice in the space of 12 months; following the failed coup against Erdoğan in July 2016 and now as Tamim Al Thani faces a regional boycott. For investors, the bloated influence of the political sphere on commercial developments must be noted now more than ever.
In Tehran, political forces may soon turn against one another, leaving onlookers to speculate over who will suffer most in the subsequent fall-out. The President and Supreme Leader each wield considerable power in Iran, but Khamenei’s enduring influence may prove too much for the elected executive during the battle for control.
With the Egyptian presidential election less than a year away, informal power plays are already at work. Elections may give legitimacy to the idea of a democratic political transition but this is merely a façade, designed to conceal the shadow forces influencing the real outcome.
Historically, Syria has represented a safe space for armed groups that follow the regime’s line with regards to domestic and international policies. These groups are somewhat of a double-edged sword that have spread terrorism and instability in the region, to the detriment of even the Syrian regime.
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The recent political appointments in Saudi Arabia cap a period of over two years defined by change. King Salman will go down in history as ‘the reformer’ due to the volume, and audacity, of the political reshuffling he has overseen – ostensibly to force through political and economic change befitting of Saudi Arabia in the 21st century.
Sitting at the intersection of arguably the world’s busiest sea route, Egypt’s maritime sector is a flow with investment possibilities. However, opportunities must not be considered without first understanding the lay of the land. Given that the maritime sector in particular is notoriously opaque in most EMEA markets, the need to understand its governance model in Egypt is paramount.