Quote Originally Posted by babbittd View Post
The National is owned by the UAE Royals and edited by British newspaperman, Martin Newland. The following appeared in the Editorials section on November 8th: Let’s build with industry, not debt
"...While speculation and luxury projects may be in fashion for a season, only an economy built on work that promotes efficiency and innovation – and not just the appearance of wealth – will be able to thrive in the long term..."
The GCC and the whole of the Middle East is competing with the rest of the world, and most particularly with the Asia [Chindia] subset, in this regard.

Given its history, cultural norms, religious xenophobia [still increasing], lack of confidence in government institutions [by their own populations], deeply imbedded corruption culture, abysmal education systems, and a host of other, similar, circumstances there is absolutely no possible way that region of the world will ever be able to compete. My observation after living in the Gulf for an extended period is that the gap with the rest of the world is increasing, despite the multi-year petro-dollar fueled "infrastructure' boom.

The then-Chairman of my firm [a senior Ruling Family member] put it best a couple of years ago during a long late-night discussion I had with him on this subject. He pulled the Nokia phone from the pocket of his thobe [dishdasha], threw it on the table declaring "Tiny Finland can make these. Other than oil what do we make?".

In a globalizing world the petro-boom is the absolute worst possible thing that could have happened to them, and the "curse of oil" is being revisited upon that region once again.