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The Gulf is an indispensable oil region

For the world’s essential energy-producing region, weak oil prices are an opportunity

As long as the world needs oil, it will need the Gulf. Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the six members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), sit atop 405 billion barrels of recoverable oil, almost a quarter of the world’s total. In 2013 they accounted for about the same share of its supply. For all the glamour in North America’s energy sector, Saudi Arabia, the GCC’s dominant member, remains the market’s crucial oil exporter, with unrivalled influence over global crude prices and therefore over the world’s economy. Its decision at the November 2014 Opec meeting to adopt a passive role in the market – to take its “hand off the tiller”, in the w

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