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Gulf growth will demand legal back-up

Capital markets in the Gulf are rich with potential. The markets are developing rapidly, especially in the UAE, but international investors will only get involved once the requisite legal framework is in place. By Nigel Page


Where developments in Arab capital markets are concerned, it has all too often been a case of one step forward, two steps back.

Volatile oil prices and constraints on government spending have been encouraging Arab states to open up their economies to private and foreign investors. But the leisurely pace adopted owes much to the deep cash reserves of these oil-rich economies - and also to the need to support legal and regulatory structures.

Across the region, there continues to be a diversification in financing sources and a deepening in the domestic capital markets, as less reliance is placed on government funding, especially for infrastructure development.

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